When Sexism affect you Health Diagnosis

During my teenage years, I developed asthma. It took a long while before I was officially diagnosed.

ambulance-145368_1280The first time I lost consciousness at school and an ambulance was called to the scene. An ambulance worker treated me like I was feebly minded once I regained consciousness. He was extremely condescending. “What happened? Did you break up with your boyfriend? Are your parents fighting? Did you break a nail?” I was so angry that when it came time to leave for the hospital, I refused to go. The school had to call my parents to come get me.

Of course, they got their information wrong and called my elementary school babysitter. Luckily she remembered who I was since she had 3 boys and no daughters of her own. As I was wheeled into the secretary office, I was still very dizzy and had trouble forming my thoughts. I told them the woman standing there was not my mother and they assured me that it was. I must just be confused. You should have seen them jumped when the woman confirmed that she was not my mother, but my elementary school babysitter. They looked at her like she was a kidnapper. She had done nothing wrong.

“Love is not what takes you by surprise and leaves you totally breathless. It’s called asthma.” – Unknown

meditation-972472_1920The hospital doctor told me I had to learn how to breathe. He said that all girls do it wrong because we care more about being pretty than being healthy. He made me feel like being born female meant I was fickle and stupid.  You would think education would make someone a bit smarter, but apparently not. Asthma is an illness, not something girls get because they want to look thin.


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