Wednesday, September 20, 2023 – A woman has revealed how she got pregnant despite being told at a young age she couldn’t get pregnant due to a health condition.
Lauren Johnson, 34, was told she was ‘essentially infertile’ due to a ‘borderline PCOS’ diagnosis she received in her teens.
The hormonal condition, causing multiple cysts on the ovaries, can make it harder to get pregnant, as well as bring unpleasant physical and mental symptoms, such as weight gain, excess hair, acne, anxiety, and depression.
But Lauren, from London, says the information she received then was ‘irresponsible’. She’s now a mum to a three-year-old daughter and is calling for change in the way PCOS (polycystic ovary syndrome) is diagnosed and treated in the UK.
‘Hearing that as a 14-year-old, I was devastated,’ says Lauren Johnson Reynolds, of the moment she found out she couldn’t have children.
… ‘I had no idea what PCOS was, but I knew I needed to be a mum.’
Lauren, who is a registered nutritional therapist further said;
‘I was 14 [when I was diagnosed]. My family and I knew something was going on because I had my first period at 13, then I just didn’t have one again.
‘The doctor said to me you have PCOS, you probably won’t be able to get pregnant, if you do you’re going to need help, you aren’t going to be able to have a baby naturally. This is why you’ve got acne and struggle to maintain a healthy weight.
‘Come back when you want to get pregnant and we’ll see what we can do.
‘I’ve always known for me that becoming a mum was my goal in life, even at that young age.
‘So this news was like a dark cloud over my life, because from that moment it became such a part of me and hovered over the rest of my life experiences, because in the back of my mind I thought “I’m not going to be a mum”, and it killed me.’
She was told that PCOS causes infertility, and it was very unlikely she would be able to get pregnant naturally.
‘There was no regard for the mental implications it would have on me. I remember my mum being really upset and crying on the way home, and thinking this must be very serious. It made it sink in a lot more,’ she adds.
‘It was very scary. I recently found an old diary from the time and in it, I wrote that I might not be able to get pregnant and I really want to be a mum and hope I can have children.’