Thursday, September 25, 2008


The past few weeks and the whole AF mess has brought up a very frustrating situation for me. I am sure that if you suffer from PCOS or happen to struggle with cycles anywhere near similar to mine, you have run into the same crap I get. I am in no way saying that I know more than my doctor by posting this and I am not one of those people that starts out my conversations with "But said..." I don't call him over every little drop or twinge that is out of the ordinary. I am a young woman with a serious menstrual problemn and valid questions and concerns for the health of my body.

This all came to the surface on Monday when Hubby had a chance to talk to our doc for himself. For the past year and a half or so I have been able to brush off his nonchalance about the CSI worthy scenes played out in my bathroom from time to time. I have managed to explain away the doc's comforting words and condescending smiles as a way to reassure me and keep me from worrying about it. On Monday however, he told Hubby something that really ticked me off. He told Hubby that he understood that things were probably heavy and icky right now but that my body would never allow me to bleed too much. He told him there was no reason to be concerned and that when the time came I would simply stop bleeding. He said the fact that I was sick had a lot to do with the messed up hormones more than the large amounts of loss I had experienced.

Lemme back up here doc! I remember being seven years old and caring for my brand new baby brother because Mommy was having one of her "bad times." I knew the word hysterectomy by the time I entered second grade. Granted my parents shielded me from the details but I still knew the word meant Mommy was sick and needed an operation that she was too scared to have. She finally had a hysterectomy at around 35 years old. She had been fighting the doctor about it since she was 29 or 30. My mother would get so anemic that they threatened blood transfusions. I am positive that the only reason she didn't receive numerous transfusions was her fear of going to the doctor. When she went for her last appointment before agreeing for the surgery, she was so pale and sick that they pushed her ahead of a room full of patients. She had around half of the blood supply she should have had. She was truly sick.

I have tried to explain to doc that my mother had a severe problem with her cycles. It doesn't seem to compute for him. I have tried to educate myself on the warning signs and I know that without the intervention of a pill my periods would never stop. I have tested that theory to a point going for over four months once. In fact, that is what brought me to the doc and my PCOS diagnosis in the first place.

It isn't just my doctor that frustrates me with this. I have mentioned before that my mother is rather critical and negative when it comes to Hubby and I having a family or anything else for that matter. You would think that after going through what she has, she would be understanding and supportive. For the most part, that doesn't happen. I get a lot of "I know" and "Well now you know how I felt" sort of comments. I don't think she is uncaring really. I think some of her reaction comes back full circle to how she was treated as a patient with the same problems. I am certain I am not the only one out there that has experienced similar situations even today. To go into a doctor's office with the weak, dizzy, exhausted feeling you have from all of that is a difficult process in and of itself. To then be told that it isn't that big of a deal or it is "normal" is like a kick in the gut! How can something like that be normal? It is understandable that after years of that sort of nonchalance one would grow callous and unintentionally bitter about the whole thing.

I refuse to be minimized like my mother. I will not avoid the doctor's office for fear of the brush off or a shrug. I know that when I have a situation as horrible and scary as I had this past weekend that it is not normal in any sense of the word even for myself and that it is ok to seek help elsewhere.

I wish that just once, my doctor could see and understand what a five week period does to someone. I wish he could see just how heavy and scary my experience is and perhaps he would realize that this is not normal. PCOS is bad enough without all of the added frustration and pain that comes from feeling alone in such a nightmare!

I will step down from my soap box now and our regularly scheduled blogging may commence...


Morrisa said...

I can truly say that I understand what you are going through. I very rarely got periods on my own but when I did there were times when they would last forever. I would finally have to go to the doctor to get provera which I would take to stop the bleeding. Have you tried that yet? PCOS sucks, it's an awful thing to have to live with. I think you need to find a doc that knows a lot about PCOS and is more understanding, it makes a big difference.

alicia said...

have you gone to anoter Dr, got a better opinon? This guy is crazy if he keeps telling you its normal! But I am glad yo hear that you aren't to scred to see a Dr, maybe you jsut need a different one.

VA Blondie said...

If you are not happy with what you are hearing from your doctor, it may be worth it to try going to another doctor. I doctor hop all the time because I am really picky about who cares for me. My experience is that a lot of OB/GYN doctors do not understand PCOS as well as they should. Even some REs do not understand it. (The two REs I have run across do seem to understand PCOS as it relates to fertility treatment.) I found that a regular endocrinologist usually understands PCOS and how to treat it. Endocrinologists focus on the blood sugar, though they will ask about cycles. If you have not done so already, it may be worth it to see an endocrinologist. Just a thought. I love seeing a regular endocrinologist. It makes me feel better about things.

Photogrl said...

I am sorry that your doctor is not being very helpful...or supportive.

Could you try to find a new doc?

If I've learned one thing from IF, that the support of you doctor can take the sting out of it.

{{HUGS}} to you!

Anonymous said...