Patients Ulcerative colitis
How do you deal with UC and romance and relationships
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I'm new to this group, but I was diagnosed with UC about 4 years ago. I am still working with my doctor (I just switched to a new GI specialist because I moved) to find a medication that actually manages my symptoms. I go on prednisone at least 3-5 times a year, so most likely I will start on Humera or something like it.
Anyways, I really wanted to ask about how other people have dealt with UC symptoms within their romantic relationships. I'm 23, so the stigmas around having GI issues can be embarasing, even though I try so hard not to let it get to me. I'm dating a lot, but whenever I start to get close to anyone, it is super difficult for me to share about my UC. Especially when I have to leave a date early because of a flare up. I thought about waiting to date more seriously until I have this thing figured out, but I have realized I'll be living my whole life with it and it's not practical to wait to live my life because I struggle with a chronic condition.
I guess I'm just hoping to hear what other people have done to help get over the fear of sharing this part of your life with someone else and how it worked/didn't.
I am new in this group. I was diagnosed UC for 3 years. I was almost OK for the first 2 years. But recently it flare up so I went back to prenison. I'd like to your experience and opinions on the medication. Thanks.
@MadelineMcKay welcome to the forums and awesome question. As someone with UC for some few years (and older than you), I will try to ease your worries some... hopefully.
Do not think of your condition being a barrier to dating. Think of it as your own trait, and we all have traits: some people are chatty, some people are rude, some people have to use the restroom more often, some people may have bowel issues, some people may experience pain... etc. And your traits is what makes you, you! You want someone to love you for you! UC is not you... so don't let it be you... all the time!
As far as telling dates, I would say there is nothing wrong with telling them on the first date or a later date. We do that with all relationships... we do not tell everyone on the first date our favorite thing to do is lay in bed eating ice-cream watching friends all day, etc.
Happy to listen to you!
Thank you so much for replying! This is amazing advice. I really appreciate it. I’m going to try to implement this idea of my UC not being me, but being a trait of me, into my life.
Hey @MadelineMcKay what are your thoughts on a male having this condition? I have this condition and have not been in a romantic relationship for some years, but it is a fear I have also.
I have not been in that situation, so just looking to see what your viewpoint is as a lady. I think maybe we hurt ourselves more worrying about.
Hi @s1d934 :) I’ve learned a lot since I posted this question and I guess my best advice is to just embrace the condition and realize that the right person will understand and also embrace our condition. The best thing to do is just be honest with the people you let into your life when you’re ready. I feel like this is crappy (no pun intended) advice but it’s all I’ve got at the moment.
I agree with you that worrying just makes it harder on ourselves.
I was diagnosed with UC Fours years ago as well. As far as telling someone about your chronic condition, it’s really up to you when you want to tell someone about UC. There’s nothing wrong with telling someone about your condition, it can be whenever your comfortable to tell
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@MadelineMcKay @s1d934Hello my name is Gloria. I have joined this group to help find tips and nutrition help for my husband who has UC that was brought on by stress about 8 yrs ago. I met him in early 2020 and we started dating and got married later in the year. I wanted to let you know in our first conversation he told me he had UC so he always has to go to the bathroom so don't take offense if he has to cancel plans or spend hours (yes hours) in the bathroom. I was very concerned at first but he was honest about everything including his illness upfront and I accepted that . I have been married for a few months and yes he is always using the bathroom and we work around his flare ups but he is also the most amazing man I know and his UC is just an illness, it doesn't define our relationship, or our life. I love him dearly and I give him lots of butt massages because I swear his butt has to hurt being on the toilet that much! We find humor where we can and still do amazing things, we just make sure there is bathroom close by. @
From personal experience ( even though being a woman may make things more difficult) be honest with whomever you're interested in. Tell them what to expect given your severity and continue to work on yourself to make yourself an amazing partner besides the UC. My husband in an account executive , has a beautiful home, is an amazing friend, hilarious, and also happens to have UC.
Hope this helps,
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Thank you! I’m so happy for you. I have actually been in an incredible relationship for just over a year now, and the honesty part you mention was crucial to me finally finding someone to trust with all parts of me! Thank you so much for sharing this.
@s1d934 As a woman who is crazy in love with my man who has a severe case of UC, I can tell you that the right woman will love you and everything about you, including the difficulties of this disease. My boyfriend told me about a week into our dating, and said he would understand if it was too much for me to deal with. That made my heart melt even more. Three weeks into our relationship I took him to his colonoscopy appointment and helped him through it. He feels self-conscious sometimes, but he has nothing to worry about. When he thinks he’s the least attractive to me, like during flares that have him sprinting to the toilet several times an hour, or his abdomen swollen from inflammation...that’s when he’s the most endearing. Now, 2 years later I am so in love with him. My only fear is this disease progressing into cancer. His is advanced and shows signs that have his doctor concerned. I can’t imagine my life without him. I will do everything in my power to help him stay healthy (with food, exercise, and love) So ...in answer to your question, absolutely you should be open to love. The right person will be by your side and help you every step of the way. :)
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