Knapp writes ‘Menopause Monologues’
summit daily news
B.J. Knapp feels that menopause is often misunderstood – joked about or treated as an illness.
“There needs to be an understanding of the beautiful passage of your life,” Knapp said.
This month, she is making the final touches on her script, to be presented at the Backstage Theatre this summer, called “Menopause Monologues.” She is basing a variety of vignettes, which range from humorous to poignant and painful, on her own experiences, as well as those of family and friends. Some deal with husbands leaving their wives either through death or because they want to “trade in their wife for a younger model,” and the pain that comes just when these women, having raised a family, are thinking, “It’s finally our time.” Or perhaps an elderly parent or college student moves in with the midlife couple, further changes their plans.
Nevertheless, Knapp’s overall message in the monologues is, “don’t pack it in, because there’s a hell of a lot of life out there.”
She experienced her own menopause as “extremely positive.” Her mother made certain to teach her that the change was simply a natural part of life.
“(Writing the script) is an interesting process because obviously at 74, I am looking back at some of the attitudes when I was going through the change … women were beginning to educate themselves and have so many more options, like hormone replacement. A generation (before that), they didn’t even talk about it.”
And so, she includes a vignette about her grandmother talking to her great granddaughter about how menopause was for her.
She believes both men and women will be able to relate well to the play, because men go through a time in which they reassess, just as women go through feelings around no longer being able to bear children and what that means. Knapp asserts that there are so many additional opportunities for older women, beyond childrearing.
“Women do recognize – and should recognize – that they never stop being wonderful,” she said.
“The piece is meant to be very empowering and really underline the fact that this is a beautiful passage of life,” she said, “and you’ve got so much wisdom to pass on.”
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