Let me ask you…have you ever been in a conversation with someone who knows you suffer from Crohn’s or Colitis and with no warning at all, they say the most ridiculous thing?
I have. Many times.
The truth is that while many people have heard of Crohn’s Disease or Ulcerative Colitis, they don’t really know what it is. And that’s okay…I don’t expect them to. But when those crazy comments come out of their mouths, it can be so frustrating.
Here are a few of my favorites that I’ve heard over the years…
“You’re so lucky you have Crohn’s so you can lose weight easier! I wish I could be skinny like you.”
“What!?!? You have to go AGAIN? Can’t you just hold it like everyone else?
“Well you don’t look sick.”
“Come on…it’s not that bad!”
“I don’t understand why you’re so tired [or insert other non-digestive symptom], I thought this was a digestive system disease.”
“I know exactly how you feel…I was in the bathroom for an hour after eating Chipotle the other day!”
“It’s just an upset stomach…probably something you ate.”
“It’s all in your head. Focus on something else and it will go away.”
It would actually be funny- if it wasn’t so frustrating!!
Although I do think most people are well-intentioned, these insensitive comments can make you feel even more isolated and alone.
On the flip side…I’m sure you have people in your life who really do genuinely want to understand (or try to understand) what you’re going through.
They ask intelligent questions and and are ready to listen. I usually answer them quite honestly, without embarrassment.
My point is…it’s always great to have the opportunity to try to educate people where you can…but in general, just let the insensitive comments roll right off. It’s just not worth your time or energy. Instead, surround yourself with those who are truly there to support you, without judgement, on the good days AND the bad. Build your own Dream Team of support players.
If you don’t have friends or family in your personal life who can support you, reach out to one of the many online support groups out there. I guarantee you’ll find a welcoming community of others who truly understand what you’re going through because they suffer the same as you.
And if you want to work with someone who understands what you’re dealing with, who has first-hand experience, and will be there to support you every step of the way, I’m here to serve.
We can schedule a time to talk here…no strings attached.
So let’s hear it!
What’s the craziest thing anyone’s said to you about your disease? Comments below are welcomed!