We Will Never Tell You "That's Normal"

May 12, 2023
We Will Never Tell You "That's Normal"
FemForward's philosophy of providing trauma-informed care, what the 5 principles are and how we will never minimize your symptoms.

A patient recently told me a story about going to a health clinic with significant bleeding issues and was told, simply, “Well, women’s bodies are a mystery….”

We laughed and laughed over that line and I scribbled on my uterus whiteboard all the things we ACTUALLY KNOW like FACTS from anatomy and physiology and SCIENCE and RESEARCH.

It’s fascinating that despite controlling more than 80% of healthcare spending decisions in the US, women/AFAB individuals continue to be overlooked when it comes to the medical system.  Our symptoms are more likely to be minimized or brushed off as psychosomatic from the outset. Women in pain are much more likely than men to receive prescriptions for sedatives, rather than pain medication, for their ailments. And one study revealed that we are prescribed less pain medication than men after undergoing the same procedure.

At FemForward Health, our goal is to change that paradigm. We hear you. We see you.

We are a practice built on trauma-informed care.  Practitioners who abide by traum-informed care understand that it’s actually the patients who help direct their own care in an informed manner. Trauma-informed care is based off 5 principles and here is how we follow it at FemForward Health.

  1. We create a safe space. This means safety for patients both physically and emotionally. A safe space is a place where patients feel they can speak up, share past experiences and their effects, and express their needs.
  2. Patients have choices based on informed consent. You cannot make a choice if your provider is not offering you all the choices available. I usually tell my patients that I am here to download for you my brain. My brain has 20 years of Ob/Gyn experience and it is my job to share that expertise with you. It is then our job, together, to make choices about your healthcare that are best for you – equipped with all the available information about the unique situation that you are facing.
  3. Your care is a collaborative effort. We do this together. It is not top down or bottoms up. It is a shared conversation between the two of us. It’s my opinion and your opinion and in the end, we come up with a plan together. And, if after a few months, the plan isn’t working, we re-evaluate and adjust.
  4. We build a relationship based on trust. I understand that trust is built over time. We engage in a manner that builds trust, mainly through consistent conversation and communication. My patients know they can reach out to us through phone or text, and we will quickly respond. If they need to be seen, we will get them in for an appointment quickly. Our patients feel listened to and supported.
  5. You are empowered. When you feel empowered, you feel you are part of the process to make decisions around your own health. That leads you forward with pride, control over your own body and health journey.

Rooted in the philosophy of trauma informed care, we will never tell you something is “normal” if you are sharing with us that it doesn’t feel normal. Feel free to laugh and walk out the door if you are in a doctor's office being told that YOU are the enigma. Mysteriously slink away and crawl over to us. We will set the record straight. We will be the Sherlocks to your detective case.