Writer-director-actor Lena Dunham has it all, right? Fame, riches and loving friends and family. What she no longer has, however, is a uterus. In March's Vogue, the 31-year-old movingly details her decision to undergo a hysterectomy after years of debilitating endometriosis.
Endometriosis causes the body’s uterine lining to grow outside the organ, rather than inside where it belongs. Dunham recounts how she’s suffered countless hours of agony, then more hours of pain management attempts including “floor therapy, massage therapy, pain therapy, color therapy, acupuncture, yoga and a brief yet horrifying foray into vaginal massage from a stranger.” (Yikes.)
As a last resort, she had her uterus removed late last year. Dunham’s trademarks—wry wit, penetrating insight and intimate details—are everywhere in the illness-and-recovery story. For example, she mentions that during this time, she was also losing her “beautiful partner” due to conflicting travel schedules and “so many reasons that have nothing to do with my uterus.” (Which makes us sad, because we’re big fans of her coupledom with Jack Antonoff, her boyfriend of more than five years until their breakup in December.)
While it’s an emotional read, it’s also an inspiring one that we finished knowing Dunham will thrive, and that she’s not ruling out any options due to her hysterectomy. (She says she’s always wanted kids). She is ruling out the option to live in pain, and that’s an amazing thing.