Teenagers think about being in a relationship, going out partying and just living their life. Whilst this was all happening for them, it wasn’t happening for me when I was 16 years old. I was diagnosed with a disease (Ulcerative Colitis) that I never heard of and seemed to be getting more aggressive as the months went on, which led me to have my colon and rectum removed within a short period of time. Personally I thought I would not ever be in a relationship, because of what I have, not because of who I am. I thought it’s a big change for me ever mind someone else. But I quickly realised ‘guess what I am going to enjoy myself!’ So I chanced my arm and went out on a few dates, just said nothing about my stoma and had great craic, I felt normal which was the best feeling, then a couple of more dates in and I decided he knows me for who I am now so I am going to tell him.
All things were going through my mind, the palms of my hands were sweating with anxiousness and I was feeling sick, so I just said it real quick ‘I have a wee bag on my stomach as I was ill and had surgery, but it’s not a big deal’. Fear of the unknown I was waiting for him to say that’s ok, and then never hear from him again. But how wrong was I, it did not bother him in the slightest and I just felt honoured and shocked at the same time, to know that there is decent men around.
So…the relationship is still going strong and I have nothing to fear, if ‘BOB’ makes noises we just laugh instead of me sitting at the edge of my seat holding my side. This is what we ostomates want someone, who we feel comfortable with, to have jokes and most importantly to be ourselves.
If you are having doubts of going out meeting men/women don’t be, if they have a problem with your stoma, they are not worth your time or effort. That’s what I tell myself, I have met people and it does bother them, it knocks you back and you start to not go out and meet people, but you get back up again, I think it’s is just in us after all we have been through. Let’s be honest, you have to kiss loads of frogs to get your prince/princess.
I am not giving tips in this blog as I am no relationship expert but it is up to you if you want to tell them straight away or leave it a while, it’s just personal preference. Do whatever makes you happy, because your happiness is more important than anything.