Woman clutches her distended belly as it bites and chomps at the surface.

The Truth About Endo Belly: A Photo Series

Worldwide, 1 in 10 women will be diagnosed with endometriosis. While endometriosis affects MILLIONS of women across the world, few people know its symptoms, how it's treated, or what it really means to struggle with this condition. Since the launch of Endometriosis.net in 2018, we've heard many stories of women experiencing pain for years because receiving a diagnosis, and others being told that it's "just bad periods". Our message to endo warriors? We know your pain is real - and you matter.

To bring awareness to the day-to-day realities of life with endometriosis, we asked our advocates to share their experiences with endo belly - severe bloating caused by endometriosis, often linked to endo flares or the menstrual cycle. To highlight their experiences - and the realities of endometriosis - we're sharing their brave and powerful endo belly photos.

From Alene

“This belly has been through a lot. It bloats. It screams. It sent me to the ER. It required surgery. It's so easy for it to feel like the enemy. But at the end of the day, it doesn't need my rants about clothes not fitting or the grief that it brings to my day. It needs compassion and to be nurtured. So I ask it (yes I talk to my body), "What do you need? I am here for you. I want to help you feel better." Read more from Alene here.

From Kimberli

"Endo belly, my body's way of telling me it's angry. A lot of times I don't even know what I did to make it angry. Going from a flat stomach to looking 6 months pregnant in a matter of seconds really puts a toll on my life. But this is my life. Endo belly is my life. And even through the pain and discomfort, I have learned to embrace it. I am strong + a fighter. Endo belly will not win." Read more from Kimberli here.

From Shireen

"Endo belly can strike at any time and for me it's ALWAYS when I wear something tight on my tum! This summer I'm living for stretchy trousers and crop tops! Pure comfort!". Read more from Shireen here.

From Jessie

“Definitely not pregnant, and I also didn't eat all of the pizza. It's just my endo belly." Read more from Jessie here.

At Endometriosis.net, we're making the invisible visible. Join us by sharing your story, asking a question, or learning about ways to be an endometriosis advocate in your community.

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