It’s time to end the silence on endometriosis

Ellie Angel-Mobbs 8 March 2019 18

Ellie Angel-Mobbs is an ambassador for Endometriosis Australia. Photo: Supplied.

One in ten women battle endometriosis, or endo for short, a challenging and debilitating disease. The average diagnosis takes 7-12 years and it costs Australia $7.7 billion annually in lost productivity and healthcare costs.

I am that one in ten. There is no cure.

Endometriosis happens when the tissue that is normally present in the lining of the uterus (womb), occurs outside this layer. Imagine it’s like a spider web growing inside your body, latching onto various organs, and causing them to stick together like glue (these are called adhesions).

Symptoms include pain before, during or after your period, pain when you go to the bathroom, pain during or after ‘adult time’, nausea, fatigue, anxiety and depression. It can also cause infertility.

You are bound to know someone, whether they be in your family, a colleague or a friend who struggles in silence. My Mum had severe endometriosis, so the chance of me developing this disease was high. We now understand that genetics plays a part in its development and much more research is needed.

Over the years I have had more than ten surgical procedures, a stint in intensive care, countless trips to emergency and doctors’ visits. The only way to diagnose endo is via surgery with a procedure called a laparoscopy. Under general anaesthetic, a specialised gynaecologist (excision specialist) looks inside your abdomen and if there are areas of endometriosis they can excise the lesions or affected areas.

My endo journey began when I got my first period. I was always in pain and feeling sick. I would go to doctors, have tests and scans, but they could never work out the problem. One doctor suggested it was ‘all in my head’. There’d be days when I couldn’t work due to pain and I’d have anxiety attacks whenever I had to tell my boss I couldn’t come into work.

After ten years of suffering, I finally saw one of Sydney’s best gynaecologists and had a laparoscopy. I was diagnosed with Stage Four endometriosis, the worst you can have. It was growing on my uterus, bowel, ovaries, urethra and it even suffocated my appendix.

The surgeon described my uterus as a badly bruised apple that will never heal and told me I’d have to eventually have a hysterectomy. I was also told to “have a baby ASAP”. At that time, I had just started my dream job and a new relationship.

Now at 34, my biological clock is ticking. I would love to start a family with my husband but endometriosis means it’s not an easy process. I see my friends on social media sharing photos of babies and it breaks me.

But through this heartache, I keep telling myself that I am feeling good. Through diet, exercise, mindfulness, a healthier lifestyle and acupuncture, I can manage my endometriosis pain. I am lucky and I look for the positives in every day because I know of women who struggle immensely with this disease every day.

I have been privileged to speak to other women and girls due to ongoing awareness-raising over the past few years. Some can’t work or have lost their jobs; some are unable to afford the high ongoing medical costs and as with any chronic health condition, most will experience anxiety or depression.

I am proud to work with Endometriosis Australia. Through a hard-working team of staff and volunteers, we endeavour to increase recognition of endometriosis, provide education programs and help fund research.

On Saturday 30 March, National EndoMarch High Teas are happening across Australia. I am honoured to be hosting the Canberra event at the Hyatt. The afternoon is all about raising funds for research, education and creating awards for endometriosis.

You will indulge in the best high tea and bubbles in Australia, along with some fantastic raffles and other fun activities. You will hear from keynote speaker Tanya Hammond and a panel of experts in their fields – Medical Director of Endometriosis Australia, Professor Jason Abbott; Member for Canberra MP Gai Brodtmann; and Melissa Parker who is the researcher and coordinator of Canberra Endometriosis Centre.

We would love to see you there as we gather to help End the Silence on Endo. Together we can put an end to Endo.

Grab your tickets here.

Find out for information about Endometriosis Australia:

Ellie Angel-Mobbs is a radio presenter on Sydney station 2DayFM, a Canberran born and bred and an ambassador for Endometriosis Australia.

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18 Responses to It’s time to end the silence on endometriosis
Rose Watson Rose Watson 9:07 am 07 Mar 19

Graham -read the article

Lisa McRobbins Lisa McRobbins 9:22 am 06 Mar 19

I was almost sacked from a government department because of my endometriosis. I was forced to have an operation and scoffed at (by a woman) when i told them i needed two weeks to recover. Workplaces have a lot to answer for when it comes down to how females are treated in the workplace with endometriosis. I was told it would go away after a baby but its back. Great...

    Ellie Angel-Mobbs Ellie Angel-Mobbs 4:48 pm 06 Mar 19

    Lisa McRobbins oh Lisa this breaks my heart. I have heard your story too many times. Workplaces need to me more compassionate about this disease. I got told the ‘have a baby that’ll fix it’! If only that were the case. Hope you are doing ok xx

Barbara Mobbs Barbara Mobbs 8:12 am 06 Mar 19

We would love you to join us at the Endometriosis Australia High Tea on the 30 th March ( ticket available via link)

Informative panel of speakers and a keynote speaker plus raffles and more ! 💛

If you would like more information on Endometriosis checkout our webinars at

Ellie Angel-Mobbs Ellie Angel-Mobbs 7:51 am 06 Mar 19

Thankyou so much RiotACT for sharing my story.

Sending my love to anyone who is battling this disease 💛💛💛💛💛

Barbie Brooker Barbie Brooker 6:49 am 06 Mar 19

Sammi Jane good read

Jennie McCulloch Jennie McCulloch 4:18 am 06 Mar 19

Nine out of one of the ten still remains. It was a horribly painful existence for thirty years. Nobody can visually picture the pain people go through. What they can’t see doesn’t exist.

Jenni Zimoch Jenni Zimoch 10:47 pm 05 Mar 19

Pretty sure it's not women who are silent, it's the (mostly male )GPs telling us it's in our heads and periods are painful.

    Kelly Zerbst Kelly Zerbst 10:38 pm 06 Mar 19

    I find female doctors at the hospital to be terribly dismissive and treat me like it's all in my head and I'm just there for drugs. It's a horrible feeling to have something dismissed when it has such a negative impact on your life.

    Ali Kate Ali Kate 11:15 am 07 Mar 19

    Jenni Zimoch I once got told I was swallowing too much air...

    Jenni Zimoch Jenni Zimoch 11:17 am 07 Mar 19

    Ali Kate did they even GO to medical school? ?

John Andriunas John Andriunas 10:41 pm 05 Mar 19

Heidi Andriunas and see post above by Canberra Endometriosis Network.

    Heidi Andriunas Heidi Andriunas 10:43 pm 05 Mar 19

    John Andriunas thanks :)

    Heidi Andriunas Heidi Andriunas 10:50 pm 05 Mar 19

    John Andriunas I would love to go to one of these endo events haha

Michelle Preston Michelle Preston 10:05 pm 05 Mar 19

Molly Preston 💜💜 more awareness the better.

Canberra Endometriosis Network Canberra Endometriosis Network 8:31 pm 05 Mar 19

Anyone with endometriosis in Canberra is welcome and encouraged to like our page and join our private support group by searching for Canberra Endometriosis Network in the search bar. Nobody should have to go through this journey alone 💛

Mel Sharp Mel Sharp 8:19 pm 05 Mar 19

Kathy Sheather wish I had kept track/count of how many surgeries I’ve had over the years.

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