Patricia Yarberry Allen, M.D. is a Gynecologist, Director of the New York Menopause Center, Clinical Assistant Professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology at Weill Cornell Medical College, and Assistant Attending Obstetrician and Gynecologist at New York-Presbyterian Hospital. She is a board certified fellow of the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology. Dr. Allen is also a member of the Faculty Advisory Board and the Women’s Health Director of The Weill Cornell Community Clinic (WCCC). Dr. Allen was the recipient of the 2014 American Medical Women’s Association Presidential Award.

When I go shoe shopping I really have no interest in flirting.  I much prefer the glory of Manolos to the men who are employed in the shoe salon.  I have my favorite places to shop, where I know I will be treated with kindness and attention. And respect.

Last week, I was shopping with my daughter in law at Bloomingdale’s, not my usual haunt,  where she was in search of black patent high heels.  Frankly, the selections were a bit weird, with platforms and bondage stuff and ugly round toes with thick soles.  The kinds of shoes that make everyone’s ankles look really thick.

We found only one elegant pair of high heels in the entire department.

Then the the unexpected: a young man, not our salesman, crossed the room. He began  to give me special  attention.  Perhaps less unexpected: the  attention was unwanted.  The woman who will flirt with lampposts finally found his gambit uninteresting.

“He has been watching too many episodes of Desperate Housewives,” I thought.

Cougar, indeed.

—Patricia Yarberry Allen

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