Things are a mess but they’ll get better!

Having trouble with the blog?  It’s a bit of a mess right now–links don’t work, fonts are weird sizes, and a host of other issues.  Thank you for your patience!  A complete redesign is in process.  Keep your eyes out for a re-launch in the spring.

Surviving Metformin

Surviving Metformin:  6 Tips for Coping with Side Effects via PCOSRa.com

What was your first week on Metformin like?  Horrendous?  Terrible?  Filled with waves of nausea?  The sickest you’ve felt in your life?

Let’s reminisce for a minute:  About a dozen years ago, on December 24, I went to the doctor for a routine physical.  Are you envious of my holiday plans?  This was in the years before Pinterest, so I was carrying on with regular life activities on Christmas Eve morn rather than bedazzling the cap of an Elf on the Shelf.  Anyway, at the Christmas Eve check-up, my physician mentioned that he had read promising things about Metformin being used in women with PCOS.  We chatted about Metformin for a bit, talked about other PCOS things,  finished up the tests, and then I headed to the pharmacy to pick up the prescription. Continue reading

Makeup for Women with PCOS

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What’s a girl with PCOS supposed to do for makeup?   I don’t know all the answers about makeup for women with PCOS; but, I’ll tell you what I use and you can go from there.  I have oily skin, and sensitive skin, and dry skin, and perioral dermatitis, and SUPER sensitive eyes, and a host of other issues that also complicate the makeup situation.  Oh, and did I mention PCOS?  It’s a dermatological landmine!  My face would be happiest if left to its own devices; but, the au naturale look is not what I’m going for.

Before we get into the makeup, a disclaimer of sorts:

Are these expensive?  Yes.  Sorry.  I’ve tried many cheaper alternatives, without success.

Do I have a list of less expensive drugstore items you can substitute?  No.

Is this really what I do [nearly] every morning?  Yes.

How long does this all take?  Five minutes.  Really.

Step 1:  I start off by washing my face with Hibiclens (see item 3 in this post:  http://www.pcosra.com/2014/05/pcosacne3products/).  Make your bed and open the curtains while the Hibiclens works its magic on your skin.  Hibiclens is a miracle worker as far as I am concerned.  It’s made a huge dent in my PCOS-related acne.  If you only buy one product from this list, buy Hibiclens.  It will be worth it.  I promise.  You can buy Hibiclens at any drugstore or pharmacy.  I usually get the generic version at Walgreens.

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How to Earn a College Degree Without Debt

How to Earn a College Degree Without Debt by PCOSRa.com

In a few months, I will graduate with my 4th college degree (!).  I’ve never had a student loan of any variety nor did my parents pay for my college tuition.  I graduated from college debt-free.  You can do it too!

Several family members and other real-life acquaintances have asked me for advice on how I stayed out of debt while pursuing educational opportunities, so I decided to do a blog post about it even though this doesn’t quite fit with my usual themes.  I’m not an expert on funding your college education; but, now that I’ve finished 1 associate’s degree, 2 bachelor’s degrees, and almost 1 master’s degree–I  think I may have a few words of wisdom for others who are just starting on the journey.

There’s no secret to graduating debt-free.  All it takes is a commitment to do so.  You absolutely CAN graduate from college without debt.  It is not an impossible dream.  Student loans are an optional part of life, and you can opt to not have them.  There is no reason to go into debt for an undergraduate degree, and most graduate degrees can be earned without debt too.

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Ask Ra: Can I remove skin tags at home?

How to Remove Skin Tags at Home, via PCOSRa.com


Dear Ra,

I have PCOS  and it brought along skin tags that are all over my neck and armpits.  There’s even a few between my thighs.  Is there anything I can do to get rid of them at home?  I don’t have money to go to a doctor for such a silly thing right now.  They’ve been here for a long time.  I’m so sick of them, and I want to be able to wear sleeveless shirts again!  Do you have a DIY home remedy for skin tags?

 -Kendra in USA

Do you have a question for Ra?  Visit the Ask Ra page!

Ah, skin tags.  Those annoying little bits that plague most of us women with PCOS.  I feel your pain Kendra!  I do actually have a home remedy for skin tags.  I used it myself a few years ago to remove 35+ skin tags in my armpits (stop judging me for things beyond my control) and they never came back!  Continue reading

PCOS and Acne: STOP the Fish Oil

 

If you have PCOS and Acne--Stop Taking Fish Oil Supplements!  via PCOSRa.com
Last year my acne was completely out of control.  It was horrendous, awful, disheartening, and depression-inducing.  I’ve always had acne, but last year it truly was SEVERE.  My whole face felt like a giant eruption and I couldn’t bring my introverted self to voluntarily be around other people with such severe acne.

I spent a long time trying to figure out what was causing it–my exercise pattern had not changed, I was eating the same foods in the same quantities as I had been previously, my menstrual cycle was the same, my other PCOS symptoms were unchanged, my prescription medications were the same, I was using the same cleanser and lotion on my face, my makeup was the same, my linens were being washed with the same detergent that has been used since the day I was born…ugh.  All this acne and no idea where it was coming from. Continue reading

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Dealing with PCOS: Three Things You Can Do Right Now

Dealing with PCOS:  3 Things You Can Do to Start Feeling Better Today via PCOSRa.com

PCOS brings along a train full of baggage.  Once you discover that you have PCOS, you suddenly feel like you must eat only organic GMO-free gluten-free calorie-free vegan locally-produced foods,  exercise for fifteen hours a day, and sleep for precisely 8.75 hours per night.  That’s all while dealing with the maddening amount of body hair (Oh the hair!  It doesn’t stop!), popping zits and finding makeup to cover your now red-splotched face, inventing ways to get some sort of volume into the ever-decreasing quantity of hair on your head, purchasing clothing in manatee sizes, and oh let’s not forget that your neck and elbows are brown and look like you’re incapable of bathing.  All the while you still need to maintain your family, work, social, educational, religious, and community life.  It’s enough to drive a person mad.

If you were just diagnosed with PCOS, or you’re just getting back on the wagon, here are three reasonable things you can  do today to help things get better.  Will they solve all your problems?  Nope.  Will they help?  Absolutely. Continue reading

How to Prepare to Teach Relief Society

 

How to Prepare to Teach Relief Society via PCOSRa.com

There are many, many ways to prepare to teach Relief Society.  Over time, you’ll figure out what works best for you.  Me?  I never actually sit down to write a Relief Society lesson until the night before I teach (my mother probably just had a heart attack from reading that–hi Mom!).  However, that doesn’t mean that my preparation is left until the night before.  Continue reading

How to Teach LDS Relief Society Lessons about Difficult or Controversial Topics

How to Teach Relief Society Lessons about Difficult or Controversial Subjects

I taught Relief Society last week, and the assigned topic was #11 from the Jospeh Fielding Smith manual:  Honoring the Priesthood Keys Restored through Joseph Smith.  When I first saw the title, I had a bit of trepedation.  The priesthood, especially women’s role in the priesthood, has been a highly controversial topic lately.   I was worried that our discussion time would turn into a full-scale argument.  I wallowed in my thoughts for a bit, and then buckled down and read through the lesson. Continue reading

A PCOS Dilemma: What Do You Say if You Think an Acquaintance has PCOS?

What do you say if you think someone has PCOS?  via PCOSRa.com

I have a dilemma, and I’d like your help with it.  I don’t have the answers–just the problems.

Here’s the scenario:  You are acquainted with someone (through work, school, church, a community group, etc.) who you think has PCOS.  You know her name and a few things about her, you exchange “hellos” when you see each other, and one time you sat at the same table for a dinner party; but, you really don’t know her well.  Her appearance highly suggests that she has PCOS.  You have PCOS too.  What do you do?  Do you say something?

I’ve been in this exact scenario more times than I can count, and I never know what to do.  What do you do?  I want to talk about PCOS.  I want people to know that they aren’t alone.  But I also don’t want to offend them. Continue reading