Life with an ostomy bag can be a struggle especially in the beginning. If you know that it is going to be permanent or that you will have it for many months I think you have to be able to talk to someone about this, otherwise all your questions will go unanswered except by yourself, which is ( in the words of Lord Sugar himself) a fatal error.
You will suffer much more without support, there is plenty out there now. This very website for example has a huge range of topics that might be able to answer any questions. There are more stoma nurses now that you can have access to, there are many many forums online with others like us who may have had their stomas for many years, all with different stories to tell and different advise for any particular issue. I know that you also see and hear some scary stuff but that doesn’t happen to everyone, and even if it does happen, you get over it eventually, and in a much stronger frame of mind.
We are also lucky to have counselors. I know that seeing a counselor feels like you may have failed, but this is not the case at all, you have had or are having a life altering operation and you need to get your head around it. I have seen a counselor twice because my first surgery was traumatic, then months later I had more surgery to remove the last bit of rectum so had new worries. Now I am very well mentally and have pretty much accepted my stoma now and instead of hiding away, I let everyone know what I have been through and where I am now, mainly to raise awareness because anything bowels and poo isn’t looked upon as conversation worthy. I disagree and will talk to anyone who listens, hence the blog.
You might think your friends won’t want to listen but I can assure you that if they are worthy of your friendship they will be happy to help. I find that telling my story has been so helpful for me, it has give me an new angle on my situation and I love helping others who can read my posts and get something from them. When you ask for help from the stoma world, you really won’t feel so alone anymore.
I am not saying it will be easy, that would be impossible. I am saying that yes you will have ups and downs but this is a journey you have to take so why not take others along for the ride?
You can also follow Clare on her blog.