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Many people are forced to live with painful reproductive health conditions — largely ignored by the medical community. Endometriosis, PCOS (Polycystic Ovary Syndrome), fibroids, and adenomyosis for example are reproductive health issues that too many women, trans, and nonbinary people have had to silently struggle with for years before getting a diagnosis or treatment. Many of us have been dismissed or told repeatedly, “It’s just a bad period.” Nope! 


The challenges 

These conditions often make it difficult to get pregnant, and can cause pain so severe that they get in the way of relationships and everyday activities like working, going to school, or having sex. Physical challenges aside, research shows that people with these conditions have higher rates of anxiety, depression, self-harm, as well as a lower quality of life. It can be really hard to get accurate diagnoses and expert care, because elements of white supremacy — including things like sexism, racism, and transphobia — show up in health care, just as they do in other areas of society. 

What we can do

  1. Raise awareness: Start conversations about these conditions with the people you love and care about. Use trusted resources — like this website and the expert providers at Planned Parenthood health centers— for accurate information.
  2. Demand good care: See a nurse or doctor if something doesn’t feel right. Be direct and persistent if you know you need care, and get a second opinion if you don’t feel good about how your condition is going.   
  3. Advocate: Speak up in your community and online to demand more funding to research these conditions. Join local, national, or global networks who are raising awareness and providing community support. Tell your state and federal representatives that all people deserve care that’s easy to get — especially for people who have been marginalized by systemic racism and discrimination.

By sharing our stories, demanding better care, and advocating for more equitable research, we can improve health care in our communities. 

Let’s create a reproductive future with health care for all, no matter what. 


Tags: endometriosis, hormonal-imbalance, ovaries, pcos, polycystic-ovarian-syndrome, adenomyosis, fibroids

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