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Crohn's Disease Forum » Surgery » Stoma Subforum » Not sure how I feel...


05-05-2014, 05:21 PM   #1
Nyx
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Not sure how I feel...

So, this weekend I was out with friends for breakfast at a restaurant. Suddenly one of my friends hits me on the arm and says "bag!" and nods toward the corner. I didn't really clue in to what she was saying; I thought she was talking about someone's purse or shopping bag. I guess my look of puzzlement clued her in to my confusion, so she pointed in the vicinity of my bag and then nodded back to the corner. By the time I looked, the guy had already sat down so I couldn't see anything. But my friend proceeded to tell me that she could see his whole bag hanging out from the bottom of his shirt.

Meanwhile, we're all just getting our food served to us, and the guy with the bag gets up and was getting ready to leave. Well, she didn't lie...about 3/4 of the guy's bag was hanging out under his shirt. I couldn't believe it. And it was full. I probably shouldn't say this, since I have a bag and all and should be more sensitive, but it grossed me out and turned me off my food.

I would never leave my bag hanging out for everyone to see unless I had some kind of emergency and it couldn't be avoided.

Sorry if my reaction offends some of you, but man....I'm still flabbergasted by the whole experience.

What do you all think? Would you "let it all hang out"? How do you think you would react?
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05-05-2014, 05:36 PM   #2
FrozenGirl
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Full disclosure: don't have a bag however I am totally accepting of them and think you should be proud of your body, bag or not. However having said that, kinda gross. I think primarily because its around food. Same way I would be grossed out if someone had their pants halfway down their butt. More of a food hygiene issue for me. If it wasn't around food I don't think I would see it as nearly as big of an issue.
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05-05-2014, 05:39 PM   #3
Nyx
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I think that if the bag was empty, I'd have been fine. But even though the bag was flesh coloured, you could see that it wasn't empty.
05-05-2014, 05:46 PM   #4
FrozenGirl
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Agreed. That ups the 'eww' factor a little more.
05-05-2014, 05:55 PM   #5
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Nope.

When I had a bag, I wouldn't even let it hang out around my family, only me. AND I couldn't stand to wear the clear bags just for my own sanity.

Poo is private.
05-05-2014, 06:49 PM   #6
2thFairy
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Mine hangs out all the time. I am very conscious about it and always make sure it is undetectable empty or full. I am very careful about my clothing.

Whether it was around food or not, I see no difference. Do you know how many doctors and nurses have stomas? Does that make them unsanitary to be around you?

edit: Mine hangs out of my jeans, but is always covered by shirts.
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05-05-2014, 07:25 PM   #7
FrozenGirl
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A very fair point 2thfairy. Apologies if I unintentionally offended anyone. To be clear I believe it is your stoma, your choice with regards to visibility
05-05-2014, 08:43 PM   #8
Nyx
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I didn't think it was unsanitary...just unappealing with my bacon and eggs...lol
05-05-2014, 09:43 PM   #9
2thFairy
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Understandable.
05-05-2014, 10:34 PM   #10
vonfunk
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I'm in the same boat as you. There are some things that should be covered up while in public. At home, whatever, I don't care, but as soon as I go to leave the house everything get's tucked away.
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05-05-2014, 11:59 PM   #11
Jennifer
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I don't have a bag but know that I wouldn't be grossed out. Maybe it's a new thing for them and they aren't quite used to it yet. At least it's in a bag. I've seen some gross shit. Maybe I'm just desensitized. :P
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05-06-2014, 05:26 AM   #12
DustyKat
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I don’t know that it would gross me out but then due to my line of work I don’t know that much would!

So having said that I see it this way…no matter what the ‘activity’ it all comes down to being discrete. Just as has been said by those of you with a stoma, you do your utmost to keep yours covered.
I have never had a stoma but I felt the same when I breast fed my children. I fully believe that a woman should breast feed her child where ever she wishes and certainly should not be asked to leave an establishment or asked to feed their child in a toilet block to save the sensibilities of others embarrassed by it. It is very easy to be discrete when feeding your baby and to deliberately do otherwise is just an exercise in arrogance as scant regard is given to those around you.

Dusty. xxx
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05-06-2014, 08:08 AM   #13
VeganOstomy
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Out of curiosity, if he had a patterned pouch cover, would you have found it more acceptable?

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05-06-2014, 11:10 AM   #14
nogutsnoglory
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I certainly keep my bag under my clothes. I don't want others seeing it but more power to anyone who wants to let it hang out. I think if it's a covered bag it's ok but a clear bag would be gross.
05-06-2014, 11:55 AM   #15
Nyx
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@VeganOstomy..I think a pouch cover would have made the situation better, yes.
05-06-2014, 11:57 AM   #16
2thFairy
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I agree.
05-06-2014, 11:58 AM   #17
Nyx
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Thank you all for your replies. I was just fretting over my reaction this situation. I should be understanding, and celebrating this person's choice, so when my first reaction was one of revulsion, I was shocked at myself. I'm a bit ashamed actually.
05-06-2014, 12:36 PM   #18
VeganOstomy
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Thank you all for your replies. I was just fretting over my reaction this situation. I should be understanding, and celebrating this person's choice, so when my first reaction was one of revulsion, I was shocked at myself. I'm a bit ashamed actually.
No need to feel ashamed. It's only a matter of time before the military will come out with cloaking material and nobody will ever know we have a bag on - even while fully nude!
05-06-2014, 04:06 PM   #19
Absentminded
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Don't feel ashamed at all! It's cool that the chap felt so free and open about it, but at the same time you're probably more aware than most people of what is peeking out from under his shirt.

When I had my Stoma I always had it tucked in and covered up (more for myself than anything else though) , I personally hated the feeling of it full and/or "hanging loose" as it felt like my bag was going to fall off (obviously it wouldn't, but I didn't like the feeling on my skin.)




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05-06-2014, 09:57 PM   #20
Jeff D.
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To be honest I would feel the same way. I have a bag and when I'm in my room, by myself I'll leave my bag out but once I, in the presence of others I hide it. That being said I will talk about my bag and my ostomy over food as long as the other person/people don't have an issue with it haha.
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