Scartissue + patriarchal and racist structures in Gynaecology
An appell to love your scars. The inherent capacity of your body to heal. Sometimes we tend to think that our body is against us. We are living in war with our own bone and flesh. We tend to think that our knees hurting is our body not doing what it’s supposed to do. (Let me tell you one thing – Its never your body against you. Your body wants you to live!) But even worse. It’s a widely spread silent reproach that people who birth a being into this world by a caesarian somehow failed. I recognized this within my patients, they are holding guilt and shame thinking their bodies somehow failed. 31.7 % is a way to high number of Caesarians (caesarianrates.org) and its even worse to recognize that 25.6% of the low risk (this is negative language but I am not sure how to put it better) are caesarians. Numbers are only countrywise lower in Europe.
Therefore on average around every third person that gave birth in Europe has a rather big scar in their lower abdomen. Eventhough it is that common only little of this people have knowledge on how to live with that scar and how to support their bodies in healing. This article is not supposed to focus on that. But if you are interested in it, feel free to contact me for a scar tissue session.
Please let us as a society go of shame and guilt around scars. You and your body are fucking powerful. Especially if you gave birth, no matter how. You are a creator/creatrix.
It is also another topic if this number of caesarians is the consequence of patriarchal history of medicine, of capitalist structures in medical care or of other reasons.
I just want you to remember that it is not you against your body. It’s a part of you. The mashine that allows you to experience sensations in this life. This body allows you to feel cold and warmth. To feel water and spring. To feel sommer and a full heart. To feel pleasure. And actually the body is always orientated to work for you. To heal you. For example when the body is in pain. Its warning you. It screams stop. Because it wants to avoid serious tissuedamage. Honestly in most cases it is us who could avoid this pain if we would be sensitive for the smaller signs. But this is not your fault. We live in a capitalistic system that’s based on our economic value - so why should it focus on empowering you to recognize your bodies boundaries. That means that it is a rebellious act to allow yourself to listen to your body and take breaks!
But back to the scars. Manifestation of the coexistence between vulnerability and power. We should carry these scars to the world with pride. It shows that our body is a survivor, that it is able to heal itself again.
And when we allow the scars to be a part of us we can also start meeting them with love. Start touching them gently. Rubbing them with Oils, just feeling into whatever comes up. Because also here counts: Issues are in the tissues. Be especially sensitive with old scars – there might be old emotions coming up that were stucked for quite a while.
What happens if we treat scars? Tissue might let go of tension and in chainreaction all connected tissue that overtook and transferred the tension leading to new symptoms can finally relax. Maybe we can imagine the scar like a little child really wanting to tell a story but no one of the adults gives it space to and is willing to listen. The child almost bursts. And then finally, adult sits down with child to listen. And the child feels a release, feels heard.
Back to this: It is also another topic if this number of caesarians is the consequence of patriarchal history of medicine, of capitalist structures in medical care or of other reasons. Douch of Douglas, Fallopian Tubes, Graafian Follicle, Gräfenberg Spot, Skenes Glannd, Bartholins Gland… and the list continues. What do these anatomical structures have in common? Besides naming specific areas of the Uterus they are all named after white men. (Source: thelanguageofbirth)
The disgrace finds a special prolongation in German language. Where we name the visible parts of our Vulva Schamlippen, Schambein, Schamhaare. Yes, that’s right – it translates to Shamelips, Shameleg and Shamehair. What about neutralizing it to Vulvalips, Pubic bone and bodyhair. Even rewriting it to Lustlips, Lustbone and Lustjungle. You know whats even worse? Visible inner labia is even nowadays sometimes called Hottentottenlippen (engl. Hottentot-lips) in medical lecture halls (personal source). That is not only sexist but racist as this term was historically used during colonisation to refer to the Khoekhoe, the non-Bantu speaking indigenous nomadic pastoralists of South Africa .
Sadly our modern gynaecologic medical care is still depending on a racist and patriarchal system. To get to the knowledge we hold today black women were enslaved and used for experimental surgeries. (source:Thewombroom.co)
The whole reproductive health care is not orientated towards the empowerment of women* and to make them feel as if they own their bodies. We are disempowered and retraumatized in gynecological settings. A longyear patient of mine who survived sexual abuse is telling that everytime seeing a gynecologist is a little retraumatisation. Every third women* experienced sexual abuse. Why don’t we educate the people who are supposed to help us to stay healthy and heal on this. (source: https://legaljobs.io/blog/sexual-assault-statistics/)
I wish for a detailed processing in medical history.
I wish for a compulsory traumainformed course in the field of Gynaecology.
I wish for a reclamaition of our bodyparts that prolonges in our anatomy-books and spreads into lecture halls.
We decide what our bodyparts are named and I fucking deny to ever name my bodyparts after a dead racist white man. As much as you own your Uterus, your Cervix and your Vulva, you own your scars and you are a hero and holding the center of creation in you, that no operation can take away from you.