Page 3070 - Week 09 - Thursday, 13 October 2022

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average for a lot of period pain, although quite a few women who calibrated this machine would say, if they had endometriosis, that maybe they would regularly get pain at level 8 or 10, which is frankly quite horrifying.

I would encourage you, if you do have a bit of time, to jump on to TikTok and have a little look at them. There is a cowboy at a rodeo who collapses and says, “This is awful,” at level 8. He is twitching at level 9, and he cannot get his big manly “yee-haw” out at level 10. There is a real estate agent who is trying to do his normal spiel about a fictional house and he collapses in pain at level 4, and then at level 7 he says, “Oh God! It’s coming in waves. I feel like I am going to rupture!” Another woman comes in and calibrates it for her partner. She said level 7 was an average cramp, and her partner was in a sweat at that level. Then we have got some couples who are doing their simulations together and quite a lot of them are pretty horrified at what is the normal experience for an awful lot of women every month.

There are also some other simulators that are quite fun, with politicians being asked to wear vests that simulate menopausal hot flushes. Again, we get the same visual where it is really quite difficult to engage in your normal activities whilst experiencing something that an awful lot of women have to deal with regularly in their lives, in their workplaces, as they are going about their caring duties, as they are going about all of their responsibilities. It is fun to have a giggle at this stuff, but I think it is actually a really good lesson in empathy too. I think some of these quite entertaining TikTok demonstrations are a good way for us to see what it feels like to be somebody else and what it feels like briefly to share somebody else’s experience.

As Ms Orr has pointed out in all of her work, there are so many issues that are exclusive to women. There are so many issues with reproductive health, with menstruation, with menopause, that are intrusive. They are quite difficult to manage. We have a lot of issues to deal with as women. At different points in our lives we will deal with menstruation, we might deal with pregnancy, we might deal with loss, we might deal with breastfeeding, and we might deal with all of the pre-partum and post-partum health complications that go with all of those issues.

I have a lot of lived experience of some of these things. Obviously, I talk about these issues with my friends on a regular basis. But it is really, really good to open this conversation up to be more of an acceptable conversation generally, to be more of a normal workplace conversation and to get some genuine support to deal with all of these issues. I am really pleased to see this revolution coming in women’s health matters. I am really, deeply empathetic to anybody who is experiencing difficult symptoms from any of these things. Please do speak up. Go and chat to your doctor or your health carer. I am hoping we have a more supportive society soon that normalises this stuff and just helps all of us deal with it.

I think we will be passing this motion today. I do not want to get ahead of the debate, but I suspect this one might go sailing through. I would really like to thank Ms Orr for introducing this. It was good that we had a little chat about this and we introduced a few extra bits into it to deal with the some of the post-partum complications. I think that was really good too. I am pleased to be part of a parliament that can deal with issues like this and take some small steps to make a lot of people’s lives better.

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