It’s estimated that about 176 million women around the world suffer from endometriosis — five million of those are in the United States alone.
Singer Halsey is one of those five million and shared a poignant message with her followers also struggling. “Emo moment; but if any of you suffer from Endometriosis please know you aren’t alone,” she wrote in a note posted to Twitter.
Endometriosis effects women of reproductive age and occurs when tissue similar to that of the endometrium, or lining of the uterus, is found in other parts of the body. The tissue is generally found in the pelvic cavity, but can attach itself to other parts of the reproductive system — like the ovaries and Fallopian tubes — or even the bladder, intestines and rectum.
This results in intense pain during menstruation, though some women can experience it all throughout their cycle.
“I know how excruciatingly painful it can be and how discouraging the disease can be,” the 21-year-old singer continued. “To feel like it’s gonna limit you because of how debilitating it is. To miss school and work, or even worse to GO and suffer through it anyway feeling like a prisoner in your own body. To maybe be worried about ‘never having kids,’ or dealing with crazy treatment suggestions.”
About 30 to 40 percent of women with endometriosis have issues with fertility and there is no absolute cure, according to the Endometriosis Foundation of America. Many women who have it don’t realize it until they try to become pregnant. Halsey said she was recently diagnosed after years of suffering and “finding myself doubled over backstage in the middle of my sets, or fighting back tears on an airplane, or even being in so much pain I would vomit or faint. With doctors essentially telling me I was being a big baby about my period, or misdiagnosing PCOS, etc etc.”
The moment she was diagnosed was “bittersweet,” she said because it was validating that she wasn’t imagining her pain. Now, she wants to help her fans with their struggles.
“Just know I’m here if you want to vent. I have managed to live a wild, incredible, and unpredictable life with Endo, and I’m here for you! x.”