Dr. Northrup says many women, including Rachel, struggle with anger. "The anger is always at yourself because you have allowed yourself to be shortchanged. You have some message—probably from the women before you—that women are supposed to sacrifice. Right? You're supposed to put yourself last. That's what being a good woman means. So when you put yourself first, you feel guilty, all right. So that's the whole legacy we're all struggling with," she says.
"But the Baby Boom women, all of us in this time grew up with, 'Don't trust anyone over 30' and we were the Me Generation. We're redefining the whole perimenopausal transition now and you're angry because where is the 'me' in the Me Generation now? So we're doing it differently so you don't have to go off and get the same diseases that your mother had, you see. So I want to give you permission as a doctor to do the things that bring you joy and pleasure for your health. For your family's health."
Still, Dr. Northrup says it's important to express—not repress—your anger. "Now, I don't want anyone to get rid of anger. In fact, some of you who are depressed, I'd like you to find your anger. Women who are depressed, they're easy to manipulate. The women who are angry, everyone's afraid of. But you don't want to stay chronically angry," Dr. Northrup says. "You figure out what that anger means, what you need to do about it, and then you have a dance break or you do something to get into joy immediately. You use the anger and then get out of it as soon as you can."