I’M FINE, THANKS

I'm fine, thanks

I’m fine, thanks

One lie. A little one. Intended to answer the question “How are you?” in the expected way. Well meaning. Until you develop a chronic illness like hypothyroidism. Then those three little words become way too big to handle.

How are you?

❌ I’m exhausted, thanks.

When hypothyroidism hits you, the fatigue is so deep that there are no words to describe it. Thyroid tired. Boy, if only people knew, but do you really want to hear that?

How are you?

I’m fat, thanks.

Everyone tells me to eat less and exercise more. It’s BS. I never had weight issues before hypothyroidism. The fat starts spilling up over my damn jeans as I zip them up, but do you really want to hear that?

How are you?

I’m bald, thanks.

The shower drain keeps clogging up with the mounds of hair falling off the top of my head. The skin of my scalp is starting to show through and I’m devastated that I could be going bald, but do you really want to hear that?

How are you?

I’m awful, thanks.

What happened to me? Where did I go? It’s like I’m watching the life of a completely different person. Like I’m another person watching me, but this unfamiliar, unhealthy person that I don’t recognize, but do you really want to hear that?

How are you?

I’m ugly, thanks.

I walk by a mirror and take a double take. Is that my face? That can’t be my face. A haggard face with dark, baggy circles under the eyes that seems to have aged 10 years in the span of a few months looks back at me. I’m aging at an accelerated pace now. I feel ugly, but do you really want to hear that?

How are you?

I’m lonely, thanks.

I’m losing friends. I’m losing family. Chronic illness has a way of changing our closest relationships. I hear the whispers. What happened to her? She used to be so much fun? Now all she does is sleep. People who used to love my company are distancing themselves. They’ve stopped inviting me places and get angry when I cancel on them. I’m losing friends and family, but do you really want to hear that?

How are you?

I’m scared, thanks.

Hypothyroidism affects every part of the body and rapidly new symptoms arise. New medical diagnoses are given and medications are added. Cholesterol levels and blood sugar are rising and doctors look worried. No one seems to be able to help me, not even my doctors. When I was a little girl, I thought doctors were like super heros swooping in just in the nick of time to save you from whatever ails you, but I was wrong, but do you really want to hear that?

How are you?

❌ I’m anxious, thanks.

No body part is safe from hypothyroidism and that includes our brains. Anxiety. Depression. Panic. Mood swings. I have no idea how to explain how brutal it is when your brain seems to shift, especially at night. Every single worry you’ve ever had in your life keeps playing over and over on continual  freakin’ rewind all through your sleepless night, but do you really want to hear that?

How are you?

I’m failing, thanks.

When I was pregnant with my first son I had dreams of being a super mom. I was definitely going to be the perfect mom that balanced work, life, and parenting with perfection, but then reality came crashing down. I developed hypothyroidism and I couldn’t keep up like others mothers. I just couldn’t. I feel like a failure as a mother, but do you really want to hear that?

How are you?

I’m losing, thanks.

I was always an overachieving employee determined to rise through the ranks of the corporate world. I was confident in my abilities and never doubted that I would rise, rise high in my career. But now I’m screwing up big time at work, missing deadlines, and forgetting important details. I’m not getting the raises and promotions that I would normally receive and I fear being fired, but do you really want to hear that?

How are you?

I’m lazy, thanks.

She’s become so lazy. That’s what they say and I’m starting to believe it myself. I don’t have the energy to do the normal things everyone does and people make me feel so bad about it. Just get up and move everyone keeps saying. They don’t understand and I feel alone, but do you really want to hear that?

How are you?

❌ I’m sad, thanks.

I never expected to be sick. I never expected to have a chronic illness. I never expected to change. I never wanted to change. I hate being sick, but do you really want to hear that?

How are you?

❌ I’m breaking, thanks.

Come on snap out of it. Just get out more. Just stop worrying. Just think on the bright side. Just…just…just. Yeah just shove it because I’m losing it and your insensitive and utterly uninformed suggestions make me feel like this is my fault. My fault that I got sick. This is a disease. It happens to hundreds of thousands of people. It’s real. It’s not all in my head. I will find my perfect health again. I will. There is no stopping me, but for now please just believe me. Just love me. Just be there without judgment. But do you really want to hear that?

How are you?

I’m fine, thanks.

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About Dana Trentini

I founded Hypothyroid Mom October 2012 in memory of the unborn baby I lost to hypothyroidism. Hypothyroid Mom is for informational purposes only and should not be considered a substitute for consulting your physician regarding medical advice pertaining to your health. Hypothyroid Mom includes affiliate links to favorite resources including the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program. Connect with me on Google+

Comments

  1. Ive been hypothyroid since 3 weeks old due to being born without a thyroid gland. I have dealt with with weight problems, mood swings and all the symptoms that go with it.

    • Madeleine says:

      I’m sorry 🤗 you are not alone, I’m hypothyroid myself and can imagine how hard it can be for you. We must enjoy the rare moments when we feel a bit better to the max and breathe. Take care of yourself as much as you can. Hang in there ❤️

  2. Kara Schmidl says:

    I cried. I shared it on Facebook, and then I cried. I’ve struggle to explain to others what I feel. This just said so much I couldn’t say. Thank you!

  3. Barbara Voshell says:

    Thank you for your post. Many of the things that you stated I feel. I am now a Diabetic not just pre and my thyroid medicine was just increased. The doctors just keep telling to lose weight and I can’t. It seems that nothing I do works. I really wish that I could feel better.

  4. Sherry Greene says:

    The autoimmune paleo helped me immensely. Thinner again! The diet isn’t easy, but so worth it to feel better, and as a bonus, look better! Best wishes to you.

    • Hi I was also diagnosed with Hypothyroidism after having my baby , and i’m gaining weight more n more every day! i can’t loose the weight! can you please tell me more information about the diet you tried?!

  5. Tanya Marquez says:

    Wow, you got inside my head and were able to so eloquently write everything I’m feeling… 11+ years with post Rai for Graves Disease. I just want a doctor who will help and stop telling me “your levels are fine, see a dietician”…

  6. I don’t suffer from hypothyroidism but am 14months post stroke with no obvious disabilities but this sums me up totally.

  7. Kamayani Sharma says:

    Thanks for such a real article. This is exactly what happens with me all the time. At least someone understands and trusts.

  8. Wow. I’ve suffered since first my pregnancy 9 years ago (2 kids later). This is it… everything you wrote. Except that I lose weight instead of gain it (downside, I’m always weak). Anaemia to go along with that, and I get breathless just going up a flight of stairs. I’m tired of explaining why I can’t do things or go out more. I’m tired of canceling, I’m tired of never knowing whether I’ll manage the next vacation. I’m tired of seeing doctor after doctor. The toughest part is when you hear your angry kid say, “why don’t you just go to bed – it seems like it’s the only thing you do.” I’m 37, hypo, Hashimotos, and fighting for a quality life.

  9. Thank you for this. I have shared it on facebook as it seeems to look like my life. Happy to know that I am not alone in this battle.

  10. Thank you for this. I have shared it on facebook as it seeems to look like my life. Happy to know that I am not alone in this battle.

  11. I am….all of the above. My thyroid levels are “normal” but I still have symptoms. It is reassuring to know that I”m not alone. Thank you!

  12. Glad I found this article! I feel lazy, anxious, tired almost all the time. My mood swings are crazy. I am getting heavier and struggling to lose one gram inspite of all the diet and exercise I do. That’s really frustrating to say the least☹️ My GP wrote tests for me after I insisted and my iron levels are normal, it was just TSH and T4 levels – my t4 is in normal range and TSH is 7.0.(normal range 0- 4.0) My doctor doesn’t want to prescribe medications and says it’s just a border level increase also since my t4 is normal. But I need help. Is there any way to lose weight and feel better with hypothyroidism at all?? ☹️
    Sorry for my long vent and thank you so much for the post .

    • your doc who does not want to prescribe thyroid meds for you is an IDIOT! a TSH of 7.0 is not a borderline problem. Look on line for bioidentical hormone docs who will approach your entire system, not just thyroid. Try RLC Labs, they make natural thyroid and keep a doc list. Try ACM, Functional Medicine docs. It can be very difficult, most are naturopaths who many of us cannot afford. Keep looking until you find what you need. Women’s International Pharmacy should have a list of docs who prescribe their bioidentical hormones. Some genetic issues predispose taking some female/male hormones. Still, iron labs and all hormones need to be tested, including saliva tests for adrenal hormones. Good luck! ps.. most endocrinologists do not know best treatments.

      • there is a lot of fear in the mainstream medical community regarding treating thyroid BECAUSE there is a hidden understanding that mental health issues are frequently caused by poor thyroid health.

  13. So I’m the guy that lives w/ a hypothyroid mom. Specifically , my wife of 25 years . Your article helped , as my wife has had every one of those symptoms . EVERY ONE !!! To state the obvious, this stuff is beyond brutal on a marriage . Social life — gone. Intimate life – beyond gone ( 4 years w/ no sexual intimacy , but who’s counting?!?). Ability to do much w/ kids — not much . What’s kept me in the marriage ??? Faith, my career, my kids, my friends, my extended family, hitting about 10 million tennis balls ( a Harley is next), and the still small hope that she will get better . The good news is that she has improved some ….. so I am hoping that it continues. The article at least tells me that my wife is not a freak —- that others deal w/ this too. Regardless , I bet this is a major cause of divorce …….you have to dig deep to stay in it .

  14. All of these describe me. Each & every one of them.

  15. Such an enlightening post and the question format could be used to similar effect with so many chronic illnesses! I have shared your link on my PainPalsBlog regular feature “Monday Magic – Inspiring Blogs for You!” Claire
    https://painpalsblog.wordpress.com/2018/02/19/monday-magic-inspiring-blogs-for-you-37/

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