[Trigger warning for medical coercion and abuse.]
While gynecologists have always seen teenagers with menstrual problems, there’s a new emphasis on building that early relationship. [. . .]
“People are leery. They think it will require an exam,” [. . .] “It’s really just to establish a relationship where they get to know us. It’s a non-threatening environment.”
This move to reel in younger teen girls to the gynecologist’s office isn’t entirely evil. Road to hell, good intentions, etc. However, this all just works to further normalize the constant medical surveillance of female bodies. It’s bad enough as is, but with earlier – and therefore more frequent – visits, girls hardly have the chance to realize that it is not, in fact, necessary to have doctors regularly inspect your genitals or reproductive organs. Rather, even younger girls will now be instructed to worry about the ticking time bomb that is (supposedly) their bodies. It’s never to early to learn that females are faulty versions of males, right?
As noted in the article, “At the first visit, patients receive a pamphlet explaining what to expect.” Before ever getting a gynecological exam (years before, actually), I panicked regularly about the impending visit. I researched what to expect online and forced myself to think of it as totally normal. I cried reading about women’s accounts of their doctor’s visits (even if it was “normal”/not traumatizing). I cried more when I finally found another young woman on a forum saying that she’s terrified and doesn’t want to go through with it. Responding to her, I wrote how I felt the same way and said how I couldn’t even think of the exam without imaging kicking the doctor across the room. (The reason I was considering getting a gynecological exam at age 15 was because I wanted to go on birth control. The 21 year old man I had been chatting with online said he wanted to make sure I wouldn’t get pregnant if we decided to take our “relationship” offline. Nothing ended up happening, thank goodness.) It took me several years before realizing my aversion to these exams wasn’t because I was being “sensitive”; it seemed fucked up because it is fucked up.
Perhaps, at least, these early visits could be used to screen for sexual abuse? This is not on the list of reasons for the visits. These are, though:
“Personal safety, binge drinking and date rape.” Just what every teen girl needs. . . a lecture about how not to be raped!
“Birth control. Most teens using it do so to regulate their periods.” *Het-hem*
“The benefits and safety of the human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine.” Ah, of course.
Merck, the maker of Gardasil, no doubt wants plenty of fresh guinea pigs to sign up for the vaccine. They also are testing the vaccine on girls in India against the competitor’s Cervarix. Why India? It costs less (though, as the linked article describes, it is clearly costing these girls their lives in many, many cases). Here is a very comprehensive article regarding the testing as well as the many risks associated with Gardasil.
These “early visits” are grooming for a life time of interventionist, unnecessary health “screenings” and “check ups”. The HPV-vaccine-pushers will also assure girls that the shots are necessary, because it is presumed that you will be engaging in proper hetero sex (PIV).
Lesbian ? Asexual? Just don’t want a painis in yourgina? Who cares! Shots for all!
Gynecology never ceases to amaze me in its ability to be the full-package when it comes to patriarchal bullshit.
CherryBlossomLife on RadFemHub: “Polish Government proposal: Submit to compulsory gynecological examinations, or be fired “ [warning for gynecological illustrations and descriptions of related horrors]
A film called “One More Girl” is in production right now, set to be released in 2012. The documentary will reveal the numerous adverse effects that girls and women have suffered from getting Garasil.