How to manage anxiety around testing and the future?

Hi everyone,
I’ve made a few posts here - you’ll be able to see from my post history. I’m so grateful this forum exists with all you wonderful ladies.
I had my first abnormal smear with high risk HPV (non 16/18) last year and my second this year (non 16/18 with LSIL). I go for my coloscopy in 8 weeks. I’ve been taking AHCC, Vitamin c, A, D, a probiotic and zinc as well as B12. I’m not too hopefully honestly about the supplements as it didn’t seem to make much difference last year - though to be fair I didn’t take them very consistently. I’ve found this experience very difficult mentally (which I’m going to therapy for) and quite isolating as none of my friends have been through it before. I’m just wondering how you guys manage the emotional side - including the guilt and shame feeling.
I’ve only had 1 partner I had unprotected sex with and I thought at the time it would be okay - we were monogamous and had both had clear STI panels - but now I feel like an absolute fool for not knowing. I don’t know how to manage my future going forward and I’m so worried about what they might find and if it’s worse than I’m imagining! I’m 26 and single and I don’t know how I could trust someone, and would never want to put anyone else at risk too. I’m just seeking stories or hope or how others are managing. Thanks so much <3

Hi @Miranda I know your post is from a few weeks ago so hopefully things have improved for you by now but didn’t want to read and not leave a comment.
It is a really difficult emotional process isn’t it, I think all the waiting and uncertainty makes it harder. It’s great that you’re having therapy, hopefully that’s giving you good support and tools to help you cope.

Some things I find helpful personally is meditation and learning about concepts like ‘radical acceptance’, it can help us build resilience and the general idea is to accept that difficult things will happen but to kind of go with it rather than fight against it and take things as they are now instead of living in worry. Easier said than done though i know!
Talking to other people on here really helps too so you know you’re not going through this alone, there’s loads of us.

Focusing on hobbies and planning nice things to do can really help too, this is just ONE part of our lives and doesn’t dictate everything.

With regards to feeling shame about this, have a read about HPV on Jo’s site. I think something like 80% of people get it at some point!

Let us know how you get on x

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