Drew Barrymore and Gayle King notice the sudden indicators of perimenopause


Conversations around menopause have often been swept under the rug or discussed in low tones – which is why a number of celebrities are now talking about what specifically menopause was like for them. CBS this morning host Gayle King and actor Drew Barrymore opened up about their experiences with perimenopause by sharing the first symptoms they noticed in a new slice aired Wednesday.

A quick reminder: perimenopause (which translates to “around menopause”) simply refers to when menopause begins, and it can strike at different ages. It can start in their 30s, but most people experience it between the ages of 40 and 44, depending on the Mount Sinai Health System.

Barrymore, now 48, said the transition changed the frequency of her periods. « I realized I was in perimenopause when I started getting my period every two weeks, » she said. When King, now 68, asked her if she had a heavy flow, Barrymore replied, « Yeah, like a teenager. »

That was King’s telltale sign. « I went to the doctor because – not to get too graphic – but it looked like a crime scene, » she said. She also said she had hot flashes. As King explained, “It’s like you’re burning inside. It’s just hot, for me it was just physical heat. Then you can sometimes have dripping and profuse sweats. She joked that you can’t control when and where a hot flash will hit. « It can happen at the most inopportune times, » King said. « I’ve been on the red carpet where a photographer said, ‘Gayle, are you okay?’ I say, “It’s just a hot flash,” and they say, “Sorry, sorry, sorry.” It’s like they said something really bad about you.

That’s part of the reason King and Barrymore are trying to start more conversations about what menopause really looks like. « I’m just glad we were having this conversation because I didn’t even know the term perimenopause. [when it started for me]“, said the king.

The couple also spoke about the importance of educating all children, not just little girls, about natural bodily processes. « I don’t want little boys to say, ‘Ew,’ [when they hear about menopause] », King said. « I don’t want that because it’s something that we go through. And it’s just masculine and feminine – there are differences, and those differences are acceptable.


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