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Tue 23 Sep 2014 12:31 PM

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Women should not make any important decisions while menstruating, says UAE doctor

Comments were part of a speech at an Arab women's leadership conference in Dubai

Women should not make any important decisions while menstruating, says UAE doctor
Image for illustrative purposes only.

Women should not make any important decisions while they are menstruating, a top female UAE medical professional told a women’s leadership conference in Dubai on Monday.

Dr Maryam Matar, a trained physician and chairman and founder of UAE Genetic Diseases Association, made the comments during a speech to delegates at the Arab Women in Leadership and Business Summit, 7DAYS newspaper reported.

“I noticed all decisions that I regret were directly related to my oestrogen. I used to take my period for granted, I did not care when it was my first day, when I was ovulating, when my oestrogen is up or progesterone is down,” Dr Matar said in a speech on ‘Emirati women as partners and contributors in the nation building process’.

“So please, as a woman leader, you have your calendar, please be aware about your first day of your period,” she added. “Two days before that and the first day of your menstruation and the second day try to avoid any decision. Please, I beg you to do that.”

However, other delegates at the event hit out at the remarks as backward and dismissed them as backward.

May Khizam, CEO of a private investment firm, said the views the comments “just take us back 50 years,” and “feed into the male stereotype of women.”

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Chandra 5 years ago

May be she has a point. We should consider her views pragmatically and widen the debate rather than resort to criticism.

Lucie 5 years ago

I sort of agree with the above poster, but will amend it. Some women are highly affected by the hormones spiking or dropping,and it is a great suggestion/tool to tell women to pay attention, because it could lead to stronger, better leadership. We are not men, one of our advantages over men is that we are usually more in tune with our bodies, emotions, and intuitions... rather than trying to be men, we should acknowledge this and use it to our advantage. However, most women aren't affected to the point where they should not make decisions 3 days a month. Not to mention that men, too, have hormone spikes and dips that affect their decision making capabilities. This should be considered for leaders of both sexes.

Ibrahim 5 years ago

Women are in pain when menstruating and are having hormonal phases before it. Those are BIOLOGICAL FACTS. Under pain and hormonal imbalances decision making is different than without those factors. That is a fact too.

all the doctor said was, and she was quoting from experience, that under such pain or hormonal differences decisions better not be made

There is NO REASON whatsoever to find this offensive. Bashing a woman for speaking her mind and then asking for women empowerment is ridiculous. Women empowerment means a woman can say what she wants even if it is not feminist-friendly opinion.

may khizam 5 years ago

Dr Matar graciously gave a very interesting presentation that generated a lot of discussion. Here, my comments have been taken somewhat out of context. I wanted to balance Dr Matar's comment with the fact that men can be just as emotional as women in the workplace however we are often more tolerant of this and are quick to stereotype women. Thank you.

Ibrahim 5 years ago

Since I am a man, I cannot tell how much pain/hormonal level change a woman can endure before her judgement is clouded. But those factors have the potential of clouding judgement.

I agree with your amendment and I am glad that you took the time to discuss what was lacking in my comment.

I believe the Doctor took her personal experience and generalised it over the entire gender...in academia and debating, this is not appreciated.

She could be one of those human beings whose judgement is affected more by hormonal level change or by pain but it does not mean it is true for all women.

I would like to believe that the women who are highly affected by such changes should not be ashamed or bashed if they admit it. And the women who are not as easily affected, well they don't have the problem.

Alexandra 5 years ago

Actually, ovulation tends to occur about halfway through the period - not on the first day. Here is the reference link (see the graph on page 33): http://www.tdlpathology.com/media/2669/TAP2069_TDL_LabGuide2014_NP_WEB.pdf

allie 5 years ago

I'm sorry but this woman should have clarified that she was speaking from her own point of view. I have had over 2 decades of periods and feel that I've had a lot of practice learning to handle any minor discomfort that comes along with it.

Menstruation is a fact of life that all women learn to develop coping skills around. Certainly for anyone who feels that their mental competence is affected, or those who have extreme reactions, this would be something to look into medically. I would not say that this would be a typical experience for a woman.

Jacky 5 years ago

I believe it depends from one lady to another how they feel. I'm a pilot, 50 years old, still "blooming" and I'm absolutely not affected whatsoever by my cycle. I can fly and work out, swim, run, ride a horse at any day of the month. I'm stable and reliable the whole month. There's no restriction at all, in my case.

Tanya 5 years ago

Ibrahim, having a cycle does not affect your decision making. Men have cycles too(sometimes called Irritable Male Syndrome), does it affect them? At least it is not generalized. Generalizing is dangerous. The doctor talked about her personal experience, which is good to share. I'm sure many women might also have the same experience. But urging ALL women to take her personal experience and stop making decisions because she had this deduction, is not professional of her. She's a scientific professional, she relies on studies (multiple ones on each case, for years, before deducting anything), on stats, on proven facts... erasing all this and generalizing her own experience is what trigger comments. And by the way, many shared opposite experience in their comments, does that make them liars? No. Did they generalize? No. So that is the bottom line: taking a personal experience to generalize, coming from a professional, is not heard positively by all, and that is also a fact.

MOSA 5 years ago

She was merely giving an ADVICE to women who are NOT able to deal with periods. She did not generalize that all the women in the world are hyper during periods. I have come across several women whom I can easily identify they are going through their monthly cycle just by observing their behavior and attitude. And YES - I do agree, women who are not able to cope with the pain and discomfort - should stay away from making critical decisions, it does help.
Also, as another advice: If you are a man, do not EVER-EVER-EVER get into an argument or disagree with anything your wife says on the 1st and 2nd day of her cycle. You will be happy that way! :-P Just keep nodding and say yes to EVERYTHING.