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barbarafromtucson posted:
In the past few years, I've developed IBS. It has completely altered my life. I used to travel a lot, go out with friends, and participate in activities and such at church. Now that has mostly been eliminated from my life--because of the IBS. I can't go a single day without worrying about where the bathroom is and Imodium doesn't always work.

I've been to doctors, have figured out many foods that trigger it (and have eliminated those foods from my diet), but it hasn't cured me. I'm a lot 'better' then I was a couple years ago, but I still have episodes on a frequent-enough basis to interfere with my life.

I know some part of me is mourning the lost of my past...that I have to say goodbye to having the freedom to have a 'normal' lifestyle. I just don't know how to let go of that--I do manage to work full-time--in a call center where I can take bathroom breaks as needed--but when I am not at work, I am at home. I don't have any kind of 'life' anymore. I am single, live alone with my cats, and so being stuck at home all the time is making me feel very isolated. I do manage to make it to/thru work, so I am able to get out of the house and be around people, but still...

I have been going to counseling about this, but, so far, it hasn't helped me much. Every time I make "progess", but with the next episode in the bathroom, that progress is down the toilet as well.

How does one get thru life with a chronic health condition without family? And how does one get any part of one's past back?

I hope I am making sense.
Caprice_WebMD_Staff responded:
Yes, Barbara, that makes a lot of sense, at least to me.

I don't have IBS but do have another chronic condition for the last 25 years and I have also had to allow myself to grieve the loss of the life I once had and figure out how to have a life anyway. And I did but it can still get to me sometimes.

Getting yourself reconnected with others seems essential to me so I'm really glad you posted here. Keep trying new treatments, etc., and continue with therapy to help you cope with how this is impacting your life and start making some small changes to improve it despite the IBS.

And I really encourage you to talk with others on our Digestive Disorders community to start with. It can really help to talk with others who share the same challenges, both the physical and the emotional fallout. (((hugs)))

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