31 episodes

Black women are negotiating the different stages of menopause along with their ever evolving identifies, relationships, careers, responsibilities and societal tropes. This is a curated intergenerational exchange, a space for exploration, mentorship, intimacy and vulnerability around life, identity and change. It’s the excavation of the things that you need to know, but were never told. It’s the guide we wish we all had access to no matter our age.

Black Girl's Guide to Surviving Menopause Omisade Burney-Scott

    • Society & Culture
    • 4.8 • 76 Ratings

Black women are negotiating the different stages of menopause along with their ever evolving identifies, relationships, careers, responsibilities and societal tropes. This is a curated intergenerational exchange, a space for exploration, mentorship, intimacy and vulnerability around life, identity and change. It’s the excavation of the things that you need to know, but were never told. It’s the guide we wish we all had access to no matter our age.

    Light and Shadow: The Politics of Body Liberation

    Light and Shadow: The Politics of Body Liberation

    "Above all else, Our politics initially sprang from the shared belief that Black women are inherently valuable, that our liberation is a necessity not as an adjunct to somebody else’s may because of our need as human persons for autonomy...

    We realize that the only people who care enough about us to work consistently for our liberation are us. Our politics evolve from a healthy love for ourselves, our sisters and our community which allows us to continue our struggle and work.

    This focusing upon our own oppression is embodied in the concept of identity politics. We believe that the most profound and potentially most radical politics come directly out of our own identity, as opposed to working to end somebody else’s oppression."

    The Combahee River Collective Statement, 1977 



    Talking about our bodies and the changes that happen as people with uteruses age carried (and still carries) a different level of taboo or shame amplified by race and generation. Black women’s bodies have been problematized and pathologized throughout our existence in the country. The impact of racism, patriarchy and misogyny on Black women, women-identified and gender-expansive people and our understanding/ownership of our bodies is profound. From the moment of our arrival in this country to modern times, these forces have shaped the way many of us see ourselves, understand our inherent value and have often muted our voices. 



    This is why BGG2SM holds space for the conversation that disrupts the system and centers the most marginalized. 

    In our latest episode of Season 4, we interviewed Social Justice doula and Black feminist Lutze Segu. We talked about:



    *Anti-racist feminist frameworks and who controls the narrative about menopause and aging



    *Why it’s important to engage in narrative and culture shift work with Black people that disrupts white supremacy, patriarchy, misogyny, and heteronormativity related to menopause



    *How people can better advocate for themselves related to menopause and/or its onset with their health provider, employers, family members, etc.



    Enjoy!

    Episode Notes:

    Lutze Segu @lutzesegu

    Lutze Segu is a first-generation Haitian-American queer Black feminist who is a citizen of Miami, the home of the Seminole, Miccosukee, and Tequesta First Nations. She is a social justice doula, content creator, anti-racist educator, social worker, and your favorite Black feminist thinker. Lutze is currently a doctoral candidate at the University of British Columbia studying Race, Gender, Sexuality, & Social Justice.



    References:

    Black Feminism Resources:

    Combahee River Collective, https://combaheerivercollective.weebly.com/

    Black Feminist Future, http://blackfeministfuture.org/

    Alexis Pauline Gumbs, https://www.alexispauline.com/, https://www.akpress.org/undrowned.html



    "Say More" about Menopause!



    BGG2SM, in partnership with Kindra, co-designed “Say More,” a collection of conversation and journaling prompt cards filled with thought-provoking questions, personal storytelling prompts, and creative ‘wild cards’ that empower people to support themselves and loved ones through menopause and aging. BGG2SM listeners can use the code "OMI20" to get 20% off their "Say More" purchase at https://ourkindra.com/. 

    Check out our open source toolkit http://bit.ly/saymoretoolkit

    Learn more! www.blackgirlsguidetosurvivingmenopause.com

    Produced by Mariah M.

    Hosted by Omisade Burney-Scott

    Theme Music by Taj Cullen Scott

    Season 4 of the podcast is sponsored by our local NPR station, WUNC, North Carolina Public Radio! www.wunc.org 

    • 54 min
    What If?

    What If?

    There is much we can learn-- or maybe unlearn about menopause and aging if we apply a Speculative Fiction lens. Our current understanding of Speculative Fiction is tethered to science fiction and fantasy, and the way this genre broadens the story or narratives begging shared to include the potent age-old question of “what if.” This question that has been posed by poets, folklorists, writers, and philosophers invites us to reimagine our present reality, and it offers us multiple diverse opportunities to understand “who” is speaking and what is happening from their vantage point. 

    Black Speculative Fiction is often grounded in Black feminism, radical Black liberation praxis, and gender liberation ethics. Because notions of a multiverse live inside of string theory science, science fiction, and fantasy, there may be some juicy “what if” unlearning around menopause for Black women, women-identified, and gender-expansive people that are actually based on truth…like:



    *Menopause doesn't always happen in your 40s and 50s

    *Menopause happens to people who don’t identify as women 

    *Menopause happens to people who aren’t heterosexual

    *Individual menopause experiences are impacted by white supremacy, patriarchy, homophobia, transphobia, and misogyny



    In episode 4 of the Black Girl's Guide to Surviving Menopause, we explore some of these "what ifs" and truisms with Austen Smith. We explore:

    *Disenfranchised Grief

    *Austen’s journey to gender-affirming surgery, barriers in existence via the medical industrial complex, sociocultural norms, etc.

    *The importance of intergenerational spiritual communal work and liberation as a "time-bending" somatic experience

    Come with us on this journey and conversation through the infinite possibilities of what menopause is and how it is a portal to the next iteration of you. 



    Episode Notes: 

    Austen Smith IG: @transtheory



    Austen (they/them) is a masculine-of-center, non-binary wordsmith, editor, community facilitator, and radical imagination doula.

    Their work explores healing spiritual impacts of oppression, postactivism, gender proliferation and play, black queerness, and co-imagining liberation as a somatic experience in addition to an environmental reality.



    References:

    Trans and Menopausal article by Austen Smith: https://www.taunt.me/trans-menopausal

    Grandmother Hypothesis: https://www.npr.org/sections/goatsandsoda/2018/06/07/617097908/why-grandmothers-may-hold-the-key-to-human-evolution

    Undrowned: Black Feminist Lessons from Marine Mammals by Dr. Alexis Pauline Gumbs, https://www.akpress.org/undrowned.html

    Whale Whispering, Michaela Harrison, https://www.michaelaharrison.org/whale-whispering

    Post Activism, Bayo Akomolafe, https://www.bayoakomolafe.net/post/the-times-are-urgent-lets-slow-down



    "Say More" about Menopause!



    The Black Girl’s Guide to Surviving Menopause, in partnership with Kindra, co-designed “Say More,” a collection of conversation and journaling prompt cards filled with thought-provoking questions, personal storytelling prompts, and creative ‘wild cards’ that empower people to support themselves and loved ones through menopause and aging. BGG2SM listeners can use the code "OMI20" to get 20% off their "Say More" purchase at https://ourkindra.com/



    Learn more! www.blackgirlsguidetosurvivingmenopause.com

    Produced by Mariah M.

    Hosted by Omisade Burney-Scott

    Theme Music by Taj Cullen Scott



    Season 4 of the podcast is sponsored by our local NPR station, WUNC, North Carolina Public Radio! www.wunc.org 

    • 56 min
    Murphy's Law

    Murphy's Law

    Since we launched the Black Girl's Guide to Surviving Menopause, I have learned quite a bit about how Murphy's Law plays a role in what we produce. We are all familiar with Murphy's first law; if anything can go wrong, it will. However, I don't think many of us know that there are two other laws; nothing is as easy as it looks, and everything takes longer than you think it will. If I were to offer a podcaster's version of Murphy's law, I would posit: There's no such thing as stable Wi-fi. If your computer/tablet/cellphone battery can go dead mid-interview, it will. Sometimes what you think you've recorded vanishes into thin air. As much as there is a craft to the audio storytelling podcasting, there is also a realization that you control nothing but the good intentions you enter the conversation with. 



    A moment of honesty for our listeners... We entered into our conversation with our Season 4, Episode 3 guest, Satana Deberry, with excitement and a plan. Satana is not only one of the most progressive district attorneys in the country, but she is also a dear friend. Murphy, whomever Murphy is, decided to make a guest appearance on this episode and dematerialize the first 8 minutes of our conversation. Eight minutes of introduction and witty banter went like "puff"! Lucky for us and our fantastic listening audience, we pressed forward, editing the remaining parts that were in no way diminished by the podcast fates. Satana and I were able to discuss: 

    Our mothering journeys. 

    Unlearning old parenting models. 

    Sexual expression and intimacy. 

    Being special just because you are you. 

    Enjoy! 



    Episode Notes:  Satana Deberry  IG: @satanadeberry 



    Born and raised in rural NC and educated in the Ivy League, Satana has spent her career trying to dismantle the systems of power that keep us from being free. Whether that’s the threat of ongoing economic inequality or black respectability. As the parent of young women, she is also trying to be her whole self with them rather than creating a myth of motherhood for them to dismantle later. Her current day job is as the elected DA of Durham, but her long-time passion has been being in community and sisterhood. 



    "Say More"!



    The Black Girl’s Guide to Surviving Menopause, in partnership with Kindra, co-designed “Say More,” a collection of conversation and journaling prompt cards filled with thought-provoking questions, personal storytelling prompts, and creative ‘wild cards’ that empower people to support themselves and loved ones through menopause and aging. The goal of Black Girls Guide and Kindra in creating these cards is to ignite a supportive community that can surround people going through this crucial stage in life with resources and love. “Say More” is a beautifully-curated deck of discussion cards broken down into elemental categories—earth, wind, fire, and air. Each card explores themes like pleasure, grief, rage, play, creativity, identity, sexual expression, and healing for people on a menopausal midlife journey.  BGG2SM listeners can use the code "OMI20" to get 20% off their "Say More" purchase at https://ourkindra.com/ 



    https://www.patreon.com/blackgirlsguidetomenopause 

    Produced by Mariah M. 

    Hosted by Omisade Burney-Scott 

    Theme Music by Taj Cullen Scott 

    We are excited to have our local NPR station, WUNC, North Carolina Public Radio, as a sponsor for Season 4 of the Black Girl's Guide to Surviving Menopause https://www.wunc.org/

    • 48 min
    Made with Love...

    Made with Love...

    “If there's a book that you want to read, but it hasn't been written yet, then you must write it.” 

    -- Toni Morrison



    When I was a kid in the 1970s, School House Rock, short educational cartoon vignettes put to music, were ubiquitous on Saturday mornings. We learned about grammar, math and how the government work (kind of) all with a catchy tune. There was a particular School House Rock titled Mother Necessity" and it extolled "with Mother Necessity and where would we be without the inventions of your progeny"?  Where would we be indeed! The Black Girl's Guide to Surviving Menopause was born out of both a desire and need to create a safe and sacred space for conversation around menopause, midlife and aging for Black women women-identified and gender expansive people. We knew there was a conversation, a story and some good wisdom waiting to be found, illuminated and shared. Jamyla Bennu, of Oyin Handmade, knew the same thing about the products available to Black people on their natural hair journey in a society that told us our hair is a problem that needs to be solved. She saw the need and got into her lab (also known initially as her kitchen) to create products that are all natural and made for us, by us. In this episode of the Black Girl's Guide to Surviving Menopause, we explore:




    Creating new realities and new medicine
    Entrepreneurship
    Offerings to our community
    Intergenerational stories and throughlines
    Our menopausal journeys and being more than one thing

    We also did a deep dive into her menopausal journey at the intersection of her multiple identities, roles and paths. Enjoy this walk down memory lane and future building between an Aries and an Aquarius!

    Episode Notes: 

    Jamyla Bennu https://www.instagram.com/heyjamyla/

    https://oyinhandmade.com/about-us/



    Jamyla Bennu is the creator of Oyin Handmade, a line of natural, unisex personal care products formulated for the moisture needs of highly textured hair and dry skin. She is a maker, a mixtress, a lover of laughter & dance, a voracious reader, a gregarious introvert, and a self-described nerd. She is an advocate for independent small business, work-life balance, and making things.

    Her interests include nutritional density in both food and hair products, joy and delight as a facet of intergenerational justice, neurological diversity as a key to human potential, and the power of creativity as a form of self care and world shaping.

    She lives and builds in Baltimore with her partner, artist Pierre Bennu, and their two sons. To access a 20% discount on Oyin Handmade products, use, "BGG2SM"



    References:

    The Crown Act, https://www.thecrownact.com/

    Our Bodies, Ourselves, https://www.ourbodiesourselves.org/

    Daughters of the Moon Tarot Deck, https://www.abebooks.com/Daughters-Moon-Tarot-Book-Morgan-Ffiona/31060777668/bd?cm_mmc=ggl-_-US_Shopp_Trade_20to50-_-product_id=COM9781880130018USED-_-keyword=&gclid=CjwKCAjwu_mSBhAYEiwA5BBmf2G7uCyCjulU3E_B08xcG4eTe4eqpc7v3QDV3cKGUA7BWNI0bTpDUxoCBRQQAvD_BwE



    ----

    www.blackgirlsguidetosurvivingmenopause.com

    https://www.patreon.com/blackgirlsguidetomenopause

    Produced by Mariah M.

    Hosted by Omisade Burney-Scott

    Theme Music by Taj Cullen Scott



    We are excited to have our local NPR station, WUNC, North Carolina Public Radio, as a sponsor for Season 4 of the Black Girl's Guide to Surviving Menopause

    https://www.wunc.org/

    • 1 hr 5 min
    All You Gotta Do Is Say "Yes"!

    All You Gotta Do Is Say "Yes"!

    "This body does not bare destruction well.

    This body likes warm drops of rain and bare feet. Toes grounding in rich soil, and having my scalp greased. To move and to stretch just a little beyond reach, There is glory over there, a hallelujah in my feet.

    This body likes hot sun on bare shoulders, summer rain and not running inside. This body likes first morning light in her arms, new day sun streaming through open windows.

    This body likes warm fingers on the dip of my back. Lips brushing the hollow between collar and neck. This body clings to warm embraces, wishing and praying, praying and wishing that I never have to let go.

    This body likes mango juice dripping down onto my flesh. This body likes letting the current guide my steps and the moment of release."

    Collective Sun Reshape the Mo(u)rning, SpiritHouse, Inc.



    Menopause, if anything, is an opportunity to listen to your body. It is a time when your body is recalibrating it's navigational system and will send you new messages around what it needs to be healthy, vibrant, safe and satisfied. It is also an invitation to more deeply understand who you are as you are evolving (again) and what that might mean for your relationship to your body and to the people in your life. In this first episode of SEASON 4 of the Black Girl's Guide to Surviving Menopause, we had the great fortune to interview Syd Yang and M'kali-Hashiki (see bios below). We were able to explore "what flows and what fits' in this menopausal journey which is deeply connected to who you are in all your intersectional identities. We unearthed the notions of menopause that were formed or informed by our race, ethnicity, gender identify, sexual expression and lived experiences. We also talked about the connective tissue between menopause and internalized agism. Such a rich conversation unfolded around wanting to genuinely love and know our bodies better that allowed us to explore...


    Sex, pleasure and the menopausal body
    Queerness and menopause
    Decolonizing menopause
    Embodiment 

    Enjoy this journeying together. 



    Episode Notes:

    Syd Yang, IG: @bluejaguarlove

    www.bluejaguarhealingarts.com

    Syd Yang (they/them) is a mixed race/Taiwanese American queer trans/non-binary healer, intuitive counselor and writer who weaves together magic, possibility and intention as an energy healer and spiritual coach in the world through their practice, Blue Jaguar Healing Arts. Syd's work finds its resonance in the stories we each hold at the intersection of memory, body, sexuality and mental health. Syd works primarily with queer and trans BIPOC as well as regularly leads workshops, community healing circles and has been a group facilitator for over two decades, with a specific focus on grief, healing ancestral trauma, sexuality + spirituality, body liberation and eating disorder recovery



    M'kali-Hashiki, IG: @fierce_passions

    www.FiercePassions.com

    M'kali-Hashiki is a Somatic Sacred Storyteller & Erotic Ritualist. Her Divine Purpose is helping folx heal their erotic wounds, deepen their erotic relationship with their body & The Divine, and move further along in their path to individual & collective erotic liberation. She offers group intensives, rituals, individual sessions, instructional videos, guided visualizations; as well as private events for companies & organizations. Her lived experiences as a fat, Black, queer, femme, trauma-survivor inform every aspect of her work.

    -----

    www.blackgirlsguidetosurvivingmenopause.com 

    https://www.patreon.com/blackgirlsguidetomenopause

    Produced by Mariah M.

    Hosted by Omisade Burney-Scott 

    Theme Music by Taj Cullen Scott

    • 57 min
    Menopausal Multiverse Dispatch: Season 3 Recap!

    Menopausal Multiverse Dispatch: Season 3 Recap!

    At the end of each podcast episode, I close by saying, "we will see you again on the dark side of the moon". I chose this language because of the way moon phases have been divinely associated with menstruation throughout antiquity. The dark side of the moon is under the dominion of the crone, the wise one, the astrological sign of Scorpio, the goddess Hecate, and Orisa Oya.  It is a place of power, ancient magic, healing, ancestral connection and transformation. The idea of the dark side of the moon may also illicit an image of place that is cold, barren, volatile and inhabitable. If I'm honest, the latter imagery has also come to mind for me more than I wanted to acknowledge and I felt conflicted about wanting to intentionally explore a space that felt like a distant dark outpost---uninviting, isolating and possibly dangerous.  How would I reconcile these feelings and step more fully into this unknown?



    It sounds simplistic, but I decided to trust my gut because my wisdom and the ancient wisdom of the people who have come before me lives there. I had a hunch that there had to be more to the dark side of the moon. I had a hunch that in the place ripe for the deep shadow work of unlearning the hard wiring we have received around the evolving and aging bodies of women, women identified and gender expansive people, there would be evidence of life flourishing in a new form.



    Much like the deeper depths of the ocean, the dark side of the moon, menopause and aging has been woefully unexplored leading to cultural and societal assumptions and norms that problematize and pathologizes this transformation.  I decided to focus on the dark side of the moon, for people navigating menopause and aging, as a potent place of liminality and rites of passage. An in betweenness and a pathway of exploration in need of illumination.  A place where we could re-write the story menopause and aging together honoring ALL our voices.



    Welcome to our first recap! In this dispatch from our basecamp on the dark side of the moon, you will hear some of the voices, narratives, questions and wisdom offered to our podcast during Season 3. As we prepare to launch Season 4 of the Black Girl's Guide to Surviving Menopause, the entire team wants to thank you for joining us on this journey. We also hope to continue to carve a wide and well lit path for other folks finding their way and we are eager to learn more about the rich experiences of people navigating menopause at the intersections of their personhood, truths, hopes and dreams. 



    See you soon! 

    PS

    THANK YOU Season 3 guest: Cherizar Crippen, Aja Taylor, Makani Themba, Paris Hatcher, Chass Grissom, Shannon Houston, Aunjanue Ellis, Dr. Sunyatta Amen, Goody Howard, Dr. Cindy Duke, Dr. Arianna Sholes-Douglas, Luenell, Stacy London and Dr. Jennifer Mullan!!



    To LEARN MORE about the Black Girl's Guide to Surviving Menopause, click www.blackgirlsguidetosurvivingmenopause.com 

    FOLLOW US on IG  @blackgirlsguidetomenopause  and on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/BlackgirlsguidetoMenopause

    Become a PATRON https://www.patreon.com/blackgirlsguidetomenopause 



    Credits:

    Produced by Mariah M.

    Narration by Omisade Burney-Scott and Mariah M.

    New Opening Theme Music by Taj Scott

    Youtube (opensource) sounds effects provided by:

    - Q Suay's channel | UI Sound Design by Erik

    - z3n pnk's channel

    - Universe (Serge)'s channel

    • 27 min

Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5
76 Ratings

76 Ratings

rajunkhajun ,

Revenant! Culturally thoughtful!! Informative!!! Engaging!!!

I’m so thankful I discovered this podcast!! Finally found a podcast that considers women like me. With the information and thoughtful application of current medical data, I’m able to be more empowered when visiting my doctor and have more insights on what questions I should be asking. I’ve got more understanding through this podcast than what has been provided by my doctor!
KUDOS!! Keep up the amazing work for our community!!

DaAdelis ,

A life line…

This show has been such a resource for me as I begin to navigate this part of my life’s journey. Practical types, expert advice and a rich community of sisters. Thank you for creating this much needed platform.

sunyberry ,

Makes you want to hang out with her!

Omisade is fun, sassy and doesn't hold her tongue.

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