Struggling with PCOS

Periods. Menstruation. Chums. Monthly cycle. There are just so many names. A phenomenon which is as natural to girls as breathing; though not as easy. Lots have been said and much more shushed as taboo about this “girl’s problem”. The anxiety before you get your first blood, the shy half whispered talks with your girlfriends, nervously waiting for the chemist counter to empty so as to buy your sanitary napkins, the initial few years had a mysterious appeal to it. Now it’s mostly reduced to pain and wishing it would be a tad bit less tiring.
I went through the same stages of menstruation. The first year, it was irregular (as it is, in most of the cases). The next year too my periods jumped months. I was very nonchalant but it deeply worried my grandmother and mother. And hence started the long and embarrassing visits to our family doctor, gynaecologist, radiologist etc.
It turned out I had Polycystic Ovaries Syndrome (PCOS). But it was not something to worry about. After many reassurances from our doctor, my mother’s worries were finally put to rest. I was thirteen years old and didn’t understand any of it. But what I missed out on were the conversations my friends shared, their excitement when their menstrual periods synched, and other small things like worrying about periods clashing with my water park trips or treks.
There was nothing I could pre-plan as my periods were never regular. Even a decade and a half later, I still struggle with these things. People often joke about how I never have to worry about periods while planning picnics and stuff. I mostly play along but what they don’t understand is the uncertainty of literally everything; plus the emotional, physical and mental pain I suffer.
If you google PCOS or PCOD you will find a host of problems linked to it. Like for example weight gain or loss, facial hair growth, acne, migraine, extensive mood swings, etc. It’s definitely not easy to fight with these complimentary diseases that come free with irregular menses or the hormonal irregularities. It doesn’t get any better with people giving advice on how to lose weight or treat acne. If I could I would!! (Plus I’m not even that overweight to start with- It’s just 4 kgs extra! Which is fine I guess…)
In this span of almost 15 years since I got my periods, I have tried every possible medicine and strategy to set things right. From meditation and yoga to the gym, from ayurvedic medicines to homoeopathy and allopathy treatments, from acupressure to home remedies and dieting. Literally everything. Though effective for a time being, all these things fall short of rectifying PCOS permanently and after a while, even I lose interest and faith in them.
In spite of coming from a culture which widely believes such topics to be a taboo and doesn’t allow menstruating women into temples, I have prayed to gods for my periods. I have enviously listened to my friends complain about period pain and wish they never got it and listened to them calling me lucky. I have silently suffered and laughed it off. I have learnt to let it go. The physical and emotional pain is something that I can endure or sleep off, but the total absence of periods along with a host of other problems…I don’t have much patience and absolutely don’t know what to do anymore.
As days go by, frustration, depression and dejection mounts and finds an easy escape in tears or yellings. But that hardly helps and I fall back on praying (that’s the only thing I pray for it seems).
Yet again I find myself counting days; hoping and praying that I’ll get my periods soon enough…

© 2018 Ashwini Nawathe, Kaleidoscope of My Life
All Rights Reserved

26 thoughts on “Struggling with PCOS

  1. This is a common problem these days and blame it largely on metabolism, food intake and the environmental problems in general. I hope you recover soon from this, until then, loads of good wishes your way.

  2. Hi Ashwini , I was 16 when I was told I had PCOS .A concoction of medicines later, two surgeries later and a host of days when I felt too ugly , fat and low to do anything but mourn and sulk , I resigned . I am 33 today . PCOS lead to diabetes and I was told I would never be able to conceive naturally , battling both ( even a year long menopause like phase , I was able to overcome the same. It is just about managing our lifestyle better and making healthier choices coupled with effective coping mechanisms to stressors. I gave up all medicines and voila in two years all was back on track. I hope it all turns out well for you too. Hugs.

    1. Oh dear…I hope everything turns out to be fine because nothing seems to be working. There are days when I couldn’t care less and on the other, I drown myself in self pity. And yes I have been on n off medicines too, but everything just seems hopeless after a while.

  3. This has been such a helpful thread. I was diagnosed with PCOS last week and I’m 22. Thank you for sharing some light on the subject & the reality of this. My friends have been all “it’ll be fine soon!” but I hate that Disney-esque notion that everything’s happily ever after. Though I do hope that it will be alright, I doubt it’s going to be that easy. I’m sorry yourself & people in the comments have struggled with this, but simultaneously thank you for sharing so I have a general idea of what I have to come ☺️

    1. Hey, I’m glad you found some solace in this post. It won’t be an easy road but we are strong girl! Don’t let it get you down. And with the ever-developing technologies, we may soon find some medical help. It will be alright, just stay healthy and eat right dear…rest will follow 🙂

  4. Hello, I have also been posting about PCOS. My doctor seems to think it is manageable with metformin medicine or birthcontrol. Have you considered either of these options or tried them? I would be curious to hear about your experience. Thanks in advance. Also, I am in the middle of trying to conceive and they have me on medicine that is literally making my hair thin and fall out!

    1. Hey, Yes Oral Contraceptives do seem to work. I was put on Meprate and/or Regestrone at times during these long years. But considering my young age the medications were stopped. I was however advised by my family physician not to continue with hormone pills as they are not good in long run. But just this month I took a 10 day course of Meprate to help things. So I think the use and effective of these medicines may vary case to case.
      As to the side-effects: I had two episodes of Alopecia (partial balding) and it was embarrassing. Weight gain and slight male pattern hair growth is common too.
      And Best of Luck dear…Hope you get your wish soon 🙂

  5. Sending you all the love. I know I’m a lot younger but I’ve been having periods since I was ten, and was only diagnosed with PCOS at 17 when pretty much all those involved medically agreed it should’ve happened a lot sooner. I worry for my future but I’m very lucky because I don’t get any of the super noticeable symptoms like excessive hair growth. At age 19 most of the things I know are from charities, social media support groups and blogs like yours, so thanks you.

    1. Hey, I’m glad to know that my blog gave you some comfort.
      No need to worry dear…you are still very young. Eat healthy and stay fit. Rest will follow 🙂
      N yes it’s lucky not to have noticeable symptoms. I too don’t have any but my friends do struggle with weight gain and hair growths.
      Hope to see all of us get fit and healthy 🙂

  6. Hello , i am having pcod problem. I get stomach pain since when i was 12 years old its been 6 years now still treatment is not done. Do you get stomach pain every month ? . Dr saying to do laproscopy now . … we can’t do homepathic medicine becoz of siviour stomach pain … really it is disgisting problem. … just praying for my periods 🙇🙇 .. i took ovral l for 4 months that didn’t work on me .

    1. Oh dear…yes I do get stomach pains whenever I get periods.
      But I didn’t get you, laparoscopy for what?
      I do remember one of my friend who had taken ovral I but unfortunately don’t remember what happened after that treatment.
      Have you tried diet or exercise?

  7. And i have hyperprolactin and pcod . You? . But i don’t have any symptoms of both . i am very short and thin . I have same weight and height since 6 years . Very short and thin ….. some girls menstruate and then they miss their periods and start pcos. .. but in my case i never had periods ….. 😅

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