Apologies for not posting for a while – life , as for most of us got in the way over the summer.
Anyway I hope you are all fighting fit or at least fighting those menopause symptoms in one way or another.
I just had to comment about this article written by Janice Turner in the Times recently – have a read – flipping annoying!
Firstly, forgive me, I am a couple of days behind in the conversation which was on twitter, but felt the need to toss in my ha’penny for what its worth…how apt to start the article mentioning constipation, as anyone involved with pelvic floor health will know that straining from constipation causes one’s pelvic floor all sorts of problems!
With regard to this ‘banging on’ article, as a recognised and excellent journalist Janice Turner has the advantage of a prominent platform to voice her personal views but frustratingly for the many incredibly hardworking specialists and educators within the field of menopause, pelvic floor health and general women’s health with this one article she basically with one fell swoop appears to want to brush aside all the good work they have not only achieved so far but continue to do.
Just to affirm, I too am a ‘banger on’ so have to disagree with her on many points within her article, having met and helped numerous women gain more information on the menopause over the last few years which then enables them to manage their own menopause thereby gaining a better quality of life.
The terribly British theory that all we require are a few articles to read, a wee chat with our GPs (often unfortunately severely lacking on the menopause front), access to medical treatment if required (often hard to find and access unless your sympathetic doctor is actually sympathetic and knows what they are talking about), a glass of wine while tittering with only our closest friends is I’m afraid a touch off course for most of us! May I suggest that JT is luckily cocooned in a privileged world which the vast majority of the population do not have access to and perhaps she luckily doesn’t suffer from many of the often debilitating menopause symptoms and has just written a good old controversial article that has got everyone talking and they aren’t her personal views at all…who knows!
From my experience the reality after meeting women from all walks of life, including barristers, midwives, child minders, teachers to name a few, is that they are all extremely thankful when someone is ‘banging on’ about the menopause … at last! The women I have met definitely want to bust the menopause taboo, don’t have the time to google extensively or sit down for a quiet moment to trawl through articles, often come up against GPs who are not up to date with the most recent research and information regarding the menopause ( I would like to say that I have huge admiration for anyone going into general practice – couldn’t imagine a more challenging role not surprised they aren’t up to date half of them when you consider how many different specialties they have to keep abreast of), and struggle to get access to any medical specialist help as they are few and far between. Hence it falls to us ‘bangers on’ to fill that gap so that women can at least try and do something for themselves by receiving evidence based information which they can trust and utilise.
Janice’s perception of the valuable work that Nottinghamshire police force has done in this area is misguided – before writing such slamming views could I perhaps suggest she should have attended one of their talks, been to meet one of the organisers and talked with them before commenting on something she obviously doesn’t know anything about!
As individuals we obviously are all unique, experience illnesses, pressures of life and as such menopausal symptoms in very different ways – it is impossible to generalise about such a complex topic which is one of the reasons it has remained so ridiculously taboo for so long. I do agree with her on one point that older women can be formidably tough and fearless but unfortunately sometimes those women can experience horrendous menopause symptoms which can change those characteristics immeasurably. Life evolves as do women with hormones playing for some a very important role. We openly talk and discuss STI’s, pregnancy why not menopause and pelvic floors. Normalising talk around this topic is most definitely the way forward – hence the banging on – and using different formats to get that information across is equally important. Personally I go for short sharp bursts of evidence based information accompanied by humour where possible – an essential element in any walk of life!
I recently attended the fringe show by Gusset Grippers – Elaine Miller a physiotherapist specialising in women’s health and pelvic floors has a unique way of not only providing an hour of hilarious entertainment but you also come away highly educated about your pelvic floor as well – the show was a sell out, on from 3rd August to the 27th August got fantastic reviews which completely knocks on the head Janice’s theory that everyone wants to titter behind closed doors, rather the contrary! It is a shame the festival is now over as would have suggested JT go and see her, which would have hopefully changed her views!
Women from experience can be extraordinarily good at hiding how they really feel especially within the corporate world when any form of honesty about their symptoms would be deemed a weakness hence may I say that this is probably why JT doesn’t have a realistic picture on this topic…
Marvellous well I’m glad I’ve got that off my rather small chest, on the ‘constipation conversation’ three times a day point – just checking everyone is doing their pelvic floors three times a day – do follow :-
Gusset grippers : http://www.gussetgrippers.co.uk
Download the Squeezy app : http://www.squeezyapp.co.uk/info/index.html which is excellent and follow Pelvic roar on twitter aswell.
If your business / company does require menopause policies I highly recommend having a chat with Deborah Garlick from ‘Menopause at work’ https://menopauseintheworkplace.co.uk / Henpicked.
If you need any informal information talks I am more than happy to come and drop by!
One final question…do you have a space hopper JT…can’t recommend them enough…great for the pelvic floor, overall health ( burning thighs after 2 minutes) and guess what it’s fun!
Any information is as accurate as possible at time of writing and is for information purposes only. The information and support that Let’s Talk Menopause provides is for your own personal use. It is not intended to replace or substitute the judgement of any medical professional you may come in contact with. You should always seek advice from your healthcare professional regarding any medical condition.