Skip to Accessibility Tools Skip to Content Skip to Footer

Classic Avoidance

A close work friend of mine has Crohn’s Disease also, but has not yet had any surgeries. She like me also has a multitude of other medical issues, and we bond over her Greek heritage and our endless medical antics.

Her and I often meet on our way to the toilet, and we fight over the single disabled toilet where we get the freedom to move, and not smell kill the rest of our department!

We also meet in the kitchen or at our desks and openly talk about how we are feeling or what’s not working for our rotting bowels.

Avoiding reality

She’s addicted to cheese and all the things that hurt her, and avoiding the reality of her disease.

It’s been 11 years; yes 11 years since she had her last colonoscopy! Of course I metaphorically smack her hand for being so naughty and careless with her own disease, but realistically I’ve been there. I’ve avoided what I’ve known and the doctors because reality is just too harsh.

I have avoided the doctors, and I’ve avoided taking care of myself too. I didn’t want to acknowledge what I knew to be true because I didn’t want it to be true.

Just want to feel normal

I have eaten all the worst things because I knew they were bad, but I wanted to ignore life for a moment and just be “normal.”

Isn’t that just completely normal and standard? I think it is, and I don’t guilt myself over it because in that moment I knew it was a choice. I knew the consequences and I was prepared to pay them.

I knew what would happen every time I took a sip of an alcoholic drink. I knew I’d pay but it was a pain I’d prepared to pay for.

And there were so many times where I sat on the toilet in agony, repeatedly telling myself that I didn’t want to go or that I didn’t need to go to the doctors or the hospital.

The pain is so familiar

I knew this pain. The pain became manageable in a twisted way because it became all I knew. What was life without pain?

For almost 9 years I suffered, but it was a suffering that became my friend and I just didn’t know how to exist without it.

Only people with IBD could possibly understand this twisted mental control.

Part of you knows this drill, knows exactly what the doctor will say and do, so you feel there’s just no point hearing the same stuff over and over again.

I hated feeling like I knew more than the doctors. I could predict their every move in this diseased ridden chess game. I knew my body inside and out, and sometimes they didn’t want to hear my side. Even though I knew me inside and out, I didn’t exist; it was just the disease.

IBD doesn’t fit any shapes

It’s not consistent and no one person’s experience is the same. But the fundamental experience is the same.

We all come out the other side not quite the same. There’s some good and a lot of bad.

I have come out the other side compassionate and empathetic. I experience love and sympathy to the maximum because I’ve seen and felt it all so close.

This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.


  • thedancingcrohnie moderator
    1 year ago

    I do the same. There are days where I reach for the pizza, or over do it with the garlic rolls and I know I will pay for it. But we all go through it. We just want a moment of “normalcy” and that’s okay. IBD is hard, and we are human for having those moments.

    Thanks for sharing. It’s always nice knowing you aren’t in this alone.

    Always dancing,
    Elizabeth (team member)

  • Poll