Don’t Forget the Mental Side Effects of Colitis

Hi, My name is Karen.  I was diagnosed with UC when I was 13.  I was hospitalized for a month.  By the way I should tell you that I am now 49.  I almost died then due to blood loss.  I took all the meds that they had then. I know that they have newer stuff now.  My parents took me to Scripps, in La Jolla, CA for a second opinion.  Before we went there the doctors had me on a no residue diet.  No pepper, cinnamon, no veggies no ruffage of any kind and only 1/2 cup of milk a day. Well that diet was a real pain.  Anyway after we went to see the doctor in La Jolla, he said I could eat anything I wanted, that they (at that time) didn’t see that it mattered.  He did suggest not to eat popcorn.  It was his personal opinion that popcorn was too ruff on everyone.  He also said I was malnourished due to the diet.  That night I ate a salad.  It was the best salad of my life.  I had many flare ups, on and off during my teen years.  I finally had the entire colon removed at age 20.  I think the hardest part of my growing up was not really being able to do the things I had done before. I really loved sports and I just couldn’t do those things any more.  I also developed arthritis due the the ulcerative colitis. It kicked off another inflamatory disease that I probably wouldn’t have gotten otherwise.  I wish my parents would have had me see a counselor for the mental end of all of this.  This disease really takes its toll on a young girl.  I never felt good about myself afterward.  I always felt defective. I still do to a certain degree. I am getting help for myself now.  After learning about this diet I was wondering if I still could benefit from it somehow.   I wish they had web sites and all the great support when I was young.  I really believed my doctors when they told me everything would be “ok” or that I could live a “normal” life after my surgery.  They should have just said that I would not have bloody stools and constant abdominal pain.  There’s not always a “happy ever after” to the end of this disease.  It has taken me 29 years and two failed marriages (abusive) to realize that I am worth it and I need to help myself.  It is my hope that people with this disease become more into helping themselves and their children who have it.  Mentally and Physically.  I hope I don’t sound like a rambling fool, and I hope you get what I’m trying to say.  I’m glad we have this site and I hope we bring many people to better health.  Thanks for your time, Karen.

3 thoughts on “Don’t Forget the Mental Side Effects of Colitis”

  1. Hi Karen! You are worth it. Do not ever let anyone tell you you arent. I cant say I know what you have gone thru especially as a young girl, as I have only been diagnosed 2 yrs ago but there is a mental aspect to the disease. And I agree this site is so good at being able to vent frustration, read a similar stories or get advice and I think just knowing there is a whole community on here who understands the disease helps with the mental aspect. I am glad you are getting the help you so deserve!

  2. I agree with you that there is a mental aspect as I have suffered some depression from the weight gain from the steriods I was on recently and it really hacks away at your self esteem. I find that sites like these help because I know I’m not alone in this fight and there are people on here that are willing to listen and support each other as we battle through this disease. I think you are courageous just for telling your story to the world. Good for you!



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