I feel like a prisoner in my own body...😔
By - m-p-3
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I'm so very sorry you're in this position. I understand how you're feeling, as I know we all do here. I've been dealing with this for decades, before IBS was really known about. I have an "it's part of my life" attitude about it, mostly because I've exhausted all of my options and I know any visit to any medical professional will end with "it's IBS driven by anxiety". I figured that a lot of my flares were happening due to the stress of the IBS experience, if that makes sense. Trying to find out what's going on, trying desperately to find a solution. I think that truly played a big role in it.
I personally don't do meds, unless I'm staving off a syncope situation. The idea of using Imodium, to me, is a bandaid that doesn't let my body do what it's going to do. I can very well be wrong and I'm not giving medical advise, just sharing my personal experience. If I let my body get into a rhythm (ahahahaha like our bowels ever get into a rhythm) of sorts, I can at least have more predictability on how my gut is going to react. I'm being more mindful of stress. I mean, I'm always stressed. That's just me. But I'll take bigger stresses these days and just internalize them, not think about them. That will affect me regardless of whether I'm actively thinking about it. So, I know that while I don't FEEL stressed necessarily, I AM stressed and I need to accommodate for the repercussions.
It really fucking sucks. I've given up going to have meals out with people if I know we're going to be wanting to sit around and chat. Instead, we can hang at my place or I will go out and just have something to drink and maybe something really, really safe that I can nosh on, like a thing of plain fries or chips. I cannot go out for extended periods of time. I'm extremely fortunate in my work situation in that I do everything remotely, so I'm always within spitting distance of the bathroom and there's no one to stop me (except the meetings that will inevitably drum up my guts). If I still worked outside of my home, I would likely be in a far worse depression than I normally am in.
All of this chatter to say that you need to be very sure to take care of yourself. Treating ourselves like shit, including internalizing stress, doesn't serve us in any way but to give us even more diarrhea and crazier symptoms. I recommend not trying to fight the IBS, but accept it as part of your particular life experience. That doesn't mean not doing whatever you can to accommodate (if FODMAP works for you, for example, do that, and be sure it actually is IBS and not something else). But don't beat yourself or your body up over it. I know that's hard because IBS is like a dark cloud that hangs over us all the time, but if you try to move with it instead of against it, I think you'll have fewer flare ups or lesser symptoms, over time. I really hope I've offered at least a modicum of help. Best to you.