Monday, September 29, 2008

Finding out I had PCOS

It's hard hearing from all your friends that they were now "women" because they had all had their periods. Dear God, It's me Margret has nothing on me. I had looked womanly for a lot longer than they all had.  And I had acne from hell (I'll do an acne post some day). I had been shaving my armpits and they never had... yet they were all having their periods and I wasn't. 

Then one day, some thing happend. I there was "stuff" down there... ruining my underware.  But it wasn't blood... was it? It was all brown and not liquid at all. No chunks.  Honestly, it looked like a big skid mark kind of in the wrong place. Embarrassed, I kept it to myself for a few days but then asked my mom. This couldn't have been what they were talking about in all of those stupid puberty videos. My mom confirmed for me that it was spotting, but even she thought it looked weird. It lasted a couple of weeks. Today, after a 10 years of BCP induced periods, I think I can confrim, that first period was weird.     

Infact, it makes me wonder, can I technically consider that a period. There wasn't any bright red blood.  You usually start counting your cycle on the first day of red blood. For my own sainity, I called it a period so that I could be like the other girls and say I had one too... but today I'm not so sure.  Well, I suppose it's all moot now.

After the spotting stopped I got out my calendar like all the puberty videos said to do and counted forward to my next period. And when it didn't come when I thought it should have, I didn't worry right away.  It's kinda normal to have irregular periods the puberty video said so. But then months went by. The 9th month of not having one was really ridiculous. Me and my friends joked about the 2nd coming of the Lord in me. Then a year. Then a year and a half and I had enough. I wanted to be normal. I went to the gynecologist.

So there I was, the first of my friends to end up at the gynecologist's. I had a quick examination and the Dr. said I had PCOS.  He said that he would spare me the ultrasound to confirm it (Why? Ultrasounds looked like fun... they put gel on your belly and you get to watch the monitor... oh not that kind of ultrasound explained my mother). But basically the Dr. said more or less that I was pretty classic PCOS:

 - Tall
- Fat
- Deep voice
- Acne
 - Irregular peroids

Thankfully I didn't have any of the excess hair issues to deal with.

Then the Dr. gave me a script of Provera to induce a period.  I asked "What happens if this doesn't work?" To which he said "It will." And I asked again, "Yeah, but what if?"  And he, "It will, it always does. It will."  

Yeah, well guess what, it didn't. So my mom got me another round from him and the same thing. So he just started me on BCP and like clockwork, blood. I was on Ortho Tri Cyclen. It was the latest and greatest at the time and was suppose to help me with my acne (it didn't). 

So then I was the first of my friends to get on the pill and ended up being one of the last to have sex (waited until marriage and don't regret that one bit).

Side rant: One of the dumbest things I have ever heard, I knew a lot of girls getting on the pill to regulate their periods, only they would get told that they weren't on the "Real" pill... just a pill to help with their periods.  I would say to these naive girls, "Did you read the instructions and did it say stuff about getting pregnant if you missed pills... then yes, they are real." I think it's ridiculous that parents (and drs.) try to trick girls into thinking they have "special pills" cause they are worried if they know the truth they will have sex. How can we expect teens to make good choices if we treat them like stupid children? There's a time to lie to kids (Santa), but not when it comes to real issues that they will really have to face.

So back to my story... the most distressing part of this Dr. visit and diagnosis is that it became the first time I had ever thought about whether I would be able to have kids or not.  I asked the doc and he basically said that I didn't need to worry about that yet. He was right, but he still answered wrong. That would have been a good time to be honest to me and say 'maybe, but many women are able to get pregnant on their own or with the help of their drs...'. A short, but honest answer really could have helped me relax over the next couple years, but I didn't get that... instead I started worring right then and there about my fertility. Thanks asshole.  

1 comment:

Elizabeth said...

Wow, I feel like I could have written this post. I've been trolling through your archives and I'm so glad I found your blog! I, too, was diagnosed with PCOS at 15 and have been on BCPs ever since (I'm 27 now). I'm happy to read that you were able to get pregnant and give birth!

My husband and I are planning on ditching the BCPs sometime in the next year and starting TTC. If you had to go back and do it all again, would you do anything differently? I'm trying to decide if we should A)give myself a few months to see if I ovulate on my own, B)see my gynecologist first before meeting with an RE, or C)go straight to the RE as soon as I go off the BCPs. Any advice you have would be greatly appreciated!