‘It starts with a headache. An unbearable, dull throbbing that affects my vision and makes it hard to speak. My stomach bloats until only leggings fit, my lower back aches and my breasts feel like punch bags that have been pounded repeatedly. I’ll have one big, painful spot on my chin.
This is my experience of the monthly premenstrual syndrome (PMS) that I experience in the lead-up to my periods. And I share the experience with 90 per cent of all menstruating women. So when I read psychologist Robyn Stein DeLuca’s provocative claims that PMS is a “get-out-of-jail-free card” for women when they need a break, I felt somewhat peeved.’
I write a piece for Stylist Magazine about PMS… you can read it here.
I took a trip to the BBC’s Wogan House on Monday to talk colic live on air with Jeremy Vine and Dr Sarah Jarvis. If you fancy a listen – I spoke about my own experience of colic, and that of The Early Hour readers’ – the discussion starts around 1hr, 9m, 50secs. Here’s the link.
I was interviewed by Zetteler about setting up The Early Hour…
The result of an intense and increasing online “content” saturation, there’s a perpetual discussion among brilliantly vocal communities of writers and editors that questions the rapidly-changing relevance and role of online output. In a world where anyone with an internet connection can publish an uninhibited stream of consciousness and effortlessly access a global audience, the pressure to justify your narrative is higher than ever.
Annie Ridout had been working as a freelance copywriter before she fell pregnant, and suddenly found herself with an automatically-terminated contract 40 weeks into her pregnancy. Overcoming any sense of fear, Annie embraced the sudden liberation. Founding The Early Hour – a digital culture and lifestyle magazine for nocturnal parents – shortly after the birth of her child, she immediately recognised the potential of strategically-timed online content being used to connect the vast network of sleep-deprived mums and dads up at silly hours of the night tending to their children.
Having read about Annie’s journey in an article for The Guardian’s Women in Leadership, we wanted to ask the inspiring journalist, editor and mother a few questions of our own…
You can read it here.
In her latest book, author Samantha Ettus recommends that parents get up at hour before the kids to get started on work. While I’m an eager early riser – and feel most productive first thing – I’m under no illusion that this is for everyone. Some parents have kids who wake at 5am; some parents look after their offspring full time so need the extra sleep.
But where Ettus has really dug herself a hole is by suggesting that mums and dads who look after the kids full time are leading “woefully imbalanced” lives, and will wind up “bored and unfulfilled”. So I wrote my response for the Guardian – you can read it here or by clicking on the image above. And share your thoughts in the comment section below, or under the original article. Interested to hear what others think…
A TUC report (produced in collaboration with the Everyday Sexism Project) was released earlier this week. According to the research, over 50% of women have experienced some form of sexual harassment in the workplace.
I was asked to talk on BBC Radio 5 Live and the Victoria Derbyshire show about an experience I had while working in an art gallery. It was when I was in my early 20s, and one of the (male) trustees wanted to photograph me for a listings guide. The other (male) trustee said that it could be a “glamour shoot” (a topless photoshoot, rather than a glamorous one).
I was challenged on air (by men – only men) about whether this was actually harassment, or if I should have been lighthearted about it. My response is that while sexual inequality prevails, it’s of paramount importance that women are respected, and not made to feel small, insignificant or scared at work. And everywhere, for that matter. When we’re all equal, perhaps there will be more scope for jokes and ‘banter’.
Interested to hear other people’s thoughts?
‘I thought motherhood would make me weak and passive but it has filled me with fury and passion instead’
Here’s a piece I wrote for Baby Centre about how using alternative therapies (acupuncture, hypnotherapy) helped me to conceive my daughter. You can read the full article here.
Becoming a mum can be a bit like starting school again. Suddenly, you’re thrown into a playground of new potential friends and have no idea where to look or who to play with. I wrote about this for Selfish Mother.