I've just joined this forum because after suffering from IBS-D for most of my 57 years, I've had enough. In the past year or two I've worked hard to take more control of various aspects of my life and now it's the turn of this issue, where I feel so OUT of control at the moment. Reading some of the posts here, I've realised that I'm lucky - my condition isn't nearly as bad as many other people's - diarrhoea in the mornings and when I'm stressed, and Imodium works for me. However, I've realised that I'm getting steadily more anxious and prone to panic when facing a situation where a toilet might not be immediately available, and am beginning to avoid holidays, trips out with friends, even eating out at friends' houses. I've had accidents, so far, mercifully, when I've been alone, but the fear of the humiliation and embarrassment if it happened in company is leading to panic attacks - which of course make the fear self-fulfilling. I've realised what a strong element of shame there is in my attitude to my IBS - I've never told any of my friends or family exactly what the problems are or what it's like, and though I've occasionally been to my GP, I've never managed to say really clearly just how bad the anxiety is. Until today. I've been getting very angry about the fact that this is controlling my life, and finally asking why I should feel shame? (Probably goes back to attitudes from the family - but why should I take that on board - this is just a physical condition like any other). Today I went to the doctor's, saw a very nice young female GP, who listened, took me seriously and is arranging blood tests, including the coeliac one, is sending me to see the practice counsellors to look at the panic side, and will meet with me again to look at diet etc. I'm looking at these fantastically useful forums,the openness and honesty of which is really encouraging and affirming, have ordered some books, and am looking at food and exercise. I may not be able to beat IBS completely -I realise that as yet there's no cure - but I intend to minimise its effects on my life and happiness. Sorry for the length of this, but I just wanted to share where I am, say hello and thankyou for all the information and encouragement available on here.