Category Archives: health

Catch up on the latest health legislation, honest discussions about our bodies, and “I Have” essays from women’s personal experiences. Whether mental or physical The Frisky discusses each disease, concern, or condition to encourage open conversation.

MSNBC Host Mika Brzezinski Opens Up About Exercise Bulimia

My Eating Disorder
Katie struggled for an eating disorder in high school and college. Read More »
Body Dysmorphic Disorder
One woman's experience battling this disorder. Read More »
Feminist Blogger's ED
Chloe Angyal
Feministing blogger Chloe Angyal reveals eating disorder, apologizes. Read More »
mika brzezinski

MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” co-host Mika Brzezinski has opened up about an eating disorder she has struggled with throughout her life: exercise bulimia — a compulsion to binge eat food and then overexercise to burn off the calories.

People with exercise bulimia will exercise several times a day, multiple days a week even when they’re sick or injured. They’ll blow off other responsibilities to exercise and get panicky or depressed when they can’t work out. Not surprisingly, they’re very focused on their appearance and self-critical, particularly in regards to how much food they have eaten and think they need to burn off. (Unlike with regular bulimia, they don’t make themselves vomit.) As explained by ULifeline.org:

People with exercise bulimia are obsessed with exercise and often binge. Bingeing is when someone eats large quantities of food in a short amount of time. … Exercise bulimia has dangerous complications, including depression, injury, weak bones, reproductive problems and even cardiac arrest. Keep reading »

Domestic Violence Victims Screwed Over By PA Town’s “Three Strikes” Disorderly Behavior Ordinance

A Picture A Day
domestic violence PSA
... in the year of a domestic violence victim. Read More »
Domestic Violence Advice
court room
... from a prosecutor who has seen it all. Read More »
Hurting Victims
domestic violence photo
The NYPD has a misguided strategy to force DV victims to cooperate. Read More »
I Witnessed DV
domestic violence
Jessica watched a man commit domestic violence while bystanders did nothing. Read More »
domestic violence

Most folks would be happy if their neighbors got evicted after three different “disorderly behavior” instances in less than three months. No one wants to deal with that much partying, dog barking, or loud music, right? But a “three strikes” disorderly behavior ordinance in Norristown, Pennsylvania, is now being challenged by the American Civil Liberties Union of PA because instead of just evicting noisy nuisance neighbors, it is being used to evict innocent domestic violence victims for calling the police for help.

The ACLU filed this week on behalf of Lakisha Briggs, a domestic violence victim who called the police last year when her ex-boyfriend assaulted her; they arrived and arrested him. But police also told Briggs that if they kept returning to the residence over disorderly behavior calls, she would get evicted. Not surprisingly, Briggs was afraid to call the police regarding future incidents — including the time her ex-boyfriend attacked her with a brick — over fear that she and her three-year-old child would become homeless. And yet after a June 2012 attack from her ex-boyfriend that had Briggs airlifted to the hospital, police of Norristown threatened to evict them from their home because neighbors had called to complain.  Keep reading »

New Sexual Assault Medical Examination Guidelines Issued By Department Of Justice

New "Rape" Definition
A new definition of rape has been approved by the FBI. Read More »
"Forcible Rape"
Behind Republicans' attempts to redefine rape. Read More »
CDC Sex Assault Data
woman attacked photo
Adolescent girls and preteen boys are at the highest risk for sexual assault. Read More »
doctor patient

The Department of Justice issued new national medical guidelines yesterday revising the 2004 standard of care for victims of sexual assault. Instead of focusing on the criminal justice aspect of evidence collection during the medical exams, the emphasis now is to support the victim’s health needs — including offering female victims yemergency contraception or information on how to obtain EC. The guidelines also encourage victims to undergo forensic evidence collection, even if she does not plan to report the rape to police immediately, and stipulates how evidence should be collected and what equipment should be used to do so.  As explained by The New York Times, “The guidelines emphasize that the rape victim’s physical and emotional needs should take precedence over criminal justice considerations.”  Keep reading »

The Right To Protected Sex: Bill Introduced To Decriminalize Condom Possession

Red Umbrella Project
The Red Umbrella Project helps sex workers write their truth. Read More »
Military Trafficking
The military's dirty human trafficking secret. Read More »
Backpage.com Sued
Today's Lady News photo
Teen girls sue Backpage.com over sexual exploitation. Read More »

Anti-trafficking advocates, LGBT organizations, lawmakers and public health advocates have gathered in Albany, New York today to push for new legislation about condoms.  Yes, condoms.

Currently 39 million male condoms and two million female condoms are distributed for free in New York State. According to the U.S. Center for Disease Control, “Consistent and correct use of the male latex condom reduces the risk of sexually transmitted diseases and HIV transmission.” If used correctly, rubbers can also prevent unplanned pregnancies.

Yet having pockets full of  condoms could also lead to a potential prostitution arrest by law enforcement, or even be used as incriminating evidence by prosecutors in trial.  If trafficking victims, sex workers, LGBTQ persons and others are targeted by law enforcement, what is the incentive to have safe sex? Keep reading »

This Creepy Real-Life Barbie Infographic Makes The Doll Ideal Very Unappealing

In case you had somehow forgotten just how bizarre and unrealistic the Barbie ideal actually is, this new infographic makes the whole crazy thing very, very clear. Check out all of the statistics at the source. [The Fashion Spot via Rehabs.com]

Barbie Without Makeup
A "real girl," just like you and me! Read More »
Black Barbie Party Line
black barbie
A mom appeals to Mattel to make party supplies featuring a Black Barbie. Read More »

El Salvador Will Not Allow Lifesaving Abortion For Young Mother

Today's Lady News photo
  • A 22-year-old mother of one in El Salvador faces jail time for seeking an abortion on a nonviable pregnancy because her fetus  is developing without a brain. The woman, identified as Beatriz, cannot get an abortion because terminating a pregnancy is illegal in El Salvador under all circumstances, even though the pregnancy is posing a threat to her own life. Beatriz’s hospital asked for permission to legally perform an abortion on her over one month ago, but authorities have not yet responded. She’s now appealing for help from El Salvador’s Supreme Court. [Salon]
  • Posters reading “Stay Strong And Support The Boys” have been posted in the neighborhood of Rehtaeh Parsons, a young woman in Nova Scotia who committed suicide recently after a photograph of her alleged rape was distributed around school and police did nothing to punish her alleged rapists. [Think Progress]
  • Well, it didn’t take long for that Dove Real Beauty Sketches video to get parodied! [YouTube]
  • Carla Hale, a gym teacher at a Catholic high school in Ohio, was fired from her job for being a lesbian after Hale’s mom died and the obituary listed the name of Hale’s partner. Disgraceful. [NBC4i] Keep reading »

West Virginia Student Katelyn Campbell Stands Up To School’s Abstinence-Only Sex Ed

Ab Only Sex Ed Sucks
Every teenager in Mississippi is pregnant, basically. Read More »
Give Teens EC?
Pediatricians urged to discuss, prescribe Plan B to teenagers. Read More »
"Gateway" Sex-Ed?
teens making out
Ohio wants to ban sex-ed that might be "gateway" to sexual behavior. Read More »
sex education photo

Meet Katelyn Campbell, a high school student council vice president, Wellesley College-bound senior, and sex education rabble-rouser who is filing an injunction against her principal for threats he made after she boycotted and spoke out against an abstinence-only sex-ed assembly at her school.

According to ThinkProgress.org, Principal George Aulenbacher at George Washington High School in West Virginia threatened to call up Wellesley College to complain that Campbell had “bad character” because she refused to attend the abstinence assembly and filed a complaint with the ACLU because the public school event was hosted by a conservative religious organization.
Keep reading »

Take Two Tylenol For Your Existential Crisis And Call Me In The Morning

Angst Advice
Angsty Celebrity Teens
Ami has advice for these angsty celeb teens. Read More »
Goth Hate Crimes
In Manchester it's considered a hate crime to harass a goth. Read More »
Angsty Youth Of TV
All the goths, punks and club kids on 80's day time talk shows. Watch »
Hot Goths
These films goths were the hottest. Read More »

In what might be the most wonderful study about existential angst to ever be performed, researchers at the University of British Columbia discovered that the same pill that helps soothe your stress headache may help mitigate the sense of doom you feel when confronting the meaning of life. That’s heavy. Let that sink in. Tylenol may be the antidote to the human condition. My inner Goth is doing the pain dance right now. If only I had known about the magic of Tylenol from the age 14 to 30. Maybe things would have been easier. But enough about me. Back to the experiment, the methodology of which was straight out of a Kubrick film. Keep reading »

Anti-Abortion Activists Hold First “Leave The Abortion Industry Day”

My Son & Abortion
Avital is teaching her son about reproductive justice. Read More »
Tiller Clinic To Reopen
South Wind Women's Center
The Kansas abortion clinic operated by Dr. George Tiller will reopen. Read More »
Generation Roe
roe vs wade protest
Q&A with Sarah Erdreich, author of the book "Generation Roe." Read More »
abortion

Anti-abortion activists have many approaches to stopping abortion. One is to spread lies about the science around reproductive health. Another is to pressure women to feel guilty for terminating pregnancies, regardless of their reason. Another is to restrict abortion access through the courts. And yet another is to target the employees and property of abortion clinics, which includes harassment and violence towards abortion providers and damage to their buildings.

“Leave The Abortion Industry Day” on April 8 is one such effort towards that goal — and thankfully, an effort not involving violence. It’s a project of Abby Johnson, a former Planned Parenthood clinic director turned anti-abortion activist; “abortion industry” is a term used by anti-abortion folks to describe people who work in the women’s health field in regards to abortion. Keep reading »

Girl Talk: On The Stigma Of Mental Illness In The Asian Community

I Have Depression
Jessica has struggled with depression all her adult life. Read More »
GT: Antidepressants
Going off antidepressants made Julie feel worse than depressed. Read More »
How To Deal With Anxiety
Worried? Anxious? Panicked? Here are 10 ways to deal. Read More »

It was a workday of minor annoyances. Everything at my temp job had gone normally, except for a snippy email from IT and a laminator malfunction that forced me to dig out a half-laminated page with a fork.

So why was I crouched in a bathroom stall, hyperventilating, sobbing, and trying not to scream?

A coworker insisted I see a doctor, who said my meltdown was probably due to anxiety and depression. I was shaken – but not entirely surprised.

I was born and raised in a majority-Asian community in Hawaii, where mental health issues are not discussed. Granted, since most of the people in that community are second- to fourth-generation Asians, there are some exceptions, although these exceptions are determined by an unspoken code. (It has to be an unspoken code. If you can’t discuss mental health, you can’t discuss discussing mental health, either.) As far as I can figure, you get a pass if you’ve tried to kill yourself or at least been hospitalized. Anything else is something that you just get over eventually. Don’t dwell on your emotions all the time. We must endure. That was the message. Keep reading »

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