Though, the failed IUD situation kicked my “I want a hysterectomy NOW” into high gear, I’d wanted one for a few years. In fact, the appointment with my gynecologist where I decided to try the IUD was actually going to be my first attempt at talking to her about having a hysterectomy. I decided to try the IUD before asking about a hysterectomy.
The first time I asked about having a hysterectomy was at my 3 month post op for the IUD fiasco. When I brought it up, my gynecologist told me no because I was “too young” for surgery. She did tell me, however, that I could have my tubes tied to prevent pregnancy and continue to use the pill to help my periods. I was sort of satisifed with that idea. I was glad she was going to do something. At my 6 month IUD fiasco post op, I asked her again about having a hysterectomy. I told her that I had thought about the idea of having my tubes tied and continuing to take birth control, but that would only solve one issue, not the other. She agreed with me. She told me that she had been thinking about it as well, and the more she thought about it, the more she realized I really would benefit from having a hysterectomy, and she was completely on board with doing it.
So, why a hysterectomy? Especially at 24? My periods got bad. And when I say bad, I mean BAD. We’re talking needing a super plus tampon AND and overnight pad just to leave the house. Tampons worsened cramps and increased my nausea, which is why I only wore them to go places. When I was home, I’d just change my pad every 2-3 hours. Leaks (waterfalls? flooding? “leaks” doesn’t make it sound as bad as it was) happened every night during my period. I not only had legit period panties, but I also had to make sure I had enough clean sheets to change them every morning. Not fun. On top of that, I would get 3 day long migraines, my chronic pain increased, I had constant Meniere’s attacks and near syncope when I stood up, I had incredibly bad cramps, things got so bad that I barely left the house while I had my period. In high school, I’d miss days at a time or have to leave early, in college, I’d have to miss classes. There was no way I could go to school the first few days of my period. At one point, I was on Motrin 800mg for my cramps, starting every 8 hours 2 days before my period started, every 6 hours during my period, and every 8 hours for 2 days after. I’d have to take it for almost 2 weeks out of every month. I did this for about 2 years when I realized it wasn’t helping at all and just stopped taking it. My periods were also very irregular. Sometimes I would have one a month, 2 a month, I even had 4 a month a few times. Sometimes they would last a week, or a day, or 3 day, one time I had one that lasted a month and a half. I always became so weak and tired and had to take iron because my period would make me anemic. For 12 years I thought this was normal.
Honestly, it was like my period was a medical condition in itself with the super bleeding, incredibly painful cramps, 3 day long migraines, dizzy spells, irritability, chronic fatigue flares, pain flares, weakness, stomach issues, inability to eat, and everything else my period brought.
I never talked to any doctors about this because I thought it was normal. Every woman you talk to will tell you that their period is “the worst”. I don’t know, it just seemed like the only thing I could do was suck it up and deal with it. It wasn’t until I read a random article online that I realized that my periods weren’t normal. They weren’t supposed to be that heavy,that painful or that irregular, even with PCOS.
I had been on birth control ever since I was diagnosed with PCOS at 16. I must have tried over 15 different types and brands in that time. They would work for a few months, then stop working, and I’d have to change again. It just kept going and going and going. My gynecologist suggested an IUD after I told her about my frustrations with the pill. We decided on an IUD after realizing that it was the only non pill option that I would be able to do. That failed miserably. After the IUD fiasco, I tried going back on the pill, and ended up trying 4 different ones before having my hysterectomy almost a year post IUD fiasco.
I figured that a hysterectomy was going to be the perfect choice for me. I HATED getting my period, and nothing ever worked to regulate it. Not pills, not diet, not exercise. The older I got, the worse it got. Plus, to be honest, I don’t handle blood all that well, and dealing with blood like that, sometimes multiple times a month or for weeks at a time, yeah, not my cup of tea.
I am writing this in hopes that it helps someone else. You know your body better than anyone else, and when it comes to periods, if you feel that something is up, talk to your doctor. If they don’t listen, get a second opinion.
As for the topic of kids, that’s for another post 🙂