Whether you’re just starting your journey, or have been diagnosed for years, it’s important to know that you’re not alone. Four women with endometriosis share their best piece of advice. This can help women who may be going through the process of diagnosis, treatment, or anything in between.
Meghan R. (diagnosed 2016): “You have to find your voice when it comes to something that is going on with your body—if it’s not normal for you—you have to be your own advocate. If you know something is wrong, don’t let someone tell you you’re fine. We want to go in to the doctor and hear that everything looks and seems fine. That’s not always the case. Let your gut lead you, and if you know deep down something’s wrong, that means something’s wrong, and you should pursue it.”
Danielle M. (diagnosed 2008): “What works for one person doesn’t necessarily work for another person and vice versa. Seek out [a gynecologist, someone who specializes in the female reproductive system]. Do your research online and physically with other people. Communicate about it. Don’t let the stigma [of discussing your pain] get you down.”
Anne M. (diagnosed 2010): “It never felt like anyone really listened to what I had to say—[but pelvic pain is] a part of life; we have to talk about it. When you know something is wrong—don’t let it go away. You have to be your own strongest advocate because nobody else will do it for you. Your friends, your family, your doctors are all wonderful, but you have to do what’s right for you. You know what your normal is, and we all kind of have an idea of how we want to live our life, and I think you have to pursue that in whatever capacity makes the most sense to you.”
Krystle B. (diagnosed 2008): “Research everything you can about [endometriosis]. Do all the research you can. I found out exactly what the symptoms were, I found out who else is suffering; who else is an advocate. Find organizations, find people. Now, when it comes to endometriosis, I have no problem saying the “taboo” words—that’s the reality of women. [Speaking up] has made me a stronger advocate; it’s made me a stronger person in general.”
While no 2 individuals walk the same path, these women can agree on the importance of speaking out about endometriosis. What will you do—who will you inspire—when you speak out?