This story comes from AR, who has chosen to remain anonymous. He is from India so his experiences may not be representative of those who live in the UK.

In 2019, my life took a turn I never saw coming. It all began when a doctor near my town noticed something off with my height and late facial hair growth during my class 11 days, when I was 19. At first, my dad attributed it to genetics, but things got worse. I felt constantly tired, struggled with homework, and couldn’t keep up in class. My vision started getting blurry, and I thought it was just from too much screen time.

Doctors initially couldn’t pinpoint the issue, chalking it up to minor hormone variations and suggesting exercise. But the first doctor insisted on seeing an endocrinologist. Following various tests, an MRI revealed I had a craniopharyngioma. The urgency for surgery grew as my vision worsened.

I negotiated with the doctor to delay surgery until after my class 12 exams. On my birthday, my dad came from abroad for my transsphenoidal surgery. Post-surgery, sodium and potassium imbalances prolonged my hospital stay. Only later did I discover my pituitary gland was removed, requiring lifelong hormone replacement. It hit me hard, but I persevered through hormone replacement therapy, dealing with weight gain.

My online searches for similar stories helped, but the real support came from family and friends. Despite setbacks, I completed my degree with numerous leaves. It’s been five years since the surgery, and though complications persist, I’ve gained confidence. My next dream? Pursuing an MBA. Through it all, my parents stood by me, caring for me like a baby. Their support is something I can never fully express my gratitude for. Life has its challenges, but over time, confidence emerges, helping you move forward.