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It’s the Health Equivalent of Learning Geography by Having War Declared On You

Post Published: 26 April 2010
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Category: Dear Thyroid Letters
This post currently has 23 responses. Leave a comment

Dear Thyroid,

Thanks for scaring the living shit out of me when I learned about you and your acting out. I’m sure you’d heard about Uncle Donnie and what a loonie he is, with being hypothyroid and all. I was terrified that you were going to turn me into him! It took Mom and Dad to talk me down off of that branch and assure me that I was far more sane than he. I really don’t need,   any more stress. I was planning my wedding for God’s sake!

Speaking of my wedding . . . couldn’t you have normalized a little sooner, so I didn’t have to be FAT on my wedding day and feeling fat and insecure on my honeymoon? We were at St. Maarten! A beautiful, friendly island and half the time all I could think about was how to dress so I didn’t look monstrously huge compared to the other recent brides honeymooning on the island.

Thanks for messing with my already insecure body image! *sigh* Ya know something? You suck!

But you know what else? We’re lucky. We married a man who is the picture of sainthood and patience. He doesn’t understand why I wear out easily or why my libido disappeared after he proposed (by the way, that was NOT COOL!!). I didn’t understand that one either until I started doing research. Stupid thyroid!

Why did you have to start acting out anyway? You know I don’t like needles. ICK! And having to have my blood drawn every few months sucks. Speaking of which, why are you messing with my cholesterol? Seriously? I’m 29 years old, I shouldn’t have high cholesterol! Although last test, you were normal and my cholesterol was slightly elevated, but I’m still blaming you, thyroid.

I had started eating better at that point, too!! You seemed happy with,  it. Primarily fruits and veggies and plant-based proteins with free-range chicken and wild-caught fish. Except soy. I know, we’ve been over this. No soy. Soy is bad. Fine with me! I can’t stand tofu anyway. But you do know that,  soy is in everything, right? Oh and we’re cutting out sugar too. Maybe keeping raw honey. No, no agave nectar. Weren’t you there when I read about how highly processed that was? What? You’d taken a nap? Fucker! You cant take naps on me! But still you sent my cholesterol up some. Totally not cool!

The hubby isn’t going to like what that does to the grocery bill, but it will be better for you and me, and him if I can convince him to jump on board. He’s a meat and potatoes and highly processed kind of guy. But you knew that.

Okay here’s the deal: if I stick to pretty strict diet of unprocessed and natural foods, will you start behaving the way you should? Maybe then I won’t have to take the Synthroid? And you can quit messing with my cholesterol levels? You’ll give me back my libido, my energy levels and I’ll start exercising and taking care of myself the way I should have a long time ago.

I will say, that through this you’ve made me more aware of how things work and what works better for us, but it’s a really shitty way of teaching it!

BEHAVE! NOW! (Thank you for being mildly hypothyroid though! I’d rather you not be, but if you have to be, mild is better than nothing!)

Sincerely,

Em

(Bio) I’m 29 years old and have been married for just over a year and half. I work full time as a receptionist while I’m trying to figure out what I want to do with my life. I was diagnosed as hypothyroid 2 years ago, right before my wedding. I am mildly hypothyroid and it is completely under control with my medication. I do have a blog that primarily showcases my weight loss journey and occasionally touches on my thyroid battle.

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23 Responses to “It’s the Health Equivalent of Learning Geography by Having War Declared On You”

  1. Gwen says:

    One important note to remember Em – when your weight fluctuates, get retested. Otherwise you may go hyper and that’s why your uncle may seem “loonie” at times. I’m learning all this the hard way and don’t want ANYONE to suffer like I did and am. Good luck to you!!!! Your lucky to have gotten this at a time when this blog is possible! It’s been extemely helpful to me 🙂

  2. Hi Em,

    I am so sorry you are having to go through this and, in particular, that your thyroid decided to gatecrash your wedding. Rather poor etiquette if you ask me and unbelievably bad timing! For me one of the worst symptoms of hypothyroidism is lack of libido. On top of that, I have to take the pill for elevated male hormones and I’m sure that just serves to suppress my libido further. Having no libido makes me feel older than my years and I long for it to return. I am glad for you that you have such a supportive husband. It sounds like you are well on your way to getting well.

  3. Dear Thyroid says:

    Gwen – Great advice and show of support. Thank you so much for connecting with Em.

    xo

  4. Dear Thyroid says:

    Sarah – 1) “gatecrash your wedding and poor etiquette” was entirely too funny for words.

    Thank you for writing about lack of libido in relationship to hypo, and as it relates to you (and in general). Every time we’re hypo and in the sex closet, so to speak, OMG, it is intolerable, wouldn’t you say?

    Great show of support.

    Here’s to more libidos, FOR ALL OF US.

    xo

  5. Linda says:

    Great letter. I understand totally. It is almost exactly the same situation I am in. So glad you are handeling it well. The lack of libido is so depressing to me it makes me feel like less of a woman. Keep up the diet and excersise. You are lucky to have a understanding husband. Best of luck with everything. 😀

  6. “I will say, that through this you’ve made me more aware of how things work and what works better for us, but it’s a really shitty way of teaching it!”
    It seems as though we don’t know how to appreciate our body until our body is ailing. Why is it that we don’t know how to take care of our thyroid until it’s already jacked? There are so many parts of our body that we know to take care of; we know the signs if they start to fail. When it comes to the thyroid, we don’t know how to take care of it until it’s already a problem. The lack of awareness for thyroid diseases/cancers is unacceptable. Em, letters like yours will change that. Thank you for telling your story, for spreading awareness.

    xo,
    Joanna

  7. Dear Thyroid says:

    Linda – Very glad you wrote that your libido makes you feel like less of a woman. YOU AREN’T ALONE. So many of us feel this way. Admitting that takes ENORMOUS COURAGE. Very proud of you, girl.

    I try so hard to remind myself, though it doesn’t always work, that buried underneath this body, and underneath these symptoms, and underneath this sexless shituation, lies a very sexual, beautiful woman. She is here. She is inside of me, even when I fear she isn’t.

    Great show of support for Em, and really good point re: how lucky she is to have a supportive hubby.

    Do you have a supportive partner in your life?

    xo

  8. Dear Thyroid says:

    RIGHT ON, JOANNA! SPOT ON — Beautifully said. 1000% agreed.

    xo

  9. Em says:

    Wow! Thank you guys.

    This blog HAS been a fabulous source of information and support for me.

    I honestly had no idea what a thyroid was or anything about thyroid diseases. I just thought my uncle didn’t take care of himself at all (which is true, but that’s a totally different story).

    I do have to say I’m blessed to have such a patient and loving husband. He continually amazes me. (And keeps me on track with eating healthy!)

  10. Dear Thyroid says:

    Em – Thank you so much for sharing as much of you with us as you did. We’re so proud of you! Your letter is a beautiful gift, and we feel you.

    So happy your hubby is as supportive as he is.

    xo

  11. Linda says:

    Joanna, I agree 1000 percent. I wish there was more awareness. This may sound selfish and wrong, but I really get upset with seeing all the pink ribbions and asked to give support and give some more. I have done this because I do have some brest cancer that runs in my family, but all were treated and are doing very well. So…I guess my point is WHEN IS IT OUR TURN.

    I am now with a great guy that tries to be supportive of me. Any support is better than the ex-husband that made fun of me, took my dignity, and left me at my worst. The only thing he did for me was make me a much stronger person. I hope my new one can be as good as Em’s sounds!

  12. Sharper says:

    Yikes! I wasn’t even aware that libido was a symptom. Yet, another thing that makes more sense. My libido has always been low. But now that I think about it, when I’m regulated and loosing weight, my sex drive is at its high. And when I’m feeling bad and gaining weight, my sex drive is non-existent. I really just thought it was my self-esteem that was making me stay at the very opposite of the bed. Another symptom to add to my list. Thanks a lot, thyroid!

    Em – I completely understand about dieting around a meat and potatoes kind of guy. When I cooked something healthy for supper, he would complain. He is 6’7″ and has a strong metabolism to eat like a horse and stay fit. I sometimes have to cook 2 separate meals – one healthy dish for me and something really yummy and unhealthy for him. Then I get to watch him eat and enjoy, while I pick at yet another salad.

  13. HD inOregon says:

    Em,
    Great article! Thanks for sharing!

    Keeping a relationship going with a thyroid disease is a very difficult challenge indeed. There are so many strikes against you: libido, weight issues, being cranky or depressed. It is really, really touch!! And it is tiring too (if as if we didn’t have enough of that problem already).

    I feel with you!

    HD

  14. Dear Thyroid says:

    Linda – Don’t feel badly for wanting more awareness. We do need more awareness. In fact, check out this article: http://dearthyroid.org/full-lips-curvy-breasts-and-the-tightest-little-thyroid-youve-ever-seen/

    PS: So glad that you’re with a wonderful partner who supports and loves you.

    xo

  15. Dear Thyroid says:

    Sharper – So true regarding libido and not knowing. Until I learned that thyroid affects libido, I couldn’t figure out my sex drive issues. When Hyper – libido was high. When Hypo – libido was hideously low.

    It’s not you, honey, it’s your thyroid.

    How frustrating, though you can live food-vicariously through him. Sigh.

    xo

  16. Dear Thyroid says:

    Love what you wrote, HD Keeping a relationship going with a thyroid disease is a very difficult challenge indeed. There are so many strikes against you: libido, weight issues, being cranky or depressed. It is really, really touch!! And it is tiring too (if as if we didn’t have enough of that problem already).

    Truer words have never been spoken.

    Double sigh.

    xo

  17. Em says:

    Linda,

    I say we grab a color and start creating our own ribbons! HARUMPH! (ha ha ha) But seriously! I think we should.

    Sharper,

    Ugh . . . Yea. But I have found some TOTALLY yummy and creative salads that aren’t the normal boring salad! That’s helped a lot. And smoothies made w/ spinach and other stuff has helped! (Is helping!!)

  18. Em says:

    Huh . . . I hadn’t thought about my seemingly perma crankiness being related to my thyroid . . .

    Makes sense!

  19. Linda says:

    Thanks for the link to that article. It is good to know that I am not the only one frusterated by this. The subject is so hard to broach with most people. I am thankful for having this “safe place” to express these feelings without looking like a monster.
    Em, I like the color of the awareness band. At least what I have seen from the picture. I am still waiting for mine, but when I get it watch out. I will have it on loud and proud and talking to EVERYONE that will listen.

  20. Dear Thyroid says:

    Em – Totally agreed. We launched Thyroid awareness bands, which we give away for free with a SASE called INVISIBLE NO MORE. http://dearthyroid.org/dear-thyroid-dish/awareness-bands/

    We are sick and tired of being in the closet, so out of the closet we will run.

  21. Dear Thyroid says:

    Em – Absolutely makes sense, and yes! There are so many psychiatric disturbances with all sides of the thyroid spectrum. Moreover, well, add to that weight, self esteem issues, low/high libido and you’ve got an overwhelmingly challenging situation, don’t you think?

  22. Dear Thyroid says:

    Linda – It’s coming! We sent out tons last week, the week before and today.

    I agree with you re: having a safe place to share our issues. Our diseases are REAL, and have SERIOUS and REAL consequences. We have to do everything we can as a community to rally the ‘others’. har.

    You are not alone, my love.

    xo

  23. amy says:

    Em, having a supportive husband is the best:) I am sorry that this crashed your wedding! Sounds like you are doing what you can to make good, healthy choices. So important and I strive for that, too! Here is wishing you and your hubby all the happiness in the world despite that damn little annoying gland!!

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