Last month, comedian Amy Schumer canceled her comedy tour due to complications with hyperemesis gravidarum. The 37-year-old actress, who announced her pregnancy in October, has been public about her struggle with HG, a condition characterized by severe nausea and vomiting during pregnancy (which Kate Middleton has also experienced in her pregnancies).
After she returned from maternity leave, NYPD officer Simone Teagle says she faced backlash from coworkers every time she took a break to pump breast milk. To avoid criticism and unsanitary pumping conditions — Teagle says she was forced to pump in the bathroom or a dirty women’s locker room — she only pumped when her breasts became unbearably full.
There’s a picture of my mom on her wedding day, her belly swollen and round beneath a navy blue, floral maternity dress. I imagine her standing at the makeshift altar in my grandparents’ backyard as if it were a threshold in time — her marriage a trap door out of the trauma that had defined most of her life up to that point.
We’re living in a historic time for women and women’s rights, and healthcare is no exception. In response to shifting clinical guidelines, research discoveries and medical advancements, along with socio-cultural issues like the #MeToo movement, here’s what five practitioners had to say about the biggest changes they’re seeing in women’s healthcare.
Sexual violence affects around 300,000 Americans each year — that’s one sexual assault every 98 seconds. Still, as pervasive as sexual violence is, statistics show the majority of these crimes remain unreported — and the vast majority of perpetrators don’t face jail time.
A few years ago, before I had kids, I became fixated on an eating regimen that took a mental and physical toll on my life — and my relationships. Since then, I’ve typically avoided scales. But one afternoon at the doctor’s office after my second son was born, I accidentally saw that I weighed about 50 pounds more than when I started my pregnancy.
Some nights I had just a glass. Other nights, depending on my level of despair or boredom, it was an entire bottle. On days when the trenches of early motherhood were particularly condemning and isolating, my nightly wine ritual gave me a break — an escape — from the sticky, cluttered, anxious life I had pieced together as a new mother. I was “wine mom” incarnate.
I was 1,300 miles away from home when I found out my mom died. Motivated by the freedom that came with college graduation, I’d moved across the country from Minnesota to Texas for an internship. My mom and I hadn’t been in much contact for a few months, since my therapist encouraged me to set a healthy boundary in what I had recently realized was a toxic relationship.
I keep my essential oil collection in a white, house-shaped curio cabinet in my bathroom closet. Tiny glass bottles of lemon, eucalyptus, lavender, and frankincense line the shelves, fragrant with the promise of radiant skin, a balanced menstrual cycle, and a good night’s sleep. You can have it all for the low price of a $150 starter kit, they once told me through my cracked iPhone screen. Oh, plus a free bottle of our toxin-free laundry detergent if you opt in today!
“We need a flight attendant! Now!” The passenger’s sudden, shrill plea for help sent me into panic mode on the sunrise flight from Chicago to Grand Rapids, Michigan. I’m a nervous flyer as it is; then someone passed out two rows in front of me, creating a buzz of anxiety on the plane.
My anxiety is lifelong and probably stems equally from nature and nurture. My mom struggled with chronic illness, mental illness and addiction tied to childhood trauma, so though I always knew she loved me, her instability created an early foundation of anxiety for me, which manifested in panic attacks and an obsessive-compulsive disorder diagnosis when I was 9-years-old. I’ve been on an SSRI medication since then, and I’m almost 30 now.
For me, in addition to the chemical imbalance I was bor...