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MENopause – Men how much do you know about perimenopause or menopause?

I think any man who has experienced and watched their partner go through the stages of perimenopause and menopause deserve a medal too!

It cannot be easy for Men and also family members to watch as their loved one begins to change because of symptoms of menopause.

It comes as a massive shock to us women, so how do men cope with this change also?

Is this why the Mans cave becomes a retreat for many? To create some space for men to take stock and to have somewhere to escape too?

How can we help men to understand what is happening to our own bodies if we are not informed and supported ourselves within the health profession? Within the workplace is also another issue too. Many women are afraid to talk to their male work colleagues as they are too ashamed and feel uncomfortable to talk to a male about their symptoms that maybe affecting their work and capabilities.

It is important that our generation is open and honest when talking about Perimenopause and Menopause to help other generations and importantly for men to also understand.

The average age for menopause in the Uk is around the age of 51. Perimenopause can begin much sooner as early as mid thirties to the age of 45.

If a woman is under the age of 45 and has experienced menopause this is called an ‘early menopause’

A condition that can also occur much earlier in a woman is POI – premature ovarian insufficiency.

Medical or surgical treatments for the treatment of cancer, radiotherapy or can also result in an early menopause or POI.

Not every woman will have all 34 symptoms but here is a list that may help if you are noticing a change in your partners/colleagues wellbeing and personality.

The 34 symptoms of menopause are;

  • insomnia
  • brain fog
  • joint aches/pains
  • headaches/migraines
  • hot flushes
  • night sweats
  • fatigue
  • lack of libido
  • vaginal dryness
  • dry hair
  • brittle nails
  • dental problems
  • anxiety
  • weight gain
  • dry skin
  • osteoporosis
  • panic disorder
  • depression
  • irritablity
  • body odour
  • irregular heartbeat
  • allergies
  • stress incontinence
  • bloating
  • dizzy
  • tingling
  • muscle tension
  • digestive problems
  • electric shocks
  • tender breasts
  • burning mouth
  • mood swings
  • irregular periods
  • memory lapses
  • difficulty concentrating

PeriMenoPost has a downloadable symptom chart tracker to help keep a track of symptoms. If your partner/colleague can keep a log of their symptoms, then take the chart to her doctors appointment. This will help create conversation and also show a pattern of symptoms for the GP to see, making the best form of treatment if possible to help aid her perimenopause or menopause journey.

Helpful tips to support your partner during perimenopause and menopause.

Just to be there, to listen and to be understanding. Be patient, be loving and supportive. If you can make your partner feel special, loved and to remind her how fantastic and attractive you still find her.

Women need to hear this at this stage of their lives even more so!! Self confidence and low moods can be present and with hormones spiking up and down from one minute to the next, it’s exhausting for us girls!

Photo by Gustavo Fring on Pexels.com

A quiet night in! A good netflix box series, healthy food and an early night is now a womans new friday night! Early nights and the occassional drink is much better for women at this change of their lives. Why not encourage a friday night to be your special date night. Just the two of you, netflix and maybe a G&T! Cuddle up on the sofa and enjoy being together. Just knowing that your there for your partner will help your partner to feel good about herself and to will help to unwind.

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Communication is key! Keep all lines of communication open and talk with your partner about how they are feeling, can you help around the house be gentle and kind. This will be appreciated, without the pressure of having to ask you. Which can present as another issue, pressure and overwhelm. As women we feel the need to be wonder woman! We feel it is our role and our job to run everything! Try to talk without coming across that your noticing things which are not being done. This could result in a meno rage explosion, so drop into conversation that you could help with the weeks shopping trip, ironing or sometimes just the offer a cup of tea can be all that we need!

Try to not snap back at your partner also, if you find you are in heated exchanges. The up and down of oestrogen and progesterone plays havoc with mood swings, try to be undestanding and patient. If you feel you may say something unkind or untoward take a step away, breathe and try not to take things too personally.

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Find out as much information as you can to educate yourself about perimenopause and menopause. You can visit your GP or try some of these helpful sites to help give you more information and support.

https://www.newsonhealth.co.uk/

https://thebms.org.uk/

Try to encourage your partner to exercise, maybe you could work out together. This will help to give your partner a lift in mood, all those endorphins and for that all important feel good factors for well being. Exercise really helps to alleviate symptoms during perimenopause/menopause. A gentle jog, a cardio class or a yoga class. During Lockdown there has never been a great time to experience new classes, you could try a class together.

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Love and sex during this stage of a woman’s life can be a sensitve time, as you both crave love and affection from one another. She will feel unattractive and low in confidence and you will begin to feel ignored and maybe unloved? Sound familiar? Women at this time are going through such big hormonal shifts mentally and physically sometimes the last thing on a woman’s mind is sex. I can assure that as a woman of forty something we do want our partners, it just takes time for the feelings and changes occurring to a woman need to be accepted and embraced before you can feel comfortable. We all age, all change is anothers factor of ageing, it can arrive as a big shock for women. We have to deal with the big slap in the face that you can no longer have children, you no longer feel feminine and a another reminder that we are ageing and that youth is slipping away. Reassure your partner that you still find her attractive and that you are looking forward to the rest of your lives together and that you have so much to look forward to together!!

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What a book!!!

Once I started I could not finish PERIMENOPOWER by Author Katarina Wilk, Orion springs Publishing.

I throughly recommend reading this book!! A MUST!

If you are looking for clear, honest and helpful supportive advice during perimenopause. This is your BOOK!

Katarina talks about her own ups and downs with insomnia and her perimenopause symptoms that you can relate too.

Her writing style is informative, helpful and positive! Urging you to regain your PERIMENOPOWER!

Fourteen chapters each detailing separate issues and topics including katerinas story, terminiology help and advice to see you through tese stages with lifeestyle changes, exercise, diet and HRT.

katarina had a particularly difficult time with insomnia and she explains the lacks of sleep so accurately the merry go round of brain fog that ensues with thius symptom. Shje also details hwo the lack of sleep can seriously affect your whole well being, I for one can relly realate tothis.

When insomnia strikes it can really unbalance you and derailyour joie de vie!

How many women have been told this when visiting their GP with symptoms unaware of perimenopasue?

I don’t want to take anti – depressants I’m not depressed, I just want to sleep

Katarina Wilk, Author- PERIMENOPOWER

Katarina’s helpful book with medical information broken down to understand in a way that you feel immediately comforted safe in the knowledge that these symptoms are natural and help is out there to get you through!

I want to clarify once again that the perimenopause isn’t an illness but a phase that most women go through. SOme of us suffer more, others less and sometimes it’s hard to say which came first, the chicken or the egg.

Katarina Wilk – Author – PERIMENOPOWER

Katarina chapter on HRT is really helpful and goes into detail about the viewpoints previously about HRT and how HRT research shows that it is important for women to use HRT during perimenopause and menopause. The benefits for your heart, bone and well being are mentioned by Professor Tord Naessen at Uppsala University. She also brings to our attention an OEstrogen pioneer in swedish gynaecology, Mirjam Furuhjelm who believed that a womans life should be lived for as long as possible and as healthy as possible. Mirjam true to her belief took oestrogen in her midlfe and lived to the age of 94!

Katarina’s sleep solutions

1. Avoid caffeine

2. Exercise

3. Yoga

4. Acupressure mat

5. Evening bath

6. Natural supplements

7. Melatonin

8. Atarax

Katarina Wilk, Author. – PERIMENOPOWER

PEIMENOPOWER is available to buy on amazon and to buy direct from https://www.orionbooks.co.uk/

Season one of PeriMenoPost Podcasts has now come to an end, todays episode 10 with Breeda Bermingham is the last in this season’s pods. I am midway through recording season two with more guest speakers talking all things perimenopause and menopause.

It has been great fun recording the podcasts with women who truly want to help other women and help to create more awareness surrounding perimenopause/menopause stopping the taboo and stigma. I hope that during lockdown the pods have helped to support followers and raise awareness.

You can find the pods on itunes, spotify and anchor fm.

PeriMenoPost Podcast – Season 1 Episode 10 Breeda Bermingham, Founder of Midlife Women Rock Project.PeriMenoPost

PeriMenoPost talks to Breeda Bermingham,  Founder of Midlife Women Rock Project,  a Midlife  Women’s Health Advocate and Researcher. Breeda is a mum of four children and lives in Ireland.  A previous nurse and midwife, Breeda later qualified as a public health nurse.   Following the birth of her fourth child and deciding to work part time.   She enrolled into full time education and studied a degree in psychology.  Her thesis involved researching midlife and menopause. During her research her findings became clear that the cultural beliefs of female ageing has to change and she believes in a positive approach to menopause and is on a mission to change this mindset.  Her three top issues to highlight are fear, shame and denial, she believes these are all the top main feelings women feel during this stage of their life and wants to change this. She also feels that the next stage of menopause should be talked about, for women to come forward to discuss their journey of post menopause and relay any fears to younger women. Breeda is currently finishing her masters on menopause and she holds regular MidlifeWomen Rock cafe’s each month for the women in her surrounding area of Waterford.  Held at the Waterford Health park, Waterford city for support and conversation surrounding menopause.  She would like MidLifeWomen Rock to be available for all women of Ireland and to have access too. Midlife Women Rock project is a continuation of a 60 day facebook posting to change the narrative for midlife and menopause.  Her research found that women collaborating together becomes a powerful force and can achieve great change!  A must to break down the menopause taboo!!! Breeda is very passionate and genuinely wants to help women at this time during the stages of menopause, listen in to our conversation and enjoy.  If you would like to reach out to Breeda you can reach her at her website or on social media. https://www.midlifewomenrockproject.com  @midlifewomenrock -Instagram @midlifewomenrockproject – facebook  Breeda Bermingham – Linkedin Audio Player00:0000:00Use Up/Down Arrow keys to increase or decrease volume.

Playlist: PeriMenoPost

Select an episode to play it in the audio player.

  1. PeriMenoPost Podcast – Season 1 Episode 10 Breeda Bermingham, Founder of Midlife Women Rock Project.
  2. PeriMenoPodcast Episode 9 – Bea Marshall Founder – Yes Parenting and EFT
  3. PeriMenoPost Podcast Episode 8 – The Mamapause – Blogger
  4. PeriMenoPost Podcast – Episode 7 Sarah Kern Real Life Meno Warrior
  5. PeriMenoPost Podcast – Episode 6 – Rebecca Smith Editor & Founder of Goldie Magazine

PeriMenoPost has launched it’s very own PeriMenoPost Members Club for brands.

If you are a retail brand or retail service that can help women through the stages of perimenopause and menopause we can help to represent you and be a part of our membership club.

PeriMenoPost members club promotes brands and menopause services to a bespoke audience of customers.

Ensuring help and empowerment to women during all the stages of menopause.

Email me today hello@perimenopost.com to find out more about how PeriMenoPost Members Club membership today.

I look forward to hearing from you.

Today is 1st July 2020 not long until 4th July, super saturday is nearly here and we will slip back into a some what normal way of life again. Please remember to stay safe and to follow government guidance rules and most importantly to look after yourselves Menos!

Stay strong and stay safe Menos

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Family and Friends do they talk Menopause?

We would like to wish all the Mums out there who are juggling the Perimenopause or Menopause and raising a family, a very Happy Mothers Day. Make sure you get spoilt rotten!!

Have you found support from your partner, family and friends during the stages of Perimenopause and Menopause? Did your Mother, Grandmother, talk to you of the Menopause openly and honestly?

Are you aware of the symptoms and how your Mother managed her Menopause?

I have a feeling that the answer could be no? Not much at all?

All we were taught at school during the 1980’s for Sex education was about puberty and periods. I do not recall much at all regarding the

Menopause, we were told that periods just stop. Period, pardon the pun!

We all think that the Menopause seriously won’t happen to us until we are much older, and it has been firmly forgotten about and not on the horizon at all. I am convinced that, this thought of mind is because there is no awareness about the Menopause and it is not spoken about openly and honestly. So it’s no real surprise for women of our generation when it arrives, it can derail you when it strikes! If your aware of what symptoms to expect and have some knowledge of how to treat this stage it would help the transition to possibly be more smoother.

It is so important, more than ever that you talk this through with your partner, family and colleagues at work how you are feeling and what you are going through. The more that people are aware of the

Menopause and how to support women at this time the better it makes for the lives of women. Changes can be made for example at work with flexible working, breaks, support from your manager if they have Menopause training and use of the Menopause in the workplace guidelines.

At home if you can talk and share how you are feeling so that everyone is aware of what you are going through, this will help you feel better and supported through the Menopause. It is important to get help from your Doctor to support you with your symptoms, with treatment if needed with HRT or alternative treatments.

This Mothers Day make sure you tell your family if you are struggling with the Menopause and ask for help and support from them, it can be just a hug, listening to you, helping you to overcome stressful situations and maybe help you have some fun.

The most important thing that we must do as Mothers is to tell our Daughters all about our Perimenopause and Menopause. Talk openly and honestly so that we can help our Daughters to know what to expect in the future with hormones and Menopause, to give them as much support and knowledge as they need.

Rachel Maclean MP and Diane Danzebrink a Menopause Nurse Specialist and Menopause Campaigner, are campaigning to raise the awareness of the Menopause. There is hope that the Schools

National Curriculum will include the menopause in sex education for children to gain knowledge. Sign the campaign at www.menopausesupport.co.uk #makemenopausematter 16K people have already signed their support, help to support this campaign and make a difference to womens lives for current and future generations.

Have a great week and keep talking menopause!!

Time to #UndoTheMenoTaboo

Menopause ….. Silence…… Every woman going through the stages of the Menopause would have been on the receiving end of this sound.

Upon mentioning the word “Menopause” and for daring to say that they have symptoms themselves and that they are menopausal. Why is there so much stigma and taboo surrounding this topic? For women this is a natural stage of their lives, some women are forced into this stage by surgical intervention or because of certain health/medical reasons.

#UndoTheMenoTaboo Personally, having had an early menopause I found the experience a very isolating and lonely time. There was no support groups from within the area I reside, during that time I had a very unhelpful GP who advised me that I should try alternative remedies.

I was aged around 41/42 years, suffering from insomnia, fatigue, irregular bleeding, weight gain, joint aches and now upon reflection mild anxiety. I was lucky to have changed GP’s and was given HRT to help manage my symptoms. When the perimenopause and menopause arrives, it comes as a rollercoaster ride of emotions as you experience a sense of grief and a feeling of a loss of identity. It happens at a time when you have absolutely no idea of what is happening to your body and overall wellbeing.

Having no one to talk to during this time was incredibly hard, as no one talks about it, not your friends, partner, work colleagues and even my GP at that time! Your confidence takes a real nose dive and you just do not want to tell the world all these weird feelings that are going on around and around inside your head. Also during this time for myself, a strong feeling of invisibility also hit me with a very powerful surge of feelings, that you suddenly feel very old, you’re over the hill and of no use to any one. It’s normal to feel like this, it’s ok.

Once you know what you are dealing with, it helps you to understand and accept this stage of life. You can no longer have children, you feel unfeminine which was the worst feeling personally. It is a big wake up call to ageing. “Menopause, surely not me? thats for old people!” It is extremely hard to convey all those feelings into a proper sentence without blurting out and crying, when your with your friends, partner and family members.

This is why education and awareness is so important to making the necessary changes for women to be educated about the menopause, so that women know what to expect and to also understand what is happening to their bodies at this stage of their lives. Firstly, starting in schools so the younger generation will have knowledge of what to expect and understand, to also educate the current menopause age generation as we will be working for much longer than the current older generation of women. Retirement is now the age of 66 years for a woman.

It is a very stressful, confusing and highly emotional time. But still no one talks about it and women as a result find themselves in a vicious circle of not knowing who to turn to for advice. First port of call is the health service and a visit to see a GP, you are very lucky if you see a Doctor who is trained in this field and is open minded and caring about the Menopause. For a lot of women they will stumble across an unhelpful GP, receive no treatments and will struggle on with sometimes debilitating symptoms and feeling absolutely dreadful, I can honestly say that this was the worst time of my menopause experience.

Not being taken seriously, with no one to talk to and the stress it caused to myself and everyone in my family. Let’s not be too negative, the menopause brings with it change and we need to celebrate this. Take a positive view on what the future holds, no more periods, no more childbirth, your freedom back so you can start to live your life for yourself. It is important that you take good care of your health and wellbeing, keep going back to your GP, ask for blood tests and check the NICE guidelines regarding HRT for the Menopause.

Keep notes, use a notepad to keep a track of your symptoms so when you ask for help from your Doctor, you are prepared and your Doctor can then help you to make an informed choice for your quality of life with the correct form of treatment that you may need. Most importantly talk to someone, don’t struggle on your own. A problem shared is halved! Join in the conversation, it’s time to #UndoTheMenoTaboo Share our Tweet on Twitter.

Share on Facebook and Instagram. Share on Facebook and Instagram Share the post with a comment to include; Your age If you are Early/Meno/Post Menopause Add our Hashtag #UndoTheMenoTaboo

Why not add a photo of you or a video, would be great! Let’s show the world that the Menopause is normal and the stereotype is not a taboo!

Lets get this conversation started! All women together, lets break down the taboo of the Menopause together!!!

Keep the conversation flowing all things Menopause and helping others at the same time.

Celebrate the Menopause!!!!

https://www.menopausedoctor.co.uk/menopause/the-importance-o f-nice-guidelines Have a great week, Menos.

Stay positive and share the hashtag.

“Mother Nature – What’s the Menopause all about?”

Have you wondered why?

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When your Teenage children are growing into young adults.  Why, do our hormones spike and shift?

This seems so unfair doesn’t it?

Your Children are growing into adulthood.  As a mum you have been looking forward to this stage, we all have, right?

BOOM the Perimenopause and the Menopause rock up to party, but not quite a good one at that a rather hell’ish one!

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Photo by Ervick on Pexels.com

When we are in the stages of early puberty, as young teenage girls we were under constant peer pressure, around this time.

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Photo by 周 康 on Pexels.com

“Have you got your’s yet?”

“what?”

“Your period”

The whole cycle then begins, as young women entering into adulthood.  Women then feel under pressure to keep up. To fit in and to feel normal like all the rest. 

When the period arrives and what an anti-climax that is? They just go on and on for years, you never really think about them ending.  Only when you have had enough PMT to last you a lifetime!! We’ve all said it at one time “wish these periods would just stop and go away!”

Periods can be a nuisance!

But when you start going through the perimenopause and menopause, you have absolutely no idea what to expect and it certainly feels the opposite of Puberty.  No one even talks about the Menopause, let alone any of the symptoms. The peer pressure is so different, in fact there is none whatsoever for women at this stage of their lives.  It can feel lonely, isolating and can be debilitating.

At school, during sex education lessons we were taught that the Menopause was the end of Menstruation, period – pardon the pun! It is no wonder then as women we find ourselves  confused and concerned about our wellbeing and need educating and supporting through this stage of life.

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#UndoTheMenoTaboo

When the symptoms and feelings arrive, it comes as a shock! At first a  feeling of YAhooo!!!! no more periods and definitely no more children!

After a while it starts to sink in as to what is happening,  once you have been told by either a result of a blood test and Gp or through your own research. Your feelings go up and down, you become more aware of your own self,  your being, self-identity and that you are now ageing. It is hard to accept at first, but once you know what is happening to your body and you know what you are dealing with it somehow helps you to cope through it. You feel Normal, but to the outside world it is not seen or accepted that way at all, this must change.

You’re no longer needed by your now Teenager/s, your body is ageing and it is now telling you by the physical reminders.  You have a feeling that your youth has disappeared but the next part of your journey and the next chapter in life is just about to begin!!

If you are having symptoms that are impacting your quality of life, visit your GP or Gynaecologist for help.  If you feel you need to talk to someone about your feelings, visit a counsellor who specialises in women’s health and can help you through this stage.

https://thebms.org.uk/ The British Menopause Society

https://www.rcog.org.uk/- Royal College of Obstetrician and Gynaecology

https://www.mind.org.uk/- Mind

“So Mother Nature , why is the menopause shrouded in so much privacy and taboo?”

Why is it deemed a dirty word, a disease and ignored? This mindset has to to change to help and benefit other women to know and to learn what to do to help themselves to gain the treatment they need to have a better quality of life during this next chapter of their lives.

My personal theory, is that Menopause arrives to help you and your children to prepare for the next stage in life.  For the Teenager who is busy enjoying life and about to head off to University and beyond, has no idea that they are leaving us Mums with an empty nest. Us mums,  we are left to deal with the Menopause on top of this but make it a positive part of your life!! The second chapter is just for you! You have helped to raise your children the best you can, your Teenager will not only thank you for this but if they see you also enjoying life and having fun it will help your relationship enormously and that the Menopause is a normal part of life!!

So next time  your Teenager is staring into a phone, glued to X-Box/Play Station, SnapChat or Fake Tan and Pre’ drinks if 18 or above,   Take a PAUSE – Remember this is all part of the cycle!!

WE WERE YOUNG ONCE – CHERISH THIS

MAKE THE MOST OF THIS TIME – INDULGE

THINK AHEAD FOR YOURSELF AND YOUR NEXT CHAPTER! – EMPOWER AND DO IT!!!  @perimenopost

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JOIN IN OUR CAMPAIGN TO BREAK DOWN THE MENOPAUSE TABOO!

FOLLOW US ON TWITTER – INSTAGRAM – FACEBOOK

JOIN IN THE CONVERSATION POST A PHOTO, ADDING YOUR AGE, IF YOU ARE EARLY/PERI/MENO/POST MENOPAUSE  ADD OUR HASHTAG #UNDOTHEMENOTABOO

GET ONBOARD, ITS TIME TO #UNDOTHEMENOTABOO

Have a super week fellow Menoteers!! keep strong and remember to pause!

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https://twitter.com/PeriMenoPost?lang=en-gb

Stereotype of a Menopause Woman. It’s not always an older woman.

It has been a busy few weeks with the word ‘Menopause’. 

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All the Menoteers, Menovists are out there spreading the word for the younger generation of women to be made aware of what to expect when the menopause arrives. 

This week BBC Breakfast time will be making a big step forward by discussing on National TV all about Menopause.  #BBCMenopause Has the Taboo been broken, we think it has do you?

This is absolutely fantastic news for women and for men.  This will help people to learn and to understand as to what happens to women as they go through this stage of their lives.

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Let’s hope that the stereotype of a menopause woman changes after this week.  We know that as we grow older and we age, our hormones deplete and we know then at some point the Menopause will arrive.  We just brush it to the back of our minds and tell ourselves that we are not yet at that age. Everyone has that image in their mind of a menopausal woman, of what they look like and how old they are. 

But what happens if a young woman finds herself  in an Early Menopause. Someone who has not yet started a family,  has had an illness, cancer or POI (Premature Ovarian Insufficiency).  What about these women, will the stereotype of menopause change for these women after this weeks awareness.  Lets hope that #BBCMenopause changes this for these women , as it is already a tough taboo the menopause and even harder with having an early menopause.  It can be difficult to accept and to cope with, if there is no support and understanding. 

Women do not talk openly about women’s health issues.  Albeit pride, embarrassment or peer pressure. Women are afraid to talk about this, they’re just not spoken about.  You’re made to feel that there is something wrong with you, no one mentions menopause or any gynaecological related issue.  These taboos need to be broken down . We should all be able to talk freely and openly about our health, as during the Menopause big changes happen to our bodies that we need to be made aware of.  It is important that we know what to look out for, symptoms, help and support. 

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The Eve appeal has launched a campaign for the word ‘Vagina” to be normalised.  The campaign will help fund more research into the five cancers for women – Vulva, Womb, Ovarian, Cervical and Womb Cancer. 

This is why we need to be able to talk openly about women’s health, not to feel embarrassed or ashamed.  Lets help breakdown the taboo’s of Menopause and Vagina,

EVE APPEAL

TEXT EVE APPEAL to 70577 #GETLIPPY

DONATE 5.OOGBP

https://eveappeal.org.uk/getting-involved/take-part-in-an-event/get-lippy/top-tips-for-talking-gynae/

BBC Breakfast time #BBCMenopause

Have a great week Menos, keep talking.

BEEN THERE? SEEN THAT? GOT THE T-SHIRT?

Make sure you enter our COMPETITION!! to win yourself one of our very own #UndoTheMenoTaboo T-Shirt!

THERE’S STILL TIME TO ENTER!

ALL YOU NEED TO DO TO ENTER IS TO GIVE US A FOLLOW ON INSTAGRAM @perimenopost

CLOSING DATE 31ST MAY 2019 MIDNIGHT

WINNER WILL BE CHOSEN FROM RANDOM AND ANNOUNCED DURING WEEKEND OF 1ST/2ND JUNE 2019

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WINNER WILL BE NOTIFIED VIA DIRECT MESSAGE AND INSTAGRAMLIVE

The Competition is open to any resident of the United Kingdom over 18 years of age

Automated or bulk entries from third parties will be disqualified.

● We reserve the right to exclude serial competition entrants who have entered more than 4 competitions in the last month.

● There is no entry fee and no purchase necessary to enter this competition.

The Competition opens on (19th May 2019 10pm) and closes (31st May 2019 MIDNIGHT)

Entrants can enter at any point between these dates.

To enter the competition entrants will need to like the post and follow us

● Entrants can only enter the Competition once, but can like, regram/repost  comment, tweet and RT as many times as they like

● The winner will be selected (Selected at random from list)

The winner will be selected at random from the list of entrants. Names will be entered into a spreadsheet and numbered and a member of staff that has not seen the spreadsheet will choose a number between x and y who shall be the winner.

● The winner will be notified by DM within 2 days of the closing date. If the winner cannot be contacted or do not claim the prize within 14 days of notification, we reserve the right to withdraw the prize from the winner and pick a replacement winner. The winner will be notified via DM on Instagram within 14 days of the closing date.

● The prize for winning the competition will be (Size Small White Printed T-Shirt Value RRP 15.00GBP)

● The Prize as stated and cannot be sold or exchanged for cash, goods or services. Unless specifically agreed in writing by PeriMenoPost) ● The Prize is not transferable and must be accepted by the winner

PerimenoPost reserve the right to use the voice, image, photograph, name and likeness of the winners for publicity and in advertising, marketing or promotional material without additional compensation or prior notice to the winners. In entering the Competition, all participants consent to such use of their voice, image, photograph, name and likeness.

● Copyright of any material produced as part of the competition is owned by PeriMenoPost  and/or its content suppliers.

● Unauthorised use of the material produced as part of this competition, including reproduction, storage, modification, distribution or publication without the prior written consent of PeriMenoPost  or, where applicable, the respective competition entrant is prohibited.

● Where you are able to submit any contribution to this competition you agree, by submitting your contribution, to grant PeriMenoPost  a perpetual, royalty-free, non-exclusive, sub-licenseable right and license to use, reproduce, modify, adapt, publish, translate, create derivative works from, distribute, perform, play, and exercise all copyright and publicity rights with respect to your contribution worldwide and/or to incorporate your contribution in other works in any media now known or later developed for the full term of any rights that may exist in your contribution. If you do not want to grant PeriMenoPost the rights set out above, please do not submit your contribution to PeriMenoPost

● By submitting your contribution to PeriMenoPost  you warrant that your contribution is your own original work and that you have the right to make it available to PeriMenoPost for any or all of the purposes specified above. Furthermore, you warrant your contribution is not defamatory, does not infringe any law, you indemnify PeriMenoPost against all legal fees, damages and other expenses that may be incurred by periMenoPost  as a result of your breach of the above warranty and waive any moral rights in your contribution for the purposes of its submission to and publication on the Site and the purposes specified above.

Data protection

● You consent to your first name, photograph and social media handles about you being disclosed on PeriMenoPost digital channels or other media if you win any Prizes under the Competition

● Any personal data relating to participants will be used solely in accordance with UK data regulations and will not be disclosed to a third party without the entrant’s prior consent. To find out more about what data we hold and how we process data please read our privacy policy We follow Instagram Privacy policy, details will be destroyed 14 days after competition ends.   

● By entering the Competition, you agree that PeriMenoPost  may contact you in relation to the Competition. Absolving responsibility of the social platforms

● This promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with, platform x (INSTAGRAM   or any other social network General liability cover ● PeriMenoPost do not accept liability for any damages whatsoever, including, without limitation, indirect or consequential damages, loss of profits, or any damages whatsoever arising out of, or in connection with the competition. ● Except in the case of death or personal injury arising from its negligence, or in respect of fraud, and so far as is permitted by law, periMenoPost  and its associated companies and agents and distributors exclude responsibility and all liabilities, whether direct or indirect, arising from: ● any postponement or cancellation of the Competition; ● any changes to, supply of or use of the Prize; and ● any act or default of any supplier, which are beyond PeriMenoPost.

HAVE A GREAT WEEK MENOS!!

Loneliness and Menopause

Have you found menopause to be a lonely time? Have you found it hard to connect, have you felt alone and isolated?

Have you found it difficult to talk to friends and family members about your feelings and symptoms?

We can definitely relate to those feelings, when going through the midst of the rollercoaster ride of hormones and emotions.  It is hard to verbalise and communicate with loved ones to tell them how you are feeling, when that menopause mood decides to turn up unexpectedly.  It is also not something that you want to freely admit too as it is seen by others as a negative and a taboo that is not discussed.

Thank goodness for social media and platforms actively encouraging and allowing women to discuss, share and offer advice to others.  Medical, health and wellbeing influencers are able to share their knowledge too which is great! This will help so many women to learn more about their feelings and how to manage menopause.  Doesn’t it feel good to know you’re not alone?

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Photo by Daria Shevtsova on Pexels.com

It can be very isolating if you are having an early menopause as we are only too aware of.  You want the support and care from your loved ones and close friends but they do not know how best to support you.  Until recently there is was a lack of information and knowledge available for them to understand. #BBCMenopause and our campaign #UndoTheMenoTaboo hopefully has changed this there is much more information out there now for people to access.

You feel uncomfortable discussing your loneliness as menopause is seen as a taboo subject by many, it is extremely hard to raise during a conversation with friends.  They may not be experiencing menopause so they cannot relate to how you are feeling.

When feeling alone it creates a vicious cycle for family, friends and loved ones and yourself.   Friends, family and loved ones are not quite sure how to talk with you about menopause feelings and symptoms.   This then makes yourself to feel ignored and not being understood. You then distance yourself from friends, family as you feel different and not normal as you are the only person going through this on your own and you feel no one understands your feelings. 

To help you break this cycle of feeling lonely, why not join our conversation and follow PeriMenoPost to help you find other like minded Menos, for support, advice and friendship within a fun, safe and friendly community! Get on board! No one likes to feel left out and alone, so join our #MenoTribe!!!

Why not try this week to join a new adult education class, a new hobby, find a local menopause cafe support group meeting that you can attend to meet others in the same situation as yourself or you could volunteer for a local charity helping others.  Find time also this week to talk to others, a friend, a neighbour or a work colleague or your partner. Making that first step to how you are feeling is the first step to breaking the cycle of how you are feeling and it will help you to feel more supported if you can have a friend onside that can support you and make you feel wanted and involved.

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www.menopausecafe.net has a network of regular meet up events across the UK, if you search for events you will find your nearest available cafe, you can meet other women and talk and eat cake!

www.menopausesupport .co.uk offer’s further helpful advice and support.  #makemeneopausematter campaign.

www.menopausedoctor.co.uk Dr Louise Newson website details more menopause information and runs a menopause clinic.

www.lizearlewellbeing.com Menopause related advice and information, look out for podcasts too.

www.megsmenopause.com Megs Menopause website covers a wealth of information, advice and tips also.

http://www.open.ac.uk Sign up for that course today!

www.meetups.com Why not check out and see if there is a local meet up you in your area that you can meet others.

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This week is #LetsTalkLonelinessWeek follow on social media  for more advice and information. @marmaladetrust

Have a super week Menos, share with PeriMenoPost what you achieved this week to break the cycle of feeling lonely.

Menopause, Milestones, Graduations & Birthdays.

Hello to all of our readers and followers, apologies for no recent blogs over the last few weeks.  Life has been very hectic! I have been busy celebrating personally and also for my second Daughters graduation from university,  a politics and philosophy degree from York University. I am a very proud mum indeed!! Two daughters have now graduated from university, my eldest graduated from Exeter University with a psychology degree.

It still only feels like yesterday that we were packing for Uni life for both of my daughters with help from the Ikea university checklist of items.  Our car was brimmed full of loaded boxes and the long drive into the unknown. A sense of excitement and nerves but also the intrepidation for the journey ahead with our teenage daughters fleeing the nest. 

During this stage of your menopause,  have you noticed that it has coincided during the busiest time of your life?  Had you once thought much like myself that at this time of our lives, life would be much more simpler and easier? No one mentions how busy life becomes with teenagers,  exams, university, empty nest, work life, ageing parents life seems to be whizzing along very quickly all of a sudden.

Day to day life has somehow become busier, hectic, full on and at times all encompassing?

Is this hormones and mother nature playing havoc here? Certainly does not help at times, whether it is exhaustion, fatigue, a sleepless night or brain fog it can be very frustrating and debilitating.

If you have found yourself suddenly in the midst of perimenopause or menopause and you are having empty nest feelings,  it can be a very emotional time for you. At a time when you are not feeling your best and not quite yourself, it can be very tough.  You will be incredibly sensitive and emotional with your hormones at this stage and it may well feel amplified when your child goes to University.  It is a huge milestone and achievement for your teenager and yourself. Don’t put too much pressure on yourself and try to enjoy the process.

Just remember to be kind to yourself as this is a big change for you personally,  physically and mentally within your body and it is also a change within the dynamics of your family, when your teenager leaves for university, change is happening.  

I found it was important to keep my sense of identity, independence and to try and be strong as I could during these times. 

There will be days when it can be tough, with your hormones and feelings,  not every day will be great. Just remember to take each day as it comes and then you slowly get used to the change.  Rely on your support network of friends, family, partner and colleagues. Make this the time that it is important for you and what is going to make you happy and keep you engaged and active.

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Pexels

Some ideas possibly:

  • Keep yourself active
  • Exercise
  • See a show
  • Meet a friend for lunch or dinner
  • A spa day or retreat
  • Evening class
  • Hobby
  • Enrol onto a learning course University, College, Adult Education centre or Open University.
  • Set yourself a challenge!
  • New Career or start a business
  • Holiday with your partner or a solo holiday
  • Meet ups – maybe start your own one,  for mums of empty nests!
  • Forums – For parents of teenagers at university
  • A weekly park run or a charity race
  • Plan weekends to visit your teenager, don’t cramp their style though and don’t be too disheartened if they are busy, a quick coffee or lunch and a hug is enough.  You could also plan a trip/event for when your teenager comes home.

It is important to look after your wellbeing and to keep yourself mentally and emotionally fulfilled.  This will help yourself and your Uni teenager to show that you’re coping ok for they will soon be arriving home with the washing! you will then have lots to discuss and catching up will be good fun.

As much as teenagers like to think they are ever so grown up and that they know everything!  They do worry and care about you still, they just don’t like to admit it!

On top of all the celebrations, it was also my birthday recently.  My Husband and myself share birthdays, we’re just one day apart! My birthday felt like it had arrived far too sudden this year and it flew by as quickly as it came.

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Birthdays

Pexels

Have you noticed that now in menopause you feel slightly differently about birthdays each year? Do you find yourself counting down the years to the next milestone birthday with excitement or dread?   Do you find it yet another reminder on top of menopause that you are ageing and becoming older?

Birthdays are now slightly odd events as you reach a certain age in midlife,  have you also noticed that you don’t really like a big fuss on your birthday? Just an easy stress free day is enough to suffice or do you like to embrace your birthday and have lots of celebrations?

In particular milestone birthdays, when you were younger you would of wanted to celebrate with all your friends and share your day with everyone.  As you age, you simply just want your nearest and dearest with you on your day, easy and simple with no fuss.

Is this mother nature reminding us that we are in fact getting older and as much as we would love to be dancing in Ibiza drinking cocktails into the early hours of the morning!  We no longer have the capacity or neither the energy at our age now to be able to maintain such antics.

Change, you either love it or loathe it.  Personally, I feel change is good !!!

Change happens all throughout life, it is inevitable.   It is best not to fight it, you just have to go with the flow.  It is hard at first but once you accept that your body and age is changing you will suddenly realise that you can look forward and still have fun!!!   Don’t let menopause run your life, be positive and turn this stage of your life into the best times and don’t look back!  

A big, big thank you to Rebecca Weef-Smith at Goldie magazine and to all the team for their splendid magazine this month.

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Issue no 5 – Life’s a beach.

PeriMenoPost is featured in this months Goldie Magazine, life’s a beach issue no 5.

It was a fantastic opportunity to share my story of early menopause, retraining with Digital Mums and how PeriMenoPost was born out of personal experience.

Grab your copy today online from Goldie magazine directly or check website (link below) of where to purchase a copy locally to yourself.

Goldie is a great read, it is fashionably bright, colourful, fun and young minded, covering style, fashion, culture, life and love.  Perfect for a nice sunny day in the garden or the beach with maybe a cool drink or a cheeky cocktail or two!

We love Goldie magazine!!  Enjoy reading and have a great week Menos. Let’s hope the sunshine returns this week!

http://www.goldiemag.co.uk/

No alarm bell to tell you perimenopause or menopause has arrived!

Why is there no alarm bell or no added peer pressure when perimenopause or menopause arrives?There is rather a lack of it?

Definitely no bells ringing, is this a good thing?

Think back to when you were constantly being asked by school friends “have you started your period yet”  That dreaded question, that you knew was coming. Maybe we do need a small reminder or that gentle nudge that perimenopause and menopause could soon be heading our way?

Would you like to have been more prepared and would you have appreciated some relevant information to help you for when the time comes? 

How is it so,  that all women at any age do not mention menopause? It’s quite remarkable that as women we go through our lives, living and dealing with periods and childbirth.  Why do we go silent when talking about menopause? It’s a bit like the childbirth myth, not spoken about until afterwards. 

Firstly, no one wants to admit that they are ageing or having symptoms, we are all guilty of that one! We do need to talk more openly about our feelings and to raise more awareness, no longer keeping menopause shrouded in taboo. It’s time to put menopause into a positive mindset for women, menopause should no longer be silenced or joked about.  It happens to all of us, we need to embrace and accept it.

It is partly due to awareness and a lack of education on the subject of menopause and perimenopause.  For a long while there has been very little available information out there for women until very recently.  Women are now asking more questions, leading the way forward and gaining the correct menopause treatment that they rightly deserve. Menopause campaigners, Diane Danzebrink, Dr Louise Newson, Meg Matthews, Liz Earle and Andrea Maclean have helped to raise menopause’s profile and this is helping to make a difference to many women’s lives.

As a society, everyone is living longer.   Menopause has suddenly exploded onto the horizon as more and more women are now working into an older age.  Whilst running a busy home, a career, children, uni-teenagers, empty nest, elderly parents and life is busy, it’s fast paced and at times overwhelming with stress.  No wonder women are asking more questions and in need of help and support. 

Why not make this week a positive start and talk to friends, family members, colleagues about menopause.  Start asking questions and see what response you have? You could be surprised and also be relieved that you all could be feeling the same way but just too embarrassed to mention.  Give it a try!!!

A group of women who are shouting the word menopause on social media at present are the pausitivity ladies, they’re currently running a fantastic awareness campaign on social media.  A poster/selfie campaign @Pausitvity it’s run by a group of 4 women – @yournewlifeplan @Karen_Kenning @Change_n_thrive @50Sense #KnowYourMenopause

These ladies are committed to helping spread the word “menopause” out there for everyone.  Their aim is to have a poster in every GP surgery. The poster outlines symptoms and gives some informative advice on what to do if you are experiencing symptoms. Why not take your selfie today, with a poster like we did (below) and join in the menopause conversation too!

Head to @pausitivity on Twitter and click to download for the poster, take your selfie holding the poster and simply ask to pin up at your local GP Surgery.

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#KnowYourMenopause

Author Jane Lewis of  My Menopausal Vagina book, which highlights one of menopause’s taboo subjects Vaginal Atrophy.   She is raising awareness for an unmentioned and not discussed menopause symptom, Vaginal Atrophy or genitourinary symptoms of menopause.  Head to @mymenopausalvagina on twitter or www.mymenopausalvagina.co.uk then download your copy. Jane would like the leaflets to be featured in doctors surgeries, hospitals and care homes for elderly women to gain access. #vaginalatrophy campaign.

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#VaginalAtrophy

This week we posted about an article from @mygenneve @jillangelo @RebeccaCaroe – founder of Faster Master Rowing. The article explains how rowing for women over the age of 40 is fast becoming a rapidly growing sport.   There are many health and wellbeing benefits for women to start rowing as a sport. Not only is it good for fitness and health, it is a great stress buster and a sociable sport that women can meet and make new friends. To read the full article head to twitter @mygenneve

It looks like a challenge may well have been set by ourselves, so watch this space! A gentle nudge and reminder to give rowing a try!

September is all about new beginnings and fresh starts what will you be deciding to do this September menos?

A new feature to our weekly blog, a real life Meno 60 seconds interview!!!!!

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Karen Lingard is a PeriMenoPost follower. 

Karen would like to share her story with you to help  other women by talking about the words “perimenopause and menopause”

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Karens real life menopause journey, told by Karen, herself.

My journey began a couple of years ago, I started to put on some weight and was then not able to lose it.  I noticed I was sweating more, than the usual. I never thought this had anything to do with menopause, I still felt  far too young. I am 51 years old now, I feel that this age is a blessing. I began to hide my age and I didn’t really want to admit to getting older. Last year I started to feel that something was not right, upon the left side of my tummy, a slight swelling appeared.  I was also experiencing really bad acid reflux which was making me feel quite nauseous a lot of the time.

I was always tired, with no energy.   I knew something was wrong but didn’t know what it could be.  I kept visiting my Doctor but they insisted it was acid reflux.   A blood test revealed that I was anaemic due to the heavy periods I had endured. Having had a colonoscopy and endoscopy, I still felt unwell.   My lower back and my joints were burning and were very painful, my Doctor sent me to have x rays and ct scans, just to be sure that there was nothing sinister happening. During this point, I became quite anxious I became convinced that it was something sinister as I knew my own body. I was given anxiety tablets from my doctor.  I had never experienced anxiety before, I had never suffered with stress. I just knew there was something more. 

I could not eat fatty foods, this would make me feel sick, my joints became painful and with a burning sensation.  It was affecting my quality of life, work and my family life. I decided to pay privately for more scans and tests. My results showed that I was suffering from endometriosis and that I was in fact perimenopausal.  Once treated for endometriosis, I began my own research of how to manage perimenopause. After reading Meg Matthews website, it seemed to mirror my own personal experience. During those four months, I had a feeling that I was going mad. I laugh now with friends about my A&E trips as I genuinely believed something was seriously wrong with me. I’m usually a rational person, but it seemed to take over my life. I manage my symptoms with taking regular vitamins to help,  such as 3000mg of evening primrose per day, magnesium, cod liver oil, vitamins, vitamin D and calcium. Eating a healthy diet helps, ensuring that I eat all the right foods. I manage my symptoms with plenty of regular exercise and looking after my health and well being.  

A big thank you to Karen Lingard, for sharing her personal journey of endometriosis and perimenopause.   We can relate with Karen’s story with many doctor trips, A&E and interestingly diet too was a factor. If you are experiencing symptoms, NICE guidelines online gives a guide on menopause to help you.

https://www.nice.org.uk/guidance/ng23/ifp/chapter/Menopause

PeriMenoPost will now be featuring every week within our blog a real life interview with one of our cherished followers.  A bit of fun, embracing and accepting a positive attitude towards menopause and spreading the word that it’s ok and normal to discuss menopause.

#UndoTheMenoTaboo

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PeriMenoPost 60 Second interview with real life

#Menowarriors

1) Best Part of menopause?

    Able to understand, talk and accept my coming to terms with menopause.

2) Tell us your best #Menomoment?

My funniest  #Menomoment, upon reflection and which I now laugh about has to be the trips to A&E .  Friends joke, telling me that I am barred from A&E!

3) What has been the worst part of your menopause?

The bloating and change to my body.

4) Have you taken the NHS or Private Health route to treat your menopause?

Initially self funding privately,  I am now treated within NHS.

5) Have you been supported within your workplace?

Yes. 

6) HRT or natural/alternative treatment for Menopause?

Natural.  

7) What advice would you give to a younger you,  prior to Perimenopause and Menopause?

Information and awareness would have helped me during this time, as I felt I was in the dark.

8) Where do you see yourself in 10 years time?

Same, I’m now in a much happier, healthier place.

9) Who would you like to give a shout out – a mention too? Who has been supportive and instrumental in helping you through menopause?

Finding Meg Matthews website, www.megsmenopause.com –  I stumbled upon her Instagram page. Bupa healthcare were very helpful. 

10)Who is your favourite #Menowarrior?

Meg Matthews 

Created by PeriMenoPost

If you would like to be interviewed for our weekly real life Meno 60 second interview,

contact  – 

@PeriMenoPost -Twitter

@perimenopost -Instagram

@PerimenoPost – Facebook

Look out for some exciting PeriMenoPost news soon  – more information coming soon via social media!!

Competition time – Enter our competition to win yourself an #UndoTheMenoTaboo T-shirt!!! Simply retweet this week’s blog and the winner will be chosen by Friday 30th August 2019 Midday 12pm. Terms and conditions – below.

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#UndoTheMenotaboo

Please read these terms carefully before entering the competition. 

Entering the competition constitutes an acceptance of these terms and conditions.

The Competition is only open to (UK RESIDENTS)

The Competition is open to any resident of the United Kingdom over 18 years of age

Automated or bulk entries from third parties will be disqualified.

 ● We reserve the right to exclude serial competition entrants who have entered more than 4 competitions in the last month. 

● There is no entry fee and no purchase necessary to enter this competition.

The Competition opens on (25th August 2019 13.45pm) and closes (30th August 2019 MIdday 12pm )

Entrants can enter at any point between these dates.

To enter the competition entrants will need to like the post and follow us

● Entrants can only enter the Competition once, but can like, regram/repost  comment, tweet and RT as many times as they like

● The winner will be selected (Selected at random from list)

The winner will be selected at random from the list of entrants. Names will be entered into a spreadsheet and numbered and a member of staff that has not seen the spreadsheet will choose a number between x and y who shall be the winner.

● The winner will be notified by DM within 2 days of the closing date. If the winner cannot be contacted or do not claim the prize within 14 days of notification, we reserve the right to withdraw the prize from the winner and pick a replacement winner. The winner will be notified via DM on Instagram within 14 days of the closing date.

● The prize for winning the competition will be (White Printed T-Shirt Value RRP 15.00GBP) 

 ● The Prize as stated and cannot be sold or exchanged for cash, goods or services. Unless specifically agreed in writing by PeriMenoPost) ● The Prize is not transferable and must be accepted by the winner

PerimenoPost reserve the right to use the voice, image, photograph, name and likeness of the winners for publicity and in advertising, marketing or promotional material without additional compensation or prior notice to the winners. In entering the Competition, all participants consent to such use of their voice, image, photograph, name and likeness. 

● Copyright of any material produced as part of the competition is owned by PeriMenoPost  and/or its content suppliers.

 ● Unauthorised use of the material produced as part of this competition, including reproduction, storage, modification, distribution or publication without the prior written consent of PeriMenoPost  or, where applicable, the respective competition entrant is prohibited. 

● Where you are able to submit any contribution to this competition you agree, by submitting your contribution, to grant PeriMenoPost  a perpetual, royalty-free, non-exclusive, sub-licenseable right and license to use, reproduce, modify, adapt, publish, translate, create derivative works from, distribute, perform, play, and exercise all copyright and publicity rights with respect to your contribution worldwide and/or to incorporate your contribution in other works in any media now known or later developed for the full term of any rights that may exist in your contribution. If you do not want to grant PeriMenoPost the rights set out above, please do not submit your contribution to PeriMenoPost 

● By submitting your contribution to PeriMenoPost  you warrant that your contribution is your own original work and that you have the right to make it available to PeriMenoPost for any or all of the purposes specified above. Furthermore, you warrant your contribution is not defamatory, does not infringe any law, you indemnify PeriMenoPost against all legal fees, damages and other expenses that may be incurred by periMenoPost  as a result of your breach of the above warranty and waive any moral rights in your contribution for the purposes of its submission to and publication on the Site and the purposes specified above.

 Data protection

 ● You consent to your first name, photograph and social media handles about you being disclosed on PeriMenoPost digital channels or other media if you win any Prizes under the Competition

 ● Any personal data relating to participants will be used solely in accordance with UK data regulations and will not be disclosed to a third party without the entrant’s prior consent. To find out more about what data we hold and how we process data please read our privacy policy We follow Instagram Privacy policy, details will be destroyed 14 days after competition ends.   

● By entering the Competition, you agree that PeriMenoPost  may contact you in relation to the Competition. Absolving responsibility of the social platforms

 ● This promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with, platform x (INSTAGRAM   or any other social network General liability cover ● PeriMenoPost do not accept liability for any damages whatsoever, including, without limitation, indirect or consequential damages, loss of profits, or any damages whatsoever arising out of, or in connection with the competition. ● Except in the case of death or personal injury arising from its negligence, or in respect of fraud, and so far as is permitted by law, periMenoPost  and its associated companies and agents and distributors exclude responsibility and all liabilities, whether direct or indirect, arising from: ● any postponement or cancellation of the Competition; ● any changes to, supply of or use of the Prize; and ● any act or default of any supplier, which are beyond PeriMenoPost

This past week at the PeriMenoPost home has been through more change, no 2 daughter has now moved into a flat with no1 daughter.  No 3 son has just had his first festival!!! Hand is on the mend too!

Looking forward to hearing all their news, oh how to be young again!!

As always Menos, have a super week and wishing you all a fabUlous bank holiday weekend!!

Enjoy the sunshine.

Is your business menopause friendly?

PeriMenoPost is pleased to announce the launch of www.perimenopost.com!!! Wahoo!!!!

If you have been following PeriMenoPost on social media you’ll know that not only do we talk socially about Menopause on all things digital but we can also help your business/brand to talk menopause friendly too!

I am Lorna Ive Founder of @PeriMenoPost and a digital mum graduate.  PeriMenoPost can help your business to grow with strategic social media management. 

I had a bolt of inspiration to help other women going through all stages of menopause.   I wanted to create an online tool to help provide women with a friendly, fun and informative community. Navigating women through the rollercoaster ride of menopause with the help of social media platforms, Twitter – Facebook and Instagram with a weekly blog and competitions.

Perimenopost began as my campaign in January 2019 for my digital mums training, I was then able to put my lightbulb idea I had formed into action!!  Perimenopost has helped to make menopause become more accepted and discussed in social conversations online and in real life. 

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Is your brand talking menopause friendly?

Do you have a business or brand that you feel can help women manage their perimenopause or menopause  journey? Are you a brand that would like to reach out to the menopausal woman?

No longer a taboo, menopause conversations are now taking place. Let your business join in the conversation and help to raise brand awarenes and helping women at the same time.

Let perimenopost take your brand to the next level and create a winning formula!

Perimenopost is a resource for women to use online to be a part of a friendly, fun and informative community, to gain further information and understanding with a postive mindset helping to make informed choices. 

Contact PeriMenoPost today.

www.perimenopost.com

@PeriMenoPost twitter

@Perimenopost instagram

@PerimenoPost Facebook

Starting the conversation about all things #earlymenopause #Perimenopause #Menopause and #postmenopause.  Breaking down the taboo one post at a time ..

Real life Meno 60 seconds Interview 

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Real life Meno 60 Seconds interview

This weeks real life meno  60 seconds interview guest is our competition winner Samantha Evans @samtalkssex

Congratulations and well done Samantha !!!

Our #UndoTheMenoTaboo T shirt is on its way to you!!

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#UndoTheMenoTaboo

Samantha Evans would like to share her menopause journey with you and share with you her commitment to raising awareness and helping women about sexual health, intimacy and to not suffer in silence.   Read Sam’s story …..

I’m Samantha Evans co-founder of Jo Divine, an online sex toy company, with my husband Paul in 2007. I’m 51, menopausal, married with three teenagers.

Having a professional background in nursing, I’m a features writer for Jo Divine and work with many healthcare professionals in the NHS and private practice to help them advise their patients about regaining sexual function and enjoying sexual intimacy and pleasure through the use of suitable sex toys, dilators and sexual lubricants.

With an extensive knowledge about sex toys and sexual lubricants, I advise women going through the menopause and beyond about ways to enjoy sexual intimacy and pleasure as this is often a time when many couples give up on their sex lives due to the impact of menopausal health issues that affect their intimacy and pleasure.

I really enjoy sex but spent many years in my 20’s and 30’s suffering from recurrent thrush, bacterial vaginosis (BV), cystitis and urinary tract infections that led to vaginismus which nearly destroyed my sex life due to using poor lubricants such as KY jelly adn other well known brands which contain glycerin, glcyols and parabens all of which irriate the tissues of the vagina and vulva, disrupting vagina pH and can cause thrush. To overcome the issues of recurrent thrush or BV I would use well known feminine hygiene products bought over the counter and still recommended by GPs everywhere that actually exacerbated the problem as so many of them contain the same ingredients that were causing these recurrent infections!

The only advice I got from a gynaecologist at my local hospital was to iron the gusset of all my knickers which is useful advice but he never discussed my sex life or the use of lubricants. 

This is why I’m passionate about educating women about ways to enjoy sexual intimacy and pleasure when menopausal and midlife sexual isues such as vaginal dryness, vaginal atrophy, painful sex, low libido and decreased sexual sensation occur, issues that many find embarrassing to talk about, all of which can impact upon sexual intimacy and pleasure and lead to people giving up on their sex life when there are simple practical things they can do to keep enjoying sex. For me, sex is fun, messy, noisy, intimate and most of all pleasurable.

https://www.jodivine.com/
https://www.jodivine.com/authors/samantha-evans

Twitter @samtalkssex

@samtalkssex @jodivineuk Instagram jo.divine

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1) Best Part of menopause?

Not giving a hoot about what people think about you, I have gained so much confidence and hopefully encourage other women to speak out, seek help and not suffer in silence or from embarrassment especially when it comes to enjoying sex.

Meeting all the fabulous women through campaigning for better education and care for women. Everyone has their own story to tell and has used it to improve their own quality of life and that of women everywhere.

2) Tell us your best #Menomoment?

Being part of the Latte Lounge Panel in aid of the Eve Appeal in July with Liz Earle ( huge fan of her products), Athena Lamnisos (CEO of Eve Appeal) Dr Louise Newson ( leading menopause GP), Katie Taylor (founder of the Latte Lounge) Diane Danzebrink (founder of Menopause Support) and Jane Lewis (author of Me & My Menopausal Vagina)

Seeing a medical professional panic when they can’t turn off the sex toy you’ve put in their hand  at a conference/talk. This happens quite often and always makes me smile!

3) What has been the worst part of your menopause?

Walking out on my husband and sitting in a local wood among the bluebells crying for more than 3 hours earlier this year due to feeling completely overwhelmed and incredibly sad. I think I’m quite confident and practical, always trying to rationalize things, probably as I have a nursing background yet this completely derailed me. I always ask my children and husband where they are when they go out yet I turned off my phone and no one knew where I was and I made them frantic with worry. Something I still feel really sad about. We all ended up talking and things are better now.

4) Have you taken the NHS or Private Health route to treat your menopause?

I have to admit  as a former nurse I had no idea of some of the symptoms of menopause such as  palpitations, itchy skin, joint aches and pains, painful breast, ect. I started to see my male GP with these symptoms about a year before I was told I was menopausal. He was hopeless, refusing to acknowledge when asked, if these were menopause symptoms and prescribing inappropriate medication which exacerbated my symptoms. Luckily we have a female GP with an interest in women’s health in my GP practice so  I took my symptom checklist Diane Danzebrink recommended I do but she didn’t look at it, within minutes of chatting she said you’re menopausal and she has been fabulous ever since. 

5) Have you been supported within your workplace?

My husband and I co-own Jo Divine and work from our home office but he is just brilliant, he’s got used to my lapses in concentration. It helps our office looks out onto the garden and I go and sit outside, have a cup of tea whenever I want to.

6) HRT or natural/alternative treatment for Menopause?

HRT patches x 2 weekly to protect my heart, bone, vagina and bladder health, Vagifem (local oestrogen for my vagina) x 3 weekly.

Natural products include YES organic lubricants and vaginal moisturisers as they are free from glycerin which can cause thrush, glycols that irritate the tissue of the vagina and urethra and parabens which are oestrogenic and have no place inside our bodies, also pH balanced to that of the vagina. 

Having had my sex life and vagina health destroyed in my 20’s and 30’s by KY jelly, well known lubricant brands and feminine hygiene products I wanted to ensure that I could continue to enjoy sex through menopause and beyond.

7) What advice would you give to a younger you prior to

Perimenopause and Menopause?

Get educated about the symptoms of the peri/menopause because I had no idea that many of my symptoms were perimenopausal, educate your children and partners, ignore all the negative menopause coverage in the media ( I wrote an article about how I was having better sex in my 40’s than my 20’s after seeing yet another photo of a sad women sitting ont h end of the bed in the Mail online whcih ended up in the Mail online!) and numerous websites/celebrities touting products for the menopause to vulnerable women that are often detrimental to health or offer no benefit.

8) Where do you see yourself in 10 years time?

Still enjoying great sex and helping more women  (and their partners) to enjoy sexual intimacy and pleasure too. Hopefully will have written my  book about owning Jo Divine and being a sexual health and pleasure expert.

9) Who would you like to give a shout out – mention too? Who has been supportive and instrumental in helping you through menopause?

I’m so lucky to have met and now work with amazing women campaigning for better education for everyone, including medical professionals, especially GPs so big shout out for Dr Louise Newson, Diane Danzebrink, Jane Lewis, Katie Taylor and Rachael Egderton plus my lovely husband Paul and three teenage children who are fabulous. 

10)Who is your favourite #Menowarrior?

Can I have two? Diane Danzebrink #Make Menopause Matter campaigner and Jane Lewis, they have become firm friends and we can talk about anything, Jane and I are vagina warriors, she and I will never stop talking about vaginas, vulvas and sex!

Thank you Sam for a great interview about your journey and your fantastic campaigining for sexual health awareness which is helping so many women to regain their sex lives.

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Photo by Fathi Vee on Pexels.com

This week is sexual health awareness 16th Sept -22 September 2019.

If you’re experiencing symptoms due to menopause and it’s affecting your sex life, you will find some more information from the following sites;

      www.jodivine.com                  www.fpa.org.uk www.brook.org.uk

It is also Gynaecological cancer awareness month #GCAM

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To help you gain more information the following sites have plenty of support and advice to help you.

@eve appeal   www.eve.co.uk

@vulvacancerUK  – Twitter 

@wombcancersupportuk Twitter /www.wombcancersupport.weebly.com

@jotrust – Twitter/www.jotrust.org.uk

@ovariancanceractionuk- Twitter / www.ovariancancer.org.uk

@targetovariancancer twitter / www.targetovariancancer.org.uk

@macmillancancer www.macmillan.org.uk

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It’s menopause awareness month and we are very pleased to announce a well woman event!!

A little surprise in store as PeriMenoPost will be present too, come and say hello and join in the conversation about all things menopause.

Bella Vou Clinic, the Pantiles in Tunbridge Wells is holding a well woman event. An evening of empowering and informative talks by womens health specialists.

The event is to be held at the Salomons Estate, Tunbridge Wells, TN3 0TG

26th Sept 7-9pm with host of speakers including question and answers.

Dr Marilyn Glenville PHD the UK’s leading nutritional specialist in women’s health will be discussing how to balance your hormones.

Dr Gail Ball is an experienced GP working within the NHS  for womens health and sexual health in Brighton for 18 years. 

Samantha Evans @samtalkssex @jodivine our competition winner!! Will be discussing sexual health and intimacy. 

Pip Salmon is a clinical specialist physiotherapist an expert in pelvic floor and urinary incontinence.  Pip will be sharing some tips and advice to help manage symptoms and giving you the confidence back to feel comfortable with your body.

Sandrine Gasnier the founder of Sandrines Pilates will be sharing some helpful exercises to regain pelvic floor muscle and strength, helping to control bladder, bowels and sexual energy.

Sue Hutchings owner of Knowle Grange Health Spa will be offering mini massage treatments during the event, Sue is a Reiki Master, Kinesiologist and personal trainer.  Sue will be offering treatments during the evening event.

Nicola Pinkney is a MLD/DLT therapist who trained in the DR Vodder method of MLD for manual lymphatic drainage and decongestive lymphatic therapy. Nicola will also be providing treatments for the event.

PeriMenoPost will be joining in with questions and answers, so come and say hello!

www.bellavou.co.uk

Tickets are available from events@bellavou.co.uk or from www.eventbrite.co.uk/bellavou 

Look forward to meeting you there Menos.

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Competition time!!!!

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If you would like to enter our weekly competition and win yourself an #undothemenotaboo t shirt, to enter you need to like our blog and then retweet or repost! you will be entered into a lucky dip.  You may also be next weeks real life 60 seconds meno interview guest!!

Terms and conditions for competition;

Please read these terms carefully before entering the competition. 

Entering the competition constitutes an acceptance of these terms and conditions.

The Competition is only open to (UK RESIDENTS)

The Competition is open to any resident of the United Kingdom over 18 years of age

Automated or bulk entries from third parties will be disqualified.

 ● We reserve the right to exclude serial competition entrants who have entered more than 4 competitions in the last month. 

● There is no entry fee and no purchase necessary to enter this competition.

The Competition opens on (17th Sept 2019 2pm closes (24th Sept 2pm)

Entrants can enter at any point between these dates.

To enter the competition entrants will need to like the post and follow us

● Entrants can only enter the Competition once, but can like, regram/repost  comment, tweet and RT as many times as they like

● The winner will be selected (Selected at random from list)

The winner will be selected at random from the list of entrants. Names will be entered into a spreadsheet and numbered and a member of staff that has not seen the spreadsheet will choose a number between x and y who shall be the winner.

● The winner will be notified by DM within 2 days of the closing date. If the winner cannot be contacted or do not claim the prize within 14 days of notification, we reserve the right to withdraw the prize from the winner and pick a replacement winner. The winner will be notified via DM on Instagram within 14 days of the closing date.

● The prize for winning the competition will be (White Printed T-Shirt Value RRP 15.00GBP) 

 ● The Prize as stated and cannot be sold or exchanged for cash, goods or services. Unless specifically agreed in writing by PeriMenoPost) ● The Prize is not transferable and must be accepted by the winner

PerimenoPost reserve the right to use the voice, image, photograph, name and likeness of the winners for publicity and in advertising, marketing or promotional material without additional compensation or prior notice to the winners. In entering the Competition, all participants consent to such use of their voice, image, photograph, name and likeness. 

● Copyright of any material produced as part of the competition is owned by PeriMenoPost  and/or its content suppliers.

 ● Unauthorised use of the material produced as part of this competition, including reproduction, storage, modification, distribution or publication without the prior written consent of PeriMenoPost  or, where applicable, the respective competition entrant is prohibited. 

● Where you are able to submit any contribution to this competition you agree, by submitting your contribution, to grant PeriMenoPost  a perpetual, royalty-free, non-exclusive, sub-licenseable right and license to use, reproduce, modify, adapt, publish, translate, create derivative works from, distribute, perform, play, and exercise all copyright and publicity rights with respect to your contribution worldwide and/or to incorporate your contribution in other works in any media now known or later developed for the full term of any rights that may exist in your contribution. If you do not want to grant PeriMenoPost the rights set out above, please do not submit your contribution to PeriMenoPost 

● By submitting your contribution to PeriMenoPost  you warrant that your contribution is your own original work and that you have the right to make it available to PeriMenoPost for any or all of the purposes specified above. Furthermore, you warrant your contribution is not defamatory, does not infringe any law, you indemnify PeriMenoPost against all legal fees, damages and other expenses that may be incurred by periMenoPost  as a result of your breach of the above warranty and waive any moral rights in your contribution for the purposes of its submission to and publication on the Site and the purposes specified above.

 Data protection

 ● You consent to your first name, photograph and social media handles about you being disclosed on PeriMenoPost digital channels or other media if you win any Prizes under the Competition

 ● Any personal data relating to participants will be used solely in accordance with UK data regulations and will not be disclosed to a third party without the entrant’s prior consent. To find out more about what data we hold and how we process data please read our privacy policy We follow Instagram Privacy policy, details will be destroyed 14 days after competition ends.   

● By entering the Competition, you agree that PeriMenoPost  may contact you in relation to the Competition. Absolving responsibility of the social platforms

 ● This promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with, platforms Twitter and INSTAGRAM   or any other social network General liability cover ● PeriMenoPost do not accept liability for any damages whatsoever, including, without limitation, indirect or consequential damages, loss of profits, or any damages whatsoever arising out of, or in connection with the competition. ● Except in the case of death or personal injury arising from its negligence, or in respect of fraud, and so far as is permitted by law, periMenoPost  and its associated companies and agents and distributors exclude responsibility and all liabilities, whether direct or indirect, arising from: ● any postponement or cancellation of the Competition; ● any changes to, supply of or use of the Prize; and ● any act or default of any supplier, which are beyond PeriMenoPost 

Have a super week menos, keep shouting the word menopause out there!!

All of us together,  we can normalise and make menopause become accepted within society.  Contact PeriMenoPost today to talk menopause.

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Keep talking menopause, we are!

It’s been a very busy few weeks for PeriMenoPost.

Last week was a week of firsts!

First Client – Instagram workshop.

Launching PeriMenoPost website.

PeriMenoPost speaking at a Well Woman Event – BellaVou Clinic – to raise awareness and starting the conversation about menopause.

Digital mum peer group meet up in real life #queensofthesocialage

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#QueensOfTheSocialAge

Digital Mum peer group.

@bemighty

@littlecambs

@socialfolke

@annamartinmedia

@perimenopost@lornaivemedia

@sketch @digitalmums

Sketch was the meeting venue for our “in real life” meet up during the weekend, what a very suitable social media venue! We absolutely loved it!

We had alot of fun, ate delicious cake, bubbles, G&T’s and alot of catching up to do.  We had planned an afternoon tea to celebrate our passing and qualifying of the Digital Mums Social Media Strategist course.

These super talented ladies are awesome!!! Now firm friends and work colleagues within the world of social media management. We missed you @beautiful_iow  Next year, going to be a yearly meetup!!

All through our training we helped, supported and encouraged one another.  Pushing each other well and truly out from our comfort zones, helping each other with strategies and all whilst learning new skills. I could not have wished for a better peer group to be placed with all through our social media training and campaigns with digital mums!

A pleasure to have been placed in such an awesome peer group! Wahoo ladies!!

@socialfolke –  All things social in Folkestone, Kent.

@bemighty  -For working mums and flexible working.

@annamartinmedia –   Super Social Media Strategy for business.

@littlecambs – the go to guide for little people in Cambridge.

@perimenopost – Menopause awareness and community.

@lornaivemedia – Social Media Strategy for business.

@thisbeautifulisland   – A great guide to Isle of Wight.

@digitalmums – #learnin

I want to say a massive thank you to my fellow #queensofthesocialage and wish them all the very best of luck for their future social media careers. #socialmediastrategist

PeriMenoPost was asked to join in with questions and answers for @Bellavou Pantiles, clinic of Tunbridge Wells for their Well Woman Event held last week.

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It was an absolute pleasure to be included with the fellow guests and speakers during the evening. The event was held at Salomons Estate in Tunbridge Wells. Over 50 women turned up to listen to talks about womens health from a selected panel of speakers, a friendly, fun and informative evening.

The evening was a big success! A series of events will now follow, the next event will discuss menopause, we will be there to keep talking and breaking down the taboo and stigma surrounding menopause.  The event will be held on the 7th of November 2019. To book your place email events@bellavou.co.uk 

Come and say hello!

Dr Marilyn Glenville discussed how to balance hormones naturally with nutrition and a life style of self care.  Reducing stress and eating a well balanced diet, supported with good vitamin and minerals. Dr Glenville explained how womens health can be affected by nutrition, stress and with help from the Glenville Clinic you can manage symptoms. If you are experiencing symptoms and would like to have a consultation, contact the clinic;

www.marilynglenville.com

skype or phone consultations call 01892515905 reception@glenvillenutrition.com

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Dr Marilyn Glenville Phd

Glenville Nutrition

Dr Gail Ball Spoke about the Well Woman Clinic,  that is offered at the BellaVou Pantiles Clinic, in Tunbridge Wells. 

Dr Gail Ball offers a personalised well woman screening to meet your needs.  To book your consultation and to find out more – contact hello@bellavou.co.uk

The Well Woman Clinic offers a well woman medical consultation, menopause management, Family planning and sexual health advice and personalised treatment.   If you are expereincing symptoms contact BellaVou today to make your appointment with Dr Gail Ball.

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Dr Gail Ball

Pip Salmon is a specialised womens health physiotherapist.  Pip spoke in a very approachable and kind manner about how important it is to keep exercising the pelvic floor.   A very helpful and informative talk, with easy to do exercises at any time to help you regain pelvic floor strength if you are suffering from stress incontinence.  If you are experiencing symptoms contact Pip to make an appointment  https://www.mtw.nhs.uk/service/physiotherapy/

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Pip Salmon – Womens health physiotherapist

Sandrine founder of @sandrinespiltes lifestyle discussed her honest account of  her journey and how pilates has helped her to regain her pelvic floor. Sandrine stressed how important it is for women to exercise and strengthen the pelvic floor especially after child birth and heading towards menopause.  Sandrine encouraged the audience to join in with a pelvic floor exercise that she uses within her clientele at her studio to help them regain pelvic floor strength.

To book a class at Sandrines Pilates www.sandrinespilates.co.uk

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Sandrine Gasnier

Founder Sandrines Pilates Lifestyle

Sue Hutchings, owner of Knowle Grange Health Spa in Frant, Tunbridge Wells and her team of assistants were ensuring everyone was relaxed and comfortable for the evening.  Sue and her team offered a range of mini treatments and massages throughout the evening. Ladies were treated to a very relaxing treatment and the room smelt absolutely divine!  To book a treatment contact https://www.knowlegrange.co.uk/

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Sue Hutchings

Owner Knowle Grange Health Spa

Sam Evans @samtalkssex and Founder of Jo Divine, a company that is extremely passionate about raising sexual health awareness and providing information on a wide variety of sex toy aids.  Sam gave helpful and informative advice to women about the importance of being aware of one’s sexual health. For further information contact Sam Evans at www.jodivine.com

Nikki Pinkney offers Manual Lymphatic Drainage therapy and deep oscillation therapy within BellaVou Clinic, Nikki offered helpful advice during the evening.  Nikki is passionate about the effects of manual lymphatic drainage therapy to help patients post surgical surgery with patients recovering at a faster rate, providing a holistic treatment.

Contact Nikki Pinkney www.rejuvenate_mld.co.uk

As PeriMenoPost we gave helpful menopause friendly advice.  Discussions with women about the different stages of menopause and how raising awareness locally was our mission.  What we will be offering to the community in the format of menopause friendly workshops, meet mighty menos -coffee groups and social media management for menopause friendly products to local businesses. We will be present at the next BellaVou event, book your place at events@bellavou.co.uk  Come and say hello.

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PeriMenoPost and Pip Salmon

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We feel there is still a very long road to go to breaking down the menopause taboo.  The current and younger generation of women believe that they are no where near menopause and have not even heard of perimenopause.  The older generation do not want to talk about it.

Younger women are not aware of the 34 menopause symptoms,  they also do not know of perimenopause. This is in part due a generation of women with  the lack of education and information from school sex education and with no information from GP’s. This has to be addressed.  Older women have a sense of feeling that they are too old and do not need to be given advice. They feel they have managed and have gone through menopause and it is all final and that they do not need help.  The older generation of women between Friends do not talk to each other about menopause. This is so sad and must be so lonely, this has to change and women of post menopause age must be helped to feel accepted and advised that there is help for them if they are suffering from symptoms and where to access the correct treatment.

Perimenopost wants to be here for all women of all stages of menopause early, perimenopause, menopause and post menopause.  Women supporting one another, no one should sufffer in silence or be alone. As women we all experience menopause at some point in our lives, we must all support one another and help one another at a time when one needs supporting the most.

Our main goal  is that the current women of the menopause age generation and younger women, are made aware of the symptoms and treatments available to them, to be able to talk about menopause openly and to feel accepted. 

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#UndoTheMenotaboo

This weeks Real Life 60 seconds guest is Aline Boblin, Aline is a menopause advocate and travels in her newly acquired broomstick! Read Alines incredible menopause journey and her interview. 

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Aline Boblin #MenoWarrior

PeriMenoPost 60 Second interview with real life #Menowarriors 

I’m Aline Boblin, 51, French expat firmly grounded in the UK for the past 30 odd years, mother to a wonderful 22 year old daughter, single, a strong advocate of volunteering, and completing my Menopause journey recovery.

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Aline Boblin #MeNoPause

#MakeMenopauseMatter

Lover of all things quirky, from burlesque and steampunk events, to pole fitness, to exploring the country in my campervan Broomstick, and ballroom dancing in aid of Cancer Research UK.

26 years of a great career in aerospace ended abruptly this year. My menopause journey is a great example of what has no need to happen these days.  An extremely challenging 7 years, a wealth of positives along the way, especially in 2019.

I’m back to being me; I’m passionate in raising awareness of Menopause and a great supporter of empowering women through information to make the right choices for themselves and preventing other women facing the same difficulties during their menopause journey that I faced. #MakeMenopauseMatter 

My personal challenge and focus are to see the volunteering I am doing in the Menopause arena lead to a paid employment in a philanthropic, fulfilling fashion, using the skillsets I have and feel re-energised to use and making a positive difference to menopausal women out there. 

Baby steps though. ☺

#MeNoPause

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1) Best Part of menopause? 

Reconnecting with my self, greatly through CBT, holding precious this self-awareness of my physical and mental self, re-engaging with my values and ethos. #StillMe

Another enrichment continues to be learning so much about health and medicine and hormonal impacts on our physical and cognitive health and so much more. I’m very grateful to the groups and forums and social media savvy women, and men, who share evidence-based facts.  They empower me and others in this field to take control of our future and our approach to the menopausal journey.

2) Tell us your best #Menomoment?  

Holding my first Menopause Café in Solihull in July 2019 with co-conspirator Lesley Byrne.

Such a heart-warming feeling to see women openly and emotionally discussing their situation and share in the way women do, reaching out for and providing support to each other.

More to come including with Diane Danzebrink

Undoubtedly, starting HRT and taking that step towards being me again.

Buying Broomstick my campervan and travelling with her this Summer.

3) What has been the worst part of your menopause?

Where do I start!

In 3 words: Losing my self.

There is indeed a very recurring theme to my journey ☺

I cannot summarise in a few words the myriad of symptoms and how they have impacted my quality of life, my emotional state, my cognitive abilities, and my general ability to deal with ‘normal’ life events and stresses, from my high powered job (I accepted redundancy after 5 months signed off by GP, the still bitter end of a 26 year career), to my relationship with my daughter (I lied to her about the gravity of insomnia and anxiety and working from home for about 2 months) and my now ex-partner, to my friendships and other family members (also lied to friends and family about the gravity of my situation, and stopped seeing many of them).

The most debilitating symptom was sleeplessness and insomnia over 7 years.

I stopped enjoying so much in life in those 7 years.

I know that, had I not been physically and mentally impaired by the peri menopause symptoms, I could have faced better all those challenges, and other family ones I have not shared here. I know it would have proved challenging and I would have had some usual ups and downs. And I also know I would not have lost myself and crashed in the manner I did end of October 2018 when Menopause overwhelmed me.

I am listing my symptoms below in the hope that it helps others realise the breadth of the way peri-menopause can affect a woman. 

  • sleeplessness and insomnia for 7 years – this proved the most destabilising symptoms, the pillar that crumbled and took away my mental, cognitive and physical strengths.  The impact on work was exponential and became catastrophic. I use many sleeping techniques including bedtime routines, healthy eating, meditation and more. These great tools and healthy habits weren’t enough though. HRT made such a positive difference. I now sleep through the night again and from 2-5 hours a week, my health monitoring partner FitBit tells me I sleep on average 6 hours a night. Result!!!!
  • anxiety for 6 months – Despite resisting my GP for several years, I even took antidepressants end 2018 out of desperation, which didn’t help, at all – I came off them gradually once HRT had stabilised most of my menopause symptoms and I was therefore more rested and stronger to face the withdrawal side effects.
  • low mood and irritability frequently over 5 years – back to their pre-peri-menopause so yes, still around but at much more acceptable levels, especially according to those around me ☺ 
  • brain fog most days for 5 years. This is pretty much gone although I can feel at times how sensitive I am to changes in estrogen levels and progesterone levels and how that impacts my cognitive abilities. This said, I am now mentally equipped to deal with these.
  • loss of self-confidence increasingly over those 7 years – I now have my mojo back! World beware…
  • poor concentration and poor memory for past 7 years and I accept that this still occurs at times though under control now 
  • joint pains all over my body for 18 months, to the point of crying in pain at night sitting on the floor in the room farthest away from everyone so as not to disturb their sleep. This is at bay unless I reduce my estrogen gel by accident and as long as, for me, my Mirena coil is less than 4 years fitted (recommendation is 5 years, but that hasn’t worked for me). Eating lots of fish too and taking supplements for joint care, cause every little helps!!!  Love the fact that I can now exercise and be more active without paying the price pain wise too.
  • dry itchy eyes for 3 years, this has now stopped and my ophthalmologist was amazed at the positive change in my eyes though not surprised once we discussed hormonal journey and estrogen use. Obviously all those little fishes eaten help too ☺
  • palpitation for 8 months, went away on its own before HRT but did get me into hospital briefly. I have my GP at the time to thank for helping work through the emotions these created and mindfully conquering them. Mind over matter can prove powerful indeed.
  • tension headaches most days for 7 years, now off the blood pressure medication I took for it for so many years to alleviate the symptoms. Greatly in my non-medical professional opinion linked to the lack of sleep. So energising to see that one go! 
  • extremely heavy periods, rending me unable to work from the office or travel for work for 3 years; the situation rendered me so on edge, making me feel stressed, and anxious about managing work and such a noticeable problem, keeping change of clothes with me, dreading standing up from my seat in case I flooded; this was remedied through using the Mirena coil
  • itchy skin to the point of waking up scratching to blood. 2 long episodes over 7 months now gone. A horrendous summer of even less sleep and so many tears and emotional breakdowns. I was even referred to a consultant for this.
  • hot flushes and night sweats on and off over 7 years now gone. This was one of the least of my problems.
  • louder tinnitus for 7 years much improved now. I would never have thought fertility hormones played a part in the inner ear. The more fool me!

Oh the things I’ve learned medically on this journey! I absolutely love that side of the Menopause!!!!

4) Have you taken the NHS or Private Health route to treat your menopause?

Both 

The NHS route proved painful, partly helpful for some symptoms but I was not treated properly as each symptom was taken in isolation over 7 years since 2012, some of them successfully patched up. I ended up seeing several consultants, taking a myriad of medicines to address what was in fact due to fertility hormone imbalance, including some HRT elements but without GP aiming for menopause HRT, and not using the options I would have chosen had I been offered accurate information on options, their risks and their benefits.

Then the Private Health avenue, which I reached out to after crashing emotionally and physically, and with timing corresponding to the end of my own personal research in what turned out to be the best option for me, HRT.  I am so appreciative of the work Dr Louise Newson does and her wonderful team at her private clinic. So many synergies came out of going to her clinic’s open day this time last year.

5) Have you been supported within your workplace?  

The short answer is a resounding NO. 

Arguably, I also did not reach out to onsite out-sourced occupational health practitioner which my employer was keen to point out. But I was so determined to beat what was happening to me myself, to not show any weakness at work to my management, my peers, my team.

My employer, especially my management, was however unable to appreciate the impacts of increasing symptoms.  I chose with GP’s support to work remotely and reduced hours to tackle my recovery. Comments were made to me ‘so, when are you coming back to work’ although I was working still, followed by ‘you know what I mean, when will you be back to normal’. Those words really stuck with me and hurt me and made me feel so inadequate and ashamed for not being able to cope. They angered me. They broke me. I still resent them.

Eventually, this toxic situation pushed me to accept to be signed off work in January 2019. It lasted almost 6 months. This was both tough because it removed a huge sense of purpose and affected my self-esteem, and also greatly beneficial because I eventually allowed myself to fully reach out to psychologist for CBT and to start physical recovery that HRT had started to induce through rebalancing hormones.

I have since then accepted redundancy.

6) HRT or natural/alternative treatment for Menopause?  

For me, HRT despite being a strong advocate of alternative medicine which I have used and still use extensively for over 30 years. HRT gives me today my quality of life back as well as long term protection against heart disease, bowel cancer, diabetes, vaginal and eye dryness, joints and muscles pain, osteoporosis and much more. I lead a mainly healthy, usually active life which research shows alleviate potential slight risks. 

Alternative treatments can prove greatly helpful when be used in conjunction with HRT too.

HRT wise, I have a Mirena coil for progesterone, I take 4 pumps of Estrogel a day (2 am, 2 pm), I also take testosterone, one pump of Tostran twice a week. I take supplements too, key ones being magnesium, vitamin D3, fish oils and multivitamins.

I am not however a medical professional and therefore I would not state that HRT is the one and only option, nor the best option, for all women. The choices on menopause symptoms managements are numerous. Each woman has her own health history. Each woman should be able to review her options, to make an educated decision on the best option for herself, and to give informed consent for treatments with the support of knowledgeable medical professionals.  

7) What advice would you give to a younger you prior to Perimenopause and Menopause?  

Educate yourself early on the potential challenges of menopause and watch out for the signs. 

Keep strong and feel empowered to be your own advocate as soon as you realise your peri menopause phase may start.

Do not let your quality of life be impaired. 

Do not suffer in silence. 

Help is out there.

8) Where do you see yourself in 10 years’ time?  

Oh that’s a tough one. I don’t tend to project myself in this way ☺

Enjoying life, that’s for sure!

Probably travelling in my newly acquired campervan, Broomstick, with a partner by my side, or not, and still working as a leading advocate of making menopause matter, rolling this out on an ad hoc basis through meno meetups in the community and workshops in the workplace as I think the journey to enlightenment on the Menopause front will have progressed extensively in next 10 years and will only require intermittent interventions.

Or something else. ☺

9) Who would you like to give a shout out – mention too? Who has been supportive and instrumental in helping you through menopause? 

My wonderful daughter Eloïse who believes in me even when I don’t.

Joanna Corscaden, a significant contributor to the foundation of the Anne Robson Trust, who has been a rock of a friend for over 40 years and especially so in past 24 months.

Sarah S who identified when I was in need for support as exhausted and showing increasing signs of incoherent behaviour and called up a girlfriends meeting to get me to seek help.

Lesley Byrne who I met at Dr Newson’s clinic and who empowered me to focus on myself when all went pear shaped at work and I hit rock bottom.

All the women who dedicate their life to making a difference and their online resources and forums available for women like me to reach out to. 

To name but a few

Diane Danzebrink for her passionate #MakeMenopauseMatter campaign and www.menopausesupport.co.uk help site

Dr Louise Newson for her relentless work in Menopause health at her Stratford upon Avon Clinic, her information site www.menopausedoctor.co.uk, her recent and easy to grasp new Menopause guide book

Jane Lewis for sharing such a personal story in Me and My Menopausal Vagina and her dedication to preventing vaginal atrophy happening for other women www.mymenopausalvagina.co.uk 

10) Who is your favourite #Menowarrior? 

Myself. 

A short statement so much more charged in emotions than it might read.

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Aline is wearing our #UndoTheMenoTaboo T-shirt- Looking forward to hearing all about Aline’s travels.

Thank you Aline for your honest and moving account of your menopause journey.  We salute you!! Your journey will help other women to recognise symptoms and gain medical help.

Wishing you a very happy journey ahead and looking forward to hearing more of your travels with broomstick and to many more philanthropic stories. 

If you would like to win a t-shirt like Aline Boblin, if you have enjoyed reading this weeks blog.  Retweet our post to be in with your chance to win yourself a T-shirt and be our real life meno 60 seconds interview guest! 

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Have a great week Menos, keep smiling and talking to one another.

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Menopause – bring it on!

#WorldMenopauseDay was a day to celebrate menopause, albeit for just one day. But shouldn’t every day be a day to be more aware of early menopause, perimenopause, menopause and post-menopause?

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Why do we not celebrate menopause?

Surely by talking, discussing and raising awareness this will help inform women of what to expect and to prepare for the symptoms that lay ahead.

Creating a positive mindset, through knowledge and support will ensure that menopause will be normalised and accepted for this stage of a woman’s life.

Let’s not keep it a secret anymore, nor an unspoken taboo or treat with stigma and avoidance.

#UndoTheMenoTaboo

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As women let’s all be strong, be empowered and be proud of what this stage of life has to offer! #MenoWarriors

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This could be the answer?

So what does menopause bring with it?

Ok, so there are 34 symptoms;

  • Anxiety.
  • Insomnia.
  • Hot Flushes.
  • Weight gain.
  • Mood swings.
  • Fatigue.
  • Low libido.
  • Dry skin.
  • Joint aches.
  • Palpitations.
  • Nights weats.
  • Irregular periods.
  • Low mood.
  • Brain fog.
  • Headaches.
  • Tinnitus.
  • Vaginal dryness.
  • Hair loss.
  • Dizziness.
  • Bloating.
  • Allergies.
  • Brittle nails.
  • Osteopororsis.
  • Bladder problems.
  • Breast pain.
  • Dental problems.
  • Nausea.
  • Body Odour changing.
  • A sense of panic.
  • Muscle tension.
  • Tingling sensation.
  • Electric shock.
  • Burning mouth.
  • Hair loss.
  • Irregular heartbeat.
  • Source: Megs Menopause www.megsmenopause.com.

Menopause is a natural, biological process that will happen to all women.  Every woman will experience a different version of menopause, everyone is individual. No menopause is the same and everyone’s journey is so different.

Just think about what menopause has to offer?

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  • No more periods.
  • No need for contraception.
  • No more childbirth.
  • Freedom.
  • Power to create the next chapter of your life..
  • Wisdom – having gone through the experience you can now offer advice and support to others, including your daughters, family members and friends.
  • Career – you can now focus on regaining your career or deciding to balance your life/work balance to make it easier for you to manage.

How has this made you feel? Does this fill you with a sense of new adventure?  Has it left you feeling a sense of loss? Have you found this next stage energising? Have you made big life-changing decisions?

How can we manage menopause to maintain a good quality of life?

  • Selfcare.
  • Nutrition.
  • Exercise.
  • Hrt treatment.
  • Natural menopause.
  • Alternative remedies and treatments such as –
  • Acupuncture – reflexology – deep tissue massage – aromatherapy -mindfulness.
  • A good support network.
  • A good relationship with your healthcare expert – enabling you to feel comfortable discussing your symptoms and what is going to work best for you.
  • Be informed as you can, there are so many more helpful websites available now that offer advice and support for menopausal women.
  • The following websites offer information and support;
  • www.positivepause.co.uk
  • www.megsmenopause.co.uk
  • www.daisynetwork.co.uk
  • www.menopausesupport.co.uk

This week’s Real-life Meno 60 seconds interview guest is Jo McEwan,  Co-Founder of PositivePause with fellow co-founder Ann Stephens.

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Jo McEwan – Co-Founder PostivePause

Read Jo’s interview of her own personal journey through the stages of menopause and through the other side of menopause.

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1)Best Part of menopause?

Happily, post-menopausal, it feels great on the other side, something that’s too often overlooked. With my kids grown up, I know that I’m lucky in that I’m not sandwiched between caring for an older and younger family, so I’ve got more time to prioritize work, pleasure and looking after number one. I feel completely energized now that I’m through menopause and I’m sure that it’s no coincidence.

2)Tell us your best #Menomoment?

Sitting in the gallery of the Houses of Parliament with Ann, co-founder of PP, listening to a debate on menopause we were delighted and very surprised to hear our website described by MP, Rachel McLean, as “incredible”. She said we “demystify some of the symptoms of menopause and to talk about them frankly.” As we’d just come from taking part in a Woman’s Hour discussion, it really was a day of #Menomoments!

3)What has been the worst part of your menopause?

Not being prepared for perimenopause made it feel so more perplexing than it needed to be. I felt totally wrong footed which seemed so at odds with what I thought I knew about my body – it turned out I knew very little indeed.

4) Have you taken the NHS or Private Health route to treat

your menopause?

NHS all the way. I’ve been fortunate in being able to access excellent NHS support, but I wouldn’t hesitate to consult some of the great private practitioners that I’ve met through PositivePause.  

5)Have you been supported within your workplace?

As a small business with just the two of us, deadlines and a raft of different pressures mean that perhaps we’re not as supportive of our own wellbeing as we should be. Note to self to look at this going forward! 

6)HRT or natural/alternative treatment for Menopause?

After a couple of years of hot flushes and soaring anxiety levels, and considering my own risk levels, I chose to take HRT. I don’t see HRT as a golden ticket, so I do try to ensure I get enough exercise, keep an eye on my diet and what I drink, sometimes the eye can wander! I think it’s important that women do what fits with their personal philosophy, do their research and make informed choices.

7) What advice would you give to a younger you prior to

Perimenopause and Menopause? 

Your symptoms creep up catching you out. Being aware of those early symptoms, (hello anxiety!), will make it less mysterious and discombobulating. Find out about what’s coming in advance.

8) Where do you see yourself in 10 years time?

Fingers crossed – enjoying life, staying healthy and having little adventures with the husband.

9) Who would you like to give a shout out – mention too? Who

has been supportive and instrumental in helping you through

menopause? 

Dr Karen Morton’s been really supportive of our work both online and at our events. On a personal level, whenever I hear her talk at events she makes me laugh as well as taking away a practical, reassuring and supportive idea or two. So big shout out to Dr Karen! 

10)Who is your favourite #Menowarrior? 

I’ve recently met and had the pleasure of listening to talks by Jo Moseley, the voice behind the blog ‘Healthy Happy 50’, about how she navigated a tough perimenopause by getting on a paddleboard and taking on a massive challenge which has helped her physically, emotionally and creatively. She talks about it so powerfully, it resonates on so many levels! She’s my #Menowarrior.

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Thank you, Jo, for your story.  We need more discussions regarding post-menopause, thank you for highlighting and talking about this stage. 

If you would like to follow Jo and Ann.  

Visit their fab website www.positivepause.co.uk the website has a wealth of information and positive support to help you through the stages of menopause.

Would you like to be our next real-life Meno 60 secs interview guest?

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If you would like to win a t-shirt like Jo McEwan and if you have enjoyed reading this weeks blog.

All you have to do is enter our competition!!

Full terms and conditions are below.

Retweet our post to be in with your chance to win yourself a T-shirt and be our real life Meno 60 seconds interview guest!

Terms and conditions for competition;

Please read these terms carefully before entering the competition. 

Entering the competition constitutes acceptance of these terms and conditions.

The Competition is only open to (UK RESIDENTS)

The Competition is open to any resident of the United Kingdom over 18 years of age

Automated or bulk entries from third parties will be disqualified.

 ● We reserve the right to exclude serial competition entrants who have entered more than 4 competitions in the last month. 

● There is no entry fee and no purchase necessary to enter this competition.

The Competition opens on (25th Oct 10pm closes ( 1st Nov 10pm)

Entrants can enter at any point between these dates.

To enter the competition entrants will need to like the post and follow us

● Entrants can only enter the Competition once, but can like, regram/repost  comment, tweet and RT as many times as they like

● The winner will be selected (Selected at random from list)

The winner will be selected at random from the list of entrants. Names will be entered into a spreadsheet and numbered and a member of staff that has not seen the spreadsheet will choose a number between x and y who shall be the winner.

● The winner will be notified by DM within 2 days of the closing date. If the winner cannot be contacted or do not claim the prize within 14 days of notification, we reserve the right to withdraw the prize from the winner and pick a replacement winner. The winner will be notified via DM on Instagram within 14 days of the closing date.

● The prize for winning the competition will be (White Printed T-Shirt Value RRP 15.00GBP) 

 ● The Prize as stated and cannot be sold or exchanged for cash, goods or services. Unless specifically agreed in writing by PeriMenoPost) ● The Prize is not transferable and must be accepted by the winner

PerimenoPost reserve the right to use the voice, image, photograph, name and likeness of the winners for publicity and in advertising, marketing or promotional material without additional compensation or prior notice to the winners. In entering the Competition, all participants consent to such use of their voice, image, photograph, name and likeness. 

● Copyright of any material produced as part of the competition is owned by PeriMenoPost  and/or its content suppliers.

 ● Unauthorised use of the material produced as part of this competition, including reproduction, storage, modification, distribution or publication without the prior written consent of PeriMenoPost  or, where applicable, the respective competition entrant is prohibited. 

● Where you are able to submit any contribution to this competition you agree, by submitting your contribution, to grant PeriMenoPost  a perpetual, royalty-free, non-exclusive, sub-licenseable right and license to use, reproduce, modify, adapt, publish, translate, create derivative works from, distribute, perform, play, and exercise all copyright and publicity rights with respect to your contribution worldwide and/or to incorporate your contribution in other works in any media now known or later developed for the full term of any rights that may exist in your contribution. If you do not want to grant PeriMenoPost the rights set out above, please do not submit your contribution to PeriMenoPost 

● By submitting your contribution to PeriMenoPost you warrant that your contribution is your own original work and that you have the right to make it available to PeriMenoPost for any or all of the purposes specified above. Furthermore, you warrant your contribution is not defamatory, does not infringe any law, you indemnify PeriMenoPost against all legal fees, damages and other expenses that may be incurred by PeriMenoPost  as a result of your breach of the above warranty and waive any moral rights in your contribution for the purposes of its submission to and publication on the Site and the purposes specified above.

 Data protection

 ● You consent to your first name, photograph and social media handles about you being disclosed on PeriMenoPost digital channels or other media if you win any Prizes under the Competition

 ● Any personal data relating to participants will be used solely in accordance with UK data regulations and will not be disclosed to a third party without the entrant’s prior consent. To find out more about what data we hold and how we process data please read our privacy policy We follow Instagram Privacy policy, details will be destroyed 14 days after competition ends.   

● By entering the Competition, you agree that PeriMenoPost may contact you in relation to the Competition. Absolving responsibility of the social platforms

 ● This promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with, platforms Twitter and INSTAGRAM   or any other social network General liability cover ● PeriMenoPost do not accept liability for any damages whatsoever, including, without limitation, indirect or consequential damages, loss of profits, or any damages whatsoever arising out of, or in connection with the competition. ● Except in the case of death or personal injury arising from its negligence, or in respect of fraud, and so far as is permitted by law, PeriMenoPost  and its associated companies and agents and distributors exclude responsibility and all liabilities, whether direct or indirect, arising from: ● any postponement or cancellation of the Competition; ● any changes to, supply of or use of the Prize; and ● any act or default of any supplier, which are beyond PeriMenoPost 

Remember to turn the clocks back this weekend Menos, a well deserved lie in this weekend!!

Keep smiling and be positive Menos.

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Relationships, Menopause and Midlife Sex.

Has the menopause changed your relationship with your partner?  Are you at a crossroads with your sex life due to menopause?

When menopause arrives it can unexpectedly create a curve ball within your relationship.  You are suddenly dealing with your hormones that are changing constantly, going up and down and with it the many added physical symptoms. 

It is of no surprise that your relationship with your partner may become strained during this time.   It is important to talk to your partner and tell them how you are feeling and for you both to be patient and understanding.   Your partner may be feeling completely at a loss too, with the sudden change in your relationship.

It’s important that you talk with your partner and your Gp about your symptoms.  

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Photo by Artem Beliaikin on Pexels.com

During this time of change, why not try something new as a couple? Dancing, exercise togther – set a challenge and why not sign up for a race or event.  Discover a new hobby, see some shows, concerts or take a spontaneous trip somewhere.

A positive mindset and talking to one another can help you get through this time, it is another chapter of your journey together try and make time to have some fun.  

Enjoying Midlife Sex

By Sam Evans

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We are very fortunate this week to be able to share with you a great blog from Samantha Evans, PeriMenoPost is proud to call a Menomate!

Twitter – @samtalkssex @jodivineuk  a sexual health and pleasure expert. 

Sam Evans lives locally in Tunbridge Wells and is a passionate advocate for ensuring women are correctly informed about their sexual health,  she works tirelessly to ensure that women do not suffer, are in no pain or discomfort and that they are able to enjoy a fulfilled sex life. I have had the pleasure of hearing Sam talk at a local well woman event and Sam is great fun, incredibly knowledgable about all things sex, sex toys and lubricants.   Sam is dedicated to making a change to womens sexual health and helping couples to be just as intimate as they always have been. 

If you have experienced issues with intimacy and if your sexual health has been affected, read sams article.  Sam provides positive, informative and helpful suggestions to help you regain a healthy sex life again.

“Samantha Evans”:https://www.jodivine.com/authors/samantha-evans co-founded Jo Divine, an online sex toy company, with her husband Paul in 2007 which only sells skin safe sex toys and sexual lubricants. 

Having a professional background in nursing, she is a features writer and sexual health and pleasure expert for Jo Divine. She works with many healthcare professionals in the NHS and private practice to help them advise their patients about regaining sexual function and enjoying sexual intimacy and pleasure through the use of suitable sex toys, dilators and sexual lubricants.

With an extensive knowledge about sex toys and sexual lubricants, Samantha enjoys creating informative, practical articles about sexual health and pleasure which endeavour to normalise sex, help people to talk about it and discover ways to enjoy sex in whatever way they want to or are able to. She has also been featured extensively in the media

As a menopausal woman she also advises women going through the menopause and beyond about ways to enjoy sexual intimacy and pleasure as this is often a time when many couples give up on their sex lives due to the impact of menopausal health issues that affect their intimacy and pleasure.

As we get older our sex drive and sexual sensation can change, especially when dealing with a myriad of perimenopausal/menopausal symptoms, such as vaginal dryness or atrophy, decreased sexual sensation or low libido making sex feel painful, uncomfortable or simply not working for you anymore.

Often women give up on sex or continue to endure painful sex which is neither pleasurable, good for their vagina health or their relationship. Women who previously had a good sex life may get frustrated that the menopause has impacted upon their sex life in this way too.

However with a few tweaks to your relationship and the way in which you enjoy sexual intimacy and pleasure, you can continue to enjoy sex, even discovering new ways to make it more pleasurable

Talk to your Partner

This is the commonest reasons why couples give up on midlife sex because they are unable to talk to each other. Your partner probably has no idea about how you are feeling and may think you no longer love or desire them so it is important to tell them why you do not want to have sex or why it no longer feels pleasurable.

Over time, our sexual tastes, sensation, stimulation and attraction change so explore new ways to enjoy intimacy. What might have worked for you or your partner in the past may not work now so show each other where and how you like to be touched, make sounds of pleasure to encourage them when they hit the right spot. Try new positions, prolonged foreplay, quickie sex, simple sex toys, enjoy hotel sex, whatever makes you both feel good.

Share your fantasies, you may discover that some of them are the same. You might even want to act some of them out too!

Use A Good Lube!

Vagina dryness affects women of all ages due to hormones, breastfeeding, medication, cancer treatments, stress, anxiety and especially the ageing process.

One simple way to make sex feel pleasurable, last longer and promote vaginal lubrication is to use lubricant. Do not think of lubricants as just fixing a problem, using a good pH balalanced sexual lubricant can make “ok sex” feel great.

I put YES organic oil based lubricant on before foreplay to get things going which really helps, you may only want to apply it for penetrative sex or other sex play, experiment with what works for you. Always stop if sex feels painful. 

It may take time to get used to using a sexual lubricant for both you and your partner which is why it is important to use a good sexual lubricant, a product free from irritating ingredients that has been designed for sex play, not something from your bathroom or kitchen cupboard. Many couples try a lubricant, find that it causes irritation or even thrush, think all lubricants are the same which is not the case so avoid lubricants.

Using a pH balanced lubricant such as YES organic lubricants and vaginal moisturisers, free for irritating ingredients not only makes sex feel more pleasurable and last longer but also keeps your vagina and vulva happy and healthy, especially as we get older.

A Healthy Vagina is A Happy Vagina

Many people care about what they eat or use on their face, hair and body but do not give a thought to what they are putting on their vulva and inside their vagina or anus yet these are highly absorbent and sensitive intimate parts of our body.

Having had my own sex life and vagina health destroyed in my 20’s and 30’s by using KY and other well known lubricant brands and feminine hygiene products still available on the high street today which caused recurrent  thrush, bacterial vaginosis ( a vaginal infection with a fishy smell which requires anitbiotic treatment), cystitis and urinary tract infections this led to vaginismus whereby the muscles of the vagina constrict, making penetration either impossible or feel painful.

Through my own research and discovering “YES organic lubricants”:https://www.jodivine.com/articles/sex-tips/want-better-sex-use-lube I found that many commercial lubricants/moisturisers and feminine hygiene products contain ingredients including glycerin, propylene glycol, parabens, perfume and dyes in addition to “tingling” or “warming “ ingredients which can irritate the tissues of the vulva and vagina, disrupting the delicate pH of the vagina which may cause thrush or bacterial vaginosis, especially if you are prone to these infections.

Many water based formulations have a high osmolarity so exacerbate vaginal dryness by drawing moisture from the walls of the vagina not hydrating them.

Always check the ingredients before you buy or ask your GP before they prescribe you a product and do a skin test before rubbing it over your clitoris, nothing worse than an itchy or stinging vulva or vagina!  Be aware that some well known brands do not put the ingredients on the box or label so choose a product that has an ingredients label.

Feminine hygiene products, scented menstrual products and perfumed condoms are completely unnecessary as our vaginas are self cleaning and all you will do is disrupt the vagina pH which will lead to irritation, an infection and make your vagina/vulva feel sore.

I keep my vagina and vulva happy by using YES oil based organic lubricant for sex and when using sex toys, YES vaginal moisturiser twice weekly and Vagifem, a local oestrogen pessary three times weekly. For those worried about using HRT, local oestrogen is not absorbed systemically (into the bloodstream), it is absorbed directly into the walls of the vagina and into the skin of the vulva, replacing the depleting oestrogen to keep the skin healthy and flexible. The depleting oestrogen makes the tissues of the vagina and vulva shrink and thin, leaving them feeling sore, less well lubricated and the vagina tightens, making penetration feel sore or painful. It can also lead to thrush or other vaginal infections and irritation. Local oestrogen is the equivalent of taking one HRT tablet each year so an incredibly small amount of oestrogen which can make a huge difference to your vagina/vula health and your sexual pleasure too.

Regular Orgasms are Good for You

Orgasms are fun, free and good for your health! 

Enjoying regular orgasms with a partner or during solo play using your fingers or a sex toy can increase your vaginal lubrication, help you begin to feel more sexual if you are struggling with your libido, reduce stress, boost immunity, keep you looking young and exercise your pelvic floor. Orgasms can also improve the quality of your sleep, a common problem during menopause, as the release of feel good endorphins induces a state of relaxation helping you drift off.

Often during menopause our ability to orgasm may take longer or it may not feel as pleasurable so I often recommend using a “simple bullet vibrator”:https://www.jodivine.com/articles/buyers-guides/bullet-vibrators either for solo play or with a partner. Small enough to slip between yourself and your partner, bullets can also be used on partners with a penis and on nipples too.

Men can benefit from enjoying regular orgasms because they can improve prostate health and help to reduce the risk of developing prostate cancer. Regular ejaculation flushes out prostate fluid in the prostate gland which can stagnate and become inflamed leading to an enlarged prostate which causes pain, increases the need to pee and difficulty in emptying the bladder.

Kick start your Libido

Sometimes it can be really hard just to make the effort to have sex so take the focus of penetrative sex if this is how you normally enjoy sex with a partner and enjoy non penetrative sex play. Enjoy kissing, cuddling, body massage, gentle touch with fingers, silky ribbons, feathers, mutual masturbation with a good pH balanced sexual lubricant, nipple play. Having regular orgasms can help to kick start your libido and arousal so indulge in a long bath and take your favourite waterproof sex toy with you, grab some self care time alone or share your sex toy with your partner. Show them how it works for you, use it on their body.

Exercise those Pelvic Floor Muscles

Regular pelvic floor exercises can make orgasms feel stronger and help incontinence issues. However, some women have a tight pelvic floor which can make penetrative sex feel painful. If you are unsure how to do your pelvic floor exercises or if you think you have a weak or tight pelvic floor, a pelvic health physiotherapist is the best person to see. They are the experts in pelvic health and will be able to assess your pelvic floor muscles, offering practical exercises to strengthen or release your pelvic floor. Many work in the NHS so ask your GP to refer you. You can also self refer to those working in private practice too.

Explore Sex Toys

Incorporating sex toys into your sex play can help you enjoy new ways to be intimate and discover new sexual sensations especially if you find yourself struggling to orgasm or it takes longer due to decreased sexual sensation. 

A simple bullet vibrator is small enough to slip between you and a partner to enjoy clitoral stimulation during penetrative sex or foreplay. You can use it on yourself, get your partner to use it on you or play with it on their body.If vaginal tightness is an issue, using a slim vibrator or dilator with plenty of lubricant can help stretch the vagina walls, making them more flexible and penetrative sex feel more pleasurable.

Vibrating constriction rings are a great way to help a man maintain his erection, last longer and offer clitoral stimulation at the same .

Sex is not just penetration – enjoying prolonged sex play might be all you want. Explore sex toys, oral sex, bondage, nipple play, mutual masturbation, kissing and intimate massage.

Don’t give up on your sex life, talk to your partner, use a good pH balanced sexual lubricant, masturbate more, explore sex toys, do your pelvic floor exercises, be imaginative, adventurous and have fun in whatever way feels pleasurable for you!

At Jo Divine we believe that sexual health and sexual pleasure go hand in hand and have created a health brochure with suitable products to help people with sexual issues. Working with medical professionals, we hope to encourage patients and HCPs alike in talking more freely about sexual problems. A health issue doesn’t mean your sex life will have to stop!

Thank you Sam for your helpful and informative feature, women will now be informed and have the knowledge to ask their health care professional more questions and gain the correct course of treatment that they rightly deserve. 

You can follow Sam on Twitter @SamtalksSex  @jodivineuk or via her website for products and information www.jodivine.com / Instagram @Jo.divine

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This week’s real life meno 60 seconds interview guest is Jo Moseley, AKA the Paddle board super hero!

Jo is the first woman within the UK to stand up paddleboard –  S U P from coast to coast!!

One awesome real-life meno warrior!!!

Since turning 50, Jo has begun her personal quest and journey of paddleboarding and helping to clean up the environment along the waterways as she travels.  Jo takes you on a journey aboard her paddleboard, giving you a refreshing view of life upon the UK’s waterways, scenery, seasons, every type of weather and the wildlife she encounters along the way.  Her passion is clear and is infectious, making you feel that you too could jump on a paddleboard, enjoy nature and join her on her mission to help make a difference to the environment.

Jo is passionate about the environment and is actively involved in the #2minutebeachclean and also an active member of the wave project, a surf therapy charity for children in the UK.

This year saw Jo complete the #paddleboardthenorthchallenge!!  It was a joy to follow her adventures via social media. Adding to Jo’s talents and comitment to her cause she has just won the 2019 Smart award for Best Bradford Film!!  Congratulations Jo we are all behind you, all the way!

Nothing is going to stop Jo, not even menopause! She is enjoying this stage of her life and being able to experience the freedom, joy, exhilaration and the feeling of being alive out on the water.  Read Jo’s menopause journey and how she has found a new sense of energy and zest for life.

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Jo Moseley @Healthyhappy50

#2minutebeachclean #paddleboardthenorth

2019 Smart Award winner Best Bradford Film

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1) Best Part of menopause?

Ooh interesting! I think because the perimenopause broke me when I was already down, the healing & learning is the best part. I had to start looking after myself because I was at such a low point & that has been an interesting & empowering journey. I’ve made friendships, learned skills, gone on adventures & found my creative & personal voice. 

2) Tell us your best #Menomoment?

Ooh I think paddleboarding into Goole this summer in a huge thunderstorm followed by a beautiful rainbow. I had completed my 162 mile coast to coast fundraising & litter picking adventure. As the first woman to do so & at 54, it made me feel like I had achieved something not just for me but for women in their 50s and those going through the menopause. 

3) What has been the worst part of your menopause?

Sleepless nights, crippling anxiety, joint pains & feeling like I was lost.

4) Have you taken the NHS or Private Health route to treatyour menopause?

I haven’t really been treated with either route. I’ve researched & found my own answers. I am however aware that I am very fortunate in that I’ve been able to do this. If I were to seek treatment, it would be NHS.

 5) Have you been supported within your workplace?

I haven’t really needed to ask for support. I work in a very kind environment anyway so I am fortunate. My colleagues do comment on how warm I like to keep my office and why I am wearing 3 jumpers in summer! I get cold flushes! 

6) HRT or natural/alternative treatment for Menopause? 

Lifestyle changes: exercise, vitamin D, nutrition, sleep, stretching, less stress, gratitude, magnesium, sports massages. 

7) What advice would you give to a younger you prior toPerimenopause and Menopause?

Look after yourself more! Put yourself on the priority list! Move, say no to things that don’t bring you joy, stop volunteering for everything, be kinder to yourself, go to bed early. You don’t have to be superwoman! Also read up on the perimenopause & what it’s all about. You think you have to do everything on your own as a single Mum but you don’t. It’s ok to ask for help. Look after your bone health! 

8) Where do you see yourself in 10 years time?

Ooh I hope taking women out on the water on Paddleboarding retreats, litter picking, stretching & having delicious food. Helping women feel like warrior women on the water. Spending more time at the coast & in the sea. Writing & speaking about adventures, wellbeing in menopause & midlife purpose & reinvention.

 9) Who would you like to give a shout out – mention too?

Who has been supportive and instrumental in helping you through menopause?

Ooh great question! Definitely a shout out to Deborah Garlick of Henpicked. I think they were the first online community I discovered who even talked about the menopause openly. I learned so much and was grateful to contribute to their book. That was 4 or 5 years ago. Rachel from Magnificent Midlife has been sharing huge amounts of very valuable information for years too. Also Jo & Anne from Positive Pause and Jane from Meno & Me for inviting me to talk at their respective menopause events this autumn. A privilege & honour. Angela from Behind The Woman is brilliant too. My friend Sam Bunch who wrote a fab, funny book Menopause – A Hot Topic. Basically, we are lifting and supporting each other. 

10)Who is your favourite #Menowarrior?

Ooh Jane Dowling. She gives 110% every day on social media. Sharing her journey, answering questions, supporting and just being incredible. Her exercise videos on Instagram are so helpful. Such a star! 

Thank you Jo for your story, we are looking forward to hearing about your sup adventures! The retreats sound great, keep us all posted.

You can keep up to date with Jo’s adventures and follow her at;

Twitter @Healthyhappy50 

 Instagram @healthyhappy50

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Christmas is fast approaching,  the season will soon be upon us, how does this make you feel menos?

Are you already feeling the burden of all the season necessities falling on your shoulders?

Are you aware of what is giving you stress or anxiety for the christmas season?

This week give yourself some time to sit down and make a christmas plan to help you manage through christmas, identify what is already causing you stress? 

Make a plan to delegate jobs, if you are sharing christmas with family members.  Schedule in time for you to take a break, a walk in the fresh air, a quiet time to read a christmas novel or magazine.  Set yourself limits as to how you want to spend christmas, practice self care even if it means you need to take a nap if your body is tired!

Remember how important selfcare is when managing menopause symptoms and how to look after yourself with some early nights, healthy eating and exercise this will all help to make you feel so much better. 

Have a super week Menos, stay positive!!!!

Where did I park the car?

How many times have you parked the car in a multi-storey car park, told yourself twenty times what level you have parked on, even noted on your phone inside the notes or taken a photo?

Yes, we have all been there! Lost – “where’s the car?” You’re sure it was this level. Your younger version of yourself would have just laughed and navigated your way around until you found your car.

However now, a mild sort of panic and hot flush can appear and strike making the whole episode a complete mess! Brain fog what an annoying symptom of the menopause. Let’s not even start on pin numbers or passwords, that is a whole new chapter! Laugh we may, but it is a frustrating symptom if you have had a terrible nights sleep from hot sweats or insomnia. It can just add to more pressure and anxiety.

BRAIN FOG

Food shopping is another one on the list, hands up who has a handbag full of shopping lists/post-it notes?

When returning home with your shopping, yep, the items on the list are missing? It is like the twilight zone. You were pretty sure that you had remembered everything that you had intended to buy, only to discover you had forgotten the items so they get added onto the list for the next trip. Not only do you have to contend with the mundane chore of food shopping, but a hot flush can also come on when packing the shopping at the checkout. The sign of menopause becomes even clearer when you start to loudly than usual sigh or huff! It suddenly makes an appearance and this is when you know you have met the menopause! We all know the sound.

When it happened to me, it mildly amused me but this symptom is a hard one, when it comes you can be frozen and just completely forget what you said or needed to do or ask. It can be frightening at first as you then think, do I have something seriously wrong with me? and it can be very frustrating at times.

Your new best friend is now the post-it note and pen, lists and to do lists. To make sure you do not forget what you need to do. It can be so frustrating if you are an organised person, it is a bitter pill to swallow at times. I was always so organised and enjoyed doing so.

“If it comes, let it” “If it goes, let it” @vybesource

If you are having symptoms consider visiting your GP to discuss. Personally, I use lists and post-it notes daily to help me stay focused when I need to. A good nights sleep, some exercise and fresh air and a good dose of humour help to get me through. I have also found it best to be just honest with people and tell them that you cannot remember, it just takes the pressure off. When you do remember or focus, it then makes you feel better about yourself. For further information, take a look at The Menopause Room on this link https://themenopauseroom.com/2017/10/26/avoid-menopause-brai n-fog/

Share with PeriMenoPost your stories let us know if you have found what you have found in your handbag or maybe the fridge? The more we can share and support one another the better.

Have a great week!

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