17 Jul 2018

​​​​​​​Andrea McLean and The Latte Lounge share their Menopausal Confessions

The event was sponsored and held at The Laboratory Spa & Health Club, in London, NW4, with Latte Lounge partners Become, Sylk & ME ME London supporting the event with giveaways & raffle prizes raising money for Cancer Research.

On Thursday July 12th, Andrea McLean, together with an audience of over 100 of our Faceboook Group members came together whilst broadcasting out to 14,000 members via the Facebook live feed.  This has now been re-watched by well over 8,000 women.

Along with Andrea McLean there was panel of our bloggers and medical experts on hand to advise on all matters menopause related.  Not only was this an opportunity for members to come to Andreas book signing of ‘Confessions of a Menopausal Woman’, the day also marked the 2nd birthday of the Latte Lounge Facebook Group and the official launch of this website.

Katie Taylor, Founder of The Latte Lounge and Work Avenues ‘Entrepreneur of the Year 2018’, started the day confessing about her own 4 years of peri-menopausal hell where she was misdiagnosed with depression and prescribed anti-depressants, when she should’ve been given HRT and a hysterectomy.  It was this experience that led her to start the 14,000 strong Facebook group (and rising in less than 2 years!) and launch this new website.

Since the soft launch of this website 4 weeks ago, there have been more than 6k visits which proves there really isn’t anything else out there like The Latte Lounge, offering this range of subjects on all things MIDLIFE. This just shows there is a huge gap in the market for this much needed resource.

In reply, Andrea McLean confessed to Katie Taylor:

“Everything you said just there, I agreed with.  What is so interesting is we’ve both been on exactly the same journey, but have found our own unique way of expressing it and we have come to the same point at the same time. We were meant to meet! But it is clear that what we both want to do is help other women.  

For me, I don’t want anyone to feel as bad as I felt, it sounds like you feel the same and through the profile I have, if I can do things like this and through my book, then at least I can help in some small way. You and I need to hook up!”

After Andrea told her story, she joined The Latte Lounges own panel of experts; Dr Suzanne Saideman (Menopause GP), Diane Danzebrink (Menopause counselor), Caron Barruw (Psychotherapy), Marcelle Rose(Nutrition), Natasha Harris (Mindfulness) and Maryanne Taylor (Sleep), who came to support the group for a Q&A.

What came out of this discussion was fascinating.  Many commented on how GP’s are just not that well informed or aware of the NICE guidelines.  Some members confessed that they had been told to just ‘get on with it’ and were treated for depression.  The story was repeated over and over, both from the women in the audience and from our members commenting online.

Diane Danzebrink, a psychotherapist with menopause nurse training confessed:

“I too set up The Menopause Support Network (on Facebook) because there was no support group available online when I needed help.  I was never counseled before or after my hysterectomy about the horrendous psychological after effects that I would experience and I don’t want anyone else to suffer the way I did.  

 As well as providing support and information to women, I am passionate about campaigning for change and I have identified that we need 3 things: Far better GP education, information about the menopause included in the PHSE curriculum and greater awareness and support in the workplace.”

Dr Saideman, a menopause specialist GP confessed:

“Menopause is not part of our curriculum or training even at postgraduate level and as a GP I feel we are not very well informed.  So I took a course with the British Menopause Society which means I can now support women much better through this stage in their lives, which is really very rewarding.  

The International Menopause Society is planning to set up some on-line training for GPs and other health professionals which will be immensely helpful, but for now the only way to get menopause onto the curriculum is via people like Diane who are lobbying for change.”

After hearing this, the audience asked the Latte Lounge and its experts to work hard to lobby to do more, to go forth with workshops for GP’s educating them around the country as well as continuing these types of conversations as there is a much needed gap in awareness that needs filling.

Katie Taylor added that it was her main objective, together with her team, to drive this conversation nationally and worldwide - "the response from our members was overwhelming.   One thing that struck everyone was how everyone participating today had all been on the same journey and yet the help, support and understanding from GP’s all over the UK is still almost non-existent.  This is staggering in the 21st century!!

This absolutely has to change and what Andrea and the Latte Lounge team along with our resident Dr Renee Hoenderkamp, our Menopause GPs Dr Louise Newson and Suzanne, plus Diane and all our experts here in the Lounge are doing is keeping this conversation going, we are lobbying hard and educating others GP’s and many more women so that no-one else has to suffer like we have."

Member’s responded on the Facebook Live Feed with their own confessions:

“Wow!  So true Andrea, lots of ladies hide the fact they are going through the menopause for fear of being stigmatized as old, even to their partners!

So much agree with educating not just GP’s but in schools. This will also help with ‘why mummy seems different’ and our men will be pre-educated-brilliant! “

 “Thank you Katie Taylor and your brilliant team for a fabulous, informative and great afternoon. We need far better GP education. Looking forward to the next Latte Lounge Live! 

 “A huge thank you to Katie and the team for the wonderful Live Latte Lounge Spa Day and 2 year Birthday Celebration.  It was a lot of fun, informative, interactive and very enjoyable! Looking forward to exploring the website more fully. Wishing you continued success!”

“This group has truly been my saviour and has made me feel that I am not alone going through the various symptoms of menopause.  I cannot thank Katie Taylor and the team behind her enough for all the help and advice they have given me and for giving me the courage to open up and seek help.”

“Katie and team, thank you for holding my hand and showing me the way, along with thousands of other members. I will always be truly grateful and I will continue to help and support you in everything you do.  The Latte Lounge is fantastic.”

Members also enjoyed a relaxing spa day with treatments, classes, champagne, birthday cake and of course lots of Lattes!

Photos by: Claire Jonas 

The next Latte Lounge LIVE will be in May/June 2019 tbc

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