Quiz time at FICTIONARY.
What do 80% of women suffer from and don’t discuss:
a) shopping envy
b) age denial
c) bubble bath deprivation
d) overactive male egos
e) none of the above.
The answer is none of the above. [Those of you looking for “f) all of the above,” will have to read my website for a discussion of that topic. ]
What do 8 out of 10 of us fear talking about in public? Bladder control. Now, if you’re a man, and want to check out another site right now…like maybe “Denial. Is it just a river in Egypt?”…go right ahead. But I’ll pray for you because if you have an important female in your life, and you’re not sensitive to this subject, for shame. Stay. Get educated. Be the man she needs you to be.
And if you’re a woman reading this thinking, “Well, poor Christa. Girl’s desperate for blog topics.” Um. No. I volunteered for this one. Gladly. Because, sister, and hear me (read me?). If you’ve not been there, done that, you’ll be doing it. I promise.
Why is this subject taboo? Several reasons. From a psychological perspective, I find it interesting that we‘re a nation unafraid to picture a string-bikini clad female holding a can of motor oil, but try an ad for a woman discussing bladder control problems and products. Sex sells. Urine does not.
So, ladies, out of the closet. Let’s face it, one of four women experience some degree of bladder control loss. And one brave woman has already stepped forth, Linda Michaels, who was recognized by Kimberly-Clark with their first-ever Poise brand Passion award for fighting for women’s health. In fact, Kimberly Clark has partnered with the Women’s Health Foundation (WHF) to bring the issues of women’s pelvic health to the public.
After giving birth to her son (a healthy 10-pound, eight-ounce baby), Linda experienced constant pelvic discomfort and from then on, never felt quite right. For 28 years, she endured chronic pelvic, back and hip pain, incontinence and painful intercourse.
Brushed aside for decades, Linda finally decided that even if a cure proved impossible, she deserved a definitive explanation of her symptoms’ cause. She researched female urologists and found one who suggested pelvic floor therapy, a treatment Linda had never heard of, and directed her to the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago (RIC).
Thirteen weeks of life-changing therapy alleviated the pain, embarrassment and blame she carried for half her life. Pain-free and active, Linda no longer suffers from incontinence.
Katie Lorenz, a friend from RIC, nominated her for this award “because Linda wouldn’t take no for an answer, sought out the best help possible and is willing to share her story to help educate women — and doctors — on under-researched and under-treated women’s health issues.”
Click here to view Linda’s video testimony of her triumph over pelvic pain: Windows Media (.wmv, 16mb) (http://ric.cachefly.net/testimonials/linda.wmv)
“I’m so vocal about my experience because I learned that the only way to get the answers and treatment I needed was by talking about my situation over and over until I was finally directing my questions to the right person,” explained Linda. “My personal goal is to help women suffering from similar health issues realize that incontinence and pelvic pain are not a right of passage after pregnancy…”
POISE, Kimberly-Clark’s branded product designed to help women with bladder control issues, has an extensive website. There’s an assessment questionnaire you can complete online to determine your bladder health. And the questionnaire isn’t linked to your local community newspaper’s gossip column.
The Learning Center link on the site is not limited to bladder health. While you’re there, check out the Life and Health Website & Archives. I headed back to the site after writing this blog to read the article on Bioidentical Hormones. Somebody forgot to tell me about designer hormones…Speaking of designers, don’t forget to enter the POISE Dream Destination Shopping Trip. London, Paris, New York, or Beverly Hills. There’s also a sweepstakes for free products you can enter.
So, here’s what I’m thinking. I plan to live a long time. I plan to exercise, sneeze, giggle, cough, and laugh. Maybe all at once. And my bladder’s not going to stop me. But, if it tries to, I have Poise…both the product and the noun.