Telling People That You Have UC

Some Basics About Mike:
22, Male, Jewish, New Yorker, College Student with mild to moderate Ulcerative Colitis. Was diagnosed in December of 2011, but had symptoms in early 2007.
Mike’s Current Colitis Symptoms:
Frequent bowel movements (around 5-8 times a day, sometimes more and sometimes less) with mucous, cramps, mucho gas, kidney stones, MAJOR anxiety and depression. No blood (thank God)

Mike’s Story:

Hey guys,

I was wondering how you disclose (if you do at all) to people that you meet that you have UC. I feel a bit COMPELLED to reveal to people (even people I just met) that I have UC just to save them the trouble.

For example: I went out to a bar last night. I saw this beautiful blonde model (at least I think she was) and started chatting her up. She was really nice and we seemed to hit it off nicely, but the most pressing issue on my mind was my UC. As shallow as this may sound, when I meet a girl, I want her to be as flawless as possible. I mean, don’t we all? Don’t we all want to find someone who is perfect for us? That’s the key to commitment, in my mind. But anyway, physically, I don’t want to find one thing wrong with her and emotionally, I want her to be sensitive, sweet, caring, intelligent, etc. I don’t want to find one flaw about her (I know, very shallow, but that’s just my nature). Anyway, I hold the same standards to myself and ever since I was diagnosed with UC, I always felt like this big, fat elephant was in the room. So I mentioned (probably because of my OCD) to this girl I just met that I have this colon disease called “Ulcerative Colitis” (I know, I’m quite the smooth talker) and she just seemed turned off. I blew it with the girl because I mentioned this depressing subject out of the blue, but I do feel like I need to disclose it to people.

talking about colitis comic

I know UC is not contagious and it’s not a taboo disease like HIV/AIDS, but somehow, I feel like people in my life NEED to know about it. Let’s say I took that blonde home with me and she spent the night…I wake up every morning between 6:30-7:30 and go to the bathroom and can’t go back to sleep. In the morning, I usually go defecate 3-4 times. That and I have major gas in the morning and throughout the day. It’s embarrassing and a turn-off. I know that.

So what do you guys do? Do you feel compelled to tell people that you have UC? Or is it not vital to disclose since it’s not contagious and can’t spread like HIV? Do you guys feel the cloud known as Ulcerative Colitis constantly hanging over you (not necessarily the physical symptoms, but knowing in your mind that you have this disease) when you’re at social gatherings? Does it hinder you? What about the people around my age, who are not necessarily looking for a commitment? How do you broach the subject, if at all?

I don’t know, this could just be my neurosis. I do have an anxiety disorder and I am clinically depressed.

Where I’d Like to be in 1 year:

Cured (don’t we all?). If not cured, then showing 0 effects of UC. I want to be happy, healthy and successful. I want to forget that I ever had UC.

Colitis Medications:

Asacol – 2400 MGs in the morning

Prozac – 60 MG

Florastor

Centrum

written by Mike from NYC

submitted in the colitis venting area




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8 Responses to Telling People That You Have UC

  1. Trevor W July 9, 2012 at 5:57 am #

    ex nay on the disease say. Just simply say you have a “medical condition”. It will save you. For me, I only tell people passively when the I feel the right time comes. I don’t go into detail…I just say it’s similar to chrones but not as severe and just say my digestive system is very sensitive and doesn’t except certain foods.

    • Bev July 9, 2012 at 2:24 pm #

      I like that approach Trevor! If I put myself in the person who’s hearing that’s shoes…it sounds like something I could wrap my head around.

      You’re right…too much detail, and too soon especially, could make one think that they can’t handle all that right off the bat. If they fall for you, or fall in love with you later, they can accept it easier over time, no?

      Cheers:)

  2. Dede July 9, 2012 at 4:35 pm #

    Mike, What a bummer to have that open. I agree with Bev: hold off before Ellington, relax, and just get to know someone… I knw it’s nice to think about all the fun you can ave in the sack (sorry, I’m over 50 !!) , but why rush—talk, meet in a few days and walk across the Brooklyn Bridge (no bathrooms, but pan for afternoon!)… And get to know someone first. I’m frankly more interested in intellectual combat ability rather than study guys (though I married a cute guy, who is also smart, and stood by e when I ad a major bowel resection in 2006!). You want to try and relax and be yourself! If someone walks away after you tell them, then do you really want to bwith them anyway?!

    Hang in there—are you doing some diet changes to help with symptos, and stress reduction things, like exercise, meditation, acupuncture? I have a massage 1x per month, too—really helps with my anxiety. Are you seeing a therapist? Best of luck on the dating front! You sound like a really nice guy! Look for the beauty that comes from the heart ;)

  3. Dede July 9, 2012 at 4:38 pm #

    Oops! “Hold off before telling” sorry about typs—in hammock w/ iPad!!!! ;)

  4. Trevor W July 9, 2012 at 6:13 pm #

    Hey Bev.

    As you can probably tell, I’ve dated before and there’s just certain things you don’t touch on till much later unless you wanna sugar coat it. Especially when your dating in your early 20s! Come on! Everyone is very judgmental and slightly shallow during those years.

    Gotta make your colitis sound sexy and tough.

    • Bev July 10, 2012 at 6:24 am #

      Hahahahaha!!!

      I feel you, Trevor!!

  5. Adam
    Adam July 9, 2012 at 11:13 pm #

    Hey Mike,

    Tuffy question. I wish I was dating after I was diagnosed to try to give you some real life scenarios, but turns out I was already married when the doodie scope and diagnosis went down.

    Butt….if I was to hit the dating scene again, dang… let’s see.

    Nope, I don’t think I’d offer it right away. I guess there is just too much other cool stuff to talk about and ask a date on the first go-round. If I really liked the other person, which I hope would take a few dates to find out, then maybe it might be something to explain. But like most things in life, especially when it comes to conversation, the delivery is usually just as if not more important as the content.

    Here’s one tiny bit of advice that my uncle used to give me way back in my single man days (now bear in mind, my uncle had Crohn’s disease with a bag on his side for 30 plus years, AND I shit you not, he had more girls chasing him than I can count. You would have thought he was a rock star, Uncle Bennett was crazy like that)

    He always told me that the best way to have a successful first date (use your own definition of success, not my uncle’s please) was to be the person asking 90% of the questions. By that he meant that people generally like to talk, and especially about ourselves… So, by throwing in some nice questions, instead of being the talker all night, things can usually end up well.

    Alright, best of luck buddy with the NYC ladies!
    -Adam

    • Bev July 10, 2012 at 6:27 am #

      Uncle Bennett…very distinguished like…

      Wasn’t he on Downton Abbey?

      I think he was spot on about asking 90% of the questions…it’s all about the other person…at first anyway!

      I was way married when I got the fab news that I had UC too…my poor guy was stuck…either that or lose half of everything, right?!

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