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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Ok, so I went to the therapist yesterday for the 1st time. He asked why I was there & I told him. So then we go into the details of my life, daily routines, effects of IBS, ect. Then he starts to ask me about my childhood, parents, siblings, teen age years, & 1st marriage. So by this point, he knows pretty much everything about me. (Keep in mind this is still my 1st appt w/ him)So finaly after my alloted 45 minutes, this GENIUS has come to the conclusion that1. My life is extremely stressfull2. My symptoms are encouraged because I have underlying guilt that I make more money at my job than my motherThat is insane! I really love my mom, but please. I've actually made more than her for several years... but now it bothers me?! Go Figure!
 

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Gordon Fan:Sounds like you got a therapist who did not receive supervised clinical experience treating GI patients. Unfortunately, this does happen. Doesn't mean that therapy with GI symptoms isn't possible.If you are going to give this one more try (which would probably be a really good idea), start by asking your GI doc for a suggestion. Then call the therapist's office and inquire about their training and experience. Board Certification, while not a guarantee, makes it a lot less of a #### shoot. You really need someone who routinely treats GI problems. Generalists (someone who does marriage counseling, ADHD, depression, vocational counseling, and then a little GI concerns on the side) just will not cut it. Sometimes people on this forum can recommend someone who is experienced with GI stuff.
 

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I've been to 4 different "therpists" in 18 years.Pretty much the same thing as your experience with all of them.There is a lot of info on this board about the mind body connection with IBS. My theory for whatever it's worth: many of us-especially with IBS-D, urgency, etc. are prone to it through our chemistry, nervous system etc. It is truly amazing when you read posts on here, from people all over the world, from teenagers to seniors, theduplication of feelings, situations, problems,symptoms.A therapist that doesn't know about the disease cannot help you. Just trying to treat the anxiety may help-but there is no cure for IBS.No need to spend $100 a hour for someone to tell us that we have too much stress in our lives.I'm sure you'll see some posts from people that have positive things to say about therapy. I don't...and I've been to an MD psychiatrist, and 2 Master's degree level practitioners, and one PHD level person. NOt one of them helped me at all.Sorry-pretty negative post, but it's my reality from experience.Hang in there....learn stuff on this board, and keep trying to find the best way to deal with your particular issues.Jeanne
 

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I was in a clinical trial with Cog. Behav. Therapy specifically designed for IBS patients. I think that it is hard to find someone who has the expertise both in Cog. Behav. Therapy AND IBS.From the studies when you do find the right person it can be effective for a lot of people. I'm just not sure how you make sure ahead of time that the person you are talking to actually knows this sub-specialty well.K.
 

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I've had therapists in the past and they have all been good. I went to see a psychotherapist, and they were both knobs. The first guy kept asking me to repeat my story, which was hard enough to even tell ONCE at the time. So I asked for another doctor and he actually laughed at me when I told him my story. So I said screw it, no more psychotherapists.So perhaps try another one? Get a recommendation from your doctor, someone your doctor trust is probably someone you can trust.
 

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I tried going to a therapist who does hypnosis therapy as a way of helping you to control your stress. The session lasted 2 hours, the first 40 minutes felt like a psychology class from college because he basically lectured me on the the various theories surrounding hypnosis.Then he asked me what meds I was on and basically said that if I became "stronger mentally" (those were his exact words) I wouldn't have to "resort" to using medication like Immodium or Dicyclomine.I was pretty angry after he said that but decided to stay and let him proceed with his hypnosis therapy. The problem was the hypnosis didn't work at all on me and I sat there with headphones on with my eyes closed feeling really stupid because nothing was happening.So basically the hypnosis therapy was a $100 waste of time for me.
 

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quote:My symptoms are encouraged because I have underlying guilt that I make more money at my job than my mother
quote:if I became "stronger mentally" (those were his exact words) I wouldn't have to "resort" to using medication like Immodium or Dicyclomine
They ought to give these doctors a TV show on
 

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24GordonFan, did you go to see this therapist for your IBS symptoms and the stressors that come with it alone or for other issues? I personally in my experience with this malady find my diarrhea is no more stress or depression induced than a sunny day with a winning lottery in my hand giving me rapid transit and ab pain and the sweats. To put it another way, no matter how I feel mentally/emotionally, my symptoms were the same.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
gutsgonewild,I went to see him based on a recomendation from my boss about the symptoms & stress of this wonderful little "problem". I had also seen others on this site who had been helped by theirs, so I thought why not. Boy was I wrong!So today is the 2nd day that I've not been able to keep ANYTHING down. I am so tired of being sick. I've been coughing, vomiting, & having D since yesterday morning. The medicines aren't helping (suprise), and my poor hubby is so concerned that he suggested taking me to the ER. What for I said!? I have a colonoscopy scheduled for tomorrow. I just pray that it will provide some answers, because I don't think that I can continue like this much longer.
 

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24GordonFanI posted earlier, and came back on to see what others said....there was Flux from years ago...gotta love him! Anyways....I always get a little red flag when fellow IBSers write about other awful symptoms.When you said you were coughing and vomiting as well as having diarrhea-you may be reacting to something totally aside from "regular" old IBS.Friends and co-workers will say they have the "stomach flu" which is not anything real. The "flu" or influenza, involves the respiratory tract-not the gut...although symptoms can go to the gut. I always kind of smile inside when people say-I had the runs/trots and was throwing up too-that awful flu! (if only they knew huh?)Most likely if you are vomiting and all that, you may have some food poisoning of sorts.But, with IBS- it's easy to just think it's an extension of our disease. Hopefully you are feeling better. Sorry if I am off base here, as I don't know your real condition. But I rarely vomit....I mean probably 3 or 4 times in my adult life, literally. That upper part of my GI tract seems just fine. I get windy here....just trying to say I hope your other symptoms were just in passing and related to something else.Jeanne
 

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24GordonFan, what meds are you taking? I too suffered from vomitting starting the 2nd day of taking Bentyl, it took months for the vomitting to stop even after I stopped taking that med. Like jeanne2 said, it could be something other than your IBS, sometimes it is easy to blame everything on this curse since we have so few answers.
Good luck with your colonoscopy and I hope the doctor is going to take biopsies as well to rule out other things that could be causing your symptoms.
 

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Therapy can definitely be very helpful for those with IBS. Study after study shows the effect of stress on IBS. And no, a therapist should not just be telling you that you are too stressed, but should be helping you to eliminate and control stress and anxiety in your life. First, though, its important to note that IBS is not psychosomatic. Psychosomatic means that something is all in your head -- that the problem has no physical causes. Its an unhelpful term that applies more to seeing someone with chicken pox and then beginning to itch than to IBS.IBS, though, does have a strong mind-gut connection. How is this different? There is little doubt that in patients with IBS, something physically is off. Patients have an ultrasensitive GI tract and there is current research having to do with gut flora being off, seratonin levels, etc. However, with all of these, the mind has a lot of control/effect. Stress, anxiety, and negative thought processes can lead to more symptoms. Learning to destress and to replace those negative thought processes in your mind can produce physical changes in your body that helps control the IBS. So, therapy can be helpful in doing this. However, there are certain kinds of therapy that are better for people with IBS. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy is often helpful, as its purpose is to replace those negative thought patterns. Biofeedback has also been helpful, as it teaches you how to control your own body more effectively. Finally, hypnotherapy has an 80% effective rate! That's not to say that you don't have to find the right therapist. Sounds like everyone here found the wrong therapist. I can tell you that I did the IBS Audio Program (www.ibsaudioprogram100), and it helped me immensely. In stead of spending $100 per session with a hypnotherapist, you can spend $80 once and have a 3 month "course".
 

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Backfire-Pleeze, don't take this in the wrong way. We are all on here to learn and share.You are very positive about therapy, yet your other posts seem like your IBS is really bad.(I used to use this board for years, then left for about 5-just came back on last week, and have been really into it again...I'm sure this too, will pass..but)I also posted on this thread that I have had no luck at all with therapy. Besides spending a great deal of time and money on it for myself, my anxiety and my IBS, one of my children was in therapy as a teenager. It was all a joke.(And, as a patient, I didn't hold back anything in discussions...I was too anxious for someone to understand and help me to be coy)(I can in fact, use my own created biofeedback on occasion to quiet urges-or at least hold back until I'm where I need to be, if you get what I mean...but I did that all on my own)Maybe you have to live in a bigger town than I do, and have more access to experts.Be specific in what you got out of either therapy or the tapes that makes life easier for you now.ThanksJeanne
 

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I believe that those who us who have physical problems caused by our stress/anxiety, it is imperative to discuss at least temporary use of medication to get things under control. Unfortunately, in the US this can only occur if you see a psychaitrist, who is a medical doctor who can prescribe medication. I do believe that many people can learn to control their anxiety long term, but if your are spending half your life in the bathroom, you may need medication to give yourself a rest. Once that happened, my psychiatrist helped me to set limits, learn how to say no and recognize when enough was enough. And by the way, one session is rarely enough to truly decide if a therapist is right for you, especially if you are not used to therapy. Take care all.
 

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Hi California,Read your post with interest. I spent almost a year with a psychiatrist, he never prescribed any medication for me. I was much younger then (have seen 3 other therapists of sorts, since) and I think I just didn't know any better. It was a bizarre experience-he didn't help me at all-in fact I think I ended up feeling even worse because I thought surely he could "help" me! Most family doctors can and do prescribe drugs for mental heatlh problems. (I've tried 3 different anti-anxiety drugs and 2 anti-depressants-plus god knows how many GI meds)Ideally, the mental heatlh professional would work with a family doctor....but in my experience they didn't. Sent reports etc, but my family care doc and GI specialists have been the ones to prescribe medication over the almost 20 years I've had IBS.I am sure there are some good therapists out there..I am not totally "poo-pooing" (pun)the idea of using counseling, I just didn't have any luck-and it's darned expensive-even with co-pays.And- those of you that live in large metropolitan areas certainly have better access to experts or specialists. It's limited where I live.I figured I'm pretty intelligent, I don't care if I tried too hard to please my parents, or whatever, I can do some biofedback on my own, and keep dealing with IBS with help from others that have it. If there are success stories from others that use therapy, I'd love to hear how it works(ed) for them.Jeanne
 

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Hello Jeane,I didn't mean to make it sound like the psychiatrist made it all better. It was the Xanax that did that. But the shrink has given me a new perspective on how to deal with issues that cause me stress. My insurance doesn't cover it at all, so I pay $100 a session once a month, though that will soon be every other month. If you don't mind saying, what anti-anxiety drugs have you tried? Take care.
 

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Jeanne2, don't worry -- I won't take anything the wrong way. We are all here to help each other and debating what works and what doesn't is part of that. You must be referring to my posts about the increased stress I've experienced in the last few weeks. That's really the only thing I posted about in the last few months. If you read my posts "Just Started Questran," you'll note that at the end of winter, I started taking Questran and started listening to Mike's tapes. The Questran cleared up most of my diarrhea issues -- at the very least, it made my stools much more solid. However, I still had the urgency problem and the problem of not feeling empty -- feeling that I had to go to the bathroom multiple times a day (which I did). Questran didn't seem to do anything for that.I started the IBSAudioProgram and followed the instructions carefully, following them to the T. The program has you rate all your symptoms when you start it, during the middle, and at the end. By the middle of the program on a scale of 1 to 10 I had dropped my urgency problems from an 8 to a 3 (I don't have the booklet in front of me, so my numbers may be one off)! My feeling of not being empty problems I had rated a 7 at the beginning and now they were a 2! My pain had been a 4 and was now a 1! By the end of the program, both urgency and emptyness were down to a 1 and my pain was gone. Huge, huge improvement. After the program ended I also had a huge stress enter my life as I'm moving and starting a new job. These anxieties interacted with my fear of now being off the program and I had symptoms return. I emailed Mike, the creator of the ibs audio program, and he sent me an email having to do with stress, shadow fears, and how I should proceed. I now feel that I'm back to where I was before and my problems have almost vanished again.So the short of it is that the ibs audio program helped me immensely! It was a lot of work, and I don't expect to never have symptoms again. During times of extremely high stress, they may creep back; but now I know how to deal with them. These results are similar in others that have tried the entire program and followed it to the end. The program offers an 80% success rate -- much more than other remedies I know of. As for biofeedback or cognitive behavioral therapy, I can't attest personally to those. Besides getting a book on cognitive behavioral therapy (Breaking the Bonds of IBS), I never went to a practitioner. I can only report what I have read about the therapies and the success that has been reported. And any of these therapies is doing it "on your own." None of these will work if you don't put in the time and effort needed. All of these therapies are merely aids in order to get you to be able to control your body more effectively. Its akin to finding a golf instructor. The instructor can tell you how to swing and what position you should be in, but it takes hard work to learn to play golf. Some instructors are better than others, and I that's why I recommend the IBS Audio Program -- because its so easy to use and such a small investment of money. However, its not a pill to take -- you have to do the work.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
***gutsgonewild- I must have caught a bug. I still have effects of one, just not with the vomiting. Well the colonoscopy is thankfully over. They must have gotten a kick outta me, I cried like a baby. What can I say, I was REALLY nervous. So the doc says, "Yep it's IBS, spastic colon. First, try to control it by changing your diet. Increase your fiber to 20g. per day. Learn which foods to avoid. Here's some Librax for the cramping. Only take immodium for important events, not daily ones. Call me in a few weeks if there are still problems & then we will start playing aroung with medications." So that has posed so many more questions in my head.The nice thing about the last two days was that after being so sick, everything was empty, so it didn't hurt. Granted I was very weak, but there was no pain, no D. So now that there is food back in the system, here I sit another morning, missing work, wishing I was someone else. I know that I am starting to become "in jeopardy" at work. But how do I control this. I'm starting to increase the fiber, but I can only eat so much after being so sick (tummy shrank).I know that EVERYBODY IS DIFFERENT & that these boards are JUST SUGGESTIONS.So with that said, I would like to ask for everyone to list for me the things that they find are either good or bad. You decide what key pieces of info you think that might be beneficial for someone like me, with a recently positive diagnosis of IBS, should know. Are there certain tricks that you've learned? Certain foods that seem to set it off? Really, I'm looking for ANYTHING! Sorry for the length. Thanks for any advice that you might have!
 

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I hated my colonscopy myself too -- but at the same time, its such a relief to have it done. The good news is that nothing life threatening is wrong with you! IBS is an awful syndrome and literally a pain in the butt, but be glad that the colonscopy ruled out more serious ailments. Fiber is a great way to start, but there are some things about fiber you should know. First, if you take a fiber supplement, they are not all the same. I had increased problems it seemed when I was taking fibercon, but when I started taking Citrucel powder, I noticed a big improvement. My advice is to stick with the powders and to take it about an hour before bed. That is what works best for me, at least. With food, you really should take a look at this website: ...com. It has an entire section about fiber in food. Note that not all fiber in food is the same! There is soluble fiber and insoluble fiber. Eating lots of insoluble fiber, especially on an empty stomach, can cause symptoms! The site explains it all. It also has a good idea of an IBS friendly diet that can really help you. Everyone is not the same, but this site seems to pull together the common problem foods most of us have.More importantly, though, I would immediately start keeping a food diary. It is hard to tell exactly what foods are problems for you. That is because when you first eat the food there is a gastrointestinal effect as the food hits your stomach. There is also another effect, though, as your food gets digested later on. Eating something bad for you might produce immediate symptoms or it might mean you have symptoms 12-24 hours later. That's where a food diary can help. I kept a detailed account of every little thing I ate or drank with the exact time. I also kept a detailed account of every symptoms I experienced and rated it on a scale of 1 to 10. After a few weeks, I could easily see what my problem foods are. That's where I would start. In addition to diet, try to get exercises, lower stress, get enough sleep, etc. And keep talking! You see that IBS not only brings with it physical problems, but also social and mental anguish too. Talking with others will help. If you are really concerned about this, there is a great book called "Breaking the Bonds of Irritible Bowel Syndrome" which talks about the emotional side of IBS and what you can do.Keep us up to date! BackFire44
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Okay, so here I sit at 4:32pm, after missing yet another day of work. I've increased the fiber but to no avail. At this point, I am so tired of everything that I would rather not be here. My hubby seems to call at least every hour to check & see how I am doing. Honestly, every time he calls, he makes it worse. I've tried to tell him that this is real, not predictible, and I am trying. All he can seem to notice is how much money I am not making by not being at work. Right now, I would rather be single living in a box (with a toilet) trying to deal with this on mt own, rather than having to deal with his calling & questions daily. I am so afraid that this is going to ruin my marriage.
 
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