Gynecological violence

It took me a few years and a deeper awareness, given to me by the increasingly precious and attentive information disclosed by the activists who lavish in this area for a new education against violence and for the elimination of gender taboos, to realize me that gynecological violence is a phenomenon with many facets. There are the most bloody and  Recognizable, but also the silent ones, which insinuate themselves into the soul in a silent but constant way, which express a discomfort constantly making us question about the validity of our feeling.


Making us continually remain on the edge of the razor, suspiciously in the balance.


Those violence definable by the "non -violence" society that make us ask: but did it really or not?

As if what we have heard or tried was something exaggerated.

As if we were wrong to feel like this.


The point is that we are not wrong.

And it's time to overturn the situation.

I have been suffering from Vulvodinia for many years and before having received an adequate diagnosis, they entered and exited several gynecological studies without ever receiving a reliable and above all credible medical feedback.

The pain and discomfort were always new and always different labels, which I found myself stuck on me every time I came out of those doors.

The first memory that I have of this type of pain dates back to my 15 years, in conjunction with my first preliminary relationships. Shortly thereafter I would have subjected myself to the first gynecological visit. I remember very well, unfortunately, that day: I entered the room together with my mother and saw this woman of about middle age, who told me in a little attentive to my young age and without pleasant ways, to lie on the bed and in the meantime it made me some request. A few seconds later he began to visit me and started trying dense and burning and she, as the Gaslighting manual teaches, said that my pain was simply derived from the fact that I was still a virgin. Despite my attempt to stop it and explain that it was something too painful and acute to be traced back to what I imagined at the time to be the "Imit breaking pain" - of which I had an idea based on my own physical relationships, and thanks to the stories of acquaintances and friends -, I was completely ignored. There is also an important thing to say: I have always been, until a few years ago, a girl unable to make my voice heard and to fight for my rights, why you will understand better how, from professional and medical figures that They should have our health in hand, listen to us and protect us, it was for me and I imagine it is easier even for many of others*, feeling overwhelmed, since vulnerable. 

But let's go back to what was my first visit.

As you read, my words and my pain were not worthy of such consideration but, as if that were not enough, everything ended with the insertion inside the vaginal channel of an egg that began to burn as much as I can, whose unwanted effect did not allow me to walk or get off the car for about an hour and a half. Well yes, I was sitting on the seat of my mother's car without going down or entering the house all that time. In response to the pain experienced immediately present in the studio and to the request to remove it because it is unbearable, received a candid "su, after a while passes" in response from the gynecologist. Needless to say, from that moment on, I no longer put foot in a gynecological study for a long time, for the fear of trying a similar pain that I could not oppose.

The second episode of gynecological violence took place a few years later.

I was approximately 19 years old and, after continuous episodes of pain that were obviously dissociated from my first "diagnosis", I had decided to go to another gynecological study to obtain answers and understand if my suspicions were actually founded. This time the gynecologist seemed quite respectful and kind: we talked a lot, I expressed my doubts about what was my condition and she listened to me understanding and illustrated me what she knew about my pathology (i.e. little or nothing), trying to make me understand A little better how to deal with it in the future, clarifying that it was necessary to contact a qualified specialist. After the interview of about half an hour, the moment of the visit came and, not having made it up to that moment a with internal tools, I did not know what I would meet and not even what I could have tried.

Suddenly, without explanations or attention to my pain previously illustrated during the cognitive interview, the gynecologist imposed the speculum. Although I continued to tell her aloud that I felt atrocious pain and that I could no longer resist, until I twist on the bed, she continued with the inspection until she was finished. This experience served me to understand that gynecological violence is not only to be victims of inadequate, disrespectful or cruel behavior: it also occurs when the patient's limits are overcome to try to do the "proper work", without placing Too much attention to his needs in the name of an end considered right, that is, to obtain answers on the medical condition in spite of the pain deriving from the procedures themselves.


The third and last experience of gynecological "violence" happened not long ago, precisely in conjunction with the actual diagnosis of what is my chronic pain. In this case, respect for me was not lacking in the physical sphere, but in the psychological one that has worsened, like an infinite loop, the condition of the physical one. Although I had expressly requested the presence of my boyfriend inside the room in which he had to keep the visit, he was removed without any effective reason by ignoring my will, because, according to the opinion of the gynecologist, he could be a disturbing element. To disassemble this thesis there are two notions that must be clarified: the first point, my boyfriend is a medical student at the 6th year and it was he who helped me understand my illness better and to understand what I was facing. His presence therefore, in addition to being comforting for me, could be a point in favor to explain what I, technically, I did not know how to describe, and a precious link to tell how vulvodynia impact my daily lives, seen by him and observed by time. Second point, shortly thereafter, in the room where the visit would be held, to my total knowledge, there would be 4 other specializations in gynecology present all the time: not only during the interview, but also during the exam itself , literally folded on me. In addition to the fact of not having been minimally warned of the participation of other people unrelated to me in the beginning, I was not even asked if, given such a particular clinical condition, which personally transports the agitation and emotional discomfort to a physical state that Increase the pain, I preferred to stay alone with the doctor. I was therefore observed by 5 people as a clinical case to be studied, becoming didactic material to be used for a demonstration. All without comfort of my boyfriend regarding the pain I knew I would have tried during the swab test (a test that consists in touching with a cotton swab inhumidated the vulva in specific points and that in people with vulvodynia is painful) that you are Then aggravated because of the inconvenient condition in which I was because I was very tense. As if that were not enough, even the same visit was partially vain in my eyes because, due to the tested embarrassment, I did not clearly expose myself, bypassing some very personal things that I do not feel like sharing with specializations. When they say so much pain for nothing.


Finally, my experiences can somehow order in Fase decreasing of recognition of violence. The evidence of having been the victim of such an episode has become increasingly difficult to identify over time, since from a clear episode I went to that series of questions and doubts I was talking about at the beginning. "Can you define as such?", "Maybe he just did his job" and so on. However, what I understood thanks to these events is that if, in some way we are led to ask ourselves if something wrong has happened, perhaps, it is because it is so. I do not say that any negative experience must necessarily be defined, but that the important thing is to question without fear and give voice to our doubts, without putting them on a priori because it does not comply with what has so far taught us the society. We have to establish the personal limits of our body and our mind and, if these are not respected, to make it present without fear as an act of respect towards ourselves.

Marta Boraso

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