Inspiring Women to Live with Poise, Flair, and Purpose

The Conversation Is Starting!

We’re so thrilled that so many of you are picking up on the #SexualHealthMatters conversation. It’s an important one to have, and the Patty Brisben Foundation knows how important it is for women to have those conversations.

That’s what the Patty Brisben Foundation is all about. Since 2006, the Foundation has worked to enhance women’s sexual health by funding research, providing educational programs, partnering with community organizations and linking women to resources in their area. The four areas we concentrate on include:

  • Vulvovaginal Pain Disorders
  • Impact of Perimenopause and Menopause on Sexual Health
  • Intimacy-Related Sexual Dysfunction after Cancer
  • Libido and Sexual Desire

We do that by awarding grants for research and programs that advance women’s sexual health. Just this year we awarded more than $350 thousand to go toward women’s sexual wellness! And you all have been so generous in your commitment to the Patty Brisben Foundation, with Consultants raising some $136,000 during the 25th anniversary world conference earlier this year.

That’s why we’re so excited that we’re bringing back the Virtual Queen Bee to raise money for the Foundation. Those of you who participated last year know that it’s a fun way to get your families, your colleagues, your neighborhood involved in a great cause. Walk or run the 4-mile event whenever and wherever you choose, and pledge to raise funds for each mile. Your donations help the Patty Brisben Foundation continue its mission of keeping the sexual health conversation going.

If you have not registered for the Virtual Queen Bee yet, make sure you do so and complete the four miles before our Foundation Gala on October 13. Sign up and join the fun for a great cause! And don’t forget, you can learn more about the Foundation’s work at pattybrisbenfoundation.org.

Sexual Health DOES Matter

We’ve just wrapped up another awesome National Training here in Cincinnati and as you can see by our pictures on Instagram, we had a fabulous time! But we also got some serious work done and were able to get our Consultants on board with our #SexualHealthMatters campaign.

If you were there, you know that we want to make the conversation about our sexual health not dirty, not embarrassing, but part of the normal discourse among health professionals. Our #SexualHealthMatters hashtag is a reminder that women can be embarrassed to death, literally, by not feeling comfortable when they talk about their own sexual health.

An article from the Women’s College Hospital in Toronto is a good way to start the conversation about women’s sexual health, starting with the basics. “Having the freedom to choose how to express yourself sexually (or how not to) is an important part of a woman’s sexual health,” the article begins.

“Sexual health also means understanding your body and how it works,” the article continues. “Women who understand their bodies can make better choices about the sexual activities that they enjoy. They can also choose to become pregnant or they can choose to avoid it. Being knowledgeable about sexually transmitted infections can help women protect themselves and their partners from disease.

“Understanding your body is an important part of sexual health, but sexual health also involves being comfortable with yourself and your sexual desires. It means having healthy relationships with others. Sexual health can also mean learning to identify and leave violent or abusive relationships and learning to cope with the after effects of such relationships.”

The article then branches off into different headers, including the female body, birth control, safer sex and the like. All of them have great information to get the conversation going about sexual health. There’s a reason why, at the doctor’s office, you’re often asked about your sex life, whether you feel depressed and whether you feel safe in your home environment. Sometimes, simple questions like that can get the conversation going when we may be hesitant to do so otherwise.

Sexual health is not a dirty word. It’s an important conversation we all need to have, and we at the Patty Brisben Foundation are working to make sure it’s out in the open. That’s why we’re having a series of conversations in the Greater Cincinnati area throughout the year dealing with women’s sexual health, with our next one coming up Tuesday, September 25 from 6-8 p.m. Save the date, with details coming soon!

Want to read more about women’s sexual health or direct some of your clients to this resource? Check out the full article here.

Are You a Queen Bee? Then Walk Like One!

We hope you are all enjoying the summer, but you know it won’t be long before we’re back in our fall routines (have you seen the “Back to School” sales already???). Once we’re home from vacation and the kids are in classes, it’s time to think about a new routine for yourself—getting in shape for the Queen Bee Virtual 4-Miler.

Many of you participated in last year’s Queen Bee Virtual event, enough, in fact, that the Flying Pig Marathon, the organizer of the Queen Bee, was able to present the Patty Brisben Foundation with a check for more than $10,000! That’s a lot of steps, and you made the gift possible by being part of the Queen Bee.

For those of you who might not be familiar with it, it’s easy, fun and a great team-building experience for your group. First, sign up at here to be part of the Queen Bee. Then, because it’s a virtual race, you can do a four-mile walk any time you want to—you can do it in bits and pieces, you can do it all at once, you can do it on a treadmill, around your neighborhood or at the park. Any place you can walk, you can get your miles in! You can also RSVP and connect with other walkers to stay motivated on the Queen Bee event page!

Last year many of our Pure Romance Queen Bees made an event out of the walk—they got friends and family members to sign up, headed to the park for a picnic, then walked the miles! Others got their teams together and made a day of it (with a happy hour afterwards!). However you do it, it’s easy and fun to do, and it’s a great way to get back into a healthy routine.

The actual Queen Bee 4-Miler and Half Marathon will be held in our home town of Cincinnati on Saturday, October 13, so we’d like you to sign up and complete your miles before the event. That evening is our annual Gala where the Flying Pig will present the donation that YOU have made possible by being part of the Virtual Queen Bee!

As you know, the Patty Brisben Foundation for Women’s Sexual Health directs resources and funding research to advocate for women’s sexual health and advance the understanding of the issues facing women’s sexuality. We have funded projects and grants around the world, and it’s because of your generosity and we’re able to do so.

So enjoy your time off this summer but once you get back, don’t forget to include the Virtual Queen Bee as part of your regular routine. And we’ll see you out on your walk!

A “Selfie” to Remember

How many of you are into taking “selfies,” whether they’re solo or with a group? It’s such a fun way to let your friends and family know that you’re having a great time while including your closest pals in your photograph.

Of course, there’s an art to taking your own picture. In fact, an article from Allure gives 12 tips on taking the perfect selfie. But there’s a new trend in selfies you may not have tried yet. It’s the V-selfie. And yes, it means what you think it means.

An article in Sunday’s New York Times outlines the latest trend, where women use their smart phones to take intimate photographs and send them to their partners. Some include their faces, some don’t. “The V-selfie, though very much here, is perhaps less insistent,” writes Laren Stover. “Shared on dating apps or in texts, it has been sent to create longing and a sense of intimacy: A missive of lust and promise to lovers, or would-be lovers, who are separated.”

Before you try the trend, remember the rules of any intimate photography: Make sure everyone involved is of legal age, and make sure you know your partner VERY well. “It’s not just an image. It shows an element of trust,” said one V-selfie recipient. On-line images never go away, so be careful where you send these photos.

If you and your partner want to spice up your love life, the V-selfie may help you do just that. Want to read more? Read the New York Times article here.

Sex After Cancer

We all know someone who has undergone cancer treatment—maybe you have yourself. The treatment itself can be invasive and draining. But once the treatment is done, and you’re feeling better, it’s only normal that you’d like to resume intimacy with your partner.

But cancer treatment can change our sex lives, according to an article on webmd.com. “You may not be in the mood as often,” the article states, “and physical side effects can leave you feeling self-conscious.”

The article points out that while some of the after-effects of cancer treatment can disappear fairly quickly, others can last for months or years. Vaginal dryness, for example, can make sex painful.

But there are other ways to bring back those intimate moments—the article suggests kissing or cuddling if you or your partner aren’t in the mood for sex. For vaginal dryness, Pure Romance offers a number of products to help make sex less painful.

This is also the time that it’s so important to have an open and honest relationship with your partner, according to the article. Talk about what makes you uncomfortable, what you are self-conscious about, and what feels better. Maybe you are more sensitive now in other parts of your body than before. Once the discussion starts, you and your partner can work together to get that spark back.

For those of you who have finished your treatments and you’re cancer-free, congratulations! We are so proud of you and we hope you continue to have many more happy, healthy years with your partner. And don’t forget, Pure Romance is here to help you navigate your way back to a fulfilling relationship with your partner.

Want to learn more about sex after cancer? Read the article here.