Living with PCOS: The beginning of my story

It all started in my 4th year of university. It had probably begun nearly 10 years earlier, but that was when I first began to be alerted to the fact that something was seriously wrong.

Though my cycle had always been erratic, it seemed to be getting worse. When I went through a period of 6 months with absolutely no cycle at all, a friend finally brought it to my attention that it just wasn't normal, and I needed to see a doctor. I was oblivious to the needs and concerns of my body back at that time, but I thought sure, I'll go. No big deal.

My family doctor ran some blood tests on me and then referred me to an OB-GYN for more testing. Following more bloodwork, a lengthy personal history, an ultrasound and a physical exam, she shared the news with me. I had Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome.

When I asked what it meant, she handed me a little brochure on the topic, told me I'd need to be on birth control pills most of my life, and that I could come see her when I wanted to try to get pregnant.

Stunned, I asked what I could do about it. Surely, I could change my eating, my lifestyle, I could exercise more! Something!

She flatly said that no, there was nothing I could do about it. It was just the way my body was, and I needed to deal with it, she stated emphatically, as she scribbled a prescription for the pills.

I left saddened, but also infuriated and impassioned. I went back to the university and straight to the office of our on-campus nurse, and told her the news. She agreed, sympathetically at least, that it was a challenging diagnosis, but that there was much I could do to help my body become healthier. She took a few women's health books off of her shelf and began to photocopy. I left with a large stack of papers, focused mainly on the basics of nutrition, and what a women's body needs to function well.

It was the beginning of my journey into natural health, nourishing foods and believing that I actually had a role to play in stewarding the health and well being of my body. God is still sovereign, and disease and death are inevitable aspects of living in a sinful world. But, He does not leave us hopeless or without the ability to pursue greater health.

More to come…

About Stephanie Langford

Stephanie Langford has a passion for sharing ideas and information for homemakers who want to make healthy changes in their homes, and carefully steward all that they've been given. She has written three books geared to helping families live more naturally and eat real, whole foods, without being overwhelmed, without going broke and with simple meal planning. She is the creator of Keeper of the Home.

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Comments

  1. Thank you for sharing your story. PCOS is challenging, and hard to always have to “manage” but it is doable. I agree whole heartedly with your statement “It was the beginning of my journey into natural health, nourishing foods and believing that I actually had a role to play in stewarding the health and well being of my body. ”

    Many Blessings to you, looking forward to reading more on this lovely site.
    ~Jenny C.

  2. Hello ive just recently been diagnosed with PCOS ive noticed that something was wrong years ago but the dr i was seeing never said that it could be PCOS until recently when i pressed the issue that something was wrong im kind of angry because i could of did things to make it better as far as eating right & exercising i want to get pregnent now im not so sure that i can have kids im 23 yrs old & im depressed terribly about this i dont know how much more i can handle…

  3. I know I’m about 2 years late in reading this (I just began blogging), but I — too – have PCOS… but also have 4 healthy children. God is amazing! Love these postivei stories! I see that you have 3 children now. Are you done? Anxious to see/hear about the continuation of your PCOS story.
    .-= Kat @ TodaysCliche.com´s last blog ..Seriously? Guess I’ve been married too long…?? =-.

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  5. Stephanie-

    I am so interested to find out what you learn about naturally helping this problem. I, too, have been struggling with “feminine” problems for a few years now. Ever since I had kids, really. But since Baby Titus was born (a year and a half ago), my “problem” has gotten worse. My period has been lasting for about 25 days out of the month, stopping for only a few short days before it picks up again. The doctors have done all kinds of tests, asked tons of questions, and put me on several kinds of birth control. Nothing has worked. I haven’t been back to the doc’s in quite a long time now. It’s only gotten worse, but I’m afraid that if I go back they will suggest a Hysterectomy, which I am totally not even considering! I’ve been trying to research natural methods to help, but I haven’t started any kind of regimen yet. It would help if I knew what the problem was, but I don’t even have a name to call it. I’m thinking that vitamins and diet change might help. I don’t know. I can’t wait to hear what things you have found to help you. Thanks so much for sharing such a personal aspect of your life. I know many of us struggle with similar issues.

  6. I just found your blog through Biblical Womanhood, and after reading your post immediately though of the book, “Endometriosis: A Key to Healing and Fertility Through Nutrition” by Dian Shepperson Mills & Michael Vernon. I’m not sure if you’ve read it, but I know it also covers PCOS. It’s a definate nutrition book, so anyone seriously interested in health/biology would learn alot from it.

  7. I’m looking forward to hearing the rest of your journey!
    :-)

  8. Thank you for sharing. I look forward to future posts regarding PCOS. I was diagnosed with it about 7years ago. It has been a long hard road. The only thing that has helped is prayer, diet, and exercise. Drugs only made it worse and created more symptoms. Now 73 pounds lighter the symptoms are fading away. I encourage all to obtain a copy of Nourishing Traditions cookbook by Sally Fallon. I also would like to encourage all to check out the website for Insulite Laboratories. There is hope!

  9. Thank you so much for sharing your story. I love your recipes, so I check your site from time to time, and I believe I was meant to visit today and find this post. My gynecologist is trying to convince me to go on bc pills because I’ve been irregular all my life (I’m 25), but my husband and I are resisting, both because we want to have as many children as God gives us and because I don’t want to put unnecessary chemicals in my body. I’m set to have an ultrasound next week because I have terrible pain (cysts?) and cannot get pregnant. I look forward to reading the rest of your story and would appreciate any guidance/advice. THANK YOU!!!

  10. I have the same diagnosis, and am an adoptive mom. I would like to get my PCOS under control for my health’s sake. I’ll be reading…

  11. Thanks for this post! I too had a very erratic cycle and after one 4-month span with none at all, I was finally diagnosed with PCOS. My OB/GYN immediately perscribed me bc pills as well, which I naively took for about one month before the side effects became too much to handle. My Endocrinologist perscribed me medicaton for my acne without even talking with me about whether or not I wanted it. I didn’t really think my acne was THAT bad! Anyways, I agree with you that there are better ways to manage PCOS. I have been trying to manage it with diet and exercise for about 2 years now, and managed to get my periods back to a relatively consistant state. Right now it has been 4 months since I had one… but that is because I am pregnant!!!! :-) And without any fertility treatments thankyouverymuch!

  12. Genevieve says:

    I just came across your blog and was interested in reading it because of the title, I have PCOS too, I had to fight for my diagnosis even though I knew for years that is what was wrong with me, I was on bc for my young adulthood, I was not able to conceive but I do have two beautiful children through adoption. I just wanted to say thank you for sharing your story.

  13. Looking forward to the rest of story. I find it amazing how natural living has helped you in this area. Can’t wait to hear more. Oh, I’ve e-mailed you before letting you know that I added your site to my blogroll on my blog. I just wanted to let you know I added your button too.
    God bless!

  14. Coming from another woman with PCOS, I’m infuriated that your doctor prescribed birth control pills for your PCOS! OMG I’m just livid!

    I can’t wait to hear the rest! I know natural health has helped me with my condition!

  15. I have PCOS as well and experienced a similar situation…although, I had to fight for my diagnosis! Can’t wait to read more!!

  16. Hi Stephanie,
    I have enjoyed your blog for some time now. I’ve never commented before. I love reading what you have to share about nutrition. I too have PCOS. I was diagnosed a year and a half ago. The doctor did the same thing to me…tons of prescriptions and of course, the birth control pill. The side effects were awful!

    Thankfully, 3 months ago I began seeing an MD that practices natural medicine. I’m now on natural hormones and eating a much better diet. I can’t believe how well it works!

    I am looking forward to your future posts about this!

    Thanks!

  17. Thanks for sharing your story. I look forward to reading the rest of it!

  18. great story to share…thanks woman!

  19. I’m looking forward to the “rest of the story.”

  20. Oh, Stephanie, I cannot WAIT to hear the rest of this story and about how you have been able to manage your PCOS. I have not been officially, but I’m becoming more and more convinced that that is what is wrong with me. My cycles have been completely erratic since I was about 16 (I was even on my cycle on my wedding day because there was no way for me to plan around it–yuck!). Every doctor I have been to has just said, “There’s nothing wrong with you–you just have irregular cycles.” Then they put me on one birth control after another. As a very young woman (I was on some form of birth control from age 16 to 21 and I’m now 25), I never thought to question these doctors, or the birth control. But finally, I couldn’t take the side effects anymore, and I quit. Since then, I’ve learned more about what birth control really is, both from a health and spiritual perspective, and I want no part of it. However, we recently suffered a miscarriage, and the doctor wants me to go back on bc so I don’t get pregnant again right away. Grrrrr!

    ANYway…didn’t mean to type a comment as long as your post! I am just so excited to see what God has done in your life in this area. I don’t think I’ve ever commented, but I read your blog quite often, and I so appreciate how you present the concepts of living naturally, all within the context of first living as godly women. Thank you!

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