Friday, March 25, 2016

Making Love with a ostomy

I know that getting the news that you are going to have a stoma is not fun for many people.  So many people hate it but some understand that it may save their life and are actually glad in a way.  But let's just be honest. During the first stages and months of having surgery and getting a stoma lots of fears creep into your life.  One of the fears that strike many people the hardest is the idea of intimacy.  I have to admit it was one of the areas that worried me the most.  The thought of not being able to be intimate again and feel that confidence was a really hard thing for me to get over.  But I want to let you know that for the most part that intimacy with your partner is possible and there are lots of tips and guides to get you in and our of a good situation that is nothing but positive.

Feeling comfortable in your own skin is key.  This is not easy for most.   I was most afraid I would look ridiculous and simply not feel sexy.  Luckily I was under the impression that I would be wearing a full-sized bag during the whole process and that was just silly.  Hey, we all have fears and they all manifest a little differently.  When it comes to fears there certainly are a few more fears than just looks too.  I was terrified of smells and simply just feeling gross during the whole ordeal.  Well, there are so many products that are meant to do the dead so to speak and I have to admit I was impressed with the ostomy gear available. Yes, it does feel like you are the only one who has struggled with this thought when you first get a stoma.  We are all in the same boat and if you are young-looking forward to this time, it is going to be ok.  You will be just fine and happy.

The gear available is awesome.  You have so many options, just ask.  Learning is key and most people are more than happy to help in this area.   It is similar to heading to the beach in a way and looking good is not really an issue.  There are many manufactures and they are all willing to help you find the right product that fits you and your lifestyle well.  I do first suggest talking it all over with your healthcare provider and making sure you are ready for this kind of activity.  It may be painful or simply complicated after surgery because you are still healing.  Also, all the medication that may be going on can have effects on you in so many different ways.  There is no need to feel pressured and afraid.  Learn and be comfortable.

Smells are always a part of this area and they do not have to be unpleasant.  That was something I was really worried about and there are lots of great tips and articles on this.  Lots of gear is anti-microbial and rather scent-proof.  There are also drops you can use in your mini bag to make sure odor is eliminated. But if you are just starting out, light a candle for your own psychological mindset. So take heart and learn.  That is my best advice. 

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