The world is still filled with suffocating silence and dishonor about gynecological health. Shopkeepers continue to wrap sanitary napkins with newspaper, and women continue to hide them while headed to the washroom. The list does not end here. I’m sure each of us is right now relating to many more such “beliefs”.
Gynecological Health Awareness Day
September is Gynecologic Cancer Awareness month and today, the 10th of September is celebrated as International Gynaecological Awareness Day. Founded by Kath Mazzella in 2001, her sole agenda has been to empower and give voice to women who are victims of mental disturbances. From her personal experience and her daughter’s story, she realized how women suffer in silence every day due to their menstrual cycle, and sexual and other mental challenges.
After she was diagnosed with Vulva Cancer and post-surgery, the grief and disbelief she went through led her to ignore her daughter’s diagnosis of Endometriosis and Poly Cystic Ovarian Syndrome. A little time later, she happened to meet and pour her heart out to a lady with a similar condition of Vulva Cancer and surgery. This heart-to-heart meeting helped her realize the power of sharing stories and also how her daughter was left alone during her crisis. This late but happy realization made her jump forward and declare the International Gynaecological Awareness Day.
key messages for gynecological health
Women are unconsciously or consciously instructed to feel embarrassing for their feminity. They are inculcated with shame about their periods from childhood. They begin to automatically feel secretive about their body, about the days that they bleed, and about the intense pain/cramps that they face. This leads to a fear of rejection and loneliness sets in.
It’s time that we all join hands to end this and bring around a more livable society. What are the key messages of this day?
1. Eradicating taboos on sex, sexual health, menstrual cycle, and gynecological health, from the society
2. Break down stigmas through higher education, knowledge, and sharing of experiences/stories
3. Bridging the communication gap between women and men, societal perception and reality, about the gravity of women’s issues
4. Spreading the importance of a holistic treatment of women in the society
5. Removing barriers in the way of women and allowing them to experience a fresh, vivid and joyful life
Each participative hand matters. Together, we can bridge the societal gaps and make it a more jovial and caring place for all our ladies. If you are a woman or a man, each of you can make a difference and each one of you is welcome. Read on to know how YOU are important to making this dream come true.