Is it wrong for a man to be a gynecologist?

A gynecological examination.Shooting a real doctor's office

Are all men that go into gynecology secretly perverted? Should gynecology be left only to women? Do male gynecologists get turned on when they do gynecological exams? Do men have an “on and off” switches for their sexual arousal?

Previously I wrote a post reviewing an essay by Pastor Anderson of Faithful Word Baptist Church in Temple, Arizona. The full post can be found at http://www.faithfulwordbaptist.org/lust.html.

In part of this post, Pastor Anderson states this about male gynecologists:

“And, you know, here is an area that is not popular. It has never stopped me before. It is not going to stop me now. But here is another area that is not popular. But, you know what? Women who go to a male doctor and just disrobe in front of a male doctor. Why? Because they don’t believe that nakedness is a sin. Because he is not lusting, supposedly.

Because we all know what is going on inside his mind. He takes a polygraph detector test right before and after every visit.

“I had…my mind is as clean and pure as the driven snow.”

Yeah, right. Good night. He is a man. He is a red blooded man like anybody else. Do you know what every male gynecologist ought to do? He ought to take a scalpel and a lancet and cut out his own eye and throw it in the trash. That is what the Bible says. He ought to just remove his own eye. I am not kidding. He has got all the tools to do it. He ought to do it.”

The Facts about male gynecologists

Before I tackle the issue the morality of a man(Christian or otherwise) being a gynecologist let’s look at the facts about male gynecologists.

FACT #1

Even with half of all gynecologists now being women, most women don’t care if their gynecologist is male or female

“There has been a significant gender shift in OB-GYN over the past two decades. In 1990, 22.4 percent of all OB-GYNs were women. In 2010, nearly 49 percent were women,” Jeanne Conry, president of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, said in an email. She pointed to figures showing bigger changes to come: “In 1990, 49 percent of all first-year OB-GYN residents were women. In 2012, 83 percent were women.”

But that still leaves plenty of men pursuing gynecology as a profession…

70 percent of women said they had no preference when asked if they preferred a male or female gynecologist. Of the nearly 30 percent who did, the majority preferred a female gynecologist…”

http://www.thedailybeast.com/witw/articles/2013/12/09/are-male-gynecologists-creepy.html

FACT #2

Male Gynecologists admit they are sometimes sexually aroused by their patients

“Of all the specialties in med school, I was sure gynecology was the one I wouldn’t want. As a straight male, I didn’t want to ruin my love of the vagina. Years into it now, I’m never more professional than I am with a patient. The vagina is so desensitized to me, I hardly notice anything about it. But if a woman is attractive, I do have to fight that part of my brain. I’d be lying if I said otherwise. I’ve had patients legitimately hit on me — one immediately after her abortion, and another right after a pelvic exam.”

http://nymag.com/thecut/2014/09/10-men-explain-why-they-became-gynecologists.html

FACT #3

Some Male Gynecologists have sexually abused their patients

“Of 10,000 physicians surveyed, 1,891 responded and the result was that fully 9% admitted to some sexual contact with one or more patients. (Sample included 344 gynecologists.)”

http://patientmodesty.org/sexualmisconduct.aspx

ARGUMENT #1 Sexual Misconduct by Doctors

One of the most common attacks against the idea of male gynecologists is the possibility of sexual abuse. In the survey I cited above, 9% of physicians admitted to sexual conduct with patients. But we have to be careful to separate out what would be “unethical” sexual conduct, verses “criminal sexual misconduct” by a doctor. The reality is that the vast majority of sexual conduct between physicians and patients is actually consensual, even if it does violate medical ethical rules.

But from a Christian perspective, it would be wrong for man to engage in sexual conduct with any woman outside of marriage, so from our perspective we would say that 9% of physicians admitted to sexually immoral behavior with their patients(regardless of whether it was consensual or not).

While it is a sad fact of the sinfulness of man, that 9% of physicians engage in unethical and sexually immoral conduct with their patients – this means that 91% percent of physicians do NOT!

So basically we have people attacking the concept of male doctors treating female patients because of the possibility that less than one out ten of those doctors may engage in unethical or immoral behavior with their patients (and even a much smaller percent would engage in abusive behavior).

I can sympathize with women who have suffered sexual abuse at the hands of their male physician. I realize that even if less than 5% of male physicians engage in sexually abusive behavior with their patients, that makes little difference to these women – they would never see a male gynecologist ever again.

But we cannot “throw out the baby, with the bathwater”. I believe if we look at this from an objective standpoint, the sexual misconduct argument against male gynecologists does not warrant the elimination of male gynecologists.

ARGUMENT #2 Female Gynecologists

The truth is by every measure, there are more and more female gynecologists every day. Now half of the OB-GYNs in the United States are women. Even higher numbers of female OB-GYNs will be coming through medical schools over the next decade.

So why shouldn’t women, Christian or otherwise switch over to female OB-GYNs? The truth is there is a doctor shortage in this county, whether it is in the OB-GYN practice, or even just general family practice. If women started going exclusively to female physicians those doctors would be overrun and the waiting lists would be astronomical.

So yes let’s as Christians push more women to enter the medical field and become OB-GYNs so women won’t have to see male gynecologists. This would solve the problem right?

But aren’t we forgetting a very important issue from a Christian perspective?

Being a physician of any kind, whether that is an OB-GYN or some other kind of doctor, is a very demanding job. It takes almost a decade of schooling and residency with long hours and a lot of commitment for anyone to accomplish this feat.

For most female physicians, they are not even able to start a family until they are well past their prime child bearing years and even when they have children their children spend a great deal of their time being cared for and raised by people other than their mother(their father, their nanny, or other child care professionals).

Now if you are an Egalitarian or Christian feminist and therefore reject the Biblical doctrines of Gender Roles, then this is not a problem. But for those of us who believe God created men and woman for distinct and different purposes, then these commands of God’s Word would seem to discourage us from pushing more women to be doctors:

“…teach the young women to be sober, to love their husbands, to love their children, to be discreet, chaste, keepers at home, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God be not blasphemed.”

Titus 2:4-5(KJV)

“I will therefore that the younger women marry, bear children, guide the house, give none occasion to the adversary to speak reproachfully.”

I Timothy 5:14(KJV)

“She looketh well to the ways of her household, and eateth not the bread of idleness.”

Proverbs 31:27(KJV)

While the Bible does not forbid a woman from working outside the home, it does make clear that a woman’s primary place is in the service of her husband in their home caring for their children and household.

A woman cannot be in two places at once, either she will give the majority of her time and energy in service to her husband, her children and her home as God had designed her to do, or she will give the majority of her time and energy to others outside her home as she pursues her career outside the home.

So on the female gynecologist argument, I have shown that for two reasons this argument does not hold up when put under closer examination. There are not enough female physicians to service all the women that need medical care. Also from the perspective of Biblical Gender roles, we must cannot, if we accept God’s Word on the nature and design of woman, encourage more women to be OB-GYNs.

I completely realize that my argument against more female doctors could play right into the “doctor shortage” problem. If we have less women doctors, then we would have less doctors and create a larger problem. I agree that it would under the current system.

But there is an easy way to solve this problem. We need to do a better job of establishing different levels of medical caregivers. We need to encourage the training of more male physician assistants and male nurse practitioners, men who do not have to have all the training of a full a doctor. This would greatly alleviate the pressure on doctors and allow them to handle the cases that truly need a fully trained doctor.

ARGUMENT #3 Sexual Arousal

Finally we will address Pastor Dave Anderson’s argument from the point of lust.

Light switch. 3d illustration isolated on white background

Let me first say where I agree with Pastor Dave – men don’t have an “On and off” switch for sexual arousal. Many male gynecologists will privately admit they are sometimes turned on by their patients, if they find them attractive. But let’s also be honest with the fact that for every patient that is attractive to a male doctor, there will be several that are not attractive.

As I have pointed out in my previous post addressing Pastor’s Dave’s “Lust of the Eyes” essay – Sexual arousal is NOT lust. Please review that post examining the scriptures on this very crucial point. If we error by believing and teaching the false doctrine that mere sexual arousal is lust, then Pastor Dave would be right that no man should ever be a gynecologist from a Christian perspective. But if we follow Pastor Dave’s perspective, men ought to look at the ground everywhere they go, for fear of seeing a beautiful woman and becoming sexually aroused (and therefore lusting).

It is not sinful for a woman to disrobe for her physician, as Pastor Dave asserts. As long as she is not setting out to purposefully make him lust after her (as some female patients do with their doctors), then she has committed no sin by disrobing in his presence for a medical examination. Contrary to Pastor Anderson’s assertion – Nakedness is not always sinful, see my post “Why Nudity is NOT always shameful?”.

In the same way, it is not wrong for a male gynecologist to have his female patient disrobe for an examination. It is not sin for him to examine her in a medical and professional way. It is also not sin for him to be turned on by her beauty if she is attractive to him.

What is sinful, is if he either thinks of ways to get her to have sex with him outside of marriage (lustful thoughts), or he actually engages in sexual behavior with her. That is the truth of Scripture.

Conclusion

91% of gynecologists never engage in inappropriate sexual behavior with their patients. There are not enough female gynecologists to serve the needs of all the women out there. Christians should not be encouraging more woman to leave the duties of their home to be physicians. There is no sin in a woman disrobing for her male doctor, or being medically examined by him. A male gynecologist is not sinning if he is aroused by an attractive female patient in the course of his duties. The sin comes in what he does with that arousal. Based on these facts, it is not wrong for a Christian woman to see a male gynecologist, and it is not wrong for a man to be a gynecologist.

 

 

Advertisements

28 thoughts on “Is it wrong for a man to be a gynecologist?

  1. This pastor is arguing from a feminist perspective that says only Men are guilty of sexual sin. The fact of the matter is, we know from studies that your average woman is sexually aroused by the site of other women; even if they won’t admit it.

  2. Proverbs Ch. 6 vs 29 states that ANY male who goes into or touches another mans wife will not go unpunished. I feel that it was never Gods “plan” for men to enter into this specific profession. It is sinful.

  3. “So he that goeth in to his neighbour’s wife; whosoever toucheth her shall not be innocent.” – Proverbs 6:29 is referring to sexual touch, it is not talking about a man literally touching another man’s wife in anyway shape for form.

    I am all for interpreting the Bible as literally as possible, but you have to realize the Bible does use euphemisms.
    For instance the Bible uses “knew” as a euphemism for sex. So does that mean it is literally a sin for you to know anything about a another man’s wife? Even her name?

    “And Adam KNEW Eve his wife; and she conceived, and bare Cain, and said, I have gotten a man from the Lord.” – Genesis 4:1(KJV)
    The Bible often uses the word “knew”, and this is the literal hebrew “to know” as one of its euphemisms for a man having sex with his wife.

    If we followed your interpretation, and interpreted Proverbs 6:29 use of “touch” as literal touch, as opposed to sexual touch, then these things would be sin:

    1. It would be sin for a male paramedic or male doctor to give life saving help to a woman who was dying, because he would have to touch her.
    2. It would be sin for a male fire fighter to rescue a woman from a burning building, because he would have to touch her, to carry her out.

    Aside from interpreting a euphemism as a literal, you also have another problem as I pointed in this post, in order to have more female doctors so women would not have to see male doctors you would also have to violate God’s plan for a women to be wives and mothers, and to dedicate majority of their time to the husbands and their homes. I am all for using mid wives wherever possible, but why would we ignore medical help for women, and be able to save infants and women because of a belief that has not Biblical basis?(That men cannot help with women’s medical issues).

  4. God also says to do NOTHING that can cause another to stumble into sin. Whenever a woman casually walks into a doctors office, removes her clothes and allows a man to “examine” the most intimate parts of her body, it can cause that person to fall victim to temptation. This, is fact. Just because a man slips on a white lab coat and throws a stethascope around his neck does not make him immune to Gods law. I do however see your point in an EMERGENCY situation. But during an emergency, one is not “focused” on the sexual organs but is intently focused on saving the life of that person. Different situation altogether. I know those things happen but wehave no ccontrol over them. However, we do as far as a casual visit to a doctor.

  5. Example. Just today I was informed of just another reason men have absolutely no business in this particular area of the medical field. A doctor(who is married) at a local hospital has been making advances towards a single nurse and is now having a sexual relationship with her. Men are men, plain and simple. No medical degree on Earth can prevent a mans mind from “wandering” in the wrong direction and once it does, its too late. He has already commited adultery in his heart and the poor, unaware woman, lying on her back, feet in stirrups and legs spread, has now also commited a sin for willingly opening up the possibility for the man to “stumble” into sin.

  6. So if 91% of male ob/gyns never do anything inappropriate, but the other 9% do, how would one ever know for sure they are not being examined by one of those 9% ers? There really is no way to tell what is going through the mind of another person. Our world today is a wicked and deceitful one and sin takes place everywhere on a minute-to-minute basis. Why would a Christian female even want to put herself in that situation not knowing what could be going through the mind of a man who calls himself a doctor? I personally would not take that chance nor would I allow my wife to unless it were in an emergency situation where her life depended upon immediate medical care.

  7. hello,

    I disagree with you. Emotions are a huge factor in any relationship. As a man, I think it is wrong for my wife to let another man see her naked, much less touch her in such familiar fashion. Now I see a lot of people call out men that are opposed to their wife seeing the male gynecologist/ob, labeling them as immature, jealous, etc.
    I don’t know how old you are, I am middle aged, and I have always thought it was wrong.
    We can find justification for just about anything by pulling texts here and there, the bible is not to be used that way, it supposed to be exegetical, not esogetical.
    I would point out, that I can find a verse that forbids touching in a nonsexual way as well, Duet 25:11,12
    The idea of doctors doing exams in such a provocative fashion is a recent innovation, in fact when men began to take over the mid-wife business in the 1800’s, physicians were actually opposed to the idea, I have even found a few tracts these men have written(Man- midwifery exposed and corrected).
    I would also point out, that before the exam and the pill, women were dressed far more modestly than they are now, just look up old paintings of female swimsuits before and after, but as this practice became more and more available, the divorce rate has went up, promiscuity increased, and now we face the idea of gay marriage as a reality. I don’t blame only the male ob doctor for this, but is it a coincidence that teen preg and divorce rate has actually went down since more females have entered this field?
    Elizabeth Blackwell was the first woman to receive a medical degree in the US, her opinion about men delivering babies was” a monsterous proposition”.
    Lets also consider the hypocrisy, a judge will label a teenaged boy as a sex offender for the rest of his life for having sex with his underaged girlfriend, but that same girlfriend can go to a male gynecologist that is 40 something and will likely see far more than the boyfriend, and nothing will happen to him. how is that right?
    have you considered the psychological damage it does to our young folks, we preach that they should abstain until marriage, yet allow this garbage as a precursor? Think of what impact this knowledge will have on many a young groom that knows some other man has seen his betrothed before him? I can tell you it had a very negative impact on myself, fortunately my wife agreed that she will only see females for this after I explained my feelings to her. but had the male gynecologist not been available in the first place there would have been no need for the spiritual damage to occur.
    I am sure you will find ways to try and refute my opinion, that is fine, my feeling cant be refuted by another.

  8. Sam,

    I see that you feel strongly about this and I doubt I will convince you otherwise. I will simply point out these things and leave it at that.

    1. In answer your question on my age, I like you am middle aged(40).

    2. Deuteronomy 25:11-12 is not referring to a man touching a woman for medical reasons, but rather a woman grabbing a man’s genitals so as to incapacitate him if he were fighting with her husband. So its talking about assaulting a man’s genitals as way of stopping a fight between two men. So there is no verse of Scripture that forbids a man from giving medical attention to a woman or seeing various parts of her body in order to do that.

    3. There is actually no proof of any correlation between men performing gynecological exams and women becoming promiscuous and divorcing their husbands. Those issues lay squarely at the feet of modern feminism. Women(and men) have no fear of being promiscuous because there are not laws or penalties against this. Women now freely “give out the goods” with no fear of social or legal repercussions.

    4. I agree that statutory rape laws(like a 19 year old man having sex with his 16 year old girlfriend) are absolutely ridiculous. Yes it is still a sin against God if they are not married, but it should not make him a sex offender. However there is a HUGE difference between a man performing a medical examination of a young teen girl and a man sexually molesting a young teen. I am sorry that you cannot see the difference, but there is a HUGE difference between the two.

    5. Honestly I think you are rarity in western culture where you would be offended that a male doctor has examined your wife. Most Christian men that I know are not offended by this and we see this as very different than if our wife told us she had sex with other men before us. Now yes in some other cultures like Muslim cultures – men would have the same reaction you do. But that is because of how they have been brought up and taught that no man can ever see their wife’s body for any reason. I have some relatives that have worked in hospitals near Muslim populations. They have told me that some of these Muslim men would rather let their wive’s die then be treated by a male doctor.

    6. There is no psychological damage caused to most men in western cultures by this, because most men can distinguish between a man sexually touching their wives(even before marriage) and a doctor medically examining their wives. This has zero to do with teaching our children that sex is reserved for marriage. A gynecological exam is not a sexual act. There are no sexual relations happening between the doctor and the patient(under normal circumstances).

    7. I agree that as the head of your home your wife should follow your spiritual guidance, and if you are uncomfortable with her seeing a male gynecologist then she was right to seek out a female one.

    Again I hold no illusions that I will change your position – just offering some responses to your feelings for the benefit of others who will read these comments.

  9. Sam,

    One other issue I meant to address is the subject of a husband’s jealousy. As I have pointed out many times on this blog – man is made directly in God’s image and woman is made in man’s image(I Corinthians 11:9). Part of us as men being made in God’s image is our jealousy with our wives. We don’t want our wives to give their affection, their emotions or their bodies to any other man except us. God even gives a test for a jealous husband in Numbers 5.

    I say all that to say I am not saying that you having jealous feelings about your wife are wrong or abnormal. God was jealous of his wife Israel, and Christ is jealous of his Church. I just personally believe your normal jealousy as husband is being directed at an area where you don’t need to be jealous. Your wife is not giving her affection, her emotion or her body(in the sexual sense) to a this doctor. They are not connecting on any of these levels. This is a medical examination – pure and simple.

  10. Hello again,

    You are correct in thinking you wont change my mind, and unfortunately I can see that I wont change yours either, but like you, I want to respond for the benefit of other readers that may be struggling with this issue, and trying to find a way to heal from the damage it has brought them, and if nothing else to tell other men that their feelings are normal and they are not alone.

    you are correct in your 2nd point, that the touching of genitals was not for medical reasons, but it was for reasons other than conjugal, also in every example of childbirth that is mentioned in the bible that I can think of where other people present are mentioned, a midwife was always attending the mother to assist in the childbirth. Granted there are male physicians in the bible, most notably Luke, however somehow I cant see our dear Luke performing a gynecological or obstetric exam, nor can I find any example of any man helping with a childbirth. In fact, even Pharaoh didn’t intrude his men on the midwives when he ordered them to throw out the Hebrew boys when they were born.
    I would also throw in this, considering that in our day that many womens attitude towards their husbands is one of “its my body not yours, so I will pick my own doctor whether you like it or not” is also unbiblical, according to 1 Cor 7, saying that the wifes body is not her own but belongs to the husband, and husbands body belongs to the wife, what can this mean but nothing other than sexual relations? But, I see that you did at least somewhat agree that the husband is the spiritual head of the home. I would argue also that if the husband declared to his wife that he was uncomfortable, or even just plain jealous, and the wife does it against his will anyway, that it is no better than adultery, because it involved what was supposed to be for his eyes only. I know that sounds kind of harsh, but if the husband cant expect his wife to be faithful over what may be a small matter, how can expect her to be faithful in something more important?
    You said that it is a medical exam and not sexual, but let me ask, how are men enticed by a woman? where does the fascination begin? It begins with the visual, and then the tactile. Surely you must realize that all those filthy magazines sell like crazy for a reason? What is the doctor not seeing that is included in those magazines?
    I suppose you will no doubt say that the doctor see so many that he becomes desensitized, I say bologna, have you ever become desensitized from observing your own wife?
    There is also the matter of modesty, which as we both know has been fully chucked out the window in our day. It did not happen overnight, you say you cant see a correlation between the male obgyn and current standards of modesty, but I can, it is so plain that it has been overlooked like a blindspot in the mirror. I haven’t took the time to actually collect data and compare, but you have to ask yourself, how did all this undressing begin in recent times? You don’t see the connection between promiscuity and males being introduced into mid-wifery, but just consider, they didn’t really start to take over until about the mid 1800”s, and even then it wasn’t that popular, and only the affluent had the money to actually pay a surgeon to help in the delivery of a child, the rest of the population still used midwives, so long in fact that my grandmother used a midwife. But as health insurance and doctors became more accessable to common folk, the more that the male doctor was used in child birth, and then birth control, and now they urge all women everywhere to receive one of these exams a year, beginning when they are but 18 or begin to have sex. But in reality almost all women I have talked to began to go when they were only 14, and guess what they had to see a male doctor. Beg to pardon but that is monsterous! And now, if we go back to the same time to see how people dressed when men began to take over the mid-wife business, we see women clothed from their ankles to their necks,( and there was no A/C in those days mind you) and now you see that especially in the summer how little is covered up. What is different? seems like the more widespread that birth control became, the less clothing became also. and how to get birth control? a visit to the gynecologist of coarse. All of this took about 100 years time, like I said it wasn’t overnight.
    Let me ask, how do you ruin a persons modesty? How do you make them unashamed? Isnt it through humiliation this is accomplished? My position is sound, a young lady who was once modest is asked to remove her clothing in front of a male and allow him to do the exam(no need for graphics as I am sure we are familiar with what takes place), and now the shame is gone, or at least it is now easier to expose oneself to others. I don’t understand how you don’t see that. Maybe the exam itself doesn’t have sexual “intentions”, but certainly all the mechanics and many of the anxieties on the patients part are all there, and possibly if it is a young doctor the novelty of seeing a strange attractive woman in such a position of vulnerability is there for the male doctor.
    You are correct in saying that it does not bother many western men that their wives/betrothed/girlfriend sees a male gynecologist, but not for the reason you give, you said they are ok with it because they simply distinguish between a medical exam and sex, I pretty sure it is because they are also unashamed, immodest, and culturally it is considered normal for people to be undressed in front of others. Or they simply do not care what their signifigant other does, it is not for any accolade that I can give any of my fellow men. And so, because ‘most’ men are ok with it, it must be ok, right? You know that is false as well as I do, I think that a collected human morality is one of the few things that actually decrease in value
    the more you add them together.
    I don’t guess I will go into my own personal experience right now, as it has been a lengthy response, but I will just conclude that males really shouldn’t be involved in intimate medical procedures, especially when we have so many qualified female health care workers that are able to do the exact same test, and make everyone feel more comfortable, and ease a few consciences at the same time.
    Thank you, and I do appreciate you not falling back on personal attacks to make your points( as many often do in this debate)

  11. You are not reading the results of the study on sexual misconduct of physicians incorrectly. First, the 9% of physicians who do engage in misconduct, out of the total of 1,891doctors, comes down to about 178 or so doctors. Not all of those were gynecologists. How many of the 178 doctors were gynecologists? We don’t know.
    Second, the study is very old. It was conducted in 1994 – making it over 20 years old. There are I am
    sure other studies done since then; who knows if the results were similar or not?
    I am not negating your viewpoint, necessarily. But basing reactions on this study aren’t true. I am not negating your Biblical viewpoint on male/female roles or anything like that. Just trying to show that this study really doesn’t show, anything.

  12. Recently, my wife gave birth to a beautiful baby boy. We went to this hospital thinking that the pelvic exams required during labor will be conducted by female gyns who were actually available. Only to find out that it was this male gyn conducting them. The only thing these midwives did were to observe.
    please someone help me here, what kind of man who loves his wife will stand there and watch as a male gyn inserts his hand into his wife’s womanhood and not get jealousy? Till now, I am still struggling with the sound of the screams of my wife when this male gyn was examining her pelvis.
    I donnot know whether I should be angry or just smile it off like it was nothing.

  13. John,

    Your Statement:

    “please someone help me here, what kind of man who loves his wife will stand there and watch as a male gyn inserts his hand into his wife’s womanhood and not get jealousy? Till now, I am still struggling with the sound of the screams of my wife when this male gyn was examining her pelvis.
    I donnot know whether I should be angry or just smile it off like it was nothing.”

    I will tell you “what kind of man who loves his wife will stand there and watch as a male gyn inserts his hand into his wife’s womanhood and not get jealousy?” – it is a man who loves his wife and his child and wants them both to be healthy and safe. You must distinquish between a man touching your wife in sexual way and man touching your wife to help her in a medical way.

    Would you rather your son have died or wife died? There is not sin in what happened. I would “smile it off” like it was something great – this man helped your child come into the world. Instead of being angry at him you should be thanking him and buying him a cigar.

  14. When I was first pregnant, I would only see female providers because I was extremely uncomfortable with the pelvic/breast exam. Since then, I’ve had a heck of a lot more experience in medicine. Now, I actively seek out middle to older-aged men for my OBGYN care. Why? I wouldn’t say all women in the field are incompetent (because they aren’t), but I have consistently gotten better care by men in pediatrics, pediatric oncology, surgery, and overwhelmingly in OBYGN.

    With numerous female OBGYNs, my concerns were downplayed or discounted time and time again. I think I have mastitis. “No, you probably don’t.” I think I have breastfeeding thrush. “No, that’s so rare.” I’ve never had sex outside of marriage “Well, we’re going to test for all the STDs again, anyway.” I think I have low progesterone. “Hmm, probably not.” I’m really worried about this subchorionic hematoma “It’s no big deal–I had one.” I never saw a placenta when I delivered my 13 week miscarriage. “…Hmm.”

    I’ve had huge mistakes made by several female providers across the spectrum, but that last OB’s mistake almost cost me my life. I’m now seeing a male OB who I finally, FINALLY don’t have to fight with to get the care I need!!

  15. How funny that you have this post featured today, Larry! I’m having a lot of trouble getting my normal ob-gyn practice to take my IUD out now (during an optimal timeframe) so that we can try getting pregnant this summer. And I called our normal family practice who can do this also (another female doctor), but she’s out on vacation for ALL OF JUNE lol. The only person available to do it in this optimal time frame, is a male physician. I’ve had a male ob-gyn before and my husband didn’t mind at all, they aren’t perverts, they’re just male physicians that deliver babies.

    It’s really strange to me that people can feel so uncomfortable with issues like this.

  16. I don’t have a problem with male doctors (gynecologists are not the only doctors to see female patients in various forms of undress or totally nude). However, I can understand why some people are more comfortable with a doctor of their own gender. I certainly am. The OB-GYN practice handling my pregnancy is composed of men and women and I’ve been examined by both. I have a ridiculously difficult time psychologically handling pelvic exams (which in turn makes them very physically difficult). When the man was doing it, my husband had to hold me down as I was clawing at the sheet and doing everything to keep from screaming. When a female did it, my husband was not with me, and I was still uncomfortable and nervous but the difference was obvious. I appreciated the care both provided for me, but at some level, I am just more relaxed with a female doctor and I am hoping that it is a female that is on-call when I go into labor. But it’s not for modesty issues. Just a personal comfort level.

    Like Dragonfly, my husband doesn’t mind at all, or I would definitely seek out a female-only practice. While I agree that men don’t have a legitimate reason to be jealous, jealousy doesn’t always look rational and I think a wife submitting to her husband in this area can be a huge sign of respect.

  17. Your situation totally makes sense, Anna. And I spoke too soon!!! My husband is actually Not comfortable with a regular male physician (and when he explained why to me, I was no longer comfortable either… looking into just taking it out myself lol.

  18. Eh, I wouldn’t recommend it. But I’m not involved in that kind of nursing so I really can’t give a real medical opinion. Could you ask your gynecologist or one of the nurses at her office? I know sometimes those things fall out on their own, so I’m guessing it can’t be that dangerous, but I don’t know enough to recommend it.

  19. Thank you, I did try calling my regular gynecologist group of women – all of them can do it, but there was a hang up with them absolutely “needing” to check to make sure our insurance covers it being taken out. It already covers it, but the woman that needed to make the call to verify for their office was out or something for the past few days (and you’re supposed to have it taken out during your cycle because it’s easier for them)… so it’s been an annoying time-sensitive thing with needing to get an appointment during my cycle, but they won’t even allow me to make an appointment until their woman verifies that my insurance covers it. Just silly really. And then my regular family practicianer is out for the whole month of June, but a male physician in their officer was available.

    Anyway, I read up on it and decided it wasn’t dangerous at all unless there’s perforation problems or risks, so tried it and came out easily – even without any pain at all! Yay!!!!!!!! So excited.

    I keep wondering if you’ve had your baby yet??? You’ve got to let us know somehow once you’re rested, so happy for you Anna. Having babies and watching them grow older is one of the most beautiful blessings in the world! So happy for you!

  20. So glad that worked out for you! I have not had my baby yet but it should be any day now. Due date has come and gone. My next appt is tomorrow and I’m seriously considering asking them to induce me on Saturday (my husband is supportive of this even though it was not what we had initially planned). My hips are not symmetrical and have not been since birth and pregnancy is exacerbating that a lot. I know some pelvic pressure is normal but from what I can tell from talking with my mom and nurses on my unit, this level of pain isn’t normal. Working 12-13hr shifts isn’t helping either so the sooner I can start maternity leave the better.

  21. Inducing sounds good if you’re having that much pain 😦 ugh I’m so sorry Anna. I’m pretty sure it’s probably being on your feet for 12-13 hours, it is just really hard on a woman’s body in those last weeks and days getting closer to 40 weeks, and all that extra weight and being out of proportion to your back/etc. Throw in hip issues and ouch!!!! At least you’re so close and it’s almost over!

  22. Anna,

    First of all I want to echo what DragonFly said and wish you the best on the upcoming birth of your child. Definitely let us know when it happens.
    I totally understand some women not being comfortable with men for various reasons and I also believe that even if the wife is totally comfortable if the husband is not – even if or irrational reasons I wife should respect her husband and not mock him for his feelings.

    I think when it comes to jealousy as in other areas where husbands may have some insecurities and other flaws it is the job of men to come alongside of other men and try and show them why these fears are not really founded in good reason. I am going to write a couple of posts on jealousy soon – one toward men in handling their jealousy and one toward women in handling theirs. Jealousy is a complex emotion and Biblically speaking like anger jealousy is not always wrong. I think that jealousy like anger can actually be used in positive ways as fuel for us to do good things. That is just a preview of what I will be writing about on jealousy.

  23. As a physician, I can say without a doubt the sexual thoughts are non existant when I am with a patient. I have had breathe taking women that I’ve seen and women who I know were trying to flirt with me. My wife has been in the office and was floored by some of the attractive women that have walked past her on their way to see me. She doesn’t believe that I am not attracted or aroused, but I am not. Not even for a nanosecond. Their beauty is at arms length and it’s not the loss of my license I’m worried about, it’s their complaint and the proper care I want to give them that is at the forefront of my mind.

    I cannot comment on what could possibly be on mu colleagues mind when I hear that they have molested patients, as it is so far from my heart and mind.

  24. Jeff,

    I believe there is a huge difference between having thoughts about molesting a patient(which would be an evil thing to think about, let alone do) and simply being aroused by their beauty. I don’t believe you have an off switch for that. But I do believe that you can “distract yourself” with your duties as a doctor to help them as a patient. I am not calling you a liar – I am just with your wife on this one – I do think is is possible you are aroused and you just do a very good job of suppressing it and distracting yourself with your job as their doctor.

    I am not saying that is a bad thing either – it is a good thing. But make no mistake my friend – if a certain woman’s beauty would arouse you sexually outside your office, those walls of your office building are not going to stop that from happening. It is all a matter of how you process that arousal and you are distracting your mind from your arousal with your duty to them as a doctor and again – that is good.

  25. I think the problem is wrongfully formulated, because the problem is not if it`s wrong for a man to be a gynecologist. The real problem is if the society and the evolution of the society would determin a gynecologist to behave wrongfully in terms of sexual arousal. And i`ll try to explain this phenomenon.

    I think, at least in the last decade, the entire medical system has changed so much and because of those changes in terms of evolving the gynecological cabinets and all the gynecologist procedures are not done well and are wrongfully violated.

    First of all, all of the gynecological cabinet must have a changing room with opaque glasses, so that all the womans have an intimate habitat for changing or undressing.

    Second of all, none of the gynecologists should left alone with the female pacient during the procedure. Every cabinet must have a female nurse wich is imperious necessary to asssit at the entire procedure.

    Third of all, gynecologist is must give his woman patient a dressing gown wich, during the procedure must be as long thru the patient knees.

    Fourth of all, during the entire procedure, gynecologist must wearing gloves on both hands.

    Fifth of all, before the procedure, a woman patient should sign a convention (an agreement) that should contain information about the confidentiality clauses of the entire procedure, the rights of the patient. and so on.

    If all of those circumstances are achieved, i have no worries to let my wife visit a gynecologist man at any time.

    If those condition are acheived i think there will be no reason for a doctor to feel any attraction for a woman during the exam.

  26. @Joliet Jake,

    I’ll start by saying that my gynecologist is female, so there might be some differences here. But they’ve always had me change into my hospital gown (which is below the knee) in the patient room with the door closed, and I can’t imagine any circumstance wherein a gynecologist would conduct an examination without gloves.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s