Inspiring Women to Live with Poise, Flair, and Purpose

Make Time for #GivingTuesday

I hope all of you had a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday! My family and I enjoyed the long weekend and now we’re in the middle of the tinsel and trees and gift-giving! But while we’re all running around shopping, I’d like you to stop for just a moment on Tuesday to remember Giving Tuesday and what this season is all about.

Giving Tuesday, as you may know, was started in 2012 in New York by the 92nd Street Y and the United Nations Foundation as a way to balance out, if you will, the spending of Black Friday and Cyber Monday. It reminds us that, however hectic things may get in the next month, this is a time to give to others.

And so, I’d like to suggest that you think about the Patty Brisben Foundation on Giving Tuesday. We started the Foundation in 2006 to focus on women’s sexual health education. For years it was difficult for women to get answers to some of their most intimate questions about menopause, sex after cancer and pelvic pain. Our goal at the Foundation has always been to help doctors in their research and treatment for these women.

We are proud that over the last decade we’ve raised nearly $4 million for women’s sexual health causes and have provided grants for clinics in South Africa, researchers in Massachusetts and doctors in Oregon, just to name a few. But there is so much work left to be done. Women need access to good sexual health care, no matter where they live. We’re making progress, just like the researchers that we’ve funded, but we have work to do yet before every woman gets all the services she needs.

That’s why I’m asking you to help on Giving Tuesday. The Patty Brisben Foundation is the only Foundation that funds research solely focused on women’s sexual health. You can help women across the world live healthy lives, just by taking the time to donate during this season of giving. And thank you for supporting our mission to direct resources and fund research to advocate for women’s sexual health, and advance the understanding of the issues facing women’s sexuality.

Want to learn more about the Foundation? Visit www.pattybrisbenfoundation.org.

Sexual Health in the Age of Oversharing

We know how difficult it can be to try to explain some of your most private moments (and parts!) to anyone, from the doctor’s office to the bedroom. That’s why I found an article that ran in the New York Times this past week so interesting.

“My Vagina Is Terrific. Your Opinion About It Is Not” is the attention-grabbing headline of an article by Jen Gunter. She is an OB-GYN based in San Francisco and writes the article from the point of view of treating women for 25 years on sexual health. “I have listened to women with completely normal exams weep that they have been told that they do not smell or taste correctly. That they are too wet, or too loose, or too gross.

“These women all shared something: They were told these things by men,” she writes. She also references an earlier article of her own experiences, when a man she was dating told her she’d be more desirable if her hair were straighter, her clothes were different, etc. “The metric for my supposed perfection kept changing…which I now gather was the point,” she writes.

“So when this man began to tell me how my healthy vagina could be better, I dumped him,” she continues. “Telling women how they can be better is a classic way of tapping into body image issues and honestly in my personal opinion it is a form of abuse.”

In this day and age where we are having open discussions about sexual harassment and abuse, Dr. Gunter’s article reminds us that no one has the right to prey on our insecurities. That’s why our Consultants are trained in dealing with these intimate conversations, so you as a consumer can ask honest questions about sexual health without the shame of someone telling you it’s bad or wrong.

You can read the entire article here:And to all of you, we wish you a healthy and Happy Thanksgiving!

 

Take Time to Be Kind

Did you know that Monday, November 13 is World Kindness Day? On one hand, it’s nice that we have a day set aside to be kind to one another. However, it shouldn’t be limited to just the one day. It takes no more effort to be kind than not, so let’s make sure World Kindness Day isn’t just a one-time celebration.

Some notable women said it best when talking about kindness:

  1. “A single act of kindness throws out roots in all directions, and the roots spring up and make new trees.” ― Amelia Earhart
  2. “Never be so busy as not to think of others.” ― Mother Teresa
  3. “Love and kindness are never wasted. They always make a difference. They bless the one who receives them, and they bless you, the giver.” ―  Barbara De Angelis
  4. “We need more kindness, more compassion, more joy, more laughter. I definitely want to contribute to that.” ―  Ellen DeGeneres
  1. “For beautiful eyes, look for the good in others; for beautiful lips, speak only words of kindness; and for poise, walk with the knowledge that you are never alone.” – Audrey Hepburn

And besides being nice to each other, kindness has tangible health benefits, as well. An act of kindness can decrease stress, boost happiness, lower blood pressure, release feel-good chemicals and inspire more kindness. Want more reasons to be kind? Read this from Huffington Post https://www.huffingtonpost.com/david-r-hamilton-phd/kindness-benefits_b_869537.html and be kind to someone today!

Thanking Those Who Serve

This week many of us will celebrate our military and especially our veterans as we lead up to Saturday’s Veterans Day commemoration on November 11. But acknowledging the sacrifices our armed forces make every day to keep us safe shouldn’t be a one-week thing. In fact, one of our Pure Romance Consultants has made it her mission to make sure female members of the military get to enjoy some of the comforts of home throughout the year while on active duty.

Consultant Jennifer Bary heads up a 501c3 non profit called The WOW Project (@Womenofwarproject on Facebook or http://womenofwarproject.org). Based at Eglin Air Force Base, The WOW Project sends care packages of specialty products, including Pure Romance skin care products, to women who are serving in the military who have been nominated by friends or family.

“We just sent our 300th box,” said Jennifer. “We are hurting for donations as we are receiving requests from all over the country faster than we can fund them. We fulfilled a request for 30 boxes to a special forces unit here locally. The 30 women were the largest contingency of women that unit has ever sent at once.

“They were sent to an undisclosed location,” Jennifer added, “and for the first time ever, this unit has a female in charge of the operation. A pretty big deal!”

Volunteers from members of local Boy Scout troops to veterans and retirees help pack the boxes and get them ready for shipping. “We even had a former member of the Women’s Air Corp who packed for us,” said Jennifer.

Sent with each box is a letter to the women who are serving, as a quick ‘thank you’ to let them know they are not forgotten back home. “If someone wants to send a card or letter, we will include them in the boxes,” she said. “These ladies often leave their children behind, so we try to include letters from children. The ladies often mention those are very cherished items for them.”

So as we celebrate our military this week, let’s not forget the women who are on the front lines and who have left their families behind to keep us safe. If you’d like to help The WOW Project by sending a card or letter, the address is PO Box 1776, Eglin AFB, FL 32542. You can donate on the Facebook page by clicking the donate button or mailing in a donation at the address above. And thank a veteran or someone on active duty this week.

#MeToo

How many times have you seen that hashtag over the last couple of weeks?

The discussion surrounding Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein’s alleged sexual misconduct has turned into a national forum on sexual harassment and abuse, both in and out of the workplace.

While more and more women are using the hashtag in social media posts to say they, too, have been harassed or worse, we’re learning that the movement actually started when the hashtag symbol was still known as a number sign.

The New York Times over the weekend ran a feature on Tarana Burke, who, some 10 years ago, created a nonprofit, Just Be, Inc., that helps victims of sexual assault and harassment. At that time, she gave her movement a name: Me Too.

Of course, it was actress Alyssa Milano who helped the #metoo hashtag movement catch fire this past week, not knowing that Burke had been using itor her own nonprofit. Two days after first tweeting about #metoo, after she found out about Burke’s cause, Milano reached out to Burke and even gave Burke credit in a “Good Morning, America” interview.

However the conversation started, the important thing to remember is, we are now talking about something that most of us have kept hidden in our pasts. As consultants, you may find that your clients are now more willing to talk about #metoo moments when you sit down with them in the privacy of the order room.

We’re talking about it. Now, let’s listen to each other. And make sure the movement lasts longer than a 140-character tweet.

Want to read more about Tarana Burke and her nonprofit? Here’s the New York Times link: https://www.nytimes.com/2017/10/20/us/me-too-movement-tarana-burke.html