Have you ever been menosplained to?
Holland & Barrett have partnered with TV presenter Cherry Healy to launch the menopause Pause & Listen Pledge for a more effective support network for people suffering from menopause or perimenopause.
This comes after the retailer conducted research which found that a whopping two thirds of women don’t talk about menopause for fear of being judged or treated differently.
What’s worse, one in three women said they had experienced a negative reaction, such as someone shutting the conversation down, when they had spoken about what they were going through.
The menopause Pause & Listen Pledge asks people to promise to unconditionally listen to and support people experiencing the menopause.
This is more important than ever with a quarter of women saying they had even experienced ‘menosplaining’ – when people trying to explain their menopause back to them rather than listening.
Women said they would feel supported (43%), normal (37%), confident (17%) and less anxious (15%) if they simply had someone listen to their experience without interruptions or judgement.
The pledge launches alongside the training of 4,000 of its colleagues to advise on the menopause.
Holland & Barrett will also now have dedicated Pause & Listen consultation rooms for women to talk about their symptoms with a trained menopause adviser.
Holland & Barrett’s Pause & Listen Pledge:
We won’t pretend to know how your menopause feels.
We won’t say millions of people go through it every day.
We won’t tell you to just get on with it.
We won’t say ‘You’re way too young to go through the menopause’.
We won’t make light of your menopause.
We will give you the chance to offload.
We will help you try to find ways to get through it.
We will understand that your menopause is unlike anyone else’s.
We will show you that you don’t have to do this alone.
And above all we will always listen and support you.‘
Cherry Healey, TV Presenter said: ‘Since recently being diagnosed as perimenopausal, I’ve been fortunate enough to have been supported and listened to, yet I sadly know this isn’t the same experience for so many.
‘That’s why taking part in Holland & Barrett’s Pause & Listen Pledge is so important to me – we must get more women talking openly about their experience, the good, the bad and the ugly, so they receive the support they need, and the only way we’ll achieve this is if we create an environment where women feel listened to, without judgement.’
It is important to note that no two women’s menopause experiences are the same, and the change affects everyone differently.
Despite 83% of women saying that menopause is less of a taboo subject now than it has ever been, half of all women still feel uncomfortable talking about it with friends and family.
Fiona Sweny, Wellness Futures Science Lead at Holland & Barrett said: ‘While awareness has improved, there is still a big job to be done in helping women feel heard.
‘We know everyone’s journey is different and while we won’t pretend to know how an individual’s experience feels, we can promise to be there to listen, support, and offer guidance and invite others to join us in this promise.’