Hot women? When we're going through the menopause, you bet we are…
I have a confession – I'm a terrible Geordie. If it's winter, nine out of ten times I go out I wear a coat.
I know, I know, that's a shocking admission but it's true. I can't stand being cold. I've had the facility guys at work at my desk more times than I can count (not that that's much, having failed my maths O'level five times) to change the direction of the air-con. Meanwhile, from November, I don thermals more days than not and can't go to bed until Brian the hot-water-bottle-toy-dog-thing-that-you-microwave has been in for at least 15 minutes to take the chill off.
However, more recently I've been the one sitting on the train with my coat sat on my lap; the one in bed throwing the quilt off me and searching for the cold spot. I’ve been the one…
SUFFERING FROM HOT FLUSHES!!!!!!
Yes, sneakily over the past few months, the menopause has turned me into a fully-fledged Geordie with her own (over-working) central heating.
And you can stop your sniggering right now. How do I know you're sniggering? Because that's what I used to do. When I'd hear my colleagues at work complaining about being too hot due to "the change".
"How bad can being hot be?" I'd think, fastening up my cardie.
How bad? Hell bad, that's how bad.
Forget complaining about the heat on holiday when you're looking for an excuse to order a cocktail at 11am ("I need the ice, you see. I'm too warm"). This is Lucifer territory, I tell you.
It starts with a strange feeling around your body, as if all your blood has been put on the hob to warm. Then it moves into full-on attack and every part of you is bubbling, from your tippy-toes to the roots on your head.
And it is bubbling. Next time you see a pan of water on the boil, stop and offer up a prayer of respite because that's what a menopausal woman is feeling with a hot flush.
But it doesn't stop there. Oh no. You've got the sweats to come. Have you ever had your toes sweat? Well if you're a woman in her late forties, be prepared for it because every part of you – and I mean EVERY part of you – is going to try to cool you down.
So, inside you're boiling. Outside you're wet and boiling.
It also makes you a wonderful person to be around. Sit next to me on the train and add to the body heat and I can't guarantee what will happen.
Yes, beware, you could be subjected to a full British glare at its finest!
I don't have any energy for anything else, you see. Hot flushes strip you of every ounce you have. All you can think of is how hot you are and why can't you lie naked on a marble slab somewhere? I'm keeping away from the British Museum for just that reason – seriously, there is no better argument for returning the Elgin Marbles back to Greece than that there are a lot of menopausal women in London all looking for a way to cool down.
Nor is it the heat that zaps you. These lovelies have no respect for day and night and will happily erupt several times while you're sleeping. And then you're not sleeping. And nor is Mr 50 Sense.
I'm not defeated, though. I'm off to Holland & Barrett to find something that can help. I'll just have a quick search online first….
Hang on, what’s that? Lubricants? Seems there's more "fun" to come…