Endometriosis is a medical condition that affects almost 1 in 10 women in the UK. A figure that equates to roughly 176 million women worldwide. Additionally Endometriosis covers a wide range of symptoms that can be particularly debilitating towards women; from intense menstrual pain all the way to infertility. Despite affecting such a wide breadth of women there can be a lack of awareness and understanding around the condition. With the month of March being Endometriosis awareness month, here at Merci Maman we have decided to place a spotlight on Endo UK Ambassador Miranda Burns to hear how Endometriosis has affected her.
Who is Miranda Burns?
Miranda Burns is a radio presenter for Capital FM, infertility campaigner, and mother to one to baby Penelope. She bravely shares her journey and experience with endometriosis. Alongside this she has also documented her IVF journey on social media. Both in an effort to make other women who are currently in similar situations feel less alone. Keep reading to find out more about Miranda …
Our Endometriosis Interview With Miranda
So Miranda can you explain what exactly is Endometriosis?
Endometriosis is a condition where cells similar to the ones that line the womb are found elsewhere in the body. There is still so much misinformation and poor understanding surrounding it, meaning people go years without a diagnosis. In the UK, it takes on average an unforgivable 8 years to diagnose, meaning those with endo will often suffer with no answers, for a very long time. 10% of women worldwide have endometriosis, and a cause and cure are yet to be found. To put that into perspective, the amount of women affected by diabetes is a similar number as the amount affected by endometriosis. It causes pain, fatigue, depression, issues with relationships/sex and infertility.Miranda explaining what endometriosis is and how it can affect the body
How and when you first find out about Endometriosis?
I found out about it from a friend at work and finally had my diagnosis in the summer of 2018. Up until that point, although I’d shown signs and symptoms of endo for years, no doctors had suggested investigating it. In fact, I was often just told that what I was experiencing was normal.Miranda’s journey to getting diagnosed
What obstacles and barriers have you had to overcome in living with Endometriosis?
Finding the courage to share my situation with my partner was difficult. It took a good few months before I felt brave enough to open up, which seems silly now considering all we’ve gone through together since. It’s also quite impressive I even managed to hide it from him for so long, although he says he had suspicions something was wrong regardless. Endometriosis affects you in such unpredictable and intimate ways; it’s frightening sharing such private and “flawed” parts of yourself with someone you love and don’t want to lose, even more so when I suspected it may have harmed my fertility.
How has Endometriosis impacted your day-to-day life?
I really struggle with my energy levels – I am constantly tired, drained and struggle with something called “brain fog”. I live with pain, frequent infections, issues with my bowels and bladder, plus pain during sex. It’s a lot. One of the hardest things is that as a condition, it’s not visible, so on the outside I appear perfectly healthy. This means that unfortunately, you don’t always receive the understanding and empathy that perhaps you need.The symptoms that Miranda has struggled with
Are there any support groups or systems which help in finding comfort?
YES! There is an incredible community of Endo Warriors out there, and so many fantastic instagram accounts who dedicate HOURS of their own time to raise awareness and share the love. You can find me on instagram as miranda.burns, but there are so many more. I could list loads but some great ones include; thefannydiaries, battlewithendo_ox, allthingsgabz, cheerfullylive, Trutherus, endometrioluce. You can also find loads of information at EndometriosisUK and at The Menstrual Health Project.
What inspired you to share your Endometriosis and IVF journey on social media?
Honestly, just feeling really lonely. It was miserable struggling and feeling like I was alone in those feelings. I’m a radio presenter and every single day I’d come bounding into the studio with the biggest smile on my face – keeping up that kind of positivity can be exhausting and I needed to be honest with myself and the people around me. Opening up was one of the best things I ever did as I found SO many inspiring women who GET IT. Girls fly when we support one another and not much makes me happier than being someone’s hype woman!! I’ve vlogged and shared sooo much of my journey now, and we’ve even made a podcast called Test Tube Baby which I really hope helps others feel less alone too.Why Miranda started campaigning on social media
We want to massively thank Miranda for sharing her journey with us.
Below we have linked some useful websites that may aid those who are struggling with endometriosis.