Hi, my name is Haley, and I am 21 years old. I was diagnosed with Endometriosis last year, and I consider myself pretty lucky to have been diagnosed fairly soon after my symptoms started. I was only wrongly diagnosed for a few months before my gyno figured out what was wrong. After going in and out of urgent care clinics, I called my gyno’s office and begged for an ultrasound or some other kind of test that might explain what was wrong with me. Soon after, I had my first laparoscopy and was diagnosed with endo.
After I had healed from that lap, I felt like I was on top of the world. I could run again, walk again, have sex with my boyfriend without wanting to cry, and I had a sense of false hope that my problems were solved. Something my gyno failed to mention was that, in most cases, Endometriosis returns shortly after the lap is performed. I was pain free for about 8 months, and now I am in more pain than I was before I had the surgery. I now suffer from panic attacks and paralyzing abdominal pain that I can only imagine must be worse than any labor pains I have heard of. When I have an attack, I can’t breathe, my body shakes uncontrollably and there is absolutely nothing I can do to find any relief. It feels like someone is taking a branding tool and twisting it into my stomach for hours on end.
The most frustrating part of all of this is that almost everyone I tell my story to dismisses the pain and categorizes endo as just having “bad periods.” Although this is true for some women, it is not nearly the entire story. Sometimes when I describe the pain to people, even those close to me, they tell me I might just have a low tolerance for pain. I don’t blame them for not understanding because, as anyone else in the world with endo knows, it is really difficult to explain what this condition feels like. However, I know that I am strong. I know that I don’t have a “low pain tolerance.” I’m not over-exaggerating, and I know that I will be able to make it through this with the support of those who love me. We are all in this together, and we have to keep fighting.
Thanks for reading!
The informational content of this article is intended to convey a personal experience and, because every person’s experience is unique, should not be relied upon as a substitute for professional healthcare advice.
This story is intended to convey a personal experience and, because every person’s experience is unique, should not be relied upon as a substitute for professional healthcare advice.