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Laura

My name is Laura, and I am 23 and from Perth Australia, this is my story.


“You have no uterus” Four words that completely changed my life. I met my first boyfriend when I was 15 and decided at 16, we were ready to move our relationship to the next level. In the moment, everything was perfect until it didn’t work the way I thought it was meant to, I knew something was wrong. The following week my mum decided it was best we book a doctor’s appointment as we had a few theories as to what was wrong and why at 16, I hadn’t gotten my period yet. Was it an infused hymen? Did I have Vaginismus? or was I just a late bloomer and the mental side of sex had gotten to me, and I was just nervous? Only if I had known the heartbreak I was about to face in the coming weeks. I saw my local GP a week later and was referred to see a gynaecologist who first wanted me to have an ultrasound just to make sure everything was in working order but based on what I had told her in the back of her mind she speculated MRKH but didn’t want to raise any concern until I had the ultrasound.

 

I don’t remember much from that day, I try not to as it is easily the worst day of my entire life, soul-crushing, personality changing but what I wouldn’t find till years later, empowering. Walking out of the ultrasound clinic and being told I had a condition I had never heard of was scary, I had no idea where to start. In the span of two weeks, I went from talking about future baby names to now learning about surrogacy and the thought of never even being a mother. Where do you even go from here? I was then back to the gynaecologist who introduced me to dilation and why sex didn’t work for me on that not-so-perfect day. I had around 1cm of vaginal length, so I had a long way to go for sex to work and be comfortable. I stayed overnight at a woman's hospital in the city about 45 minutes from my house on the first day of my dilation. To this day I still don’t really understand why they made me stay the night. I assume it was because I was dilating regularly throughout the day for the first time, and they wanted to be able to check on me. I remember one of the nurses coming into the room while I was dilating followed by a group of student nurses. Thankfully I was under the covers, but it was still one of the most mortifying moments of my life and I'm sure the students were confused too.

 

I remember well how incredibly isolating this was. I couldn’t exactly have my family come and keep me company during the day as I had to dilate so most of my day was spent staring out the window watching the cars drive by and people watching. What makes it even more like I was in a movie, it started to rain. I'm sitting on a window ledge watching the rain fall down a window while I'm crying. I started to process all the moments I was going to miss out on like taking a pregnancy test and showing my partner with a cute surprise, taking bump update pictures to share with my best friends, and feeling my baby kick inside me, that moment after birth when you hold the life you just created for the last 9 months. I couldn’t wait to be out of the hospital and be at home, so I wasn’t here by myself drowning in my own thoughts. I fell into an ongoing in-and-out depression from here. I felt so isolated from all the other girls at school. Couldn’t join in on normal “girly” conversations as I didn’t get a period. Sometimes with people I hadn't met, I would lie and join in the conversation just to have at least 5 minutes of normality in the craziness that was going on inside my head.

 

After about 6 months, I was finally having somewhat normal sex. I rushed my dilation a lot as I just wanted to stop and not think about my MRKH every second of the day. This caused a lot of problems, bleeding, scar tissue and more trips to the gynaecologist. It wasn’t till around the year mark after my diagnosis everything was in working order, my sex life was normal and pain-free I had done some counselling and I was managing. Babies and pregnant women became something I actively avoided as they became a massive trigger to me. I skipped classes at school that had anything to do with the reproduction system like sex education. It was taking over my life. Fast forward to 19 when MRKH took force and was out to crush any part of good mental health I had. I was single after almost 4 years. Never had any other sexual partners that knew how my body worked. I found myself in a toxic mindset of one-night stands that fuelled my self-confidence as I couldn’t get pregnant, so it was an “attractive” quality I was told more than once.

 

I was drinking and doing drugs heavily for about 2 years avoiding help and not thinking about my MRKH. After failed relationships and one too many hangovers, I said enough was enough. I got the help I needed from some fantastic psychologists, who focused on me and got me to a better place. Being told I had MRKH was one of the worst days of my life and I really didn’t see an end to it all. I thought I was always going to be stuck in this vicious cycle of bad mental health and self-sabotage but it gets better, I promise, each day is a new day and a new day means new studies and research creating new pathways for us MRKH sisters. Uterus transplants are already being trailed in Australia so who knows where I’ll be in the next 10 years, I could be on baby number two by then, this is what keeps me going. MRKH is tough, it’s like having a second personality, sometimes I hide from it, sometimes I wear it proudly. I’ll be forever proud of myself that I found my voice to tell my story. 

 

I am now in the most amazing relationship and work on my mental health whenever it needs it, doing things to help when I am feeling triggered. I decided to make a page for my MRKH and my journey and it has helped massively being able to educate others, share my feelings and connect with other MRKH sisters but most importantly, Stars. I joined Stars around February/March. I joined as I had found a group of girls that made me feel like me again, that made me feel like I wasn’t less of a woman, that I was accepted. 

Being given an opportunity to write openly about my journey with others and share my life is a massive step in the right direction to dealing with a life with MRKH. It isn’t easy but it is empowering. Us MRKH sisters are strong and can fight even the toughest battles. I am looking forward to writing more pieces focusing on sex, mental health and all the other uncomfortable dark sides of MRKH.

 

Now I am the Stars Well-Being Coordinator. I love my role, I have always been a person that loves helping others (hence why I am studying to be a nurse) I have a passion for trying to shine light into other peoples lives and that’s what my role allows me to do! Stars is the most amazing and caring community, I’m so proud to be a part of it.

 

My future plans are to finish my degree, continue to advocate for MRKH and share my story, join a path that allows to me specialise in woman’s health and help other girls/women like me!

 

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