PMA, endometriosis... Major Mouvement and Marion

PMA, endometriosis... Major Mouvement and Marion

Today Major Mouvement takes over our podcast La Famélia to interview Marion, co-founder ofElia. In this podcast, Marion shares her experiences around her desire for motherhood, her PMA journey, her fight against endometriosis, and the birth of Elia.

Tanga Choupette
Light flow

Why change jobs?

"In my former life, I was a salesman in a tech company, and beyond being a salesman, we designed tech products to help merchants create communities. In my personal life, I had other expectations that weren't necessarily aligned with the job I was doing. I was working 15 hours a day and at least 80 hours a week. I made dozens of trips in France and abroad to see customers. In fact, all this pace of life was no longer in line with what I wanted to do with my family life. And in a way, I was no longer being honest with myself, since my day-to-day life wasn't aligned at all. I was happy from a personal point of view, I still am and that's pretty constant. I was less happy at work and I was very happy with my customers, so it was more the context we'll say, that didn't make me too happy anymore."

"By desires, desires for motherhood, desires for a calmer life. I also wanted to be able to recognize myself in what I was doing on a daily basis and to tell myself that I was doing something that made sense. I couldn't find it at all anymore because my desires had changed, so it kind of fell apart and it took me a while to listen to myself too and understand that I wasn't aligned at all anymore."

"I felt less and less at home in the company, so I interacted much less with my colleagues. I was just doing my job. As I was always on the outside, it's true that I was already disconnected from the corporate culture. I lived my customers' corporate culture, so I was very much aligned with their needs and a little less with the company's internal needs. Then, of course, my personal life came into play."


Philomène panties
Average flow

How has endometriosis affected Marion's working life?

Pregnancy desire and work

"With this desire for pregnancy and this desire for a baby that impacted my daily life, but in a way that was quite violent for me since I stopped taking the pill. I have a disease called endometriosis, which I've had since - I think - the beginning of my periods, since I was twelve, but it was really detected when I was 18. In a rather violent form since I had an ovarian torsion."

"I had a rather large cyst that tipped my ovary over and cracked, creating a hemorrhage. I had to have emergency surgery. I'm talking to you about twelve years ago, so I was lucky to be well accompanied and well taken care of by doctors. By cleaning out the endometriosis and the after-effects that were all around in my small pelvis, they removed part of my ovarian reserve and so I found myself at 27 with the fertility of a 50-year-old woman to make a child what."

"I was 27. We 'd been trying to have a baby for six months and, naturally, it wasn't happening. I was having increasingly painful cycles. And when you want to have a child and you want it deeply, repeated failures alter the psychological aspect, the good mood and so on. And it's true that it was getting harder and harder every month to take a pregnancy test before the due date, because in those cases, you become a compulsive tester and you tell yourself that there's something wrong. That's also when I decided to take an interest in something else. I became interested in associations that talk about our metrics, because I'd never known exactly what endometriosis was when I was 18, that it would be potentially difficult to have children, but I hadn't had any more explanations than that. And for the next ten years, I was on the pill with regular checks every six months at the gynecologist to make sure I didn't have any new cysts or anything, but I didn't have any more info."


Work and PMA 

"Today, it's important to talk about endometriosis because I think it's an issue that comes well upstream of decisions about the couple, PMA, the daughter or other subjects. It's a visceral need that I have today, for people to discover and talk about endometriosis, to open up this subject. And from early childhood, in fact, right from the start of periods, because there was indeed a time when I lived the myth that periods are painful, that it was normal. I found myself with hot water bottles on my belly in the middle of summer, under 40 degrees in the south, and that wasn't normal. If I'd known that my ovarian reserve was so low, maybe I would have made the decision myself at 20, or 25, to go for oocyte freezing processes much earlier. It still takes some stress off you, of course."

Simone panties
Medium to heavy flow

Finding meaning in your work

The menstrual pants project

"I discovered menstrual panties on an American website. I bought them and thought, this is great! It radically changed my daily life. I thought it was an incredible innovation. Except that after a few washes, they were dead. Menstrual panties replace conventional sanitary protection and can be reused over several years. At least, that's what it said on the paper. This wasn't the case for the one I'd bought, and I thought they were nice menstrual panties, but they were a bit ugly. They were really panties that you put in the back of your drawer and just take out during your periods. And I needed to feel feminine at that moment and to feel good in my underwear."

"At the same time, I had a check-up with my gynecologists, because at the time I was using a lot of tampons, even when I didn't need them, because I was afraid of spotting or periods. Spotting is blood loss at different times in your cycle, but it's not the same as periods. And I had them regularly, so I used tampons. The vagina is the most permeable part of the body. So I used tampons and that dried out the area, so I had mycoses and cystitis all the time. As part of my MAP process, we went to look into the endocrine disruptors I had in my blood and it was monstrous. I tend to eat organic food, no ready-made meals, and so we identified that tampons were ultimately one of the causes."

Reinventing menstrual pants 

"I found the menstrual panties to be great. On the other hand, they didn't correspond to my values and, above all, to what my gynecologist was suggesting and prescribing, which was to use organic cotton protection so as not to irritate the vaginal flora. So I thought I'd wear cotton panties. Except that on the market, all I could find were panties that looked a bit like grandma's. I couldn't see myself wearing them. I couldn't see myself wearing them every day. So I started designing the first pair of panties in 100% organic cotton with a bit of lace.
So I designed them and then had them prototyped. My mother gave me a sewing machine for Christmas, but I've never used it. It's not my thing. To each his own. But I thought, what are the ideal panties? So I designed these little organic cotton panties with a lace triangle, which are now called Philomène on our website.
Then, the idea was to produce locally, which are values I believe in. Local production, keeping the economy going in France and above all supporting French innovation were important to me. But I had a second factor to take into account: I work a lot, so I needed something that was close enough to home for me to get there. And it just so happened that one of our workshops was in the area where I had a lot of customers at the time. And so it's funny because I used to go and see my customers for my old company and between 12 and 2pm, I'd go and see the workshop, I'd make a couple of moves. For the absorbent zone, I called on a friend whose sister was a researcher, and we went to test different materials. The aim was to find the most eco-responsible, healthiest, most breathable material to dry the waste. And so we chose oak fiber, which is a fiber derived from eucalyptus wood."

"Then Apolline, my partner, joined the adventure and we very quickly launched a panty according to the different flows. It's always the same techno. You have to know that period pants is quite technical, contrary to what you might think, it's not just a simple pair of panties. It's not just a simple pair of knickers, especially in our case, where we use a lot of lace on certain models. It's a fairly intelligent assembly of materials, which have to live with the person's body, but also with washings. So you have things to respect because the fabrics aren't identical."

Today, all Elia lingerie is certified Origine France Garantie, made from organic cotton. The quality of our menstrual pants means you can keep them for 5 to 7 years if you take good care of them (especially when washing).


Shorty Armande

Abundant flow

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The information contained in the articles on is general information only. Although reviewed by health professionals, this information is not error-free, does not constitute health advice or consultation, and is not intended to provide a diagnosis or suggest a course of treatment. Under no circumstances may this information be used as a substitute for medical advice or consultation with a healthcare professional. If you have any questions, please consult your doctor.