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Women Like Us Share Real Stories Of Menopause: Dee


Gisborne-based Dee Le Compte shares her home with her builder husband and 20-year-old son who is crazy about cars. She works at the local Bunnings looking after tradespeople and the supplies they require for their work.

She shares the most challenging moments of her menopause journey and how she’s dealt with them.


When did you first realise perimenopause had begun, Dee?

I only started experiencing any type of symptoms last year, at age 49. I got hot flushes at night and so couldn’t sleep. It was driving me crazy; I kept turning the fan on and off all of last summer.

My periods are only just beginning to go a bit weird now – one this month, none last month – it’s going like that.

Did you understand what menopause was?

Yes, I knew it was coming. I’ve had a workmate who’s been going through it for a long time. As well as that, I remember my mum going through menopause.

I have a vivid memory of my mother fainting from a powerful hot flush when I was about 13. That freaked me out, but for me, it’s only really a night time thing.

Mum experienced menopause early – in her early 40s. I think she said it was all done and dusted for her by the time she was 44.

There are girls at work who are at this time of their life, too.

We talk about menopause a lot – we’re pretty open there. I work with a broad range of ages, both young and old, so it’s pretty cool.

What have a few of your major challenges been?

It was the non-sleeping that really got me – I was turning into a grumpy old tart!

Has MenoMe contributed to your experience?

Yes, definitely. I started taking 40+ at the beginning of the year (2021), so I’ve been taking them for six or seven months now.

It’s worked well for me. I’m sleeping right through the night now. If I do wake up it’s because of my hubby’s snoring or something like that. That said, waking up seems to trigger a hot flush.

I’m recommending MenoMe to everyone. I tell everyone:

“Give it a go, you won’t know yourself.”

A big thank you to Dee for sharing her story. 🙏 

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This is the time when menstruation is well and truly over, the ovaries have stopped producing high levels of sex hormones and for many ladies, perimenopause symptoms subside.

Estrogen has protective qualities and the diminished levels mean organs such as your brain, heart and bones become more vulnerable. It’s also a key lubricant so your lips may become drier, your joints less supple and your vagina might be drier. In addition, your thyroid, digestion, insulin, cortisol and weight may alter.

At this juncture, a woman might experience an increase in the signs of reduced estrogen but she should have a decrease of perimenopause symptoms. That said, some women will experience symptoms like hot flushes for years or even the rest of their lives.


Peri = ‘near’

Most females begin to experience the symptoms of perimenopause in their mid-forties. Your progesterone levels decline from your mid-30s but it’s generally from around 40 that the rest of your sex hormones begin to follow suit. 

Perimenopause is a different experience for every woman and some women may barely notice it. The first indicators are usually changes to the monthly cycle. This means that for some ladies, this can be accompanied by things like sore breasts, mood swings, weight gain around the belly, and fatigue as time goes on.

For those with symptoms it can be a challenging time physically, mentally and emotionally.

Importantly, perimenopause lasts – on average – four to 10 years. The transition is usually a gradual process and many women enter perimenopause without realising.