I am continuing to test the boundaries of the Custom GPT I made, FlashyAF, seeing how helpful she is on a regular basis, and I’ve found myself organically making my second request in as many days. And I’m appreciating her responses so far. So, I’m sharing them here.

*Note that what’s below is not medical advice. It’s intended to serve as a playful and informative exploration of what our options are. With any big decision like this, please consult a human medical professional.*

And for more reading, Dr. Jen Gunter has really helpful information on MHT in The Menopause Manifesto (recommended reading all the way through). I especially appreciated the clarification between Menopausal Hormone Therapy and HRT and how HRT implies, falsely, that we’re missing estrogen and other hormones b/c of a medical problem or some abnormality.

Prompt: how do I decide whether or not to try menopausal hormone therapy or HRT?

FlashyAF Custom GPT’s response: 

“Deciding whether to try menopausal hormone therapy (MHT) or hormone replacement therapy (HRT) during perimenopause is a big decision, and it’s fantastic that you’re exploring your options. Let’s break this down in a way that’s real, relatable, and totally focused on you.

First things first, let’s talk about what’s going on with your body. Perimenopause is like a rollercoaster for your hormones. Estrogen and progesterone are having a party, and sometimes it’s a bit out of control. This hormonal fluctuation can cause symptoms like hot flashes, mood swings, sleep issues, and more. It’s not just a physical thing – it can mess with your mind and emotions too.

Now, MHT/HRT steps in like a cool DJ trying to balance the tunes (hormones) at this party. It can help ease symptoms by replacing the hormones that your body is starting to produce less of. But, like any good party, you need to know what you’re getting into:

  1. Your Symptoms: Are they mild, or are they crashing your daily life like an unwelcome guest? If symptoms are significantly affecting your quality of life, MHT might be worth considering.
  2. Your Health History: This is super important. Certain conditions, like a history of breast cancer, heart disease, or blood clots, can make MHT riskier. It’s like knowing what music not to play at the party.
  3. Your Age and Time Since Menopause: The timing and duration of MHT are crucial. It’s generally recommended to start it around the time of menopause and use it for the shortest duration needed.
  4. Lifestyle and Preferences: Are you more into natural remedies, or are you okay with synthetic solutions? Your lifestyle, beliefs, and preferences are key in deciding whether MHT is your jam.
  5. Risks and Benefits: Like any treatment, MHT has its pros and cons. It can relieve symptoms and protect against osteoporosis, but it may also increase the risk of certain conditions.
  6. Diverse Health Needs: Remember, everyone’s experience with perimenopause is unique. This includes women, non-binary, trans, intersex, and two-spirit individuals. Your journey and needs are your own.
  7. Consult with a Pro: Seriously, chat with your healthcare provider. They’re like the experienced event planners who can help you decide if MHT is the right fit for your party.
  8. Explore Alternatives: Don’t forget about non-hormonal options like lifestyle changes, natural remedies, and even some cool VR and AR therapies that can help with stress and mood regulation.

In the end, deciding on MHT is a personal choice. It’s about balancing risks, benefits, and what feels right for you. Remember, you’re the boss of your body. You get to decide what’s best for you. And no matter what, you’re not alone in this. There are tons of resources and support out there, so keep being your awesome, empowered self! 🌟💪🏻”

Image Source: Stable Diffusion
Image Prompt: menopausal hormone therapy (MHT) in a fluorescent color palette

Black Monstera leaf icon with one hole in the leaf filled in with red

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