Changing the Narrative on Hope with Jodie Day
I was really looking forward to speaking to Jody Day on the podcast again. I’ve heard Jody talk numerous times at Fertility Fest and am always struck by her determination and positivity when it comes to talking about her work and her book ‘Living the Life Unexpected and Rocking the Life Unexpected’
Jody is the founder of Gateway Women, a network for childless women. In our chat we talk about societies’ representation of childless women and how conversations are beginning to change.
It’s becoming more normal to talk about childlessness due to infertility but being ‘childlessness by other circumstances’ are less discussed. Jody is collating a huge resource of articles and papers on this topic.
Gateway Women is an amazing organisation which helps and supports women through her book, by meet-ups across the world, through social media and the Gateway Women Private Online Community. Jody and her colleagues also run workshops and more than 1500 women have attended the workshops.
Jodie talks through the obstacles to overcome when facing childlessness – stopping treatment and the fear of ‘giving up hope’ both making peace internally but also for how friends and families react.
Giving up hope is the first step and she explains how we need to change the narrative around hope. As Jody says ‘we’re not giving up hope for something terrible’ Childless women in our society are representative as ‘wrong’, ‘evil’ and ‘deviant’.
Jody also spoke about the importance of giving women new childfree friends as she has found that childlessness decimates friendships and results in loneliness and isolation. She feels that perceptions on childlessness will change but it may take another decade. The LBGTQ community have helped to change the way society perceives sexuality, however women without children in the work place is the biggest diversity group that HR hasn’t heard of.
Jody talks about the belief that someone who has a child is of more value than those who don’t. Women internalise this narrative and feel shame in believing that they are defective, barren women.
Coming up is World Childless Week and I spoke to its founder Stephanie Phillips about her reasons for creating it and you can hear more from her and find out more about how you can get involved here World Childless Week
It runs from 16-22nd September. Saturday 21st is ‘We Are Worthy’ Week – get involved with Meet-Ups Worldwide. 14th & 15th September is a Gateway Women Reignite Weekend and this year on offer is scholarship places and reduced fees
Source: The Fertility Podcast