Conceiving despite PCOS

Laura was diagnosed with PCOS, but despite the odds she managed to conceive in 2016. She tells us her story and share what she thinks was crucial into helping her conceive her baby. A real testimonial of hope for all of you that have PCOS.

For those who have been trying to conceive, and have yet to succeed, I’ve been there, I’ve lived through the heartache of wanting a baby, and after years of trying, my dream came true. 

PCOS did not stop me from conceiving

When I was nineteen I was diagnosed with Poly-Cystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS), my weight ballooned, my periods were irregular. I had depression, and I suddenly felt like i was faulty. Having PCOS meant that my ovaries had fluid filled follicles on them,it affects hormones, and disrupts periods, it can cause unwanted body hair, and of course, fertility issues. 

The doctor told me that my chances of conceiving were very low. I know at the time I wasn’t ready to be a mother, and although I was in a relationship, we both felt too young. I admit now that i was a comfort eater, not just because of my PCOS, but I had a few things going on in my home life, and that, of course, didn’t help my weight.

I became more depressed. I met my partner Dan in our last year of college. Once college finished we promise we would make it work between us, as we lived a bit of a distance away from each other, and lived on campus during term time. No one thought we would stay together once college was finished. But nearly nineteen years later, we are still together. 

When I was about 25 i had a scan on my ovaries, and one was drastically smaller than the other, so I felt like all hope was lost. The nurse said I had a very strong womb though. Dan and I decided, not long after that, to try for a baby, and so we started having unprotected sex.

The months turned into years, and we had seen so many friends get married and within months they would be expecting a baby. I got fed up of everyone asking when we would have children, or the “You don’t understand, you don’t have children” kind of comments. 

Do you have PCOS? Pop to NHS PCOS  for more information.

Should I adopt?

I had friends, most of whom are parents, say “Why don’t you adopt?” or “ You may be an aunt one day” or “It will happen when you won’t expect it”.

Yes, the last statement is true, but if people are unaware of your condition or don’t understand it, then this can make you feel almost as bad as a negative test.

For me, adoption wasn’t a thought. In my heart I was doubtful I could love a child who wasn’t my own flesh and blood, and that wasn’t the right choice for me. 

Coping with disappointment

How did I cope so many years with no success of being a mum? I worked, I kept myself busy, I knew Dan wouldn’t leave me and that no matter what he would be by my side. The only thing was I felt guilty that I couldn’t make him the father I knew he wanted to be. I learnt to get through that guilt, how? In honesty I don’t know. We just kept busy. 

What changes brought on conception?

In 2013 my mum and I joined our local Gym and i got hooked on zumba. After a few years I had become great friends with my instructor, and she suggested I teach zumba. I was a full time carer for my elderly grandad at the time, and going to zumba was my respite. I did zumba 6 days a week. I watched what I ate, I lost nearly five stone. I felt amazing. 

In 2016, my life changed forever, and at first, not in a good way, I had an accident in which I ended up with a concussion, and that led to Post Concussion syndrome, my mental health was non existent, and my world fell apart.

I was diagnosed with anxiety, and I couldn’t leave the house. I gave up my part time job, and I felt so lost. By now, you are probably wondering where this is going, but trust me, I believe this was a turning point. 

I got a bit better, with support from friends and family, and I managed to get back to zumba, my confidence was returning, when one of my zumba friends sadly passed away, her dad approached me, and wanted to say thank you for being there, and he booked me a reiki session to help relax me.

It was such a pleasant experience, and I 100% believe that, plus my zumba, helped me conceive. 

Finding out I was pregnant

In the summer of 2016 my mum and stepdad took us out for the day, and i get travel sick, so halfway to our destination, I asked my mum to pull over as i was going to be sick.

The next morning I kept being sick and Dan told me to get a pregnancy test. I said to him that it was pointless and that I’d do it to prove him wrong, well, I was shocked, it came back positive.

I rushed out and bought two more tests, both were very strong positives. I was teaching Zumba up until I was 30+ weeks pregnant with the support of my instructor.

In March 2017, My son was born via emergency C Section weighing 7lbs 4 ounces. My dream of being a mum had come true. 

Tips on conceiving with PCOS 

I can appreciate anyone who is having difficulty conceiving, especially with such illnesses as PCOS, and that there is hope for those who are trying. 

After so many years so trying to conceive, I think that the best advice I can give is don’t give up. 

  • Eating a balanced diet, by cutting out processed foods, watching those carbohydrates and refined sugars, which can cause spikes in insulin levels.
  • Exercise – *groan* I know, this is the hard bit. But my advice to you is to find something that you enjoy. I found zumba and it really did change me life. It isn’t like having exercise, yes you sweat, burn calories, but because it’s also dancing, and the music is great, it’s like a party. 
  • Remember – the doctor isn’t always right. They were wrong about me, and I’m glad. 
  • Feel like giving up? Find something to distract your mind from babies. I was happy for my friends who seemed to get pregnant easily, but I also felt like I was dying inside. So finding hobbies that keep you busy. I love cross stitching, and reading. 

Maintaining a healthy lifestyle is key. I noticed that when I started losing the weight, my periods became more regular, I wanted to eat healthier. 

I also truly believe that my reiki session helped my body to relax and it balances the body.

I nearly gave up for my chance of happiness so I do hope that you found this article inspiring, and helpful in some way. Whether you have PCOS or not sure why you haven’t conceived but still trying, I wish you all the best and that it can happen.

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