First of all just to say that none of this is for attention or sympathy. At 17 I’ve realised how little support there is for girls like me going through fertility problems at such a young age, especially when children aren’t your main priority in life. I just wanted to share my story.
I’ve always struggled with my ‘time of the month’. From starting age 8 it’s never been easy, despite frequent trips to the doctors everything was bypassed because of my age and we were told to be on our way. At 15 and in the middle of exams I got appendicitis, nightmare! While removing my appendix in alder hey they found a severe womb infection, this was completely stripped leaving the walls of my womb scarred and damaged. At this point it was all new to me, I was told there would be further investigation but nothing serious. After numerous follow ups and tests, months later they then told me the infection was back, and was due to me having polycystic ovaries and endometriosis. At this time they also identified it was very unlikely I would ever be able to carry my own baby. Devastated, but hope.
With trials of medication and scans and blood test and poking and prodding they sent me on my way, with a weak immune system and by this point my insulin had also given up on me, thanks pancreas!
So almost a year after my initial operation, I was taken into a room and told I had no chance in hell of ever having a baby naturally, and had a chance in a billion of carrying full term, just to point out I was 16. With a growing infection and pains getting worse I was sent on my way again. After persistence I was finally transferred to the woman’s hospital in Liverpool. More scans, more tests, more poking more prodding and same shit different day. Your infection has now spread to your felopian tubes and ovaries. So you can now never have your own little baby and we’re taking it all out, at 17 I was told I’ll now never be able to have a baby, amongst all the other medical babble they give you which I won’t bore you with, all I care about it never getting to have my baby.
In basic terms, that’s where we are now. At 17 I now know I’ll never have my own little baby. People always say you never want something until someone says you can’t have it, then that’s all you want. With my sister having just had her fourth child and my brother currently waiting to become a dad for the first time it’s not been easy. At times I’ve hated my sister. Why me and not her? Why can she just pop kids out like clockwork? Why 4 when I can’t even have 1? No answers. It’s not fair, it won’t ever be fair but you deal with it. You begin to hate everyone around you who is pregnant, because that’s all you want. Having a baby takes over your life, but your 17, how crazy is that? And no one understands how you feel, when you’ve got the worst pains in the world and your crying and you just want it all to go away, but you grit your teeth and get through it hoping that one day it’s all going to change, it won’t. How will anybody ever want to marry me and be with me when I can’t give them a child? I feel like I’ve let everyone down. Pushed everyone away, lost all sense of control. Despite all these questions not being answered, and still struggling to deal with the ongoing bad news I’ve recently found purpose. My bestfriend has been diagnosed early with similar issues so it’s my time to be there for her, be someone who understands, the someone that I never had. Life isn’t all about having children, I’ll always be able to put me first, do everything for me, decisions for me, live for me. Spend years building my career, travel, see the world. It’s taken me almost 2 years to finally find my answer, to finally be able to look at my sisters children with nothing but love, to be able to watch one born every minute without sobbing my heart out and calling my bestfriend for comfort.
I know I’m not the only one, and I know there are other girls out there, my age, around me, my friends even who are struggling too, but you’re not alone. It may be hard to see it now but you’ll see past it. It’s always going to be sad, and I’m never going to be able to be fully okay with it, but you learn to deal with it. Having a baby is not the be all and end all, there’s more to life, though hard to see it it’s true.
Despite all the bitterness and anger and hatred you have inside, it gets better. All I want to do is know that I’m not alone, and maybe give advice to those suffering too, like my bestfriend.
I’m sorry, but you can’t have children. So what? It’s taken me a while to be able to say that but SO WHAT?
With the storm now passed after one more operation it’s all going to be over, and I can begin to move on and build my life WITHOUT children. Like so many others do.
So never take anything for granted, especially the gift of being able to have a baby, because many of us out there can’t. So many women, young and old suffer from PCOS and other fertility related diseases. Yet it’s never talked about? Well I think it’s about time it’s acknowledged and respected, so many brave women suffer in silence, im not ashamed to talk about it, and you all shouldn’t be either!
Just a little thanks to my mum, without her I would never have had the confidence or courage to talk about this publically or openly like I have. She’s also taking the time to set up support groups for under 18’s who can’t conceive like me. Without her I wouldn’t have answers, so thankyou mum x
17, infertile, PCOS and proud. Bring it on!