Over the past 3 years of helping women, since our Happy Hormone Cottage opened its doors in August of 2009, I’ve had the great pleasure of knowing that my passion of educating women really IS what I am supposed to be doing with my life. I spent 30 years in the classroom teaching middle school children, and I’ve simply transferred that passion to educating women about natural hormone balance and their bodies. I found a niche in inner city, just loving children right where they were and coaxing them along to where they needed to be, and somewhere along the way, hopefully instilling in them the belief that I believed in them, so they could learn to believe in themselves. Working with middle years women (age 35 and over) isn’t all that different, except in this case I have to coax them along into believing in themselves when nobody else does; when their family tells them they are crazy; their mothers and grandmothers tell them “this is just the way it is; and even their health care providers aren’t all that validating much of the time.
I have learned that in no other demograhic in our society, does a group of individuals have to fight so hard to be heard, as women ages 35-death, with a hormone imbalance! I have learned that once we get women ON customized and compounded hormone therapy so they have the opportunity to actually feel better, the challenges don’t stop there. We really never know how the doctors who give their clients permission to work with us will respond when we have to do what we do. The dilemma seems to be that the mind set in current standard of care is so used to the one-size-fits-all routine, that what WE do by listening to our body’s biofeedback to adjust dosing, can be problematic to some doctors who aren’t expecting this. Is it because what we do is different? Is it because some doctors have egos, so don’t like being given suggestions on how to adjust dosing (it is not intuitive!)? Is it because some health care practitioners resent being offered direction on what to do by a compounding pharmacist? I mean, really, what IS the problem? Why can’t we just all work together with our mutual clients’ optimal health in mind, for the ultimate benefit of the client? Is it possible that this cooperative effort might be a win-win for all? We think so! And the doctors we work with who DO get what we do, and see how much better their patients finally feel, are embracing this journey with us and are a joy to work with! We need more of these health care practitioners!
I have learned that no matter how badly a client feels, and women who have been hormonally imbalanced and miserable for years, can feel pretty badly…this is NO excuse for being mean to my staff OR their doctor. We have had women call and yell at us because what we tell them may not be what they want to hear. We are a free resource center with a love for women helping women. Our goal is to listen, respect and validate our women, so to have that unhappy woman treat us meanly by yelling at us or hanging up on us is simply unacceptable. And we just got a call from a family practice doctor asking us to not send him any more clients because one of them yelled at his receptionist when she got lost and couldn’t find their office. Instead of this doctor refusing to work with just her, she has ruined it for the rest of the women who would have benefited from this doctor. I find this incredibly sad on many levels! There is just no reason to be mean and out of control—-especially when we are just trying to help (and we are a free resource center for education in this area of hormone imbalance.) And most people would be surprised to learn how very hard we have to work to find doctors who are willing to think outside the box and work with us at all, because what we do is different from traditional standard of care that is one-size-fits-all.
I have learned that just because we aren’t out to make a lot of money, this isn’t always the case. Other hormone centers cost A LOT of money and even some doctors are expensive. We have one doctor who has now stopped working with us because she can’t make enough money from our clients. Doctors make money on running expensive lab tests and selling expensive supplements. We don’t believe it is necessary to run expensive lab work monthly. We can listen to our clients’ biofeedback to work with their doctor to adjust dosing; and then have them check their hormone levels annually with an inexpensive and quick blood spot kit that checks hormone levels at the tissue level of cells. So I feel some clients are being taken advantage of because they are on a customized therapy that involves topical creams. These are the health care practitioners we weed out and no longer recommend because we do have our women’s backs. We have done this for a long time and are pretty good at what we do. So why not listen to us and be willing to learn? Being on customized bhrt does not have to be expensive. Certainly, the monthly cost of our topical creams isn’t!
I have learned that I have had to work incredibly hard to be able to help women finally feel better. I mean, if women over the age of 35 felt better, I wouldn’t be so busy. But women aren’t better. Estrogen products and antidepressants aren’t working, and haven’t ever worked for a hormone imbalance. But I have to fight conventional standard of care, big pharmaceutical companies and even the mind set of women who believe their doctor is a god, so everything she says must be correct. Really? Then why don’t we feel better as a demographic? I’m just asking this question because it needs to be asked. But make no mistake. The personal cost for this passion has come with a price. So if I knew then what I know now, would I do it all over again? I don’t know. I’d like to think so. I do know that my heart is educating women and having their backs. It is all this other “stuff” that comes with this grass roots movement that can be frustrating and painful. It is always gratifying to help women (and men) feel better and to positively impact their lives. So at the end of the day, this is all that really matters.