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Colitis and Stress 151 Patient Survey Results – Part 2

The following information is the second part of the Colitis and Stress Survey (Questions # 2 and 3) that was conducted on August 8th, 2012 with the help of 151 UC patients who are part of the iHaveUC newsletter.

The first part of the survey, in case you have not read that yet is located here: Colitis and Stress Part 1


The Colitis Stress Survey – Part 2:

Questions #2:

Do you think you handle stress well when it presents itself in your life?

  • Sometimes                                                                      78  (52%)
  • Most of the time                                                            45  (30%)
  • No, I have a hard time with stressful situations     28  (18%)

Question #3:

What’s an example of a stressful situation you’ve recently faced, AND HOW did you get past it?

  • As a single parent, and only child of a very ill parent as well, I feel very stressed and find it difficult to manage all my responsibities especially during the school year as I am a special education teacher.
  • My mum called me last week.We get on well however I am her sounding/venting board for many things in her life, this is ok most of the time for me. However of late I’ve found I am not tolerating this internally very well al all. I get crampy and an anxious feeling in my guts.Mum was speaking about particular situations with family that are real stress’s for her.
    As mum spoke she was sounding more and more stressful and I felt for her as it must be hard as shes at a time in her life where she should be able to find peace.

    The more mum was venting the more anxious I could feel I was becoming. I had to stop her as I felt like I was taking this all on board.

    I calmly told mum that I am happy to be a part of problem solving though cannot keep hearing about stressful situations over and over anymore. Mum did actually say sorry and she got this. She told me I’m possibly the only person she can speak about things with.

    Yesterday I had a flair confirmed. Hmmmmmm not surprising.

    I have meditated in the past so I do find in these situations using breathing techniques can be really useful.

  • Directed and choreographed a dance show
  • I have many things that are stressful that are happening in my life right now. I work over 40 hours a week, I’m trying to plan my wedding, and me and my ‘husband’ are barely making rent.
  • Dealing with people at work. I got around it by taking anti-anxiety pills.
  • I practice mindfulness on a daily basis. This helps me manage every day stress as well as more significant stress.
  • Infair doctor billing, but I had a family member help. Bottom line, stress can be in everyday I just have to take time for myself
  • I deal with strees at my job everday. Its not my job that gives me stress, its some of the prople whom i work with.
  • I found trying to complete my Masters whilst working full time very stressful. I took a year off to focus on my health and now I completing it, however purchased leave so that I can take 1 day off a week to focus on study, it also helps me do the things I need to for my health like appointments etc.
  • Selling our condo and buying a house required my family (including my two young daughters) to move in with my in- laws for 3 long weeks. Very stressful situation. I took a lot of long walks, quiet time alone (reading books, listening to music), and vented to my poor husband as needed.
  • i work in a dogs home, taking in and rehoming stray dogs so i face work-related stress everyday
  • Moving to another state with 2 small kids. I got past it by staying present and trying to listen to my body. Also started a yoga practice.
  • As above.
  • Exams at school
  • exams at school, had to get IV steroids
  • seams when i have my worst stress its with family i don,t get along with..i try and stay away .that really helps..if its work..i can go to happy hr..and forget all about it .till the next work day
  • Just everyday stresses with my partners grandmother being sick, and worrying about general things like uni and feeling crappy. I got past these by just trying not to worry and taking some ‘me’ time, such as watching a movie
  • My work is very stressful, dealing with families experiencing difficulties and supporting them through crisis can be hard emotionally and psychologically; however I find that difficult colleagues and non supportive and poor management can be more difficult and challenging and detrimental to psychological wellbeing. Working in this tense environment is not healthy and I think this effects my immune system. I tend to pick up colds, sore throats etc leading to a flare up of colitis. Looking back I saw this episode coming about 4-5 months before it became unmanageable; like looking at a car crash, but couldn’t stop it.Managing the symptoms of colitis is stressful enough without having to manage difficult people! However I think it is essential learning , to look after yourself and say NO occasionally. Putting my own needs first, I offered to work from home or take time off sick. Working from home for a couple of weeks made such a difference, it gave me an opportunity to slow down and nurture my body while creating a distance between the people in work that were and still are driving me crazy. Building up my physical, emotional and psychological strength to return to work at a pace a little slower than before, while looking at my diet, consulting with medical professionals to get the right effective treatment has all helped to the symptoms becomming dramatically reduced.
  • I had a very stressful situation at work where I was asked to lie to customers and it put me in an unethical and non-compliant situation. Of course because I wouldn’t do what the manager asked me, the situation became extremely stressful and I became very ill. I lost bowel control at work and was so sick I went on disability. I am still struggling and trying to get myself healthy. I try to get rest, do yoga and I am going to therapy.
  • Talk about it to someone. Preferably a loved one who does not judge.
  • I had to go to court because the tenant in the house we own wasn’t paying rent. It was very stressful and it hurt like hell. Basically I just took paracetamol, deep breaths and just got through it. The pain gradually faded after we got out of there.
  • My wedding in April this year. I didn’t feel too stressed I was so organised. But I knew something wasn’t right in my gut for a month before, so that I suppose was stressful hoping that I wasn’t going to get sick and wanting the wedding to proceed. I ended up presenting blood in my stools 4 days before my wedding. I was very disappointed but I wasn’t going to let it ruin my day. Straight away I contacted my GI and started on a low dose steroid 25mg, mainly because I did not want my face to effected too much from meds in our photos. I felt better, no more blood but liquid bowel movements. As bad as it was it felt like a release, as I wasn’t wondering will I flare, I knew I had & now was doing something about it.I ended up bleeding again 2 days after the wedding, the day we fly out for our honeymoon. Another little stressful situation, but I thought it is what it is. I can’t control this, I just need to relax as much as I can, be careful with food & drink etc. I decided to go up to 50mg & haven’t seen blood since.I got passed this stressful time by not getting upset and accepting it for what it is. Continuing on with life and enjoying myself during this important and happy time in my life.
  • Car broke down so I delt with it. Medication not working so I called the doctor. I feel horribale so I call my best friend.
  • I’m trying to save the cost of new front brakes on my car ($300!) and a friend is going to do them much cheaper but he can’t get to them until a week from Friday so every time I drive my car it’s freaking me out because I’ve had brakes go out on my before. I won’t get past this for another week and 1/2!
  • Hubbys job has us moving. Third move in three years. I meditate to get past it, and it works.
  • having been booked in for surgery and beening mental prepared for it , then 2 weeks out before surgery
    obtaining DVT in the arm and upper chest. Then due to this having surgery put on hold for 6 more months.
    Started smoking again to help with the stress
  • Loss of a job / the curent economy
  • Had colonoscopy last wk. and when I got to the hospital at 6am like I was told to do. I was told I was not in system to get the test done. waited 1 hr , test was to be at 7:00am check in a 6:00am . Called dr myself finally and he got there and did it. Wife was with me to help me through. Has been for 39 yrs now.
  • Always near the holidays my uc flares up. I think it has to do with the stress.
  • There are always things going on that are stressful and lately it has been hard dealing with it. My grandma has been really ill and there have been a lot of hard things going on around me where it feels like everything is going wrong at once making it hard to accomplish everything I need to. When I see that all of the things around me start to affect my energy level and give me symptoms of a flare up, I need to make some changes and listen to my body more and begin to take care of myself in a better way. When I didn’t listen to my body, by eating poorly, not getting enough sleep, overworking, and not exercising, I notice that it all started with stress and that I need to make some changes in how I am handling it. When I realized once again that I need to make changes by listening to my body and doing more of the things that I enjoy, then I start to feel a lot better physically and mentally. Then I understand that I always need to take care of myself in my own way no matter what the stress is about so that I won’t let it get to that point again.
  • I had alot of berievements, a relationship end, new emotional job, recent diagnosis etc. In the end I saw a counsellor to help me get through it and I now feel my thinking has changed and I have new coping strategies.
  • Money issues can always be a stressful situation, but i find that if you write things down to organize the problem or communicate with other people, you’ll be helping yourself out tremendously.
  • Stress at home and work. I got past it by trying to find a bright side of everything.
  • My benefits got cancel. Due to my employer did not put me on medical leave .
  • I had been off medications for 1 month. I let the everyone in the family know to not cause each other grief. Well…Valentine’s night, one family member went to pick up the dog that was sleeping and the other laughed because the dog nipped. The one that touched the dog threw a fork and hit the patio window. The one that laughed got upset because it could have ‘hit me in the eye’. The one that got nipped called the person an insert an orifice name…and the other stormed out. They didn’t speak to eaach other for nearly 3 months…did I mention after I got out of the hospital? That flare up strated that night and progressively got worse. Severe stomach pains inthe middle of the night sent me to the ER for a 4 day stay. I didn’t get past that one.THOSE are the things I cannot handle.
  • Unusually busy time alreayd, then my spouse, who is always healthy is having severe back/shoulder problems. I have had to go with him to his doctor appointments, MRI, etc. and do some of the household jobs he usually takes care of. Meanwhile, my child had to have emergency dental surgery. In hopes of avoiding a flare, I have tried to keep up with my rest and exercise and try to find what humor I can at a difficult time.
  • someone accused of me doing something to hurt them on purpose. I just had to work it out. I apologized. I talked to friends and then had to just let it go.
  • I work in IT, and if I’m faced with a case I don’t know how to solve it is stressful finding an answer while trying to keep the customer calm.
  • I work in a bank and have had had some very nasty customers be abusive because of the state of the system here In Ireland. It is very stressful to see everyone in your workplace taking the same kinda greef. I bought myself a DVD Yoga for dummies and have found this really helpful in calming me down
  • Heavy school load and being flared stressed me out almost a year ago. I just had to get past my embarrassment of UC and talk to friends about it and tried to realize the 2 rules in life my friend’s dad always told us #1) don’t sweat the small stuff #2) it’s all small stuff!:)
  • I had a job interview a couple of days ago. It was in the morning (not the best time for me!) and somewhere I hadn’t been before. On top if this I had an ‘accident’ while walking a couple of days before which had really knocked my confidence. I went and things were fine. I noticed where the toilet was on the way in which I think helped. The success really boosted my confidence again. I got the job too!
  • Traveling across the country via Amtrak(sleeping room with toilet), we had stopped at Chicago for a change of trains and after making the long trip to the First Class lounge urgency was beginning to take over and the mens restroom was a one- holer with a guy in there reading the newspaper !!
    I had a passing thought of mooning the urinal but decided to announce to the newsreader that I had a severe medical condition and needed immediate access to the throne. He obliged very courteously and after a few minutes I relinqished it back to him.He had the opposite problem I had (constipation) and I was surprised at how accomodating he was.This was awkward but very effective and I have used it several times since then…. with mixed results. ( not everybody wants to give up their “Squatters Rights”)
  • My Mother passed away, and I had a three month flare.
  • We had a very demanding deadline for the launch of a new product. My worse flare up, which led me to diagnosis, ocurred at that time.
  • I had a bowel twist and was in hospital for 2 months. I was so so ill so the doctors were always doing procedures and putting a central line in. That alone was pretty stressful but I lived through it and started to get better. However, a week out of hospital, I had to go back to work, start back at volunteering and start revising and writing papers for the work i missed for uni. All of the pressure of keeping healthy as well as performing to my best ability in all aspects was so hard … so I took a lot of time for me (long baths, girly films), made sure I took all my meds, had regular check ups, ate lots of food and went to the gym regularly. I found that having the support of the doctors and all of the exercise helped keep the stress away. Also having a good network of family and friends helped.
  • I was in the hospital recovering from surgery when I found out my exwife cleaned out my bank account. Being in a helpless position and a hopeless situation, I was determined that I was not going to let this get the best of me. She had made me miserable in the past and i was not going to let this do me in.I had my present wife get a power of attorney prepared and had it executed while I was in the hospital. I then turned over all my dealings to her. I was able to finally breathe a sigh of relief knowing that one more stressful episode was over in my life.
  • A breakup with my boyfriend. I got past it by trying not to focus on the situation and move on.
  • i feel very bad being at home with my parents (i’m 32) and when it gets to hard words, it stresses me a lot, because i feel like i have nobody on which i can count. It happened in july and i had a crisis. Fortunately, i found your site and started a SCD diet!
  • I just had a baby and found out I have UC. My house was a mess and my in-laws decided to stop by for a visit. I was freaking at first, then realized “who cares about all this clutter”! I just left the mess and decided I didn’t care what they might think! I just had a baby and found out about my UC! Give me a break!
  • also meaning most embarrassing as well! Let’s say taking a day off, trying to meditate and realising that it’s ok to slow down, take a day off as things will still be there tomorrow.
  • I went through the first year of a two year intensive school program (like a masters) and somehow made it through. Making it through: often denying myself coffee even if I wanted it so badly, as well as trying to rest/sleep/lay down whenever I could. Breathing if the stress rose too much. Do your best but say “oh well” before you explode into pieces. I also kept to a bland diet whenever there was more stress. I find it’s necessary to keep onstantly checking in and adjusting, to not let it get overboard. I also have to avoid sugars, especially white and no hard liquors at all, and especially no packaged foods. Sugars and packaged foods are easy to grab when rushing, stressed and busy – but it’s like a death wish.
  • Death of parent. I kept busy. Played computer games and surrounded myself with positive people.
  • A bout of severe relationship stress had me rethink some things. I started taking Taiji – best thing I have ever done for myself! Ever.
  • after 19 yrs. working with the same company they ran out of work. Igot laid off ! Fortunately, I got a new job in the same field .
  • I became a grandmother…which I really wasn’t pleased about…I know, I’m a weirdo…most people are thrilled with being grandparents.Anyway, I was already in a flare, and it got alot worse. I increased the asacol, but ended up stopping the meds completely, because they actually made the flare even worse! Took probiotics and I’m in now in remission.I don’t really deal with stress well. When I start feeling stressed, I can almost feel my UC getting worse…
  • In general, I am a military wife and the mother of a 4 yr. old daughter. The most recent stressful situation would have to be my husband being deployed. He is home now, praise God. I dealt with the stress by taking it one day at a time and leaning on friends and family. I always try to talk about the stress, it seems to help me calm down and rationalize what’s going on.
  • if some thing goes wrong and upsets my routine,i can get very stressed i have to sit down and collect my
    thoughts. I have to slow right down, maybe for half an hour, and then every thing is just about ok. I have
    to say that it is getting better.
  • I contracted the disease while studying for finals attending college full-time, grieving from the very recent death of my childrens’ father (we were divorced) and commuting to work an hour each way because I also work 40 hour weeks. I was in burnout. I was angry, resentful, and hostile towards my boyfriend and our children for some time. He finally couldn’t handle my outbursts anymore & told me I needed to seek help so I went to a psychiatrist and was diagnosed with anxiety and depression. I am not the type to sulk or cry so I didn’t recognize it as depression. Anyway, I started taking Wellbutrin and my life has completely changed. It really helped that I graduated in May too.
    I know medication is not for everyone but I was in extreme “fight or flight” mode for 4 years while going back to school.
  • Unfortunately right now I’m in a flare that’s pretty bad and I’m on short term disability so everything right now is super stressed and I’m not handling it very well.
  • Well I’m a stay at home dad, me and my wife are raising our son without any help from either of our familys. Its tough but I get through it one day at a time.
  • Deadlines for projects at work are coming up and I can definitely feel the UC beast coming. Just trying to relax with some breathing, teas, and a bunch of mindless Netflix movies.
  • Graduate school final exams!
  • Moving twice in a year. Having a kid health insurance or lack of .
  • Mom of 4 boys and love it. Knowing what to eat and having the discipline to say no to junk food is stressful. Just figuring out what to believe regarding diet and medications is the #1 stress factor in my life. I’ve read and researched the past 5 years since diagnosis and find conflicts with doctors AND with my “natural” friends/nutritionists. I have come to realize that I cannot just try one diet out for a few months and expect miracles. Figuring what works out for me is taking longer than expected, but then again… I have a problem with saying no to sweets and other tempting foods I feel I “deserve” to eat like everybody else. Its depressing, but in the long run I know i will feel better and be here for my children. I hate hospital stays, but they can be a good detox from sugarholics like me. Attempting SCD from here on out. Committed now, by God’s grace!
  • Stressful situations in my life include financial problems, health issues, and social issues revolving around political work (e.g. confrontations with police). In the moment, I rely heavily on deep breathing techniques and cognitive behavioral tricks I’ve learned over the years (to better deal with an old anxiety syndrome). In general, I rely on exercise, yoga, and breathwork to keep my perspective and manage stress in a longer term way.
  • Emotional break up with a boyfriend. Meditation, yoga, talking with friends/family and taking a Xanax to help me sleep/relax helped.
  • Thesis defense! Managed symptoms by not eating, not ideal what what goes in must come out so I decided that risk management had to be extreme. Desperate times… you know the rest.
    Usually simple things like recognizing the issue and focusing on other things, finding ways to balance my stress with my required activities. I find switching exercises helps (usually I would run, but when i’m stressed I do yoga for example).
    I also find that getting plenty of sleep can work wonders.
  • Traveling is always stressful. I try to not skip any meds and stay in schedule as much as possible
  • Can’t think of just 1 right now
  • In june I had multiple family obligations back to back. I just plowed through it.
  • My 6 year old autistic son is off from school for summer break. It is the first summer that I have had no help from outside he family support. He was in a daycare for 3 time a week if not in school so I always could look forward to a rest and try to be stress free. Now I am having health issues and have no one to help me. So that is very stressful. My husband comes home and only can spend 2 hours a day with him befor bedtime so there is not much he can do.
  • Not sure I have or will ever get “past it.” My husband of over 50 years died in 2010 after several years of failing health; I cared — gladly — for him all through that time at our home. It was, to say the least, a stressful time. I knew he would not recover, but with some dementia this time a blessing, he did not. So being cheerful was part of his care. That stress is in some respects still here, but you cope because you must.
  • Tight for time, thousand things to do, meet deadlines, traveling to different places and not knowing what I will eat there, office politics etc—and then a flair-up on top of every thing :)
  • I just got into a relationship and needed to tell him about my UC. I was stressing out about how he might react, knowing either way I couldn’t change the situation. Finally when the moment seemed right, I just ripped the band-aid off. I blurted out “Sometimes I shit myself!” and followed up telling him about my diagnosis and where I am now compared to the beginning.I got past the stress as soon as I blurted out what I needed to. Once I was over that initial fear of telling him, everything else came easier.But in more serious situations, it is much more difficult for me to get past the stress. I practice mindfulness often and in the past few years it has helped tremendously. Just accepting the situation, allowing myself to feel how I do, and realizing that this will not last forever: this keeps me sane many a day and night.
  • I had to give a small speech in front of my Sunday School class–while others went ahead of me, I had to sit in anticipation of my turn–THAT KILLS ME–although it was no big deal really–I KNEW I would have to go to the bathroom..and hoped it wouldn’t be right when I was to present. While the others were taking their turns, I had to run to the bathroom..came back-sat a few minutes and had to go, even with formed stool…I WAS STILL JUST NERVOUS!!!!!!! Right when I got back, it was my turn..I went up front and got the mic..then proceeded to my seat to give my speech. Everyone laughed when I said I”m ready, but I am NOT standing up front. I honestly do not have a problem if I am first at something, or if my children present in a situation first as well…It’s ONLY when I have to WAIT around..the pressure KILLS me and I ALWAYS need to go to the bathroom. I’ve tried deep breathing exercises to help. Plus sitting in the back or on the side is a MUST. The doctor prescribed Bentyl once to see if that helped with the urgency–the very few I took literally didn’t do shit!
  • Usually it’s arguing with my wife. And I usually back down and forget about it because I don’t like to piss the person I care about the most too often.
  • The stress caused by a desease in the family…. Lots a work to do… It was hard to me to handle with this. And I had a big crise :(
  • A flare up and the resulting sick days at work! Pred!
  • If I’m called on to do more things concerning my business,sometimes it’s kinda hard.
  • The death of a relative that brought up distressing memories of that relative.
    I dont think I coped with it very well, a lot of internalized stress that had accumulated over the years regarding this relative.
  • When me & my love had an argument but I past it by breathing slowly & just relax my body
  • I have a fair amount of stress with my job being a commission only real estate broker. So I work a lot. Swimming really helps with my stress level. So as many people, the stress is a money issue and making it all work. I also worry a lot about things I don’t really have any control over. This ads to my stress level. Then of course my health which started with giardia, then went to UC. Then all drugs, then it went into remission for about 1 year and then came back hard with major joint pain. Then I found the UC diet and now I am much better but still not 100%. I still have joint page and swelling, which predizone takes away immediately. But cannot stay on that for long. Then one doctor wants me to go on another drug which was a cancer drug called methotrexate!! All kinds of side effects with this drug. But as I continue on the diet, exercise, I feel better day by day.
  • problems with job, I can’t work as much as I can before uc diagnosed. It’s really makes me fake sometimes))
  • Trying to pay bills and focus on school And having a hard time finding a job.
  • When I was not bleeding for 5 months and then started spotting. My whole world was changed. I felt sad, depressed and full of stress.
  • When I went into my biggest flare ever I was dealing withy breakup from my fiancé, moving back home and a ton of other stress like work, I’m a teacher. I went to a psychiatrist. I also like to work out (bike ride, hike, go to the gym or even a walk).
  • going on holiday and being so stressed out about the flight my UC acted up.. i opted for medication to relax me.
  • Bedbugs invading our home!
  • I am a teacher. The end of the school year. Switching jobs. I don’t really “get past it.” I do what I need to do until it is over.
  • Work related- just get up for my desk and take some deep breaths – also having a cigar after work also helps.
  • Presenting a speech for class was very stressful, thinking “all eyes are on you”, I was stressed out. But I’m the end I took deep breaths and used the restroom before it was my turn.
  • Mother wanting to commit suicide and i had to be the one to get her help
  • Recent stressful situation was dealing with a VERY difficult person at work. I began experiencing symptoms such as blood and mucus. Started a stress reducing technique of stretching and yoga like moves. Also added pro-biotic to daily meds. And also visualized pushing said difficult person down a flight of stairs….
  • I had cramps on the train this morning… I took a lot of very deep breaths, listened to some music, closed my eyes and consciously tried to relax the muscles in my lower back and abdomen… and kept my fingers crossed I could make it to the station bathroom. It worked!
  • As a teacher, I work with kids of the wealthy and influence in my city. The parents can be very demanding when it comes to their students’ grades. I am a tough teacher and give out few As. Students really learn in my class. Since being diagnosed I have become a much less demanding teacher. I can’t handle the stress of parents who expect their kids to have four and five after school activities in high school, get straight As and go to Harvard.
  • I lost my job a year ago, I ended up in the hospital with a flare a few months later when I wasn’t able to find a new job right away. Since then I have been practicing yoga and eating better and it has helped tremendously.
  • I had a blow out with a relative right before a visit to a new GI dr. I was already experiencing abdominal pain and nausea . I chose to not react to the relative until I got through the appt. , I concentrated on breathing and clearing my thoughts. It cramps stayed at a level I could handle and my symptoms didn’t get worse (which was my fear…)
    I also make sure i get and hour of exercise everyday…for me that is key in maintaining my stress.
  • Over the past few years, my flare ups have been dreadful, I have been hospitalised several times and ended up with pneumonia & burns to my oesophagus after a massive dose of steroids. I think this has just worn me out and I find myself breaking down at work even if the slightest thing goes wrong. Perhaps it has made me less able to cope, but I am finding it very hard to stay on top of my emotions. I wonder if that is a common side effect with UC?
  • I’m selfemployed, and my job involves a lot of dead lines. If those are tight, and they often are, it’s very stressful for me. I just had one of those the day before yesterday, and what I did, and generally do, is to work my bum off until I can see, that I’m well ahead with the project. Then I can relax. For that reason, I don’t generally take short jobs (there are a lot of those in my field). Instead I only accept those that have at least two days of work in them, meaning that I can get ahead during the first, long day. Working long hours doesn’t stress me, I love my job, only the dead lines. I also try to do yoga when I’m under pressure, but I must admit, I’m much better at getting it done, when I don’t need it as badly. Kind of weird, actually :-)
  • I recently took university classes over the summer, and the workload got a bit overwhelming at times. When I felt I was getting too stressed out, I’d put on some music and just take a break from my work.
  • car overheated had a flair up
  • We have a noisy anti-social neighbour who is aggressive and who keeps us awake at night arguing with her various and often changing partners and slamming doors so hard that our house shakes – the lack of sleep and worry about her affect on our daughter is what I believe caused me to come out of my 4 year remission – and I also have a long term relationship problem with one of my siblings which always causes stress when she is on the ‘warpath’ I try to avoid getting too stressed but tiredness makes it much much worse and harder to emotionally cope with
  • Took a shit
  • Our mortgage company was bought out by a bank. When we went to pay our property tax (which is EXTREMELY high), it was already paid by the new bank. They decided that we should pay the tax in our monthly payment, which we cannot do, because it adds about 1,500 to each payment. We were denied a loan modification (no reason why.) After speaking to a lawyer, he said we could fight it, but it would cost a lot of money and we would probably lose, just because the banks aren’t regulated. Bottom line, they have ruined our credit (which was stellar), we cannot sell our home for enough to cover the loan, and we are in limbo.
    I try to remind myself that I haven’t got control of the situation, I cannot do anything more to change the situation, and it is out of my hands. I exercise every day, and I try to get enough sleep. I am also vigilant when it comes to my diet. I stick to the Paleo diet. I think that is key to managing this stress.
  • Family life can be a challenge but focusing on the good that you haw and separating yourself from drama helps reduce the stress.
  • I just lost my job. I was surprised to not even have a flare up or emergency bathroom situation. It was awesome!
  • Our 2 year old child has developmental issues and it’s affecting our marriage. We recently had a big blow up about how to handle the situation. I found that stepping away from the situation & regrouping by myself (maybe even napping) has helped.
  • Sometimes being stuck in traffic gives me stress, especially when it’s bumper to bumper. I think you have to be careful when talking about stress triggering UC because sometimes it is the other way round. It is the UC that causes the stress and not the other way round.
  • Exercising can put stress on my body if I push myself too hard. I generally have to take a few days off of rest before I return back to the gym.
  • Work became extremely busy with a huge account and my husband lost his job twice! Just take one day at a time and work out the issues as i come to them.
  • Excessive workload and long work hours; challenging situations at work.
  • My partner was sent to work away for a week to the other end of the country, just as I was having a relapse of my UC. I am currently on the sick from work at the moment due to it. I had fantastic support from friends and family who were there for me while my partner was away. They did shopping for me on days when I wasn’t up to leaving the house.
  • Our son and daughter-in-law were home visiting from a foreign country and I planned a dinner hosting 18 people in our home on a Sunday afternoon. I’m in the middle of having one of the worst bouts of colotis I’ve ever had. Actually my husband & I had planned to meet the young people in the Southwest for a vacation together but because of my disease acting up the young ones decided to come home to be with us. I had a wonderful time with them at home for a week, we only get to see them usually 2 times a year.
    The family helped me with the dinner but we forgot to put our one of the salads when we served, too much help in the kitchen… was a very plesant evening.
  • I did at one stage run a playgroup but with constant disputes between my session members and the playgroup committee I decided it wasn’t worth the stress and walked away from it.Being a mother of three 1,3 and a 6 yr old as stressful enough as it is.
  • Relationships going south have been the difficult part for me. I guess I escaped in the gym and tried to remain busy. Helped momentarily, but in reality I’ve learnt to accept that I need to grant myself time to process my emotions instead of denying them and acting tough.
  • I have been unemployed this summer and very stressed about money. While filing and waiting for the response from unemployment I was under enormous stress.. My stomach was uncomfortable and the grumbling and pain became evident, ten along came the diarrhea.. Once I was approved and began receiving benefits things seemed to quiet down some but return when stress occurs
  • I had lots of stress at work, which led to a flare-up, which I am still dealing with; I am not past it yet
  • Working overtime resulting in exhaustion, trying to train and entertain a new puppy, extended family stuff and my daughter broke her collar bone….all at once!
    This resulted in a flare :(
    I got past the stresses by taking some time off from work and I also have a great support system of friends and family I can lean on!
    How I got past the flare is a whole other story!
  • Suffering through a UC flare at the busiest time of year at my job was pretty stressful. I got past it through a strict SCD diet, increased medication, trying yoga, and bedrest as soon as I got home from work until I felt better.
  • Going through a divorce, every court date is nerve racking and had to finally go to dr. And get on meds
  • I am a photographer and sometimes I have to go to places where their is no toilet for many miles around. E.G in the middle of a forest.To get past the problem I had to breath in and out very deeply and tell my brain that unless I wanted to drop my trousers in front of other walkers I was just going to have to calm down.The breathing is key to helping and after a time it will pass.
  • The end of a relationship that I did not see coming. I went to therapy, wrote in my journal, cried a lot, and worked out. I was very proud of myself that I did not flare.
  • my boss (the General Manager of a hotel) was stealing large sums of money at work, and I had to make the difficult decision to tell the company what he was doing, I tried to gather evidence behind my boss’ back, and then I had to quit as he began to suspect. The whole ordeal lasted several months, and I felt extremely stressed trying to decide what was the right thing to do.
    To get past it I quit my job and took some time to relax, the bleeding has escalated dramatically since, and hasn’t reduced and I quit over 3 months ago.
  • The decision to have surgery is definitely a stressful situation which I’ve been mulling over for a few years. Haven’t really got past it, it just became the last option.
  • accidents deaths an caregiving
  • I’m a nurse and when you have 8or more people wanting you at one time it get stressful I also teach studentsi recently changed jobs and wasnt sure if i had done the right thing. the first few weeks were very uncertain and i was afraid i wouldnt be able to make it into work on several occasions because the mornings are the worst time for me. i have to get up at least an hour earlier than usual to make sure im ok by the time im leaving
  • Bad working environment…..decided it was time to leave and start a new chapter of my life.
  • Saw bloodin the toilet….came out of bathroom, punched a chair, almost cried.
  • My Thesis was a very stressful situation, I spent almost 7 years and finally I gave up. My relationship with my mother is very complicated, but I’m trying to make it work since I’m getting married very soon. I’ve become a very negative person over the years and I’m trying to work on that.
  • A friend treating me poorly for no reason. I work with this person as well as having a friendship long before I started in this office so it has made it difficult for me to work with her. I don’t miss a lot of work and am a great employee so I just don’t get it.
  • I got married this summer, and at the same time I was planning the wedding, we had a major project going on at work. I got so stressed from all the work that I had a mini flare up at one point. Two things that REALLY helped me get past the stress were breathing exercises and asking for help. I also had to practice only thinking about work while I was at work, and wedding things while I was at home – it doesn’t help to dwell on something at a time when you can’t do anything about it.
  • My housemate moved out and I was under some financial pressure and coming to terms with living on my own
  • I was told ontop of my UC that I have precancerous cells on my cervix that needed to be removed….This was apparently a new health situation because of my compromised immune system and my unfaithful husband who admitted he was with a few women. I can only say I’m still trying to deal with this situation and have accepted the fact i have no can’t control over anybody but myself! Staying positive and I’m breathing through my new no worries attitude!
  • A recent job interview I had and I just tried to remain as relaxed as possible. It’s not easy when your mind keeps drifting back to that impending day!
  • Flare ups and still haven’t gotten passed it.
  • Diagnosis of uc and knowing I had to cancel my trip to Alaska.
  • Losing my job and having to search for a new one – with bills, mortgage and kids. Recently started Hot Yoga and it is fantastic – helps my aches, pains and stress
  • I discovered that my husband was having a very sexually active affair, it wasn’t the first one…and lots of people I think of as friends all knew about them. Even though we are trying to save the marriage it is stressful to see these people and trust my husband and to stop thinking about it.
  • A stressful ‘office politics’ situation… Which had me in tears a few times and it triggered the flare up thereby resulting in my having to take time off at the busiest time of year which resulted in my feeling self-loathing, disappointment in myself, incompetent and a geberal fear that management would think I was too ‘lazy’ to work when the going got though. I still haven’t got over it. We have holidays atm but I can’t throw off this feeling that I failed and had it not been for UC,this could have been avoided.
  • supporting sibling through a difficult divorce.
    Keeping to my boundaries regards child care I can provide.
    Ensuring I get plenty of sleep and by meditating.
  • caring for an elderly family member who has Alzheimer’s and broke his hip. Extreme exhaustion and new diagnosis of Fibro myalgia, along with UC flare.
  • This happens all the time. I’m terriifed that I will not make it in time to the bathroom in time if I’m placed into a situation where I feel that I cannot get out of in time such as on a bus, on a plane, on a elevator, etc. etc. My stress level increases dramtically. In fact my stress level can increase several days prior to an event when I know that I could be placed into a “confined” situation. It is a “catch-22”. My stess level increases because of having UC which in turns makes my UC worse. It is a vicious circle that I feel that I can never get out of. As how to get past it?….just have to bare through it. If I can, I close my eyes and fight mentally to control it.
  • I had to fire someone who had a family it stressed me out and i went into a flare almost right away
  • Work stress. Put on probation for sales numbers at a job i have been at for 19 years (was hired when i was 12 ofcourse)
  • A loved one telling me, he doesn’t feel the same way about me. He’s no longer in love with me.
  • Too much work. And fear not to be able to solve tasks.
  • A lot of what has helped me is going back to church and getting back into prayer.
  • Loss of a good friend and coworker at 26. Time and excercise.
  • I feel my whole life is stressful every day with the pains in my joints and back due to the tablets I’m on and more bad days than good you feel like some people don’t understand the pain your in xx
  • Work related- deadlines, presentations to upper management


That’s the end of Part 2 of the Colitis and Stress Survey.  Part 3 will be coming up tomorrow, look for it in the Colitis Survey Section of the site.

Thanks again for everyone on the newsletter who participated!






1 thought on “Colitis and Stress 151 Patient Survey Results – Part 2”

  1. Man, stress is around EVERY corner in life. It just is. It doesn’t matter who you are.

    Everyone says you have to learn to deal with stress, but how? Is it really possible? Really? Deep breathing? Meditation? Removing one’s self from the stressful situation?

    If you are of a certain disposition or personality, isn’t it the most difficult thing to do to try and change your personality? That is you to the core. How does one actually alter themselves?

    Alot of questions. Good insight in this survey. Alot to think about.

    Thank you Adam.

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