Young people with a stoma

Hi I’m Caitlin and I’m 17 years old, it’s only been 3 months since I had my emergency surgery for a ileostomy and I would love to see if their is anyone similar to my age who live life with a stoma too
  • Hello Kaitlin, Do not fret young person. I have had and practically since birth and I grew up playing all the sports and activities I wanted. I entered the workforce and had an overall rewarding career including significant international travel. All will be fine. The old adage of "give it time" and all will be just fine applies. You will only get stronger and more comfortable as time marches on.

    Do not let it hold you back. Finally on a more personal note I commend you for reaching out to this safe forum. When I was your age I still would have been hesitant to reach out. You are getting stronger already.


  • Hi Caitlin, welcome to A Bigger Life!  One of our bloggers is a uni student and has written some helpful blogs about being a young person with a stoma.

  • Hi Caitlin ,

    As Pikemaster said - don't worry - I was diagnosed with Ulcerative Colitis age 13 and after various episodes had a planned Ileostomy on Friday 13 Sept 1968 age 17. I have believed ever since that 13 is my lucky number.  How great not to have to know the toilet map to everywhere.  There was a chance that I might have had my ileostomy reversed - I had told my physician I didn't want it reversed as it might have to happen some day - as it turned out there was no choice - permanent ileo it was and I've never looked  back.  

    You are at the beginning of a new and exciting life where you can do anything you put your mind to.   You have to learn to laugh - and if someone farts - you know it's not you! Give your stoma a name so you can give out as you change and it's too active.  A tip for changing -in my own case - I change first thing in the morning before breakfast as I usually have my last meal around 6/7pm so the way should be clear and His Lordship will be relatively quiet so the change is quick. You know unless in an emergency not to change after a bowl of soup - it travels really quickly and you can have a battle on your hands trying to get the new bag on.

    Join IA -Ileostomy & Internal Pouch Assoc if you’re in UK/Ireland or the United Ostomy Assoc of America if the USA is your country.  You can great support from these groups and they have young people’s groups.  Don’t be afraid to ask for help/advice – don’t feel your question is stupid  - it isn’t and we have all been there.  Live, Laugh, Love and Be Happy.   Welcome to a new fantastic life.     Paddy

  • Hi Caitlin, I'm 23 and have had my ileostomy 1 month yesterday so I am still getting used to things but if you fancy a chat about anything then feel free!
  • Hi Caitlin, I hope your doing well. Welcome to a bigger life. I was 19 when I had my surgery. Any questions please ask away