This should be obvious. But it’s not, even to other women.
Because this is the year 2021, not 1812.
I have multiple physical and mental health conditions, and as such, I have a team of providers who are almost exclusively women.
I’ve been through multiple incidents of sexual abuse and assault and I’m not comfortable with most male doctors (especially older white men, who are in the majority where I live).
I also find that female doctors are generally more thorough, better listeners, and aren’t arrogant and condescending as many of their male colleagues so often are.
My female providers are as follows: primary care, rheumatologist, psychiatrist, gynecologist, and dentist. All of them are f*cking amazing!
I have male providers for pain management and chiropractic services. They’re good, but their thoroughness and listening are a bit lacking.
It should also be noted that I’m in the market for a new ophthalmologist, following a recent extremely inappropriate incident I had with a male doctor, another reason why I prefer to stick with female providers as often as possible.
Here’s the thing though: every time I need to pick up a prescription from the pharmacy or have a question or need to schedule an ultrasound, test, or bloodwork, the person on the other side of the counter or other end of the phone always asks for “his” name when asking about the doctor. Always.
I have not had a single one ask for “her” name, or even just “the doctor’s name.” I really don’t understand why this is so difficult for people (especially women).
I always respond with extreme emphasis and volume when saying, “her name is…”
If I notice these small doses of misogyny as often as I do (and I am so infuriated by them), how does it feel to be a female doctor and have to deal with this daily? Spending 10 to 14 years in school and residency and often having to work harder than their male counterparts, while being ridiculed and second guessed, to then be treated as unqualified and lesser than because you are a woman.
This isn’t just a man issue though; women need to be better about it, too.
It doesn’t take a d*ck to be a doctor, so let’s stop acting like it does.