So little is known about endometriosis.
There is currently no way to diagnose endometriosis without laparoscopic procedure.
Doctors don’t understand the illness.
My family doctor should have known.
He should have talked to me more about the symptoms I had.
Instead he told me that endometriosis has nothing to do with fertility.
Years of pain.
Years of frustration.
Years of not having answers.
Family doctors need to be educated about endometriosis and infertility. They need to know the symptoms and what can be done to help alleviate the pain. They need to stop believing that pain in periods in normal and expected.
My first experience with a fertility clinic was bad.
My fertility doctor was trying to perform a sonogram.
But the pain was too much and I didn’t know if I could tolerate it to continue with the test.
She barked at me, “well what do you want me to do then”.
I broke down in tears. Like gut wrenching, sobbing tears.
If I couldn’t tolerate the pain to perform the test, I wouldn’t get the answers I needed.
Meanwhile the answer lay right there in the pain.
She should have known.
Instead of telling me there was no logical reason for our infertility.
She should have understood endometriosis and the pain I was in.
She should have been more patient and told me she would help me figure out where the pain was coming from.
My second experience with a fertility clinic was heart-wrenching.
We filled out our intake forms and sat waiting to meet the doctor.
Frustrated by our process with our last clinic it was hard to be hopeful.
To pray for a doctor that would understand and listen.
The doctor walked into the room and declared, you have two kids already, why would you want anymore?
I've never wanted to run away.
In all honesty it took Joel pushing me back down in my chair and telling me to stay.
How can a trained fertility doctor not understand simple empathy skills.
After my laparoscopic surgery I was seven days late. I was in excruciating pain and could barely function. Thinking I might be having an ectopic pregnancy I found myself in the ER.
After explaining to the doctor that I had stage two endometriosis which was diagnosed by laparoscopic surgery and was late starting my period, he declared, “well the good news is that you’re not pregnant.”
The good news.
Three little words never cut so deep.
How could anyone who had endured laparoscopic surgery and struggled with endometriosis consider not being pregnant the good news?
Our health system is so broken.
It leaves women struggling with endometriosis frustrated, hurting and at a loss for where to turn.
Teen girls are told to suck it up when struggling with heavy and painful periods.
Women who struggle with infertility are met with doctors who don’t show empathy.
We have to do better.
We have to care.
This isn’t an odd or extreme case.
1 in 10 women.
11% of the population.
It starts with education.
It begins with empathy.