It’s coming up to 10 years since I self-diagnosed myself with PCOS, so must be nine that I was properly diagnosed. Some days have been good, even great and others have been awful – and when I say awful, I mean it. Try being hospitalised for three days without food or water and then being discharged none-the-wiser. Thankfully I’m surrounded by good people and a few people have recently messaged me about my story and blog posts. So it’s thanks to them that I bring you ’10 things you don’t say to a PCOS sufferer’.
(1) Are you ill?
Not really. My condition doesn’t stop me living my life. I go to work every day, I spend time with my family. I see my friends and boyfriend at weekends. I don’t let it stop me doing anything.
(2) You’ll get better, though...
Probably not, babes – PCOS is incurable. I’ve managed to change my eating habits and lifestyle choices to make me the healthiest version of myself I can be. But I’m no means better; nor will I ever be ‘normal’... sorry not sorry!
(3) Have you gained weight?
Thank you for the compliment. Two of the worst things for me when I was first diagnosed were uncontrollable weight gain and the inability to lose weight. I am so pleased to say I did lose a stone (post here). The meds I was on initially really didn’t help. Now the tricky part is to keep it off.
(4) You still get spots
Yep, at the age of 26, I still get spots – well done observant. I was lucky during my teens to very rarely get spots, but thanks to my wonderful condition, I get them now. Luckily it’s not many and they aren’t too bad; makeup covers them nicely. My skin dramatically turned from normal to combination though – cheers hormones.
(5) Do you wax?
I remember a boy at school and an ex-boyfriend said to me once “why is there hair on your arm?” and I completely freaked out and actually cried myself to sleep. I look back and laugh/cringe. I am obsessed with my Phillips IPL device (post here) and find it works even with my condition (a lot of devices recommend PCOS sufferers don’t use them). So while I’ll be silky smooth everywhere, you silly boys will still be arseholes *mwah*.
(6) You need to cheer up
Oh, do I? Mood swings are common with PCOS sufferers. When I have a good day, I’ll be so happy and want to skip through a meadow with my pet unicorn and when I have a bad day, well it’ll be a bad day and I’ll want to commit carbocide or eat my bodyweight in pick n mix and cry in bed. Gotta love hormones haven’t you.
(7) When are you due?
Talking periods, not babies, obv! I can’t be the only one who hates this when you go for check-up or smear or scan. Hold up while I consult the multiple apps on my phone... oh wait, they’re all saying different dates and they’re probably all wrong anyway! I can tell you when I was last on, will that help in any way?!
(8) Does it hurt when you have sex?
Or worse, can you have sex? Haha. First answer: NO. Second answer: YES. When I was first diagnosed and then on medication, I hated it because I was FAT and just felt bleugh all the time – and it was awkward. Plus sex and cysts is not a combination or conversation you want to have – attractive! But if you find a man that understands you and the condition, hold onto them ladies, as they’re a rare breed!
(9) Your hair is everywhere
My mum and brother say this all the time. Thankfully my hair is so long and thick, I don’t notice, but I imagine those with fine hair loathe this. The plug in our bath is permanently clogged; my bedroom carpet is vile and my car isn’t much better.
(10) Surely it’s just period pain
NO. NO. NO. Having cysts burst is not period pain. You do not get woken up by period pain. You’re not unable to sleep, eat, or even breathe because of period pain. No amount of hot water bottles, fluids or ibuprofen (or stronger) will sort that kinda pain. Do not get me started.
Love, Lucy xx