What do you say when...?

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Regular Member

Date Joined Oct 2007
Total Posts : 44
   Posted 10/17/2007 5:26 PM (GMT -6)   
1. people comment on your weight/appearance?
2. people ask you how you feel?

These questions/statements are asked often mostly by colleagues. Unfortunately, sometimes complete strangers say things about the weight loss.

So, do you tell the truth or just give the generic, "fine, thank you."

Regular Member

Date Joined Jun 2006
Total Posts : 267
   Posted 10/17/2007 7:18 PM (GMT -6)   
Yes, people do comment on my weight loss, mostly co-workers and family that I don't see very often. You have to understand though that before I got really sick from CD I weighed about 165lbs, then I got really ill with vomiting, diarrhea (before CD diagnosis and treatment) and went down to about 118lbs. That was a pretty drastic weight loss so I would hear a lot of comments like "it's great that you've lost weight but you really should stop now, you're starting to look sick." I would then politely explain (without detail) that I have been sick and that's what's caused the weight loss, I'm not purposely trying to lose more weight. If they got real nosey and asked what I was sick with I just gave them a generic "it's a stomach thing" answer because 1) i don't want people knowing my business, and 2) no one knows what CD is and it's to hard to explain it to them. There were rumors around my office about my weight loss, everything from "she's bulemic or anorexic" to "she's got AIDS"...yes, people can be very, very cruel. As you may know, office environments are not unlike high schools...haha. I just blew them off and went about my business, trying to get well.
I'm now holding stead at about 125lbs and have been for awhile so people don't pay me much attention anymore, which is just what I wanted ;)
Tell people only what you are comfortable with them knowing, no more-no less. People are going to gossip and be nosy, that's our nature, don't sweat it.
Take care of yourself!
38 years old, dx with Crohn's disease March 2006, currently on Humira, Entocort and hydrocodone (for pain), and Effexor

Elite Member

Date Joined Feb 2004
Total Posts : 20552
   Posted 10/17/2007 7:19 PM (GMT -6)   
Depends on who it is and how much you feel like sharing at the particular moment...my generic "fine thank you" has changed to "I could be better".


My bum is broken....there's a big crack down the middle of it!  LOL  :)

Veteran Member

Date Joined May 2007
Total Posts : 1488
   Posted 10/17/2007 8:29 PM (GMT -6)   
My response is "Still Standing" to those that do know about my CD & those who don't. Their reply is usually something like "Well, that's good". Little do they know that sometimes I am even amazed that I truly am!
Dx'd Jan'06, 1st Resection 7/06, Predinsone, Humira, Imuran, B12 injections, Nexium. Secondary conditions: Psorasis, Acne, Fatigue, Joint Pain, Lactose Intolerant, gallstones, fibroid cysts, peri-menopausal.

Regular Member

Date Joined Jul 2006
Total Posts : 144
   Posted 10/17/2007 8:39 PM (GMT -6)   
i had a incident just 2 weeks ago, my mother-in-law's friend said to me: it should be illegal to be that skinny.   I was slightly offended, since when was it a crime to be skinny, not to mention i'm not that skinny, i'm 125 lbs and 5'3, i thought that was about average, who knows, she is jealous, anyway i said back well i have a diease and i prob. couldn't gain weight even if i want to.  (not that i should have to defend it but it's pretty silly to say what she said to someone)

26 years old
dx with crohn's at 23
Fistula seton surgery 2006
Advancment Rectal Flap surgery 2007
Fisula seton surgery 2007

Veteran Member

Date Joined Feb 2004
Total Posts : 6518
   Posted 10/17/2007 11:57 PM (GMT -6)   
Only comment I ever had to make was when a boss of mine said that I did not LOOK sick. I told him he did not look stupid .
If we would read the secret history of our enemies,we would find in each mans life sorrow and suffering enough to disarm all hostility.

Regular Member

Date Joined Jul 2007
Total Posts : 58
   Posted 10/18/2007 12:18 AM (GMT -6)   
Oh, goodness. This is the #1 asked question in my life.

I have always been a very skinny boy.. "pre-Crohns" I was about 126. But over the summer when I was REALLY REALLY REALLY sick (blockage, bladder problems, the whole nine yards) I dropped down to 96. Talk about DRASTIC. Since I started my Remicade infusions (been on it for a few months now... about to get the 5th infusion) I am back up to 118. My doctors are thrilled, I look much better, and I'm not even 10 pounds away from my "normal" weight.

Typically what I tell people is that Crohn's Disease has been such a tough ride over the past year and leave it at that. I don't feel the need to explain myself unless it's somebody I find necessary. If anything, people are too scared to comment. I am usually the one who brings it up and they kindly reply "Yeah, I noticed you had become very thin!"
19 year old male/ Diagnosed with Crohn's Disease in December 2006

Current medication: Pentasa, Prednisone (40mg... almost finished!), Azasan, Nexium, Remicade

Regular Member

Date Joined May 2006
Total Posts : 167
   Posted 10/18/2007 2:59 AM (GMT -6)   
1. people comment on your weight/appearance?
- People have noticed the moon face I got from Prednisone, I told them its the pills i'm on for my condition
- When I was 105lbs (I'm 5'6 btw) many said I look sick, need to gain weight, blah blah blah (i'm now 125lbs and happy at that) I told them it's my condition doing it and I don't have anorexia, I love to eat, and when they see me eat a full medium pizza (when i'm in remission) they're surprised it doesn't stay with me, they ask for tips and i'm like, sorry, wait your turn and see if you get what I have (it's a bad joke but we laugh)

2. people ask you how you feel?
- I tell them I got stomach/joint pain, upset stomach pretty much says it in a nice way

I wouldn't bother telling them I have Crohn's unless I know them really well, some people would look it up and think I have every symptom and then look at me and don't know what else to say. It's happened to me, it's odd. I hate telling people close to me I get the D now and then and well the gas is obvious, it grosses them out and they get odd, ha, it grosses me out but i'm getting use to it, there's hope ;)

DX with CD at 22 (23 now)
Tried Pentasa and Entocort, worked for a yr and a bit
Now on prednisone 40mg and going crazy!

Post Edited (thenay) : 10/18/2007 2:00:51 AM (GMT-6)

Veteran Member

Date Joined Dec 2006
Total Posts : 559
   Posted 10/18/2007 9:56 AM (GMT -6)   
I long ago got over being self-conscious about my disease. If people ask why I'm thin, I tell them. Most have never heard about Crohn's disease, and some have questions - I'm glad to explain.

Your friends, family and colleagues may be just making conversation, or they may be just curious, or truly concerned about your health. Unless their motive has some evil intent (which I doubt is ever the case), why get offended?

You've got Crohn's disease for life - get over it. What other people think is the least of your problems. Concentrate on living your life as best you can, and (hopefully) getting well.

best regards,
Crohn's since 1988
3 resections

Veteran Member

Date Joined Jan 2006
Total Posts : 3129
   Posted 10/18/2007 10:04 AM (GMT -6)   
Comments about my weight depends on the comment and who is saying it. My coworkers are all pretty educated on CD (thanks to our jobs and my teaching them) Strangers and not so close friends do make comments. If they are curious, I explain that weight fluctuations are a part of the chronic illness I have. If they are rude, I say...if you saw a person losing their hair, would you make light that they could have cancer OR do you think twice about making stupid, uninformed comments.

How do you feel depends on who asks. I follow the old school ettiquette rules in general when it is polite conversation "fine, thank you. And you". Some friends I will outright say my life stinks right now and I feel like crud. My coworkers usually ask out of caring, but I still worry about divulging too much. I usually just say I am having a tough tummy day and leave it at that.
Dx'd '90 (emergency rupture), symptoms ignored long before that, '03 fistulas and bad flagyl reactions, B12 weekly, Pentasa [until I surrender to the bigger meds]
I'm riding on the escalator of life....

Veteran Member

Date Joined Jan 2007
Total Posts : 656
   Posted 10/18/2007 10:11 AM (GMT -6)   
I love broomhilda"s "Still standing." I have a whole bunch of cheerful stock phrases that I tell people--to keep from lying that I'm fine, but to prevent giving too many details to people who aren't really interested: "Crappy, actually, but what the hell," "I've been better," "Hey, at least I'm here," "I'll live, I guess," etc. If I say these cheerfully with a big grin, most people realize that I'm trying hard to be upbeat, but that I don't feel well. Those who want more details will ask for them. Most people don't.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Aug 2003
Total Posts : 1017
   Posted 10/18/2007 12:51 PM (GMT -6)   
How about "Not worth a darn, but I am sure I will get over it"

one of my favs.
Red (Lee Ann)
 Happy Bunny 
      When life gives you lemons, squirt juice in your enemy's eyes.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Jan 2003
Total Posts : 1129
   Posted 10/18/2007 1:11 PM (GMT -6)   
I smile and say "you can never be to rich or to thin".


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