Turner Syndrome MAG

By Kayleigh G., Meriden, CT

     Anyone looking at me would see a normal 17-year-old girl with blond hair and blue eyes. Those taking a closer look would recognize that I barely reach 5'2". What my physical appearance does not reveal is that I have Turner syndrome, but then, most people don’t have the faintest idea what that is. Turner syndrome is a chromosomal condition that occurs in women and involves complete or partial absence of the second x chromosome. While I may not be one in a million, I am one in 2,000. Short stature is one of the most common characteristics associated with the syndrome, but serious heart and kidney problems and even hearing loss can occur.

When I was diagnosed at 12, my whole life began to make more sense. I never understood why when the rest of my classmates were growing like weeds, I remained a seed stuck in the ground. I had always struggled being the shortest girl in my class and was known as “Midget” or “Shorty.” After watching the classic “Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory,” I became known as Oompa Loompa. Though these names hurt me deeply, I refused to let my classmates dampen my enthusiasm for school and learning. I got involved in lots of extracurricular activities, though they sometimes posed problems. Because girls with Turner syndrome tend to have poor coordination and perception, my athletic ability was nonexistent. I loved to sing, but it proved difficult to share a microphone with a group of girls seven inches taller. Despite this, I continued to drive myself to prove that heart and brains could make up for lack of height.

Once diagnosed, I was given a treatment plan that involved daily growth hormone injections. I am the type of person who worries about a doctor’s appointment for weeks in advance, so getting used to injections every day - and even worse, giving them to myself - was a true test of my character. However, I jumped this hurdle and after five years, I have grown 11 inches. This was an amazing response and I consider it my own little miracle.

I am not upset that I have Turner syndrome. It has molded my character and transformed me into the person I am today. I have learned that you need to rise above the negative in your life. Eleanor Roosevelt once said, “No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.” This statement has always inspired me and so I will journey on to the next stage of my life with pride and self-confidence.



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This article has 103 comments.


on Aug. 24 2010 at 7:28 pm
pianocyh BRONZE, Tenafly, New Jersey
2 articles 0 photos 2 comments

Favorite Quote:
"Nice guys finish last, and altruists get burned to the ground"
"A man who dares to waste one hour of time has not discovered the value of life. " -Charles Darwin
"What doesn't kill you can only make you stronger"

Hi!  To begin with I have never had Turner Syndrome so I can not even imagine how you feel, however I can tell from this that you are very brave and strong!  I admire you for having the strength to write about this syndrome, which ironically though statistically higher than other syndromes, is still unknown.  You may be short, but you sure have more of a heart than most of the people I know of.  Good luck with the rest of your life, and I praise your strength and optimism.  

pinky said...
on Aug. 12 2010 at 9:23 am
I was born with Turners.   I am only 4'9".  It bothered me when I was young.  But I am married. Through God's miracle, we have a daughter and we have 2 beautiful granchildren.

nikasmom said...
on Jun. 9 2010 at 9:33 pm

fantastic post thank you!! my girl 13 just got diagnosed and feels everything you posted. you're brave and wonderful keep up the great spirit and don't let anyone steal your dreams!

donna


waffjay said...
on May. 13 2010 at 6:12 pm
waffjay, Irvine, California
0 articles 0 photos 4 comments

Favorite Quote:
"I worked my using hard, so now I want to work my sobriety hard."

proud of you girl, your courage is seven feet tall. doesn't matter that you're "short". my mother is barely 5'2 as well and is a neurosurgeon. she was the highest grossing surgeon at the major medical center she works at and is the only female surgeon. she owns her height, as do you. it's cute actually, she has to stand on a little stool when she operates. it's women like you, like my mother, that we should all aspire to be. you've been through hell and back, and i commend you for your resilliency

Darkgi said...
on May. 6 2010 at 1:10 pm
Oh, this strory really touch me. You are very strong and i admire the way you face your life.

the boss said...
on May. 6 2010 at 4:52 am
i loved this story! 1 of my best friends has turner and every body makes fun of her and i just want her to know yes it fells bad but people are here for you!

BuggyGirl said...
on Apr. 30 2010 at 3:46 pm
I personally have Turner's syndrom and the short height bothered me because my family is tall and my shortest relative is 5'9 and i just recently hit 5'0 at 16 years old. I always felt like the outcast in my family. People have always make rude comments that hurt me or make me feel like a little child which annoys be and I even feel sad when I look in the mirror and see someone that looks like a little girl but the part that hurt the most was not fitting into my family. Everyone has a different story and my height has also botherd me for my own personal reasons and I just wanted to let you know that sometimes being short can have negative effects on peoples lives and to some people, including myself, it matters a lot.

pauzhaan said...
on Apr. 28 2010 at 7:38 am

Hi, My 20yo has Turner Syndrome.  She was diagnosed prenatally.  She always excelled at Literature, History etc, but lots of trouble with maths.  An interactive MRI showed that she processes math on the verbal side of her brain.  She did gymnastics from 8yo - 16yo.  Now she's a competitive snowboarder.

Being short is (she's 5') good for gymnastics, diving, and freestyle snowsports!

Check her out!  Kyla Sobieralski!


niicoleee said...
on Apr. 25 2010 at 9:26 pm
I'm 15 and 5'0 and I don't get what the big deal is about being short. I've been teased all my life, and it's never "deeply hurt" me. Why does it matter so much?

lady_S said...
on Apr. 25 2010 at 7:54 pm
i'm not sure if i have turner syndrome, but as someone who has been the short girl all her life, it's hard sometimes. I've been 4'11 as long as i can remember and while all my friends grew...i never did. it used to bother me when i was in middle school because everyday someone would make some kind of comment of me bein short....but when i got into high school, i just learned to love being short and gained a lot of confidence in my height...and also on the bright side...u dont have to worry about liking a guy who's shorter than you (which alot of my taller friends envy about) ;)

on Apr. 24 2010 at 4:23 pm
Katiebug98 SILVER, Boise, Idaho
7 articles 0 photos 6 comments
very inspirational...my sister's got turner...i'll have her read this...nice!

Raineigh said...
on Apr. 24 2010 at 4:09 am

I understand people making fun of you because you're different. I'm not one of the shorter ones, but I was by far the tallest for most of my life, even taller than my husband now! I nearly reached 6 ft by the time I was done growing, and I sprouted most of that when I was in elementary.

It is hard, kids do make fun. The girl I was best friends with from infancy had people calling me "frog legs" because I had such long legs and a shorter torso.

Just realize that what makes you different is what makes you you!


Maggs said...
on Apr. 23 2010 at 11:46 am
im 13 and I'm shorter then my 10 yr. old friend... i dont think i have Turner, but im still short. sad? yeh sometimes, but i just shake it off. i mean, my friends still say i have a great personality :] so i dont worry about it. by the way great writing, keep it up!   :]   ~[rawr]~

sweetangel20 said...
on Mar. 24 2010 at 11:47 am
Hey, im caitlin and i was dagnosed with TS the day i was born. i am now 20 years old. And you are lucky that you could reach 5ft. i am only 4'6 . I just thought you could use some advise from someone who has had TS for a long time. Yeah, sure, the things people say will hurt your feelings. You wouldnt be human if it didnt. You just have to forget and brush it off. Dont let anything get you down. And from your story it looks like you have that part down pretty well. Just keep living your life and do what you wanna do. Ignore everyone else, well the mean ones anyway.

on Mar. 23 2010 at 7:49 pm
soletmar BRONZE, Dobbs Ferry, New York
3 articles 24 photos 65 comments

Favorite Quote:
"If you wanna be a dancer dance/ In you wanna be a miner mine/ If you wanna dress like somebody else/ Fine fine fine/ Cause what the hell is wrong with expressing yourself/ And trying to be free?"
Draco: "You know they don't have dances at pigfarts."

I like this so much because it really helps me understand what this is like. I myself am in no means short, i've always been the tallest in my class as 5 foot 7 at 14 years old. It really did move me though, though at the same time tall people have probelms at the same time.

on Mar. 23 2010 at 7:24 am
FunXsize3 BRONZE, Honey Brook, Pennsylvania
4 articles 0 photos 21 comments

Favorite Quote:
"Life is like a box of choclates"

I’m 16 and I’m only 4’10. My nicknames are “midget”, “Shorty” and “Oompa Loompa”. I don’t think I have Turner Syndrome but I feel the same way. Thanks for writing this it makes me want to research Turner Syndrome.

on Mar. 1 2010 at 8:28 pm
francinejar SILVER, Chino Hills, California
7 articles 1 photo 22 comments

Favorite Quote:
God and the devil are raging inside me.

i am 17 years old and barely 4'11 i am the oldest in my class and the shortest, i've learned that good things come in small packages

on Mar. 1 2010 at 7:05 am
xAllegria BRONZE, Singapore, Other
1 article 2 photos 112 comments

Favorite Quote:
Ça fait tellement du bien d’aimer les gens qu’on aime, que ça finit par faire mal. Je sais pas comment on survit a ça. Non franchement, je sais pas. LOL (laughing out loud) ®, Lola.

Wow, I love your spirit. Nice stuff.

on Feb. 7 2010 at 9:38 am
VioletsandVoice, Spiritwood, North Dakota
0 articles 0 photos 170 comments
i don't have turner syndrome but i have had many other medical things and as a result have had many injections/blood draws/IV's and can totally sympothize with the needle/doc phobia. im thirteen and have finally reached the point where they just don't bother me as much anymore

on Nov. 5 2009 at 5:44 pm
Charlotte BRONZE, Palm Springs, California
1 article 0 photos 1 comment
Hi, great article! I'm 18 and was diagnosed with Turner Syndrome when I was an infant. I had growth hormone injections also. If you're interested, I have an article sort of relating to Turners also called "The 46th Chromosome." Thanks for writing this. :)


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