Dr. Jackie Dishes on ‘Married to Medicine’
Welcome to Doctors’ Notes, our newest contribution from Urban Health correspondents and husband and wife physicians Dr. Rob and Dr. Karla Robinson. The dynamic duo will be fielding questions about health, as it relates to African Americans. Please feel free to send them questions via firstname.lastname@example.org. We promise to keep it anonymous.
Dr. Jacqueline Walters is a successful board certified Ob/Gyn who has been making a name for herself in metro Atlanta and the surrounding areas for years. However, as a co-star of Bravo’s hit reality show Married to Medicine, the world has come to affectionately know her now as “Dr. Jackie.” We had the opportunity to chat with the doctor as she geared up for the season premiere this Sunday. Check out what she had to say about her life, her practice, and what to expect on season two.
JET: Was it a big transition for you to become a reality star?
Dr. Jackie: It is extremely exciting! I would have never dreamed in a million years that I would be on a reality TV show because I am somewhat of a private person, so it is shocking to me and all my family and friends. But now that we are in the second season, it is just another part of the puzzle of Dr. Jackie.
JET: How has the show impacted your practice?
Dr. Jackie: It’s slowed me down just a little bit because everybody wants to talk about the show, but I’ve also gotten a lot of new patients because they have gotten a chance to see my breast cancer survivor story.
JET: You’ve been very open about your health challenges on the show. Being a two-time breast cancer survivor, do you find that patients are now more invested in their breast health as a result?
Dr. Jackie: Absolutely! Women are being very open and honest. I’ve gotten tons of phone calls from the family and friends of women diagnosed with breast cancer and we talk them through the good, the bad, and the ugly. It’s my give back. I feel like breast cancer stole a little bit from my family since after the double mastectomy, chemo and radiation I was rendered infertile. So this is my opportunity to give back by helping everybody who comes to me and wants help getting through the process.
JET: In dealing with your own infertility after breast cancer treatment, what do you say to other women who may be facing the same issue?
Dr. Jackie: Well, it is very unfortunate for me being an Ob/Gyn not to get to experience childbirth. I just say that we have other options. Don’t let it shut you down. My most vocal patient about infertility is Tamar Braxton. Everybody knows Tamar and getting her through that process helped me to help others. We list every option. Every option isn’t for everybody because infertility is expensive. We try to find research programs or whatever we can to get them through it. We cry together, because I can relate to exactly what they are saying.
JET: You’ve gotten some flak for being health conscious and being an advocate for diet and exercise on the show and using your motto “Thin Is In.” Do you think your intentions are sometimes misunderstood?
Dr. Jackie: Well I thought saying “Thin Is In” did offend, so this year I have changed it to “Fit Is The New It.” The leading cause of death in Black women is heart disease and that link is diabetes, hypertension and breast cancer. The one risk factor I identify with the most is obesity.
JET: What can we look forward to this season on Married to Medicine?
Dr. Jackie: This season, you will probably get every aspect of a woman you can get. We have relationship issues, conflict resolution, health issues, we learn to laugh, cry and we learn that my meekness is not a weakness. The softer I speak, the more you have to shut up and listen. So make sure you tune in April 6 on Bravo at 9 p.m. ET so you can see what happens when the white coats are on, and what happens when the white coats come off!
It’s a health thing…we’ve got to understand!
About the Doctors:
Dr. Karla and Dr. Rob are the founders of Urban Housecall Magazine and host the Urban Housecall Radio Show. For more from the doctors, visit their website at www.urbanhousecallmagazine.com, like them on Facebook UrbanHousecallMagazine, and follow them on Twitter @urbanhousecall!
(Dr. Jacqueline Walters photo courtesy of Bravo)