PMDD & Me was founded by Alice and Sarah Girling in 2018. Alice is a midwife who also suffered from PMDD for over 20 years. Despite having professional awareness of menstrual health, Alice struggled to access the best care for the management of her own PMDD.
After several years of treatment, she took the difficult decision to have a hysterectomy and bilateral oophorectomy in 2016, followed by extensive Dialectical Behaviour Therapy to overcome the longer lasting psychological effects of her condition.
Alice and Sarah have a strong belief in the importance of individuals being able to seek out the right healthcare appropriate to their specific needs and so PMDD & Me was born.
Our mission and team
PMDD & Me CIC works to facilitate the highest quality of evidence-based education and wellbeing support to those experiencing menstrual disorders and ill-health to enable self-advocacy and self-empowerment.
What is a Community Interest Company?
A Community Interest Company (CIC) is a business that works to invest in the wellbeing of the community it serves. At its heart a CIC is a social enterprise that rather than being driven by the need to maximise profits, tackles a wide range of social and environment issues to achieve public good, thereby creating a strong, sustainable and socially inclusive community.
PMDD & Me CIC believes in the universal human right to health and health care that is accessible, responsive, timely, safe, of high-quality and patient-centred.
Based on these values PMDD & Me CIC seeks to:
- Provide educational opportunities based on current best evidence and standards to inform those affected by pre-menstrual disorders of their treatment and therapy options
- Empower those affected by pre-menstrual disorders in feeling able to access the appropriate healthcare and take an active role in their care pathway
- Enable women and those assigned female at birth (AFAB) to feel comfortable and confident in discussing their menstrual health and well-being
- Campaign for public figures and influencers to declare their qualifications and/or conflicts of interest when providing menstrual health and well-being advice
- Campaign for all NHS Trusts to provide multidisciplinary menstrual health clinics that include the provision for treatment of premenstrual disorders
In May 2019 The World Health Organisation formally recognised PMDD as a gynaecological and mental health disorder in its own right within the International Statistical Classification of Diseases and Related Health Problems, Eleventh Revision (ICD-11). Open this link for more information about what this means for you and your treatment options.
Alice is a registered midwife specialising in menstrual health. She is also a qualified lecturer, a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy and is due to complete her Master’s in Education Practice with Bournemouth University this year.
Her own lived experience of PMDD inspired Alice to set up PMDD & Me CIC with her wife Sarah, where they work to empower self-advocacy in those experiencing menstrual disorders and ill-health.
Recently Alice was invited to speak about her experiences of PMDD and how this impacted on her perceptions of womanhood at TEDx Royal Holloway and has been featured on BBC Breakfast TV, BBC South Today and BBC Radio Solent.
The word midwife means to be with-woman, which I advocate should extend well beyond a woman’s childbirth experiences, as to be a woman, means so much more than being a mother.
Having personal experience of a premenstrual disorder has given me the insight on the challenges faced when navigating healthcare services.
I am also all too aware of the myriad of conflicting advice ‘Dr Google’ has to offer, and I seek to ensure that menstrual health advice is evidence-based and comes from credible, trustworthy sources.
I’ve met the PMDD monster, experienced being the human emotional punchbag that gets beaten everyday for no apparent reason, I’ve seen the fear, anger and self-destructive power of what PMDD can do.
Our journey over the years has opened our eyes to the pain women experience and their partners go through searching for answers on how to treat, manage and cope with the emotional fallout. And this is why I do this, to collect and share as much genuinely verified information and therapies out to you.