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Trifa Khaled

I am a mental health advocate and a women’s rights activist. I believe in being feminine even when it’s seen as a weakness as a physician. I am soft and empathetic, I enjoy writing crappy poetry and buying myself flowers. During my years as a medical student, I have often seen different misconceptions of what a doctor should be. You have to be hard-working, in a way that harms your mental and physical health to prove that you are dedicated to the profession. You have to pull all-nighters and study day in and out to show that you are the smartest and most dedicated student. During my early years I fell into this misconception and try to change myself to appear “more hardworking”, I tried to hide my hobbies, I tried to pull all-nighters and brag about how all I do is study. In reality, all my grades were suffering and my mental health was deteriorating as I was unhappy and unfocused. Slowly I tried to incorporate self-care by allowing myself to sleep 8 hours a night, doing my make-up when I felt for it without being scared of getting judged, spend time writing and reading books, and simply trying to enjoy life again. My grades and mental health started to improve and after 5 years of being a medical student, and 1 year away from being a doctor, I have learned to never hide who I am to fit into a stereotype. You can be a good doctor and love fashion, you can be a good doctor and love make-up, you can be a good doctor and have 5 other hobbies, you can and will be a good doctor if you prioritize your health and mental health. A healthy doctor will probably be able to help more patients than a burnt-out doctor who is just trying to fit into a stereotype.

#withoutthewhitecoat I am a dreamer and an explorer.

Trifa Khaled
MD | Class of 2022
Jessenius Faculty of Medicine

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