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To be disappointed by female doctors describing groups of nurses and other allied health professionals as 'the girls '?

(93 Posts)
Heartsanddiamonds01 Sat 23-Jan-16 21:13:25

I regularly hear this from both male and female doctors and although it pisses me off whoever is using this innately derogatory term, it especially grinds and disappoints when it's another women. There is nothing wrong with being called a girl if thats what you are but we are talking about adult women here! I'd never describe a group of professional adult women as such so why do they find it acceptable?

SauvignonPlonker Sat 23-Jan-16 21:17:07

I'm an AHP with over 20 years' experience. Have never of heard myself ( or anyone else) being called "girls".

Heartsanddiamonds01 Sat 23-Jan-16 21:19:01

That's really reassuring to hear. Perhaps it's not so common outside my trust.

ThePinkOcelot Sat 23-Jan-16 21:20:31

Never heard of it either, but can't say it would bother me if I did.

Oysterbabe Sat 23-Jan-16 21:23:18

I can't make myself give a shit about stuff like this. YAB oversensitive.

Heartsanddiamonds01 Sat 23-Jan-16 21:24:55

I don't see it as a sensitivity issue, more a feminist issue.

JohnLuther Sat 23-Jan-16 21:25:44

Tbh where I am I hear it all the time, it's often women describing a clique or sometimes a group of work colleagues/friends, doesn't bother me.

Heartsanddiamonds01 Sat 23-Jan-16 21:28:58

I don't think it would bother me as much out of work but find it inappropriate in a workplace setting. Can you imagine a nurse referring to the team of female doctors as 'the girls '. As in 'dont worry Mrs Jones, the girls are doing their ward round now'. It undermines professionalism.

TheRealBarenziah Sat 23-Jan-16 21:33:02

In my workplace, the nurses and HCAs are always referred to by their first names by doctors of either gender. However, on reflection I think we're often guilty of referring to the receptionists and admin staff as "the girls". I know I certainly say it sometimes. I always cringe when I hear it coming out of my mouth, buthe when a phrase is part of the organisational culture, it's easy to slip into using it. I agree it's infantilising and patronising. Thanks for the reminder that I should try to avoid it.

Babyroobs Sat 23-Jan-16 21:34:44

I am a Nurse and me and my colleauges get called ' the girls' all the time, by Drs, my manager, patients, relatives etc. If I am leading the team, I may affectionately call my colleauges girls and no one is ever offended ( well not that they've ever mentioned). There are far more real problems to worry about!!

Heartsanddiamonds01 Sat 23-Jan-16 21:37:57

I find the perceptions of women being trivialised in a female dominated profession a very real problem.

Babyroobs Sat 23-Jan-16 21:41:17

Hearts - that's fine if you think it's a real problem. I don't and can't say I've ever come across a colleauge who was upset by it.

iciclewinter Sat 23-Jan-16 21:41:24

YANBU. You hardly ever hear of "the boys" in a professional environment. "The girls" is far more prevalent. It's patronising as it suggests women are too threatening so have to be put back in their place, i.e. less credible than men.

Heartsanddiamonds01 Sat 23-Jan-16 21:43:40

Thank you icicle, perhaps I should have posted in the feminist section wink. I genuinely thought mumsnet on the whole was a feminist leaning site

percythepenguin Sat 23-Jan-16 21:46:11

Similar to TheRealBarenziah I've never heard nurses referred to as 'the girls' but have been guilty of using the term for receptionists. I hadn't really thought about it until recently when I was at a meeting in my son's nursery where a (male) member of the board of governers repeatedly referred to the teachers as 'the girls', they are professionals in their 40s and 50s, I was hmm and angry

WorraLiberty Sat 23-Jan-16 21:47:47

I think you're being massively over sensitive if it 'grinds and disappoints' you, to hear a group of women calling each other girls.

By the way, is it only professional adult women who disappoint you, or all women who refer to each other in this way?

Babyroobs Sat 23-Jan-16 21:50:16

My boss ( ward sister) if approached by a patient's relative asking for help will often say to them ' I'll get the girls to come over and make your mum comfortable'. Perhaps she should be saying ' I'll get the women to come over'. I've never thought of it as offensive or patronising really.

Wandastartup Sat 23-Jan-16 21:50:43

I'm a female Dr & was annoyed to be referred to by a male colleague as "you girls" so I can empathise. I try to refer to people by their names or job titles.

SenecaFalls Sat 23-Jan-16 21:53:00

I genuinely thought mumsnet on the whole was a feminist leaning site.

Unfortunately, not so much on the issue of grown women being called "girls," even in professional settings.

YANBU, OP. It's demeaning.

iciclewinter Sat 23-Jan-16 21:54:24

> Perhaps she should be saying ' I'll get the women to come over'.

That's better than "the girls". But as it's irrelevant that they're female, why not "I'll get the assistants/nurses/my colleagues to come over"?

Heartsanddiamonds01 Sat 23-Jan-16 21:54:43

All women whilst in a professional setting. hierarchy is so ingrained in medical settings that I understand why you and others may find my post over sensitive but I genuinely feel that this term is damaging. I don't refer to women outside of work as 'the girl's' but I wouldn't take offence to it if it was an affectionate term between women who saw themselves as equals.

Heartsanddiamonds01 Sat 23-Jan-16 21:55:30

Sorry that was to worra

AlwaysHopeful1 Sat 23-Jan-16 21:57:07

Have you approached them about this?

Heartsanddiamonds01 Sat 23-Jan-16 22:00:56

I'm a midwife and have an ever rotating quota of SHOs and clinical fellows so not to all. However I have approached consultant obstetricians on the subject and although they've mainly been supportive, it's so ingrained in the culture, nothing seems to change.

WorraLiberty Sat 23-Jan-16 22:05:36

hierarchy is so ingrained in medical settings that I understand why you and others may find my post over sensitive but I genuinely feel that this term is damaging.

No, I find your post over sensitive because you're disappointed to hear professional women referring to each other as girls.

Now, if you actually had heard a doctor saying 'dont worry Mrs Jones, the girls are doing their ward round now', I would say YANBU because "The doctors are doing their ward rounds now" would be the correct and professional thing to say.

But simply being disappointed at females referring to their colleagues off ward as 'girls', (which is a friendly term - much like men referring to each other as lads) is in my opinion very over sensitive.

I think you're confusing colleagues using friendly terms, with people being derogatory.

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