Would you be kind enough to help me please, I am now in complete desperation! I have been following your blog in complete anticipation. I can not believe how similar our lives have been. I am also an artist, well I used to be, I can not find my creativity any where, it’s lost within the darkness surrounding me. I also want to campaign about this debilitating illness, when I am better! I, like yourself have kept a diary but it’s all over the place, there is no way I would be able to have a blog as I only have 4/5 ” normal ” days a month, the rest of the time I am just a walking corpse! I feel dead inside and a lot of the time wish I was! This mental torture is so overbearing. P.m.d.d has ruined my life completely. I could say and want to say soooo much on here but i will try and keep it as brief as possible. I am also 35 and have been suffering with p.m.d.d since I was 15, I have done countless research over the years and have been a guinea pig, trying every medication under the sun, which I’m sure has made me worse over the years. It was only this year, when I turned 35 in march that my gyne said he will perform a hysterectomy. Not for the p.m.d.d but for the endometriosis I also have……I still can not persuade any of the docs etc that my main problem is p.m.d.d!!!!!! They keep telling me that a hysterectomy will not cure the endometriosis etc….I know that, I have done my research but they will not accept and do not understand that it’s the hormones affecting my mental well being that is my biggest problem and concern! The dilemma I am now facing is that I am 35, with no children, I desperately want a hysterectomy but I also don’t want the chance to have children taken away!!!!! I have gone down the root of egg freezing which is just not an option for me!!! I am unemployed and can not afford the fees of thousands of pounds! I want my life back and i know the only way is a complete hysterectomy with removal of the ovaries…..how did you come to a decision? Did you want children? I forgot to tell you that I am single, again! I was in a relationship for many years but he ended it a couple of months ago, because he couldn’t handle me any more! Heard that one a few too many times! My doctor has now referred me to a psychiatrist! Ha ha ha ha how funny! I can’t wait to see what his diagnosis will be! I wonder if like all the other medical “professionals” he tells me it’s not pmdd. Well I am going armed with my research and articles written by Studd and Panay! So my main question is about not having children. I know I wouldn’t be able to look after a child, the way i am, but i also know once I am better I will want one! Why do we always want what we can’t have! I would rather have my life back but i just can’t see a future without children, it hurts me soooo much. I have told my gyne i do not want children because i want the op but i am so confused at the moment. Please, please would you give me your opinion.
Tanya, I’m sorry you are having such an awful time, I really feel for you. It’s an outrage that women like us have not been, and are still not being, taken seriously by the medical establishment as a whole.
Regarding making your decision, I’ll give you my thoughts, I’m sorry if it comes across as very matter of fact.
I really feel for you regarding your desire to have children / and the catch 22 you’re in. Sometimes I have a cry that I’ve lost the option of having biological children. However, these days I generally only get upset when I’m tired, or run down, or when something genuinely upsetting happens; most days I am incredibly grateful for my new life!
Are you in the UK (I hope you are)? If so, please read my post about how I got an NHS referral to Nick Panay. If you’re in the UK, please try to see him, you don’t need to be based in London to get an NHS referral.
Fight your hardest for a trial of GnRH analogues (i.e. Decapeptyl or equivalent), to shut down your ovaries temporarily. Or have you already had this? This should hopefully buy you time (6 months or longer) to think clearly. This helped me enormously, as I had proof about what was wrong with me, and proof that I wasn’t fundamentally depressed!!! Making the decision was possible for me due to the peace of mind I found on Decapeptyl. A sympathetic gynae might agree to keep you on a GnRH for much longer than 6 months, buying you more breathing time. You’d need to have your womb lining checked with scans every so often though, if you weren’t having a bleed.
It’s a cliché, but there are many unwanted children out there, perhaps you could give one (or more) a better start in life? If you were well, you might choose to go down the adoption or fostering route, although the children probably wouldn’t be babies. A single woman I know who’s in her late 30s has adopted a young child (her first), it would be great if more broody people would do the same.
I think that Western culture idealises motherhood / caring for babies, and that many women don’t tell the truth about how hard they are finding it, because of societal pressures. So many men still don’t pull their weight, I’ve noticed. That doesn’t mean that I don’t love cooing over babies though! I read a number of books and blogs about having a child-free life, they all resonated with me, so that made the decision easier.
If you got rid of the PMDD, you’ll find it easier to have rewarding romantic relationships. Perhaps you’ll become a step mother? This could fulfil some of your maternal drives.
I do some teaching work, I get to express some of my maternal instincts in a different way doing this. If you were well, you could pursue work that involves contact with babies, children or young adults.
I am delighted that I’m going to be a god mother / mentor to a dear friend’s child. It’s been an absolute joy to stay with her and be around a young baby, but to not get any poop under my nails, have sore nipples, or do any night feeds!
If you have the operation, hopefully you can find the strength to build up your earning potential, which will give you many more choices generally. I was terrified about money when I had PMDD, but also had my woolly head in the sand, everything seemed so bleak, it was crushing.
Without PMDD, you might well find new energy for your art work. My main reason for being able to make the decision to have a hysterectomy was that I realised, for me, I could not have the creative career I want, and children, at the same time – and because I felt like I’d not fulfilled my creative potential in my 20s / early 30s due to PMDD. The saying goes, ‘You can have everything you want, just not at the same time‘, I really believe this!
Also, you say, ‘I feel dead inside and a lot of the time wish I was!’. Another reason I was able to make the decision is because I was afraid of the PMDD getting worse as my ovaries aged, and of my suicide ideation’s getting worse, this was the most frightening aspect of it. Plus I felt very lonely and isolated, and (felt like I) was losing friends left, right and centre.
I suggest you write up a brutally honest list of pros and cons of having the operation, and revisit it during both the good and bad times, here’s mine.
I wish you all the best, let me know how you get on.
Ms Jekyll & Hyde