Find Help with a Scoliosis Support Group
I’m a Tulsa Kid
Emily Tullis, 13, Dove Science Academy & Emily Campbell, 15, Dove Science Academy
Q: Tell me about your project.
A: Curvy Girls is a scoliosis support group for girls who have scoliosis. Emily T. and I are co-leaders of the Oklahoma chapter of the Curvy Girls. Curvy Girls is an international group with chapters all over the U.S. and in Canada and the Netherlands.
Q: Why did you get involved in this project?
A: We started the Curvy Girls of Oklahoma to help girls here get over the fear and embarrassment they might have about scoliosis and to show them that they are not alone!
Q: When did you start the group?
A: We became group leaders in March of 2011.
Q: There are two of you involved. Tell me about yourselves.
A: My name is Emily T. and I’m 13 years old. I was told that I have scoliosis in August of 2010. At first, I thought I just needed to stand up straighter and that it was no big deal. When I told my mom, she made an appointment with my doctor. The doctors suggested that we go to the Shriners Hospital in St. Louis, Missouri. We went to the Shriners in February and had all kinds of x-rays taken. My curve was 80 degrees. They said a brace would not help and that surgery was the best option. The waiting list was about six months. I had spinal fusion on August 24, 2011. I have been more shy since being told I have scoliosis. I used to not care what people thought, but now that’s gone away. But now that I am learning I am not alone, I just feel tons better! Curvy Girls is showing me that I’m not alone and I do not feel as much of an oddball.
A: My name is Emily Campbell. I am 15 years old, and I have scoliosis! I wear a back brace 23/7 and used to hate it! It rips my clothes and I get frustrated when I wear it. I’m afraid to have surgery but the back brace is so uncomfortable. Its also embarrassing because people can still tell I have it on even when I have a kind of baggy shirt. At first I was scared to go to school wearing it because I was afraid I would get made fun of, but I got used to it and everyone thought it was so cool. I was watching TV one night when I saw the HALO AWARDS come on, and I loved watching that. I was so surprised to see a girl that had scoliosis. She had started a support group in her state for girls just like her. Before that I thought I was one of only a few people with scoliosis. I went on Facebook to add her as a friend. Then I searched Scoliosis on the search engine on Facebook and found her group. Ever since then, I feel better about my back brace. I am glad to wear it. It’s still uncomfortable, but almost everyone at my school knows about it so I’m not as embarrassed anymore.
Q: Why do you think this support group is important?
A: Girls might want to come to our scoliosis support group because they are afraid or embarrassed about their scoliosis. Most girls with scoliosis wear back braces, and they’re afraid that their back braces will show through their shirts and people will make fun of them. We are here to help them em”brace” their brace and to show them how to let their friends know what it is and not to be embarrassed by it. Some girls may need to have the surgery, so the girls in our group that have already had the surgery can help them through this tough time by giving them tips on what to be ready for and how to deal with certain situations. Girls that have already had scoliosis surgery or don’t have anything being done at the moment about their scoliosis can also join the group. The girls that have already had the scoliosis surgery can help those that are getting ready to have it be less afraid and give them tips. We can all support one another, no matter what we’re going through.
Q: When do you meet?
A: We meet monthly, usually at the library or someone’s home. Call 918.691.9795 or email email@example.com for more information.
Q: What do you do at meetings?
A: During our group meetings, we talk about how our backs are doing, if anyone has any surgeries or doctor appointments coming up, and if anyone has any questions or concerns. We also talk about fundraising for the Curvy Girl Convention in 2012.
If you would like to get involved with us, call (918) 691-9795 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information. We’d love to have you!
You can also go to the Curvy Girls website for more information.
We look forward to seeing you at our next meeting!