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I remember the day my IBS symptoms started... was the end of my first year of bible college, right after I started dating the wonderful man that is now my fiance. It started with severe constipation with a lot of pain that last a day or two then turned to D with pain. I have suffered off and on with IBS ever since. At times I would spend every evening alternating between a fetal position and sitting on the toilet. The IBS attacks come on so suddenly. There have been times when I have been with my fiance and I am shaking, sweating, hot/cold, hurting so bad... and he has been wonderful enough to sit by me, stroke my head and try to hold a hot water bottle on my lower back... unsure how much it helps but it makes him feel like he's helping.I have lost probably about 10 lbs since this all started less than 2 years ago. I have not been above 120lbs since then. I have gone through periods where I am afraid to eat anything. Now I eat little bits here and there, rarely do I eat a full meal. I am progressively cutting out all dairy products... started with cutting out cheese, ice cream, and drinking milk, now I am cutting it all out all together as I am still have IBS attacks. I am trying to cut out fatty foods but that is tough as I live in a college dorm and HAVE to eat the cafeteria food... for some reason EVERYTHING is deep fried. At times I am so depressed. I have had to miss work, and walk out of classes due to IBS.I have a few questions like... will I have to deal with this for the rest of my life?How can I learn how to control it?I went to a few doctors and it seems that their consensus is that I have IBS. They basically said to try cutting out caffiene, eat some fibre, and cut out milk. Beyond that they have offered very little info. I think that they don't know much about it maybe. I was tested for a ton of things in the earlier days... seems I have spent a lot of time in the hospital for testing in the last 2 years.www.IBSvillage.com has helped me recently understand IBS more.Again my main questions are... is this for life? and how do I control it?
 

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i went to my university's dining services with a letter from my doctor explaining what i can and can't eat. they had to prepare one meal a day for me. maybe you could try that? dining service food is horrible! i also have a little fridge, an electric wok, and a veggie steamer so that i can prepare some food in my room.i've had this since high school and i still havent figured out how to control it. my diet does help so much. i always carry immodium and water on me.my mom has ibs and has had the symptoms since she was a teenager. her ibs is pretty much the same. she hasn't changed her diet, still drinks caffeine, and still smokes. mine has gotten much better. i guess it just depends on the person.
 

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Hi pottersclay, it's true that some doctors don't know much about it. I think it's important to find a doctor whom you like and can talk to comfortably. Taking fiber has helped me somewhat, and I drink a ton of water. I still eat pretty much the same, except I try to moderate what I eat and stick with small, frequent meals and healthy snacks when I can. I have a lot of pain; for me being hungry is horrible. I don't think anyone can tell you if you'll have it for your whole life or not, but you may. (I still get a bit depressed about that.) Remember we're in this together.
 
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