5 Celebrities Living With Endometriosis
1 in 10 women fight endometriosis, and well-known celebrities are not excluded from that statistic. Anser Co-Founder Tia Mowry has been outspoken and vulnerable about her experience with the condition, and many other women in the spotlight have been through similar struggles. After years of being told that their pain is normal and a part of a natural cycle, these 5 celebrities decided to take back their control of their health and speak out about this disease that many women experience and many others neglect because of miseducation or misdiagnosis.
1. Padma Lakshmi
Author, Top Chef Host, Model, and Co-founder of the Endometriosis Foundation of America, Padma Lakshmi shared her story publicly of enduring 23 years of debilitating pain of cramps, backaches, and spasms so severe she was demobilized to her bed every month. After being told she would not bear children, Lakshmi underwent multiple surgeries to receive a diagnosis and treat the condition. Lakshmi decided to speak out and become the voice for young women suffering through the illness in hopes of educating about the disease and raising awareness internationally. She now has a 10 year old daughter, Krishna, who proudly stands next to her mom in her efforts to educate.
2. Whoopi Goldberg
Actress and host of The View, Whoopi Goldberg, was diagnosed early with endometriosis, fortunately able to tackle the illness before it worsened. Informed by her experience and determined to show support and advocacy, Goldberg launched a medical cannabis line, Whoopi & Maya, tailored to alleviating painful symptoms that take over every month. The line is now discontinued, but Godberg remains an advocate raising awareness on the disease and the many women affected by it. At EndoFound’s 2009 Blossom Ball, Goldberg stated: “This is something that needs to be discussed - because if you don’t discuss it, many more women are going to find themselves unable to have children, or find themselves close to dying because it's led to something else.”
3. Dolly Parton
Singer-songwriter and actress, Dolly Parton, struggled with the symptoms of endometriosis, transmuting her pains to music with her song PMS Blues. After collapsing on stage in pain, Parton had a partial hysterectomy at the age of 36, rendering her unable to have children. Parton has opened up about this dark time in her life when she battled suicidal thoughts and depression.
4. Gabrielle Union-Wade
Gabrielle Union-Wade revealed that she suffered from infertility due to a form of endometriosis called Adenomyosis. After decades of doctors disregarding her symptoms with birth control pills, multiple rounds of IVF and miscarriages, Union now speaks on her experience with infertility advocating for millions of women that they are not alone. “Infertility is not an older woman’s issue. It’s an issue, period.” Union now embraces motherhood with her “miracle daughter” born through surrogacy.
Singer and musician Halsey was diagnosed with endometriosis at age 20 after suffering a miscarriage backstage before a performance. Halsey opened up about her insecurities, feeling ashamed about her womanhood, and her struggles with confidence in a speech at the 2018 Blossom Ball. Halsey stated that she now feels better after having two surgeries and encourages her fans to take control of their health and demand better healthcare. “Don’t feel ashamed to speak on your reproductive health,” she said, “Because the only way for us to gain control of this is to speak about it!”