#WeNeedAButton and the Age of Self-Health Care
The Inner Hoe Uprising Podcast is a smart and funny podcast about sex, love and dating from four black feminist 20-somethings living in NYC. I first heard of this podcast when someone shared a podcast episode they did interviewing someone living with herpes.
Fast-forward to STD Engage, a conference of public health professionals hosted by the National Coalition of STD Directors. Two of Inner Hoe Uprising’s hosts, Samantha and Rebecca, shared the stage with an NCSD member sharing their experiences with health care providers in relation to sexual health. Rob, another host, shared their sexual healthcare horror story via video because they were unable to attend in person. Collectively, hearing these three experiences was enough for me to KNOW these had to be shared more for the sake of creating change in the healthcare space.
After catching Sam and Rebecca about to head out, I was able to stop them and give my quick pitch about what SPFPP was and that I wanted to create space for their stories as part of the #WeNeedAButton campaign for Dating.com Group. I was star-struck so I was likely effing awkward, but fortunately, they were super kind and patient, just as they were during the actual recording where I was NOT myself, separate conversation though, lol.
Hearing the stories of Akua, Rebecca, Sam and Rob during the recording is powerful. Collectively, the pattern I noticed was that their experiences mirrored a lot of what I hear from other #WNAB stories — from discomfort from the providers around sex, lack of bedside manner, bias from the provider, a couple of isms from the providers, providers not being up to date on STI testing protocol…all pointing toward the need for a way to identify sex-positive, empathetic and queer-friendly healthcare providers. One thing that stood out that I hadn’t heard much beforehand, is how much work they as patients had to do on their end, from discussing birth control options, getting throat swabs for chlamydia, fighting for accessibility and dealing with the lack of accountability for providers essentially knowing their shit.
I’m really excited to share this podcast episode as a reference point for providers to observe potential blindspots. I seriously thank the hosts of the Inner Hoe Uprising Podcast for making the time, recording on their end, sharing their stories, and being so patient throughout this entire process from prep to recording to editing to approving to posting to promoting!