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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
are you guys ever embarrassed about your IBS? i am IBS D and im like really embarrased about it i have only told 1 of my friends and thats becuase he has sumthing of the same thing i do. i was just wondering if this was normal thanks
 

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I am always, always embarrassed about it.I had to quit work, lost a long time boyfriend, had zero support from friends and family (my mother atually accused me of making it up to get attention... plueeese. If I wanted to make something up, it WOULDN'T be IBS-D, maybe low back pain or something, LOL).Now though, after having this stupid illness for so long, it's alot easier to deal with other peoples attitudes, but I definately only tell a select few.Good luck
 

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I don't really consider myself to be embarrassed about it, but still I only tell a few select people because sometimes I feel it is embarassing for them to sit a listen to me talk about it. My cousins and a couple of close friends know, the rest of the people I have just told I have a sensitive stomach and have to be very careful about what I eat.
 

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I get embarrassed..esp now when I am off work. People ask where I work and if I say I'm off for medical reasons they want to know why. (nosy people!) And some of the people I trusted with what it was have thrown it in my face saying how "other people with IBS can work 12 hour days" and accuse me of being lazy and faking it. Or they think they know "why" I have it. Gotta love those amature doctors, who don't even HAVE IBS to know about it. I've learned to nod and smile a lot.
 

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Unfortunately I am very outspoken about it. Never ever embarrased at all. In fact, my openness has gotten many friends/co-workers to confess to the same problems. As you know I am one of the Ezekiel Bread users and I have half my neighbors, all of my friends and 10 co-workers now using it that have IBS symptoms. I think if I wasn't so open that many people I know would still suffer in silence.
 

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Yes, yes and yes. IBS is totally at odds with my self-image, which is to be dainty, well-mannered and sweet. (It know it sounds kind of saccharine and anachronistic, but that's how I was raised.) I see IBS as smelly, crude and indicative of a lack of control. I go to great lengths to hide my problem, from blaming frequent restroom trips on too much coffee (I don't even drink the stuff) to sitting there smiling and making small talk while inside I'm writhing with cramps. Would it be healthier to adopt the slogan "IBSer and proud of it!" or wear a button declaring "Ask me about my bowels?" Probably not. Defecation is such a taboo topic in our society. You can talk about back problems or migraine headaches all day long and get plenty of sympathy, but I've found that IBS just isn't welcomed as a conversational gambit. And it doesn't help that there's still the common belief that we're all high-strung and neurotic. Thank goodness for this BB, where we can pour our hearts out!
 

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Embarrassed? Yes! For the most part if someone asks I say food allergies or food intolerances. (Not too far from the truth). People understand an allergy better than a syndrome.
 

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yes, I am private and embarassed about the nature of this illness. I kind of feel like it's a weakness and people will view me that way, but maybe it's the opposite since I've been dealing w/ this for 20 yrs! I am very selective about who I choose to tell and I don't even tell all my family members. I don't think they want to hear about it anyway. My husband doesn't even want to hear about it anymore...that's why I come to this board.
 

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i used to be embarrassed about it.. but not any more! i think i get more angry at others now.. for not understanding! if someone has to run 2-3 times to the bathroom, common sense tells you they're not feeling the best
so it pisses me off when someone makes a comment in an irritated voice.. it's like, 'would you like to trade me places???" stuff like that
i'm starting to get control again of it.. but when i hafta go, i hafta go!
 

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I used to be really embarassed. Now I have told a lot of people, usually in the context of a workmate offering me some food (say some potato crisps) which I refuse and say it upsets my stomach. Some people are then curious so I tell them a little bit about it. I have discovered 4 other sufferers this way! I usually call it "my sensitive stomach". The important thing to remember though is that you're the only one who is thinking about it. If you try to be light hearted about it, everyone else will be too. If you're really embarrassed and try to pretend there is nothing wrong when you are clearly in distress, people get suspicious and think there is something to hide.
 
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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
I don't really tell many people either. Mostly, I think they just don't really want to hear about it. I wonder if they think "why did she just tell me that?? it was more than I wanted to know!" I have only told my family and boyfreind and even then, I don't tell them much. I really don't think my boyfreind wants to hear me complain about an upset stomach all the time or hear about my watery BMs!
 

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my partner is exactly the same - tired of hearing how I'm "not in the mood" again tonight because I haven't been to the toilet in 5 days and have a 6 month pregnant stomach!My mother I am sure thinks it is all in my head, alternating with "It's because you dieted when you were 18 and 'ruined your bowels'".It is one of those things, like migraine headaches, I think, that unless you suffer from it you have no idea how bad it is.I have told my closest friend and also my secretary (but only because she was so forthcoming about her menopause, yeast infections, insomnia, cystitis etc!!)Also a colleague who suffers from fibromyalgia.But I don't think I would tell anyone else, they just don't understand. I too sit there and grimace while my intestines are doing a polka (I described the pain to my partner as someone blowing up a balloon in your intestines whilst simutaneously screwing around your intestines like a tight corkscrew) and try not to break wind in their presence!
 

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I was very embarresed , a freind would call and ask to go out and I would make up lame excuses as to why I am not gonna go.I am lucky enough to have a great understanding spouse who yes sometimes gets frustrated but understands when I say my stomach hurts. I try to make jokes about it to cover the stress. At work well no -one knows and I had my first D episode on my first day of work but I noticed something I am not alone look at the board I bet one of these people work where I work where you work so atleast one person understands and well for everyone else what are ya gonna do?I cover it up by saying hey man I have a medical condition my stomach sucks. and laugh it off. People have illness. HAving D alot is embarresing but ya know it happens to everyone maybe not as much as us but I bet they did it in a public place to at one point. It's ok. It happens.
 
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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
I've been aware of my IBS for only a few months now. I'm not embarressed perse', butI haven't broadcasted my condition to the world. People just don't want to hear about explosive bowel movements.My partner knows and is as sympathetic as she can be. Fortunately for me, her mother has suffered with IBS for 30 years (oy!), so she has a better understanding of the condition than most. Still, if you don't live it, you don't have the whole picture.However, I don't wear an "IBS and Proud of it!" button and have only told a few co-workers. It's not a particularly good topic for the water cooler chats. If someone asks, I tell. I have a wicked sense of humor, so I usually find a way to make the condition funny (??) - or at least view it on the lighter side. We who suffer find very little solice out there...I am VERY greatful for this BB, the kindness of the members, and the tons of good information we all provide.Bless you all!XX DoriB
 

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Embarassed, yes. Nobody at work knows about my IBS, and I can't see ever telling anyone. I divide my visits to the bathroom between two bathrooms, and hope nobody notices. I would absolutely DIE to have an accident and have someone find out about it at work. I am the only female in an industrial environment, and it would spread like wildfire if anyone ever knew. I can hear the snickering already. At the mall, or somewhere I don't know anybody, wouldn't bother me as much.
 

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I don't think embarrassed is the word. I have IBS G, and I tell people I have IBS but I don't tell them that I have chronic gas. Like somebody mentioned in another reply, I have friends that know "why" I have it and think it's all in my head.
 

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"IRRITABLE BOWEL SYNDROME" Even the words are embarrassing to say. I answer yes to this question. I only tell my family and close friends and it's hard for them to understand this awful IBS. I try to avoid it as much as possible. When I am having a bout with it, I still see a lot of eye-rolling; If you know what I mean!
 

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Embarrassed? You bet! Society doesn't look too highly upon people talking about C/D/or G. Look at all the advertising on TV and in magazines for all the new drugs being introduced for a multitude of medical problems. It's okay to talk about head lice, yeast infections and erectile dysfunction on prime time TV, but has anyone seen/read an ad like this.... "My explosive diarrhea is so much better now that my doctor prescribed Lotronex!" I truly believe the general public feels that IBS is all in our heads and we should just get over it! DUH! If it was that easy, don't you think we would have tried that?!? Next time I'm going to choose a much more glamorous problem! morning
 
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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
I discovered a fellow IBSer at work today. She just started a few weeks ago and got D cramps this afternoon. She just openly told everyone it was IBS and took a Levsin (I was just about jealous because she was so open and I suffer with cramps and pretend as hard as possible nothing is wrong). All I had the heart to say was I had a prescription for it too. I was embarrassed that other people might hear us talk about it or she might tell people that it was all I could tell her!! So silly....
 
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