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Post-Viral Chronic Illness is a Feminist Issue




There really isn’t much more to say (outside of the additional fact that Black, Indigenous, Hispanic and all femme of color face this centuries-long public health issue at even more alarming rates) other than: you need to do the research, acknowledge internalized ‘isms’, and do the work to unlearn them. You aren’t bad for having them: you’re simply a product of your environment. But don’t stop there. Craft a new environment for yourself, your daughters, your grand-daughters and so forth.


Look up “women hysteria”, “gender bias medicine”, “misogyny health care”, “women chronic illness” and so forth, and pages upon pages of current and historical articles, reports and studies will help to better inform you of this persistent unaddressed systemic problem.


And for further insight and ways to unlearn and support, please check out the @bitchmedia article (partially quoted below) and found at https://www.bitchmedia.org/article/in-sickness/feminism-must-include-chronic-illness:


“Take the time to learn about the many issues that disability rights, chronic illness advocacy, and feminism have in common. They include women’s health (which is not just reproductive health, though that is an important piece); the many gender and racial disparities in pain management for chronic pain; the rollback of the Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA) via HR 620; the dismantling of the Affordable Care Act (ACA); body image; and the dismissal of women’s chronic physical pain as “hysteria” by both the medical establishment and the general public.


...There’s a tendency in leftist and progressive spaces to dismiss online activism as “slacktivism,” but there are many chronically ill and disabled women whose activism takes the form of writing, tweeting, signal-boosting, and engaging with other activists on social media. Being physically in the streets and walking/protesting for long distances is a manifestation of privilege.


... Feminism is reticent about listening to and including women with chronic illnesses and disabilities, but to outsiders, and sometimes to fellow feminists, we’re simply invisible.”