Ulcerative Colitis Tips


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How to Date With UC

2 1/2 years of colitis...this is me:)

2 1/2 years of colitis…this is me:)

Hi Everyone,
I’m 31, and was diagnosed 2.5 years ago. Before I was diagnosed, I worked 3 jobs just to stay busy; competed in triathlons; and was a personal trainer. I was also training for, my first ever, half marathon. —I was fit! haha

I love to laugh, be active, and be outdoors. I’m one of those strange people who actually enjoy every season! I’m a skier/snowboarder in the winter; hike in spring and fall; and normally I spend my summers training and competing in triathlons, plus boating. I’m grateful, that I live somewhere in which I can enjoy all of these activities.

Symptoms:

Currently, I have the odd days with sheer exhaustion (normally if I have to work an unexpected 12 hour day); sometimes blood (when I’m really tired, or super stressed); but all in all, I’m in remission!

How to Date with Colitis

I had a very large flare last year after running my first half marathon in May of 2014. I caught strep throat two days after the race; then the antibiotics, along with the strep virus, threw me into my first ever major flare. After 65 days of uncontrollable pain, bathroom visits (20+ a day), and dropping 20 lbs (off my 120 lbs frame), I was rushed to the hospital—I was allergic to every medication they tried, so finally the hospital was the last resort. I was there for 10 days. Needless to say, it was taxing on myself, my family, and my fiancĂ© at the time. The doctors discussed remicade, surgery (as I went from having 3 inches of UC, to having 24 inches of it), and the fact that I might not be able to have children. A lot to take in as in my mind. I felt like they were just pulling my “old” life away from me. Luckily, I responded to prednisone, and 6MP.

Now it is a year later, and I’m doing great! I was weaned off prednisone in December (after a 5 month run of it). And by April, I felt like my old self again. I’m back to swim training with my triathlon group; gently biking, and hiking. Nothing intense for me, but that’s okay. I’m grateful for every day I can get outside and enjoy it!

During the flare, I had amazing family and friend support. But, like any chronic illness, it took me longer than I (or anyone) expected to recover–I was off work for 6 months. Unfortunately, my main caregiver, and best friend, ended our relationship just as I finished the prednisone. Now that I’m fully back to feeling like myself, I guess it’s time to start dating again. Honestly, I’m nervous. I haven’t dated in years. I swear there should be a dating site for UCer’s haha. Less explaining required!

(my medication and supplements: 6MP, 5 ASA suppositories as needed, iron, vit B complex, probiotics, multivitamin, zinc, calcium, vit. D, potassium as needed, slippery elm bark tea, and go yin juice)

written by Lindsay L

submitted in the colitis venting area




dating

8 Responses to How to Date With UC

  1. Molly July 3, 2014 at 1:37 pm #

    The best thing that I felt helped was being open and honest with those you date. If the seem weirded out or hesitant take that as a sign. This condition is often very much out there and stressing about it will only make it worse. You need someone who can help support you emotionally.

  2. Rachel July 3, 2014 at 3:10 pm #

    Both my husband and I have UC (ha! Made for each other!). That’s not the reason we started dating but it does make dealing with a flare a lot easier as the other person knows what you’re going through. We both share medication and even share the same gastroenterologist! Good luck with the dating. Remember the disease is just an unfortunate thing that has happened to you and something we need to learn to live with but it does not define who you are. You are someone who loves to laugh and enjoys the outdoors….oh and you just so happen to have UC. Take care and all the best!

  3. AmyLynn July 3, 2014 at 4:36 pm #

    Glad to know you are feeling better and off the steroids!
    I was pretty up-front about my ulcerative colitis with my husband back when we started dating. I didn’t want to have to run off to the bathroom in the middle of a convo and have him just wondering why, or for him to feel like I was cold-shouldering him if I had to cancel a date due to a flare. He was (and is) great about it. He looked up information about it himself, in case there was anything he could do to help. We planned dates around food I could eat and places that had readily available bathrooms.
    It can be a struggle at times, but the right person will care about all of you, not just you-when-you’re-not-flaring.
    Plus, most guys seem to be quite OK with talking about bowel movements.

  4. Adrian July 3, 2014 at 6:03 pm #

    I’m 37, male, and still looking. Have had UC for over 15 years and every time it flares I feel like I’m going just a bit crazier.
    I like your idea of a dateing site for uc’ers.
    Just an fwi, I’m a farmer from a small town Saskatchewan. People don’t typically talk about things like UC or crohn’s, most people have tried to hide symptoms, unfortunately UC has been such a large influence in my life that I’ve had to speakup. It hurts like hell for the first bit when people run away. Not many accept the fatigue, they just think I’m being lazy.

  5. Reid July 3, 2014 at 8:25 pm #

    I suggest a good place to start is to be confident in yourself and don’t be embarrassed or ashamed of UC. It’s pretty common in the US. Rarely do I run into people who haven’t heard of it or Crohn’s. You are likely to meet a guy who has some familiarity with it.

    You are probably wondering when to tell the other person about your condition. Naturally bring it up when you feel the time is right, without letting the relationship get too far a long before mentioning things. I tend to tell my dates between the first and third date, but I have a unique position and use it to make myself more interesting/attractive. If I tell them on the first, I make sure to keep the details light and emphasize how well I manage my condition and that it’s not something I fear will be an issue in my life. I see the treatments you list, that proves you are proactive, responsible, and have a lot of self-respect. All qualities most guys looks for.

    Have fun!

  6. Allison July 5, 2014 at 4:28 am #

    Hi Lindsay-
    Your story is very reminiscent of my own- Diagnosed in Jan 2010- I spent a week in the hospital and even registered for a Spring half marathon while in there. Little did I know, I’d barely be able to get up the stairs for the next 6 months. I had previously been a very busy, physically active, Type A person and one of the best things UC did was teach me how to appreciate relaxation and just going with the flow! I was sick for a LONG time but have been in remission for over a year now and it’s GLORIOUS. It require vigilance though- have to eat well and consciously relax!
    I hike, do yoga and swim in the Atlantic Ocean (NJ). I LOVE running but every time I run too much my colon gets cranky- so I keep that down to a very mellow run once per week. I am also single- the guy I was dating was totally freaked out by my illness- which I know isn’t for everyone. I haven’t dated in 4 years but I am looking forward to it but also SCARED as heck. I am BRUTALLY open & honest with everyone about UC- for me – the more I can talk about it- the less I fear it. And what I find out is that lots os people have ‘poop’ issues- they love to talk about it, too!
    You are a hot babe- so get back on that dating saddle and just have fun!
    Have a great summer and keep taking awesome care of your body and soul.
    ALlison

  7. Lindsay L
    Lindsay July 6, 2014 at 1:42 pm #

    Thanks Everyone,

    I appreciate all of your support. :)

  8. Johnny Drama
    johnnydrama402 July 11, 2014 at 1:32 pm #

    Lindsay,
    Glad to hear you are feeling better! Sorry to hear about you and your fiance, needless to say its his loss. Im 23 and was in the same boat as you. I find it hard discussing this disease with lots of people. I usually dont mention it right away, I look online at resturant menus beforehand to see if I can find a place where I can find a good healthy meal when it comes to going on a meal date. I folllow the SCD diet, which is pretty much the PALEO diet, its actually becoming quite popular now. Its pretty awesome that I have met random people who are on practically the same diet as me and do not have Colitis. Anyways like I said I usually dont mention it right away, I only mention it if I really have a good connection with the person. I usually tell them around the 4th or 5th date. Only my closest friends know of my UC, Im not ashamed of it, just try not to make a huge deal out of it. Here are some good dating tips….
    After I get to know the person bettter, I usually have them over and cook them a classic SCD meal and show them how awesome it is to eat healthy… It usually really impresses the ladies haha. It does suck that I no longer drink Alcohol, but I totally got over that issue a looooong time ago, sure it be nice to go out for drinks, but Its not worth the risk of a flareup… Why not make some special weed cookies instead? haha not sure if you are into that, but its a def option. I enjoy taking dates to music shows, outdooor hikes, camping, fishing etc…
    I still go to the bars, but no longer drink… I find being sober is way better and I have better luck with the girls ;-). I would rather not met my future wife at a bar anyways. Are you into art? I found that many coffee shops have awesome art and are super fun to go at and hang. Overall you will have no problem finding a new man. I find that athletic people are generally healthier and will def understand what you are going through and accept you for who you are.
    Best of luck!

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