Mineka Furtch wasn’t bothered by the idea of morning sickness after going through a miscarriage and the roller coaster of fertility medication before she finally became pregnant with her son.
But when the 29-year-old from suburban Atlanta was five weeks pregnant in 2020, she started throwing up and couldn’t stop. She would eat an orange, some days nothing. Furtch used all her paid time at work by taking sick days and eventually had to rely on unpaid leave. It was only morning sickness, she said to her doctor. Things would improve.
Furtch had already lost over 20 pounds by the time she was 13 weeks old.
“I fought so hard to have this baby, and I was fighting so hard to keep this baby,” Furtch said. “I was like ‘OK, something is not right here.’”
Now, Furtch’s son is 18 months old, and she is suffering again from severe nausea and vomiting well into the second trimester of a new, unplanned pregnancy.
Morning sickness symptoms are common in the first trimester. But, for some women like Furtch who experience nausea and vomiting, it can last much longer. These symptoms are often ignored or mistreated.