(me three years ago, pre yoga class near the atlantic ocean...)
After six years of resisting I just google-diagnosed myself with DUB.
*Warning, this post is an overshare in the hopes of opening pathways for discussion and sharing. Too often women don't talk about these things, resulting in feelings of aloneness and hopelessness*
Because my OBGYN sucks, the internet tells me that I'm probably a weird combo of ovulatory DUB with the anovulatory symptoms. Yay special!
Let's back track seven years down uterine memory lane:
Seven years ago, mid to end of my Master's degree at the age of 24 (ish) I began experiencing mid-cycle spotting here and there. I went through a few bloodwork tests, but student health care as it is, kinda chalked it up to stress and let it go.
Fast forward two years and my 'here and there' spotting was becoming a regular occurrence. More bloodwork (which I hate btw, taking seven vials of blood from someone who feels nausea at the insertion of a needle isn't fun), ultrasounds and a diagnose that something was up with my cervix the options given were:
1) go off the birth control
3) live with it. (nice eh? that is actually what she said).
Two years after that it was so bad that, with the support of my husband, I decided to go off the birth control pill.
Three years of no birth control pill and my cycle now resembles: 6-8 days of no period, 2-7 days of spotting, 7-10 days of full period. It's awesome. Hmm. Seems I was misdiagnosed.
Over the past seven years I have become an expert on the DivaCup. That invention has saved me boatloads of money and made this situation so much more bearable.
It took almost 2 years of brow beating my family physician that maybe a referral to an OBGYN, some bloodwork and ultrasounds might be beneficial. You know, in case I had a cancerous tumour. She only listened when I mentioned I might want a baby one day. Who cares about the fact that I have the most effed up periods ever. The bloodwork and ultrasounds (external AND internal) took about 5 months to get done while an appointment with the Gynecologist took 6 months.
Wouldn't you know all the tests came back normal. Yay no cancer! So, another procedure that was terrible, invasive and hurt like hell (mostly because I am a big baby with the pain tolerance of 0 and a tilted uterus) and big fat tears quietly ran down my face the entire time, was where they dilated my cervix, inserted the camera and inserted a saline solution to check for malformations in my lining. Zilch. Woo. #Neverdoingthatagain.
So my follow-up appointment in September resulted in a conversation that went like this:
OBGYN: "So... everything looks normal. I'm not sure why this is happening to you. I don't know what else I can offer you." Awesome.
My new options that are not even guaranteed to work:
1) IUD (not recommended since I want to get pregnant in a year and it will be as painful as the Terrible Procedure... AND it might not work)
2) birth control pill (tried every company out there, they don't work).
Do you think she'd give me a label or reason for why this is happening to me? I only got the term 'unstable uterine lining' out of her, which was enough for Google. According to Google I have 'Dysfunctional Uterine Bleeding' or DUB. There are a variety of reasons of DUB, which I don't really fit most of them because mine has been so long AND I ovulate (whereas the majority don't).
I really didn't want to Google my medical diagnosis. I believe in the Health System. I believe in the fact that certain medical professionals (NOT my family doc, she is terrible) have advanced knowledge on how to interpret and diagnoses medical and evidence based information. Now I see that unless I want to go invasive (ablations, C&D, hysterectomy...wtf??), I'm stuck with this. Even pregnancy won't fix it.
I write this post as on day eight of my Yasmin generics, I discover I am spotting, that Yasmin has a lawsuit against them for 3x more at risk for scary blot clots causing serious health damage and I received a follow up appointment letter with my OBGYN.
1. Cease the birth control pill tonight...mid month-three. I have tried every single brand under the sun, I don't want blood clots and none of them worked anyway. Eff that noise.
2. Make an appointment with a Naturopathic Doctor tomorrow. Whatever if the OBGYN thinks I'm crazy, she couldn't give me anything and it's covered by my insurance.
3. Write this blog post so other women who are also experiencing this in their twenties and early thirties don't feel alone and scared... like I do.