Can't go in public and horrible pain!

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Kris13
Regular Member


Date Joined Nov 2005
Total Posts : 208
   Posted 8/30/2007 10:42 AM (GMT -7)   
I have a huge issue with going to the bathroom (#2) in public. I just can't do it, no matter how bad I have to go. We had locking 1 stall bathrooms at work and I could go there if needed. Now these bathrooms are out of order and will be for possibly years!! (they'd have to dig up the concrete floors along the whole lower area to fix them) Now I can't go at work at all! I've stayed home sick due to this somedays and don't have much sick time left (between IBS and Fibro) I don't know how to explain to my boss what's going on. He knows I have health issues, but I'm too worried about telling him why I really need these bathrooms fixed. I just can't make myself go in public. I tried a bunch of times but I get scared and tighten everything up. sad
 
 
On Monday afternoon I had to go home with the worst pain I've ever felt in my stomach. At first if felt like period cramps, then like an ovarian cyst, then it took over the whole right side of my stomach. I almost went to the ER it was so bad. I couldn't lay flat or stand up straight. I went to the gastro and he rushed me through because he was really overbooked. He gave me an antispasmodic not expaining anything about it. I looked it up though and talked to the pharmacist. It seems to be helping after taking it for two days, but I don't know how long to take it (I'll be calling the gastro tomorrow about that) I just want this to never happen again, I'm now worried it'll happen again at work. It doesn't feel like gas pain and going to the bathroom during it (D and C both) doesn't help the pain. Is this just part of IBS? I'm wondering because for the fibro I take pain killers and get heartburn from the one and don't want it to turn into colon pain as well.

gutastrophe
Regular Member


Date Joined Jul 2007
Total Posts : 319
   Posted 8/30/2007 9:21 PM (GMT -7)   
Kris13 said...
I have a huge issue with going to the bathroom (#2) in public. I just can't do it, no matter how bad I have to go. We had locking 1 stall bathrooms at work and I could go there if needed. Now these bathrooms are out of order and will be for possibly years!! (they'd have to dig up the concrete floors along the whole lower area to fix them) Now I can't go at work at all! I've stayed home sick due to this somedays and don't have much sick time left (between IBS and Fibro) I don't know how to explain to my boss what's going on. He knows I have health issues, but I'm too worried about telling him why I really need these bathrooms fixed. I just can't make myself go in public. I tried a bunch of times but I get scared and tighten everything up. sad
 
 
On Monday afternoon I had to go home with the worst pain I've ever felt in my stomach. At first if felt like period cramps, then like an ovarian cyst, then it took over the whole right side of my stomach. I almost went to the ER it was so bad. I couldn't lay flat or stand up straight. I went to the gastro and he rushed me through because he was really overbooked. He gave me an antispasmodic not expaining anything about it. I looked it up though and talked to the pharmacist. It seems to be helping after taking it for two days, but I don't know how long to take it (I'll be calling the gastro tomorrow about that) I just want this to never happen again, I'm now worried it'll happen again at work. It doesn't feel like gas pain and going to the bathroom during it (D and C both) doesn't help the pain. Is this just part of IBS? I'm wondering because for the fibro I take pain killers and get heartburn from the one and don't want it to turn into colon pain as well.
I completely understand your situation.  For those of us with IBS, public bathrooms are like a descent into hell, filled with terror and horror.  It's been years since I've had to deal with this issue because I have made it my life's mission to only work in environments where I can have complete bathroom privacy.  That takes care of the fear of public spectacle.  But there is also the matter of explaining why I spend so much time in the loo.  You mentioned you were afraid to speak with your boss about this issue.  I highly recommend that you do.  I've been living with IBS for 20 years and for the first 15, I tried to keep it a secret because of the embarrassment factor.  As a result, I had countless experiences like the one you mentioned, where I "held it" or tried to prevent gas from passing only to end up in the most excruciating pain I've ever known.  And yes, when you let the gas and stool back up because you won't evacuate when you should, not only does the pain get worse, but it won't stop even after you've finally gone.  You are hurting yourself by trying to keep this a secret.
Everyone I work with, and all my friends know about my health condition.  I am no longer embarrassed because I realize it's not my fault and I am trying to do the best I can with a miserable situation.  I have yet to encounter a single person who didn't understand.  I don't expect anyone who hasn't suffered with this to really "get" how debilitating it is, but then they don't really need to understand completely.  If you tell someone sincerely about your specific needs, I think you may be suprised by the support you get.
Maybe your boss knows of another restroom you can use where you work.  Perhaps there is a more private area that you don't currently have access to.  If you make it clear that you need this privacy and that without it, your health is adversely effected to the point where you must call out sick, they should be willing to work with you.
Don't be embarrassed!  Over 20% of the population suffers with IBS.  You probably have co-workers who are going through the same thing.  Who knows, maybe even your boss has it!  Just be honest and tell the truth.

dbab
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jan 2004
Total Posts : 4151
   Posted 8/31/2007 6:40 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi Kris, Gutastrophe has given you some great advice. I do know how you feel though. I work in a high rise and our company takes about half of the building. What I do is go to a floor where we don't occupy and use a restroom there LOL. I usually pick a very quiet floor where the bathroom traffic is scarce. I understand your pain. IBS is one of the top reasons for calling in sick according to many studies and aside from the pain, the embarassment is a big reason. I hope you can get it sorted out and I agree with Gut, I would tell your boss, so he also knows why you are gone for a while every once in a while.
"Des"
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Co-Moderator ~ Lupus Forum 
Dx: IBS 1989, Diverticulosis 2004, Idiopathic Acute Colitis 2006, UCTD 2007
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Keriamon
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jun 2005
Total Posts : 2976
   Posted 8/31/2007 9:26 AM (GMT -7)   
I've been like that all my life too. Where I work there are multiple stalls, but I can go if there's no one else in there. I have also gone when there's a lot of people in there, all making noise (so they can't hear mine) and no one will know it's me that's being stinky. I have trouble with going when there's just one or two other people in there, especially if it's someone from my office that I know (we share a bathroom with some other offices). Thankfully, it tends to be pretty quiet most of the time. If someone comes in while I'm goning, I either wait until they are done to resume my going, or I time a flush with putting something into the toilet! Also, we have really squeaky toilet paper holders, so I'll squeak them to cover up the sound. Frequent flushes can eliminate all trace of odor--and aren't suspect in that bathroom, as a couple of the toilets are notorious for being weak flushers that need more than one flush.

I have found that holding in poop when I'm hurting just makes me hurt worse, and when I finally do go, I don't get as much relief from the pain--I keep hurting.

I've also found that there's another woman at work with no GB and one with IBS, so I'm not totally alone. Also, after being on here for so long, I'm not as embarrassed to admit to people that I have IBS or "gut/stomach problems" (although I'm still working on the pooping in public thing--I am better than I used to be; I used to wouldn't use a public toilet regardless if I was alone or not).

Kris13
Regular Member


Date Joined Nov 2005
Total Posts : 208
   Posted 9/3/2007 7:16 AM (GMT -7)   
I guess this is something I'll have to work on. I work in a college library and the bathrooms during the school year are always busy. The good thing is there is one ladies room where there is no heat, so in the winter it is fairly quiet. But otherwise during the school year you can't go in without someone coming in on you.

Of course when I get nervous it's even harder to go. I just need to learn to relax and not care what others think. I'm fine with that mantra with other things in my life, it's just this that gives me trouble.

SnowyLynne
Veteran Member


Date Joined Apr 2004
Total Posts : 1539
   Posted 9/3/2007 10:08 AM (GMT -7)   
before I was finally diagnosed in Feb.I wore depends or WalMart Assurance.When I had to go i had to go right then so I always had to be close to a bathroom.I always carried extra Assurance for emergencies,baby wipes too.Now I have very little problems.
SnowyLynne

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