Rebekah Knight, now 25, reveals how she found out she was born without a Vagina, uterus and cervix at 18. She thought she would start her period in her early teens, just like the rest of her friends. However, 17 and still waiting, she began to worry that something wasn’t right. Initially, she thought she was just a ‘late starter’, but after sharing her fears with her mum Debbie, 52, she decided to go to the GP for some advice. There, she was referred to Royal Victoria hospital, Belfast, for a variety of tests. Eventually an MRI scan revealed she had a rare condition called Mayer Rokitansky Hauser (MRKH) syndrome, meaning she was born without a vagina, cervix or uterus. The condition affects one in 5,000 women worldwide.
Rebekah said: ‘As you can imagine, I was very heartbroken and shocked. I couldn’t believe this was happening to me. ‘I was especially devastated when I was told I wouldn’t be able to carry children. There are no words to describe it. ‘But there are still options like surrogacy or adoption. This won’t stop me from becoming a mother.’ As her ovaries still function normally, Rebekah will be able to have children that are biologically hers. However, without a uterus, she will be unable to carry them herself. Following her diagnosis, Rebekah was also told that she only had one kidney and would need surgery to reconstruct her vagina because it was so small. ‘They said I needed to improve that part of the body, and to have it working normally,’ she said. ‘I was always a bit terrified of hospitals, but I knew it was going to benefit me in the long run.’
So, in summer 2013, Rebekah underwent two procedures at the Royal Victoria hospital. Firstly, surgeons stretched the tissue on the outside of her vagina before using that tissue to reconstruct the area, expanding the previously small opening. Though she healed well and thankfully did not suffer any infections, Rebekah still spent 12 days confined to a hospital bed whilst she recovered. She also spent a month undergoing tough physiotherapy to enable her to walk again before she was finally discharged.
Since leaving hospital, Rebekah has been charting her journey to help other people in a similar position.Determined to help, she has now written a book about her experiences called ‘The Girl With No…’ , which is available on Amazon.
Though she is currently single, Rebekah hopes to one day meet someone and fall in love. She said: ‘I don’t worry too much about relationships, as I believe the right person will stick by you for you for who you are.