Response to the Emotional Causes of Endometriosis

There has been so much misinformation and hurt these past couple of weeks within the endometriosis community regarding a certain blog post written by a holistic health coach about what she believes to be the emotional causes of endometriosis.  I feel the need to shed some light on the truth and share my thoughts on this article.

The blog post in question was initially published on the natural wellness blog MindBodyGreen, but was eventually removed due to the onslaught of complaints regarding the misinformation, offensive untruths and dismissive tone it contained.  Thank you MindBodyGreen for listening to your readers and community and doing the right thing.  It has not gone unnoticed or unappreciated.  Unfortunately the author then posted a slightly altered version of the article on her site, again inciting the same negative response.  Interestingly, she has been conspicuously absent to respond or address any of the many valid questions and concerns put forth.

Ms Griffin, as a holistic health professional, a woman who has endometriosis myself, and a passionate and vocal advocate for women’s health the article in question is a reprehensible disservice to women’s health bordering on misogyny.  The article in question is a work of creative fiction based solely on speculation without a shred of scientific evidence that reduces a serious and painful disease down to modern-day hysteria.  You have succeeded in blaming and shaming every single endometriosis patient as bringing this terrible physical disease on themselves.  This, Ms. Griffin, is absolutely unacceptable.

Endometriosis is an exceedingly painful disease; one that can strip away women’s quality of life, career aspirations, relationships, fertility and dreams.  We suffer for an average of 7-11 years before obtaining an accurate diagnosis, all the while being told by the medical establishment and the world that our pain is “normal”, psychosomatic; that we are “attention seeking”, “rejecting our femininity” or even have penis envy.  We are all too familiar with the sigh, eye roll, and a prescription for ibuprofen, birth control pills and antidepressants.  We’re told to “take it easy” along with a patronizing pat on the knee.

In the midst of a cyst rupture or another pain-crisis, we are forced to go to the emergency room.  We are often mislabeled as “drug seekers” or prescribed unwarranted antibiotics for “pelvic inflammatory disease” for an assumed STD we do not have.  On one occasion in the ER prior to my diagnosis my treating physician told me to “find a new hobby, and you will forget all about any menstrual discomfort.”  This kind of visceral dismissal of gynecological pain is unfortunately the standing attitude in our society.  It is easier for them to entertain the notion that we are over-dramatic or mentally ill than it is to acknowledge the presence of real physical pain resulting from a real, physical disease.

For years we suffer in silence.  Often we begin to believe that there is something wrong with us as a person, not that there is a legitimate physical disease present with effective treatment that remains undiagnosed.  Your article perpetuates the beliefs that prevent girls and women from accessing the timely and specialized medical care they need and deserve.

Even once we receive an accurate diagnosis (which requires surgery and ideally biopsy), we are often subjected to numerous treatments based on outdated theories of the disease with little to no success.  It is not uncommon for endometriosis patients to undergo five, ten or more laparoscopic ablations with little or no relief.  We are prescribed strong hormones with serious and sometimes permanently disabling side effects; which at best are only short term band-aid solutions for the pain.  Infertility is very common and compounds the profound sense of loss and despair so frequently experienced within the endometriosis community.

Eventually many of us end up getting a hysterectomy, often with the removal of the tubes and ovaries at the same time; plunging us into an immediate premature surgical menopause.  To add insult to injury, many continue to have debilitating pain following hysterectomy and bilateral salping-oophorectomy (removal of both fallopian tubes and ovaries) because their endometriosis was not removed.  Why is it acceptable to remove organs and leave the disease in place?

Ms. Griffin states:

“It is estimated that to some extent, almost all women are born with the endometriosis lesions…”

This is in fact untrue.  Endometriosis affects an estimated 10% of girls and women (and yes, even a few men and an eighteen month old girl.)  This has also been well-documented in the literature.  Necropsy of human female fetuses have found pathologically confirmed endometriosis in between 9-11% of the fetuses studied.  It is believed that endometriosis develops between the sixth and seventh week of embryonic life, long before any potential “emotional conflicts”, abuse or traumas.  Combined with the clear patterning of disease and the fact that it rarely returns when completely excised, it is very clear that Sampson’s theory of retrograde menstruation and psychological trauma/emotional instability are not the cause of endometriosis.

“The womb is the center of our creative being and the heart of our womanhood. Out of our womb we give birth to babies, businesses, ideas, and dreams. It is a sacred space in the body of a woman, and one we take for granted until that endometrial tissue starts to turn up elsewhere.”

Possessing a uterus is not what makes us women or the powerful, intelligent, creative and worthy human beings we are.  It does not define our femininity.  Let me be absolutely clear: women who have lost some or all of their reproductive organs for any reason or struggle with infertility are unequivocally not one bit less of a woman, less creative, less feminine, or less worthy as human beings.  To suggest this is extremely offensive.  I am absolutely appalled that you would make such presumptuous, baseless assumptions.  Nor is endometriosis a result of taking one’s uterus for granted.  Please refer to the the comments above as to the actual processes that are believed to cause the disease.

“…endometriosis lesions grow, waver, and bleed alongside the hormonal [fluctuations] of a woman’s menstrual cycle… Her body has developed antibodies against her own tissue. Essentially, her body is attacking itself from the inside.”

Endometriosis lesions do not respond predictably to hormones.  In fact they can make their own hormones independent of whether or not the ovaries are functioning or even present.  Nor do endometriosis lesions bleed; remember it is not identical tissue to normal endometrium.  Endometriosis is not an autoimmune disease, nor is it a subconscious masochistic inner attack on one’s self.  It is important to remember that autoimmunity is the immune system attacking the organism’s own normal, healthy tissue; not of elevated immune activity or inflammatory chemicals localized around abnormal tissue.  This is to be expected around any kind of abnormal, non-self “invader”, be it an infection, cancer, endometriosis or a whole host of other abnormal circumstances.  These are two completely different concepts that are often confused.






“But endometriosis can be a message alerting her to the wisdom of her own inner paradoxes. That she is no longer centered in the wisdom of her womb. She tries to be here, there, and everywhere all at the same time, and her body tries to do the same. She take on conflicting emotions, forcing her life and body to rage a constant battle with one another other. In other words, her mind conflicts with her heart…  Often called ‘an illness of competition,'”

Endometriosis is not a disease of confused, over-competitive, unbalanced women who are incapable of coping with the demands of modern life.  I can assure you that it is not a disease of inner conflict; in fact as a group we are incredible strong, intelligent people who are fighting to get well.  I myself and most others with endometriosis do not experience any conflicts between our heads and our hearts and assuredly are quite sane.

“The Dependent: For some women, the paradox arises as the need to be both independent and dependent at the same time. She struggles to “grow up,” desiring the comfort of home and the nurturing of a loving parent. She clings to her childhood and eschews the duties of adulthood including moving out, getting married, or having a baby. On some level she sees her own mothering qualities as being outside of herself (and thus her endometriosis is outside her womb). To her, she is not a mother (whether physically, or emotionally). She is dependent on her parents’ ability to provide, nurture, and care for herself, and while she may say she wants independence, she often doesn’t feel it.”

This projection you cast on us as being emotionally immature, fragile and unable to care for ourselves or others is patronizing.  In my experience women with endometriosis are incredibly strong individuals.  We become experts of our disease and fiercely advocate for not only ourselves but for the best interests, health and education of others in our very large community.  We fight doctors who don’t listen and insurance companies for effective treatment.  We fight intentionally misleading “awareness” campaigns and drug companies.  We fight for awareness, respect and understanding.

It isn’t easy speaking publicly about such a culturally taboo disease with progress limited by archaic beliefs within the medical establishment and the lay public.  It isn’t something that is comfortable.  But it is something we do.  These are not the actions of dependent, clingy, child-like women without a strong sense of personal conviction or direction.  These are actions of those possessing profound internal strength.

“The Business Woman: For other women, the paradox arises as a need to both work, and not work. She loves to do well in business, earning a solid living for herself and establishing her independence, but she’s faced with the conflicting emotion of also wanting to stay at home, be a homemaker, be with her children, or follow her dreams. She clings to the security, power, and money associated with her day job, but deep down she’s not satisfied with this existence… Rather than looking to herself, and what she truly wants out of life, she pursues happiness and success outside herself, and thus her womb seeks the same.”

Although endometriosis has often been mislabeled a “career woman’s disease” in the past, this again is a myth.  In the past, it was common for “career women” to be diagnosed with and treated for the disease, but not because it is a pathology exclusive to them.  They simply had access to the financial, medical, educational and insurance resources and pushed for a diagnosis, things that unfortunately all too often are out of reach for lower-income and under-insured women.  This is a serious social problem.

While I am an ambitious, driven person passionate about my career of inspiring women around the world to nourish themselves sexy and live their best, happiest and healthiest lives possible, I can’t imagine life any other way.  I absolutely love what I do.  I have the honor and privilege of working with the most incredible and inspiring clients every single day and am so grateful to have the opportunity to make the world a better, healthier place.  This is my calling.  I also am blessed with a wonderful personal life, filled with amazing family and friends.  I am living my passion.  I am not at all unsatisfied with my existence or stifling my dreams.  Nonetheless, I still have endometriosis.

To suggest that those of us with careers outside of the home are stuck in unfulfilling jobs that are merely a superficial and insecure veneer hiding our true desires is degrading to women everywhere.  The wonderful thing about living in the 21st century is that we have the choice of any career path we want.  We can choose to run a company, be the CEO of our homes and families or anything in between and we can do it all in cute shoes.  All are equally meaningful options offering important contributions to society.  The choice is ours, and this is a beautiful thing.

“The Reluctant Mother: Still other women with endometriosis struggle to accept whether or not she wants kids. On a logical level, she’s reached a certain age, has crossed off a certain number of check boxes, and having children seems the obvious next step. She often starts trying to conceive without ever truly evaluating if kids are for her. Why should she not want kids? It’s only natural!! But deep down, this woman may be trying to accept motherhood where she doesn’t want to accept it.”

Out of all of these baseless metaphorical assumptions and projections, this one is by far the most hurtful.  Approximately 40% of women with endometriosis struggle with infertility.  These women desperately want a child, but cannot conceive or experience recurrent miscarriages due to pelvic inflammation, scar tissue, distorted pelvic anatomy and ovaries ravaged by endometriomata, drug therapies and surgeries.  Some are lucky and are able to conceive following effective excision surgery or assisted reproductive procedures, but for many it is too late.  Some pursue a family through adoption, which can be a very expensive, prolonged and difficult process without any guarantee of a child.

To suggest that these women are doing this to themselves on a subconscious level is deplorable.  I think most of all you owe these women a sincere public apology and retraction of your article.

“And by realigning her life to the wisdom of her womb, she can find healing, comfort, and yes, ease from the pain.”

Let me be clear that I absolutely advocate a comprehensive, integrative approach to healthcare; regardless of the disease or condition present.  Specifically regarding endometriosis, a combination of expert excision surgery, personalized nutrition, pelvic floor physical therapy, acupuncture, meditation and targeted supplementation can be extremely effective in improving the quality of our lives.  I myself have found that dietary therapy has been essential in managing my pain, as have my clients.  Stress; regardless of the source can absolutely make pain and other symptoms much more difficult to manage and can slow healing post-procedures.  No one is contesting that.

But the bottom line is that endometriosis is a serious physical disease, with physical causes that destroys lives and can have potentially very serious complications.  It is not caused by any emotional, constitutional or mental deficits, and it cannot be cured by “reconnecting” with one’s uterus (if they still have one), therapy or changing your personality.  It is also worth noting that ovarian cysts cannot be treated by eating chocolate chip cookies, as you gleefully suggest in a different article on your site.

For all of these reasons I implore you to please remove your article from your site and stop writing or speaking about endometriosis (and other women’s health issues) until you have educated yourself on the scientific facts of this disease.  As it stands, your article is setting our progress back and disseminating inaccurate information and dangerous myths of hopelessness and blame.  It actively prevents women from getting the effective and timely expert medical care they need and has disastrous consequences on the health of women and girls everywhere.

The article marginalizes a group of women who already are fighting stigma and are not taken seriously on a daily basis.  It invalidates the suffering and experiences of millions of women and girls worldwide; reducing our pain and infertility down to hysteria that can simply be wished away.  I can’t imagine you getting away with posting similar sentiments about the psychosomatic “causes” of breast cancer, diabetes, malaria or asthma.

I believe that as women it is our duty to advocate for each other and work together in order to improve our health, global equality, happiness and individual personal potentials.  We are only hurting ourselves when we dismiss and minimize the pain and suffering of one another and ignore medical facts.

We have the power to transform the world in a very positive way, but only if together we all raise our voices in unison for the greatest good of us all.

“When sleeping women wake, mountains move.” ~Chinese proverb

 

How did the article in question impact you?  Have you experienced dismissal of your symptoms and/or diagnosis (such as pushing the outdated emotional causes of endometriosis myth) by a health professional, coach or others in your life?  Please let us know on Facebook and in the comments below- we love hearing from you!

For more information about endometriosis and effective treatment, please check out these excellent, accurate, science-based sites that are not sponsored by the pharmaceutical industry:

The Endometriosis Research Center

Endopaedia

The Center for Endometriosis Care

The Center for Endo Care

Endometriosis and Nutrition

The Benefits of Integrative Treatment for Endometriosis

Love what you are reading?  Stay in the loop and never miss a recipe; subscribe to our FREE Nutritionista ezine for free expert tips, success strategies and delicious healthy recipes and receive Erin’s exclusive report of the Top Ten Foods to Banish From Your Kitchen ($24.99 value) absolutely free!  Get ready to nourish yourself sexy!

You might also like the 5 Things Never to Say to Someone with Endometriosis

Image: Pixabay

Image: Pixabay

© 2013 Nutritionista.  Erin Luyendyk, RHN.  All rights reserved.

This article is intended as general educational material only and should not be considered medical or nutritional advice.  Please consult with your personal physician before implementing any nutrition, supplement or exercise program to ensure its safety and suitability for your specific individual situation. 

54 thoughts on “Response to the Emotional Causes of Endometriosis

    1. Nutritionista Post author

      You’re welcome! The more we speak the truth and educate those who do not know the better off we will be.

      Reply
  1. Emma

    Thank you. You covered everything. I have found Elle’s article more disturbing and triggering than all the dismissive doctors I have dealt with. thank you for your perfect response.

    Reply
    1. Nutritionista Post author

      You’re welcome! I think the majority of us have experienced dismissive doctors and other people in our lives, not believing that endometriosis exists or causes the severe pain that it can.

      Reply
  2. Beth

    Thank you. Very well stated. Thank you for all the advocacy you do. We don’t deserve these labels. For many such statements open up old wounds of self blame and hurtful “theories” we have heard along the way. We must all continue to try to dispel such nonsense.

    Reply
    1. Nutritionista Post author

      You’re welcome! Thank you for your kind words. Rest assured none of us have brought this upon ourselves.

      Reply
    1. Nutritionista Post author

      You’re welcome! Thank you for sharing- they more we can get accurate information out there the better!

      Reply
    1. Nutritionista Post author

      Thank you! Yes we absolutely need to dispel the myths and stop the stigma and blaming. Having endometriosis is not anyone’s fault and is not a psychosomatic disease. It is real.

      Reply
    1. Nutritionista Post author

      You’re welcome! Please do share as much as you want- the more we can share accurate information the better!

      Reply
  3. Kimber

    Erin, thank you for shedding much needed light and truth on the subject of Endo. There are SO MANY misguided philosophies, out-dated medical theories, and absurd (archaic) emotional/spiritual ideologies floating in cyberspace. Thank you for bringing a voice of sanity & reason to anyone lost in the crazy world of Endo!

    Reply
    1. Nutritionista Post author

      Thank you Kimber, you are so welcome! I don’t understand why some people are so intent on reducing our physical disease into a psychosomatic inconvenience. We deserve better; especially when excellent long term treatment exists!

      Reply
    1. Nutritionista Post author

      Thank you so much Melanie! We need to be heard, we have been ignored and dismissed long enough. It is time for change.

      Reply
  4. Terri Heighington

    Thank you for addressing this post, for which I had never read, but after reading the paragraphs you posted here I am outraged by such comments.
    I would love to be a mother and still hope to at 42 xx

    Reply
    1. Nutritionista Post author

      Thank you Terri, you are most welcome! What I find interesting is that she has deleted all of the legitimate feedback and criticisms questioning the accuracy of her article and stating the hurt her article has caused because she finds they trigger mental health issues for her. I empathize with her pain of course and never wish physical or emotional suffering on anyone. But I don’t understand how she does not have the insight to see that her inaccurate and offensive article is triggering the same PTSD and depression response among women with endo. Rather ironic indeed.

      I wish you well on your fertility journey and sincerely hope you are able to have the baby you desire. Good luck and baby dust!

      Reply
      1. Elaine Ellis

        I think that maybe what Ms. Griffin suffers from is a horrendous lack of EMPATHY! Whilst she can understand the intricacies of her own situation (and take steps to eradicate any threat to her clearly fragile self-esteem – hence the removal of posts that set her straight about the reality of Endo) she is evidently at a loss to metaphorically put herself in someone else’s shoes, and to envisage the hurt she has caused genuine Endo sufferers (including myself) through her ill-chosen words and insensitive diatribe.
        It is a pity that such a devastating attack on women came from a FELLOW WOMAN. Therein lies the irony!
        Still, perhaps now I can better understand why, generations after the Suffragette Movement fought for women’s rights, women are still on a less-than-equal-footing with men. Why the “glass ceiling” exists. Why sex workers and topless dancers kid themselves that prostitution is “empowering” for women. Why “bimbos” still think life is all about snaring a husband. Why feminine “attractiveness” is increasingly equated with ridiculously oversized silicone breasts, fake tan, fake hair, fake nails, an alarming excess of make-up, and equally alarming lack of clothes!
        I guess I just have to accept that there are WOMEN out there who ENCOURAGE this sort of thing!

        Reply
    1. Nutritionista Post author

      Thank you Rachel! Yes we all need to speak up. I believe that if we all speak the truth in unison in an organized way our voices will be heard and we can make incredible changes for the better.

      Reply
  5. Jennifer

    Thank you!!!! I actually had tears reading this simply because what was said in the article mentioned was so far off base. We hear such non sense so often, that having someone critically, educated with a gift for communication respond was like breath of fresh air. I felt personally betrayed by the article mentioned. It was, in my view, a perfect definition of friendly fire. So thank you for responding.

    Reply
    1. Nutritionista Post author

      You are so welcome Jennifer! I think it can be very difficult for those who do not have the disease or watch someone close to them suffer to truly understand what we go through. But, that doesn’t justify their spreading of myths and insulting projections about us or the disease we live with. Thank you so much for your kind words. We won’t be silenced. <3

      Reply
  6. Diana Orsi

    I was so disturbed by the article that my heart sunk! I felt like I did when I was being dismissed by all the doctors in the beginning of my battle all over again. ” your just depressed, go out to dinner with your husband” and ” it’s all in your head”. So now it’s also my mind is so out of wack with my body that itnis my fault in some disturbing way after all.
    Thank you for the very educated and intelligent facts you gave to dispell this ridiculous assumptions of the uninformed hypothesis of her article.

    Reply
    1. Nutritionista Post author

      Thank you Diana! It is a travesty how as individuals and a group we are consistently dismissed by doctors, other health professionals and the general population. We’re not crazy, it is not in our heads. It is a physical disease causing physical pain and symptoms.

      Reply
  7. Carmen

    Erin

    I always love the articles you post. This one is especially helpful to communicate my symptoms to friends and family who do not understand it or who thoughtlessly trivialize it. In addition, you’ve given me great arguing points to use in conversations regarding endo to help dispel misinformation about the nature and severity of the pains.

    Reply
    1. Nutritionista Post author

      Thank you so much Carmen! Knowledge is power, the more we can dispel the vast amounts of misinformation out here the better we will be.

      Reply
  8. Summer

    Thank you for posting this! The blogger was insensitive to women who have endo. My endosisters are always there for me and they were able to get this insensitive article taken down. <3

    Reply
    1. Nutritionista Post author

      You’re welcome Summer- I am so glad you like it! I agree the article in question was insensitive and full of myths and projections; no scientific facts. That is the one great thing about the endo community- we always have each other’s backs. :)

      Reply
  9. Caroline

    Thank YOU for taking the time to write this passionate, well-researched response to the blog post in question. May you continue to be inspired in your work and in your life–your words and your work are making a positive difference. I went through a lot of soul searching this past year after my own cancer diagnosis, as there are so many messages in our society about personal responsibility for our health/life situations. I think you so eloquently show here that we have a life we inherit to live, but we can then make choices from there . . . meaning a woman may have endo (which is not her fault!) but can integrate approaches (i.e. surgery, dietary shifts, stress reduction, etc.) to best meet her needs. Thank you for writing this–I think it applies to so many health situations, not just endo. The endo world is fortunate to have you advocating and speaking up!!!

    Reply
    1. Nutritionista Post author

      Thank you so much Caroline! I agree completely. Endo isn’t our fault, but there is much that can be done to improve our situation if we are empowered to learn accurate facts. We don’t bring this on ourselves with our thoughts, careers or personality, but there are great treatments and strategies that are very effective. Endometriosis is not a hopeless disease.

      I hope your health has much improved from where you were at a year ago. I have no doubt that you inspire those around you to live their best and healthiest life every day. xo

      Reply
  10. Pingback: second guessing « dropsofscarlet

  11. EndoVictim

    Honestly, I think MindBodyGreen is a real piece of s—. Maybe she wasn’t trying to be, but the least she could have done is research the experiences of people with endometriosis, a disease that she CLEARLY does not suffer from. I’m extremely bitter over that article. How could anyone possibly be so disingenuous and still call herself an “expert.” What a freaking joke.

    Reply
  12. Elaine Ellis

    Thank you, thank you, thank you for this! I cannot describe how offended I was by the post “The Emotional Causes Of Endometriosis”. What’s worse is that the cowardly author has removed and blocked the “comments” section of her post, effectively preventing genuine Endometriosis sufferers, such as myself, from putting her straight.

    The post contained some major myths and misinformation, and is a huge disservice to Endo sufferers. Truly, we would LOVE to “heal ourselves” – were THAT possible, then I am absolutely 100% certain that I would NOT have gone ahead with the FOUR painful surgeries that I have so far required just to keep my Endo at bay!

    I cannot believe that she suggests that all women are BORN with Endo. Nowhere in the volumes of research that have been undertaken to date to find the causes of Endo is THAT one listed! The truth is that Endo remains a mysterious, and little-understood disease; the causes of which remain speculative. We Endo sufferers certainly DO NOT need further confusion and confabulation added to the matter!

    I have suffered from @ 2002 with symptoms, and was not diagnosed until 2011. So that meant 9 years of agonising chronic pain, bloating, diarrhoea, heavy periods, anaemia, fatigue, vomiting, feeling faint… not just during menstruation, but persistently. I seriously suspect that I’d have to be some sort of perverse MASOCHIST to want to do THAT to myself! This is Endo we are talking about – not MUNCHHAUSEN’S SYNDROME! Endo – a genuine, bona-fide PHYSICAL health problem.

    Now, before you go telling me that I am “out of touch with my inner femininity”, or “emotionally void”, allow me to inform you that not only am I a qualified Social Worker, but I am also currently undertaking a Postgraduate qualification in Psychology. So, I have a pretty GOOD understanding of emotions – both personally, and professionally.

    Yes, women with Endometriosis go through the “emotional wringer”. THAT I can totally accept. But it is not that we CAUSE the illness by some vague, pseudo-psycho-somatic mechanism! Our emotions, and what we FEEL, are utterly genuine and natural responses to having a chronic and debilitating illness. An illness that affects us in what ought to be our most productive, and fertile, years – the time when most of us would want to be completing our education, working, and raising a family.

    For women like me, with Endo, NOTHING comes easily. Things that others take for granted are things WE must think hard about. I ask you this… Do any of us grow up thinking we may need IVF? Do any of us anticipate having to choose between pain control/symptom relief, and our own fertility? Do any of us think we may spend the so-called best years of our lives with a chronic and debilitating illness? Growing up, do we envisage infertility, or employment problems, or constant need of medication, or multiple surgeries, or inability to fully participate in hobbies/work/social life due to horrendous symptoms? Do ANY of us ever envisage getting Endo?

    NO? Thought that might be the response! Truth be told, many of us had never even heard of Endo, until we were DIAGNOSED with it!

    Women with Endo are NOT “crackers”, “hysterical”, “malingering”, “nuts”… or any of the other offensive and insensitive labels brandished so frequently at them. If we ARE in any way “emotional” it is because we must deal on a daily basis with an illness that negatively impacts upon the quality of our lives. We are not “reluctant mothers”, failing to resolve our “do we, don’t we start a family?” debate. We are, instead, often desperately longing for a child, whilst wrestling with the stark reality of infertility. We are not “selfish business women” putting career before family. We are often struggling to hold down a job or education that we worked long and hard for, fighting to hide our symptoms whilst at work or in education, frightened that because of our illness (and need for time off sick, or to have treatment) we may be overlooked for training and promotion. We may be highly intelligent, capable women; yet all that many employers see is our disease (in a negative light!). Yet more of us only have our careers left – faced with the certainty of infertility, why should we not seek to fill our lives with something that we enjoy doing? We can put all the energy and passion that fertile women may put into child-rearing into our career, or education, instead. Whose right is it to say that we should not do this?

    Women with Endo do need emotional support, I will not argue with that. Just as they need more empathic and effective treatment overall. The treatment of Endo should be HOLISTIC in nature; humans are BOTH emotional AND physical beings. The treatment and support given to Endo sufferers SHOULD address both mind and body…

    But NOT in some “hippy-dippy”, “crystal waving”, “omm-chanting”, pseudo, psychobabble manner. Women with Endo need to be addressed as individuals, as humans. THEY know their own bodies, minds and symptoms best. THEY know what issues they wish to have addressed, be they physical, or emotional. Care should be just that – CARE. Tailored to the individual; and directed by the patient. I believe they call it “patient-centred care”, and it was what I was, as a Social Worker, taught to strive for.

    All too often, humans become lazy, and use “short cuts”. Blaming patients is symptomatic of this. We stop seeing the individual, and just make sweeping generalizations, instead. We label, stigmatize, pathologize, and discriminate against. We introduce PREJUDICE.

    Prejudice feeds on ignorance… and there is already TOO MUCH ignorance regarding Endo to see it added-to in this most disappointing manner.

    Reply
    1. Nutritionista Post author

      You’re so welcome Elaine! I am so glad my article resonates with you and speaks the truth about the science and experience of women with endometriosis. I sincerely hope that Ms. Griffin educates herself on the reality and science of this terrible disease and retracts her harmful and hurtful article. I hope you are able to find effective treatment and meaningful relief very soon.

      Reply
  13. freya Goodfellow

    thank you for writing this, it says everything I feel and have been living with endometriosis and adenomyosis. Her article is so offensive. I hope she does remove it.

    Reply
    1. Nutritionista Post author

      Thank you Freya, you are most welcome! Her article was a terrible disservice to women with endo, as were Dr. Drew’s grossly incorrect comments about endometriosis, IC, gastritis and lactose intolerance on Loveline last night. Truly a disgrace.

      Reply

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *