ULRIKA Jonsson has opened up about how she confused her menopause symptoms with dementia.
The newly-single TV star revealed her third husband Brian Monet – whom she is in the process of divorcing – "didn't care" about her distress at having severe memory loss in her 40s.
In a piece for the Daily Mail, the 51-year-old explained how she had been struggling to remember things, as well as suffering with insomnia, anxiety, inexplicable weight gain and discomfort in the nether regions.
"Close to tears I told [my friend] that my brain often felt as though it was turning to mush, with a horrible fog that would cloud my thoughts and steal away the words for everyday objects," the mum-of-four revealed of how she had been convinced her menopause was early-onset dementia.
Her memory lapses rattled her, and she added: "I would retrace my steps — literally, walking backwards in the hope that reversing my journey would trigger the right memory — talking to myself the whole time, trying to calm a rising sense of panic by saying ‘it’s okay, it’ll come to you’."
It wasn't until she opened up to her friend a few months in about her worries that she realised she was actually going through a common part of the female ageing process – which is also characterised by hot flushes.
At the same time, Ulrika began to experience "dark thoughts" and "crippling anxiety".
She said that her husband wasn't supportive during this tumultuous time in her life.
"I was still with my husband Brian at the time — we’re now divorcing — and he didn’t even try to empathise with what I was going through," she recalled.
"In fact, he didn’t seem interested at all. It’s so important to share things in a relationship, yet I was doing 99 per cent of the talking.
"I felt incredibly alone."
She insisted that the menopause did not break up her marriage, but she believed the "hurt and disappointment" contributed.
A year after her symptoms began, she saw a doctor who took blood tests and discovered that her progesterone — the ‘calming’ hormone – was low.
She was prescribed testosterone, DHEA, progesterone, oestrogen, and pregnenolone, but it took another 12 months for her to feel like herself again.
Earlier today, we told you how a mum, 22, with fatal ‘Terminator’ brain tumour is writing her two-year-old son birthday cards so he doesn’t forget her.
We also revealed how a woman who lost 17 stone almost lost her sight too.
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