This is the thing I hate most about PCOS. I can deal with the fact it’s easy to gain weight and harder to lose, I can deal with adult acne, I can deal with the fact that fertility may be an issue when I want to have children. But the hair is the part that makes me so self conscious.
Hirsutism: Abnormal growth of hair on a woman’s face and body.
The irony that polycystic ovarian syndrome affects ovaries and makes the body produce more of the male hormones is not lost on me. Every single aspect of this disease attacks the very parts of us that make us women, and its not fair! I say this all the time, especially when I’m having a bad day. It’s not fair! Say it with me!
IT’S NOT FAIR!
And the worst thing that someone can say to us when we say that is “Well, life isn’t fair” I mean talk about patronising. And what I want to say to those people is:
No, life isn’t fair. So, think about the unfairness of life, and then chuck on the fact that I’m living with a chronic illness, which can give me acne, make me infertile, gain weight and grow hair where I don’t want it.
I’ve always been hairy, but I’m blonde so it wasn’t always that noticeable. One person did notice the hair on my arms, and that has never bothered me, in fact I like the hair on my arm, someone told me once if you have thick hair on your arms in means you’re strong, and I do and I am. As I got older I noticed hair where it shouldn’t be growing, it started on my tummy and I noticed it when I was about 16, really thick and dark.
I now have unwanted hair on my tummy, chest, shoulders, chin and face, and I’ve tried loads of stuff to get rid of it. I tried hair removable creams and shaving and I’ve even had a course of electrolysis hair removal therapy, but it grows back. And nothing is more demoralising for me than starting the morning with a shave, and if I don’t for a few days, I then sit in a boiling hot office with a scarf wrapped around me to hide it.
Some women may not be bothered with the hair, but if you are, I want you to know that you are not alone. I at least am one person you can turn to, and I’m sure there are other people that struggle with it too.
I class myself as a feminist, but I’m still feminine. I want to be a woman, and I want to look like one. No one talks about unwanted hair, because its embarrassing. The only portrayal of it I’ve seen is Keala Settle’s character Lettie Lutz in the Greatest Showman. Oh god, when I saw her come on the screen I almost cried, and for a moment I thought to myself, oh my god, I could grow my hair, I could be just like her, but then I looked in the mirror and saw the hair growing out again and immediately wanted to cry, because there is a difference between the cinema theatre and the real world.
In the dark of the cinema, I could have been Lettie Lutz, I could have been a bearded lady, I could have thought “Fuck it, let’s just accept who I am” because that was the spirit of the movie, but as soon as I walked out, I was the same insecure girl who just wants to look normal at the end of the day, and have smooth skin all the time.
I can live with most of the things that PCOS causes, I may not like them, but I can live with them. But growing hair where I don’t want it is the worst symptom.
What about you? What symptom of PCOS do you suffer from the most, or that affects your daily life the most? Leave comment below or in the contact me page if you don’t want to share it with everyone. I will try and reply to every one.