It’s one of the biggest life challenges women face – and now they have the support of a senior British royal.
Sophie, Countess of Wessex, has thrown her weight behind a campaign aimed at raising awareness about the impact menopause has on working women.
The 56-year-old, who’s married to Queen Elizabeth’s youngest son, Prince Edward (57), joined a discussion to support the Menopause Workplace Pledge campaign with the UK charity Wellbeing of Women.
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The focus was the effect menopause can have on working women, who often quit their job due to its physical effects.
“Women having to leave the workplace because of the menopause is tragic,” said Sophie, who worked in public relations before marrying Edward in 1999.
“We’re fabulous in our forties, and we’re even more fabulous in our fifties, sixties and seventies and we need to celebrate that and keep opportunities going for women.”
The campaign is calling on all companies to sign their Menopause Workplace Pledge as part of World Menopause Awareness Month.
Millions of women struggle with the effects of the mid-life change, which include anxiety, brain fog, poor concentration, fatigue and hot flushes.
“We can’t let anyone leave the workplace feeling that they’ve got to slope off into the shadows. We have to be able to change that,” Sophie says.
The countess became patron of Wellbeing of Women, which focusses on improving the lives of women, in May.
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In a royal first, she spoke openly about menstruation, menopause and pregnancy in a video call with the organisation’s chair and other experts, saying she wanted to help normalise these taboo topics by bringing them “out into the open and not making it some kind of behind-closed-doors conversation”.
Sources: people.com, news.sky.com, Instagram