Dr. Jen Gunter's vagenda: share accurate info about the vagina and vulva
August 31, 2019 1:22 PM   Subscribe

As the global wellness industry tops $4.2 trillion, Dr. Jen Gunter is on a mission to arm women with science-based advice in hopes of stanching the spread of health misinformation. Increasingly, she’s been sounding the alarm about how confusion surrounding women’s bodies fuels larger efforts to control them. Dr. Jen Gunter wants to protect your vagina from Gwyneth Paltrow, and from politicians trying to regulate your body with pseudoscience. (Mother Jones) Part of spreading accurate information is the ability to talk about anatomy, but Twitter, Facebook and Instagram recently blocked ads with the words "vagina," "vaginal" and "ob-gyn." (MSN)

WBUR On Point interview -- Put Away The Jade Eggs And Garlic: This Doctor's 'Vagina Bible' Separates Fact From Fiction, which opens with an introduction from Dr. Gunter:
I HAVE A VAGENDA: for every woman to be empowered with accurate information about the vagina and vulva.

One of the core tenets of medicine is informed consent. We doctors provide information about risks and benefits and then, armed with that information, our patients make choices that work for their bodies. This only works when the information is accurate and unbiased. Finding this kind of data can be challenging, as we have quickly passed through the age of information and seem to be stalled in the age of misinformation.

Snake oil and the lure of a quick fix have been around for a long time, and so false, fantastical medical claims are nothing new. However, sorting myth from medicine is getting harder and harder.

In addition to social media feeds that constantly display medical mes saging of variable quality, there are the demands of a headline-driven news cycle that constantly requires new content-even when it doesn't exist. With women's bodies, there are even more forces of misdirection at work. Pseudoscience and those who peddle it are invested in misinformation, but so is the patriarchy.
She also spoke about her new book, The Vagina Bible (Goodreads, Amazon.com), with NPR contributor and family physician Mara Gordon.

On Nov. 16, 2017, Dr. Gunter wrote an article for the New York Times: My Vagina Is Terrific. Your Opinion About It Is Not. -- I dared to discuss my anatomy. Men couldn’t handle it. This started her column, The Cycle, where she updated her first article a year later: Your Vagina Is Terrific (and Everyone Else’s Opinions Still Are Not) -- One year ago I wrote about my vagina and men’s opinions of it. Things have not improved. She also has a blog in her website, covering a range of topics.
posted by filthy light thief (8 comments total) 40 users marked this as a favorite


 
Dr. Gunter previously, twice and thrice.
posted by filthy light thief at 1:25 PM on August 31, 2019 [1 favorite]


Are ads saying penis or testicles allowed?
posted by jeather at 1:28 PM on August 31, 2019 [5 favorites]


Without batting an eye a man will refer to his dick or his rod or his johnson.
posted by ryanrs at 1:40 PM on August 31, 2019 [20 favorites]


Dr Jen Gunter's Vagenda
Featuring Herman Menderchuck
posted by fifteen schnitzengruben is my limit at 1:42 PM on August 31, 2019 [8 favorites]


As a cis man I generally refrain from commenting in these threads as I don’t have a lot to add to the discussion. But as a physician, I have to say that Dr. Gunter is FUCKING AWESOME!
posted by TedW at 1:45 PM on August 31, 2019 [12 favorites]


I do not consider myself old; I'm 27 as of this summer, but, just going over advice from the past given to me about how to 'care' for my vagina tells me all I need to know about the god awful power of ignorance and lack of progress fueled by stigma.
posted by SkinsOfCoconut at 2:06 PM on August 31, 2019


ooooh I appreciate the Mother Jones article asking Dr. Gunter for her tips on How to Find Good Health Information Online. Instead of WebMD...
Opt instead for the website of a professional medical society: American Academy of Family Physicians, the North American Menopause Society, the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, the American Academy of Pediatrics, and the Endocrine Society all have great information for patients. If you need more than what’s provided, look at the language and terminology these organizations use. Copy that language and put it into your search bar.
posted by spamandkimchi at 2:06 PM on August 31, 2019 [20 favorites]


I work on the marketing side of this for the publisher; we've also had issues with Amazon letting us put up ads with the word "vagina" in them on the book's own Amazon pages (print and Ebook).
posted by UltraMorgnus at 4:57 PM on August 31, 2019 [8 favorites]


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