Women in pain

Women in pain

Pain? No you need to suffer. Tolerate. Coz you are a woman!

Girls when young have heard from at least one person from childhood. It mostly starts at menarche. Mothers do acknowledge that there will be some cramps, but when it increases in intensity, then the girl is supposed to shut up. She needs to Tolerate it because,

(The most popular statement goes like this)

‘if you cant Tolerate this, how will you handle child birth, there’s more to come, so you better shut up and toughen up’

Now this is repeated to her so many times, that she stops talking about it and suffers in silence. I know a friend who was quiet for years and later, couldn’t handle it any more & went to the doctor without her mother & was diagnosed with endometriosis. 😑😒

The ones who think they have ‘tolerable’ pain learn to shut up about it or self medicate every time they get their periods.

This doesn’t stop here..

Even during pregnancy and childbirth how many women are comfortable to share their discomforts? Especially during childbirth. Starting from vaginal examinations, to labour pain – you are just supposed to Tolerate it all and there’s zero support and empathy.

I know moms who’ve gone through vaginal deliveries who struggle to sit, pee, poop with their episiotomy stitches but they are told they must be grateful to have got a vaginal birth. I also know moms who’ve gone through cesarean sections who’ve been told they took the painless version of delivery so they must be all cool. Irrespective of the way the baby was born, I’ve seen all mothers suffer with various kinds of pain, but the acknowledgement of that pain seldom exists.

And when there is a news about some celebrity adopting or using surrogacy services, then it’s easily connected to taking the easy route.! 🙄

Having spoken to thousands of breastfeeding mothers, a vast majority of them were asked to tolerate the pain. Pain indicates a bad latch or inefficient milk transfer and professionals look into it from different angles to figure out why this might be happening. However, I’ve seen too many moms come with extremely chapped, blistered, bleeding nipples after weeks or even months because they were tolerating it.

All put together, I’ve always felt pain tolerance is also taken as an indicator for being a good woman or a good mother. Everyone expects a mother to suffer in silence. She can’t talk about her difficulties, discomforts, pain or trauma because somehow becoming a mother was her ultimate goal. And pain got her there, so Don’t crib. Don’t complain. 😔

I wish to tell women this –

Each of us has a different pain tolerance, but there is a threshold we all have. At that threshold, tell the world you are in pain. Tell the ones who try to shut you up to have some empathy. And also tell this to yourself- the level of pain you can Tolerate has nothing to do with the kind of woman/mother you are. ❤️
Did you experience people neglecting your pain, at any time in your life?
Swati Jagdish
Sexuality health educator
I feel pain. I cry. I scream sometimes.

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