What It's Like To Have IBD And IBS
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6 Things People With So-Called 'Bathroom Diseases' Want You To Know, Even If It's TMI

Get over it, it's not gross.

6 Things People With So-Called 'Bathroom Diseases' Want You To Know, Even If It's TMI

IBDs and IBS are all too common in the United States. About 1.6 million Americans, to be exact. Despite that large number, there are still so many common misconceptions out there that need to be debunked.

So, let's get to it:

1. It's All Too Common. 

As mentioned above, about 1.6 million Americans have some form of an IBD, that is, an Inflammatory Bowel Disease, like Chrons or Ulcerative Colitis... IBS has, even more, up to 45 million people in America alone, or around 10% percent of the world's population. Most people who have these disorders are female. Chances are you probably know someone with one of these conditions, and if you don't, they've just chosen not to talk to you about it which leads me to our next item...

2. Stop Telling Us It's Gross. 

We all have bodies. And they all do... the thing. Ours is just having a harder time functioning and for a lot of us this is something that affects our day to day, even our minute to minute life, and so we want to share with our friends. I get it if you don't want to hear it, but just don't be rude, alright?

3. Not "Just A Stomach-Ache." 

Don't write us off as just having a bathroom disease. Don't write us off as just having a stomach ache. This is nowhere near the same thing as having a crampy and bloated tummy after eating too much at Thanksgiving. These can affect the whole body, giving people fevers and horrific fatigue. It is not even possible for us to describe how we feel to you.

4. It's Chronic, It's Not Going Away. 

When are you going to get better? How come you feel sick today? You felt fine yesterday. These bowel diseases are chronic, meaning that they do not go away. In the case of chrons, it can often even change the tissues of the gastrointestinal track requiring surgery. For this reason, we can be fine one day and lying in our beds in a coma the next day.

5. "You Don't Look Sick." 

No duh. From the minute we're diagnosed, we learn very quickly that no one really wants to talk to us about our pain and our problems, not really. So we learn to fake it till we make it. As a result, often times people with any sort of chronic pain disorder, not just an IBD or IBS, are really good at pretending that we're perfectly fine when we feel like we've gotten hit by a semi-truck over a thousand times. Just because I don't look sick doesn't mean I'm fine.

6. Are You My Doctor?

No? Then stop telling me what to do. Stop telling me that I need more fiber in my diet. Stop telling me that I should do yoga, or whatever the most recent internet trend is. Every single person with an IBD or IBS is completely different, and therefore we all need different things. We know what our bodies can or cannot handle, even when it sometimes shifts from one day to the next. I understand that you care, but perhaps see if there's something you can do for us instead.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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