Did You Face Misogyny As A Woman When You Went To A Doctor?

Dismissal of our symptoms. Or misdiagnosis. Or treatment not given properly. Or we are shamed for what we suffer or feel. Or even as women, we often ignore our ill health. Sounds familiar?

It’s April already, summer setting in. A new month, a new financial year.

World Health Day is on 7th April. This year is special as it is the 75th year of the World Health Organisation, and the theme is ‘Health For All’. But are all of us really given the same opportunities and treatment when it comes to health issues?

Women’s health is still an area that suffers from #MedicalMisogyny

From the internalised patriarchy that causes women to minimise their symptoms, hide their illnesses especially if associated with their menstrual and reproductive functions so taboo in social narratives. To doctors dismissive of many symptoms when women speak of them, with misdiagnosis, improper or insufficient treatment, the shaming that even the medical professionals indulge in.

So much of #MedicalMisogyny that we face as women. And I haven’t even gone into the area of mental health issues that women face.

One of our authors, Aarushi Ahluwalia, wrote this excellent, nuanced first person account a while ago, speaking of how she was not just shamed for choosing to have an abortion, but how it was considered that she did not have the right to grieve her loss, because, well, she chose it!

Share your stories, either as personal accounts, or as fiction. It is important that women speak up.

We’re changing the way we publish your entries, including those of the top selected pieces

We want to be fair to all entries – those that come in early, as well as those that come in closer to the deadline, and give them all the same time to be assessed.

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So we will no longer be publishing the top stories first.

Entries that are shortlisted will be published in no particular order throughout the month in which a particular contest is held. The final selection of stories – 3 for fiction and 3 for non-fiction – will be announced in the last week – on our social media, as well as via email. We will then make relevant changes to the editor’s note at the foot of these pieces.

​​What you need to do if you have a personal story

Submit your entries under 1000 words on your author dashboard or register as an author here and submit it.

What you need to do if your piece is fiction

Submit your entries under 2000 words, on your author dashboard or register as an author here and submit it.

Rules for both categories

​​​​​​~~ This should be a previously unpublished story.

​​​​​~~ Use the hashtag #MedicalMisogyny along with the title.

~~ Once published on Women’s Web, you may not publish it in whole elsewhere, except for an excerpt with a link back to us.

~~ Top selected stories will remain exclusive to us.


Sunday, 9th April 2023, 11.59 PM.

There are 3 Amazon vouchers of Rs 750 each for the top selected stories in fiction, and 3 for non-fiction as a token of our appreciation for sharing your stories.

Also, DO NOT worry if your piece gets published immediately (in which case we will unpublish it and hold it as an entry) or gets rejected. As long as you have put the hashtag #MedicalMisogyny in the title, just drop us a note at [email protected] and our editors will do the rest.

So what are you waiting for? Send in your entry TODAY!

Image source: a still from Dr G

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About the Author

Sandhya Renukamba

In her role as the Senior Editor & Community Manager at Women's Web, Sandhya Renukamba is fortunate to associate every day with a whole lot of smart and fabulous writers and readers. A doctor read more...

124 Posts | 752,915 Views

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