On a girls' night out, what do you and your gal pals talk about? Men, family and work? Yes. Shoes? Of course. Who else but your girlfriends gushes about your fabulous footwear? My friends and I used to lust over trendy stilettos. Now, we’re thrilled (ok, jealous) when one of us finds a comfortable pair that passes for modern or attractive.
Does LBL make the list of things women talk about on a girls night out? Probably not. But I believe it should. And I’ve discovered some easy ways to bring up the conversation so that women keep talking. Why talk about LBL? For the same reason you talked with your girlfriends about periods and boys in your teens, pregnancy and childrearing as a new mom, and hormones and hot flashes at the onset of menopause. Life gets easier when we support and encourage each other. Maybe your best friend hasn’t had an LBL moment. Even so, she cares about you, and wants you to feel safe confiding in her. You never know what kind of helpful encouragement, advice or experiences your friends have to share. And you have a lot to share with them. Those friends who’ve kept quiet about it are just waiting to get YOUR support, too. Here are three conversation starters to try the next time you’re out with friends:
- Be informative. Women love discovering new things. Educate them. Tell your friends what you’ve learned about Kegel exercise, and other pelvic floor strengthening exercises. They’ve probably heard of Kegels, and it’s good for woman to do, whether they leak or not. Start the conversation with, “I was reading an article about Kegel exercise and I’m giving it a try. Do any of you do Kegels?” Once this conversation starts, LBL comes up naturally.
- Talk about celebrities. Turn on the television or search the internet, and you’ll find celebrities sharing their experiences with LBL. Tell your girlfriends, “I was watching TV, and …” Be sure to add, “I was so impressed that she was comfortable enough with herself to talk about it. I wish more women would.” Or if you have a different view, share it, “I was surprised that she’d share that on TV. That’s something we share among friends, not the entire world.” This offers an invitation to share.
- Break the ice. When you mention LBL straight out, it gives your girlfriends permission to exhale. Tell them, “I’ve got that strong urge to go. Watch out ladies, I need to be first to the restroom.” Or “I sneezed so hard I peed a little.” When you’re comfortable being vulnerable, it’s easier for your friends to relax, drop the pretenses and share openly too. Sometimes it’s a friend who starts the conversation. When that happens, be ready to say, “Me too!” We do that with just about everything else. Friend: “I started dying the grey out of my hair.” You: “I do that too.” Friend: “I blew up at my kids and now I feel terrible.” You: “Been there, done that.” Friend: “I laughed so hard, I leaked.” You: “That happens to me when I jog. Every time I sprint, I leak.” Go for it! The next time you’re out for the evening sharing a glass of wine with your girlfriends, look for opportunities to bring up the LBL conversation. You just might set yourself (and some of your friends) free. There are so many ways to manage LBL and sharing is a the most rewarding way to find solutions, camaraderie and closer connections.
What about you? Have you found good ways to start an LBL conversation?