Hello and welcome to Girl Med Media's blog! We hope to feature many of you here as we expand and grow. To start, I'd like to tell you a little bit about who we are.
Last year, a community of women on twitter who happened to all be in medicine were talking, supporting one of our own through a rough breakup with a doctor when someone mentioned that it would be nice to have a place where we could all talk about some of the unique things women in healthcare fields deal with... things that aren't typically talked about widely among healthcare professionals. A place for us to congregate and share advice, tips, and encouragement for things like dating as a female healthcare provider, which dry shampoo will get you through your busy week, and setting spray and foundation recommendations for minimal touch-ups throughout the day.
Thus, #GirlMedTwitter was born, the official hashtag courtesy of @SingleScalpel. I've personally never seen the excitement over a hashtag that I witnessed over the next couple of days. Everyone wanted in on it. Could PA students contribute? Nurses? Pharmacists? Physical therapists? Pre-meds? Guys? Everyone seemed to be of one accord- of course you can be a member of #GirlMedTwitter. We were all-inclusive. If you wanted to talk about "girly" stuff and you were in some kind of healthcare or medical training or job, #GirlMedTwitter was suddenly the place to do it. We searched the hashtag, followed each other, commented our best makeup and shoe recommendations for clinic and the hospital. Buzzfeed quizzes were made (okay one Buzzfeed quiz was made by me) about which original hashtag user you most resembled, with over 1000 people taking the quiz and hundreds posting their results! We helped each other pick outfits for conferences and pictures for faculty website pages. I don't think any of us who were in on the original thread expected it to get as big as it did, but we were elated to see groups of successful women connected to each other and lifting each other up.
It didn't take long before this active community wanted to meet up. Some were starting to find each other and do it on their own, but a lot of people wanted something more official. I was approached by Pearl on twitter. She was interested in taking #GirlMedTwitter to a whole new, very official level. She wanted to form an official non-profit organization to plan a conference and keep all of the monetary stuff above the board. I said yes immediately, and I'm so glad I did. I've met so many amazing women through this community. And as its popularity has risen, it has been joined by the #WomenInMedicine and #ILookLikeASurgeon movement. All contributing something unique, all in support of women. We don't just talk about lipstick and dry hairspray anymore, but there is a saying that all GMT threads eventually lead to dry hairspray. But now we're discussing sexual harassment in the workplace, gender disparity and bias, mentorship, leadership, and so much more. What started as a fun hashtag to bond over has turned into so much more. We here at GMM are looking forward to uniting women across many fields of healthcare to support each other and provide mentorship opportunities to women in any field no matter their geography. And of course to talk about longwear lipstick, because being a "girl" and being successful aren't at odds with each other. You can be successful just the way you are, and your sisters here at GMM will support you.
We're so excited for what the future brings and for the chance to meet all of you next year. Here's to the future!
-Dehra and the rest of the GMM Team