The Girl Gang Missives Vol. 10


By Nicole Belanger The Girl Gang Missives is a weekly report on the badass things that women are making/creating/building/writing.

[dropcap background="no" color="#333333"]T[/dropcap]his week, the women are calling out racism in medical schools, penning prose about loss, and studying breastfeeding and trauma.[wc_divider style="solid" line="double" margin_top="5" margin_bottom="5"]

  1. Get ready to cry about a diner: Last Friday in the Boston Globe, correspondent Alysia Abbott shared a touching open letter to a diner that has become a haven for her family -- including her autistic son. It's a lovely testament to community and compassion.  [divider type="white" spacing="10"]
  2. Why don't they want to date me? If you're in the mood for getting brought to your knees, I highly suggest reading the latest instalment of Heather Havrilesky's Ask Polly column in which she tackles the age-old question "why do these men not want to date me?" What did we do to deserve this woman and her writing?[divider type="white" spacing="10"]
  3. Introducing The BodCast! This week, Bustle delighted readers (listeners?) when it announced The BodCast a new podcast focusing on radical body positivism. Hosted by Marie Southard Ospina (check out an interview with her here), this interview-based podcast will cover topics ranging from body positive activism to economic discrimination experienced based on size  to media representations. Be sure to tune in![divider type="white" spacing="10"]
  4. A Grief Life This [TW pregnancy loss]: I write a lot about grief. I talk a lot about grief. But even if it was the only thing I wrote about and the only thing I talked about and I lived for 100 more years I still would not have said enough about it. Sharing our candid narratives of loss is one of the most radically kind things that we can do -- and that is exactly what Chantal Braganza did this week in this moving portrait of her miscarriage for Hazlitt.[divider type="white" spacing="10"]
  5. On breastfeeding and trauma: This week in Rewire (formerly RH Reality Check), Sevonna Brown and Esperanza Dodge reported on recent research that has illuminated what women have known for many, many years: breastfeeding is complicated by experiences of trauma, including sexual assault and intimate partner violence.[divider type="white" spacing="10"]
  6. Sundance heads to Marrakesh: The Sundance Institute is going to be hosting its very first Middle East and North Africa (MENA) Theatre Lab next month in Marrakesh. Lead by MENA Program Manager Jumana Al-Yasiri, the initiative will bring in top industry professionals to help aspiring thespians from around the world develop their productions.[divider type="white" spacing="10"]
  7. An anonymous abortion story: Abortion stigma is a dastardly thing. And it is our stories that are leading the way out of that darkness and into the light of unconditional support for women and the choices that they make for themselves. Today, I am honored to share one such story with you: an anonymous woman's answer to the question "what does it feel like to have an abortion?" For more on the stigma-busting power of story, please check out the Sea Change Program.[divider type="white" spacing="10"]
  8. Racism in medical school: There is plenty of talk of chronic illness going in medical schools across North America. But if you ask Jennifer Adaeze, there's one particularly insidious disease that isn't being properly addresses: racism. Read her opinion piece for Stat News here.[divider type="white" spacing="10"]
  9. A GGM community shoutout! Shoutout to Girl Gang member Cara Gael for recommending Abby Norman's Medium publication "Ask Me About My Uterus", which covers all sorts of topics that people with uteruses care about: miscarriage, endometriosis, menstruation, know, the works![divider type="white" spacing="10"]
  10. Something giggle-worthy for the road: "Both unemployed at the same time" and other things that Mallory Ortberg has mistaken for friendship.
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Now, over to you…

Want your work, or the work of a friend shouted out in next week’s #GirlGangMissives? Email Nicole at!

NicoleBelangerPhotoNicole Belanger is the founder of Fourth Hour, a collection of original content that celebrates and supports everyday women in their daily lives. She is the author of the ebook On Resilience, the creator of the Conversations With Her interview series and the send-er of the Girl Gang Missives every Friday morning.