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To not want to see my MIL'a colostomy bag again

(94 Posts)
AQuarkTooFar Thu 05-Sep-13 21:57:27

Once was enough, the second time was just not necessary!

No reason to show me it, she just thought I might be interested. Bleurgh not close enough for that chat.

My DM is now listing everyone she knows that has had a colostomy bag including the Queen Mum! hmm

greencatseyes Fri 06-Sep-13 16:39:33

I have a relative with one. She didn't talk about it to anyone (though we knew) and only recently could speak to me about it as she finds it difficult - she had to explain that she can't stay at anyone's house unless there is an ensuite bathroom she can have for her own use. She can't visit us because of this - and I know she was mortified to talk about it. I assured her I had dealt with three children under three and poo was no longer capable of making me embarrassed; no help to her I'm sure, but at least I wasn't embarrassed - which would have made her feel worse.

Does anyone have this problem with travelling - any suggestions?

mrsjay Fri 06-Sep-13 16:40:32

I'm sure her mil is processing this new thing and talking about it is part of this.

Necessary evil I guess, like so much in life!

yes she is just adjusting to it she will eventually stop showing it to whoever wants or not wants to see it, but I never felt the need to show mine to anybody ever, my mum when I got it as she wanted to see but I wouldn't show it to anybody else not because I am ashamed as I needed it obviously but just because I didn't like anybody would want to see a bag of urine,

Longfufu Fri 06-Sep-13 16:44:06

My husband who's 31 has a bag, i don't mind it...better than him "losing control" he had an IBD for 8 years. Got to admit i didn't like the see through bags that he had in the early days to help him with fitting.

MissAntithetic Fri 06-Sep-13 16:44:37

I wouldn't want to see a bag any more than I would want to see an arsehole. But then I'm pretty unfazed as I have looked after many people with a bag so it doesn't bother me any more than a butt, a boob, a false leg whatever.

Although they do make some rather odd noises at times grin

midlandslurker Fri 06-Sep-13 16:54:27


I can fully comprehend your MIL wanting to share her experience and fears with those she is close to,but surely that can be conveyed verbally ? "show and tell" should be left in the classroom.

phantomnamechanger Fri 06-Sep-13 16:58:59

I think this is part of her adapting to this - and is comparable with a toddler proudly showing you the contents of their potty. Part fascination, part seeking some sort of acknowledgement from others.

I find it humbling to read of so many younger people going through this so bravely and acceptingly. All power to them.

Oblomov Fri 06-Sep-13 17:18:16

I wouldn't mind if my mil showed me hers, but then
a) I like my mil a lot.
b) I quite like shit/pooh/gore/verrucas/ vile things on health /Trypopophobia etc.
So if anyone showed me their blood/warts etc, I wouldn't really care.

Andro Fri 06-Sep-13 17:54:21

I thinks it's perfectly reasonable to not want to see a person's colostomy bag, that lack of desire doesn't for minute detract from how much someone may care/be concerned/have empathy for the person.

RachelHRD Fri 06-Sep-13 18:59:19


My DD had one from the age of 5 weeks to 18 months and it's far more unpleasant to have one and live with it than to look at one. I'm guessing she has it due to health issues so I hope she is getting plenty of support.

mrsjay Fri 06-Sep-13 19:48:49

I am sure the OP is very supportive of her MIL and her medical condition,

BadSeedsAddict Fri 06-Sep-13 20:07:16

The OP is not being very unreasonable, she has a right to not have to see someone's colostomy bag. It is unreasonable to expect her to 'toughen up'. This isn't her saying she finds stomas in general disgusting (who would say that?). She's wondering if it's within her rights to ask her MIL to stop making her look at hers. Yes it must be a big thing to deal with. No she shouldn't have to look at it, except in particular circumstances. My MIL may have to have one and despite us being pretty close I wouldn't ask to see it even if we were close, because it is a private part of her body. Equally, I would expect to feel uncomfortable were she to offer to show me it.

mrsjay Fri 06-Sep-13 20:09:01

because it is a private part of her body. Equally, I would expect to feel uncomfortable were she to offer to show me it.

^ ^ this

MrsDeVere Fri 06-Sep-13 20:17:01

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

pud1 Fri 06-Sep-13 20:56:07

My wonderful dad had his illisiostomu ( not a clue how to spell it). Fitted in April. He had cancer of the bowel and is doing chemo now. He has shown me his stoma and his bag on many occasions and it was pretty obvious that it was part of his coping strategy. It was not a pleasent sight when he has the trainer bag that was transparent but now he has the non see through one you can't see the contents anyway. He has been through hell after the op. he has major pain. Blockages, collapsing small intestine as well as the chemo side effects. He has dealt with it all so well and often says he would rather have a bag than be in a box.
If me looking at and taking interest in his stoma and bag is helping him even slightly I will happily do that when ever he wants.

BergholtStuttleyJohnson Fri 06-Sep-13 22:02:19

I've emptied a fair few colostomy bags, not the most pleasant job but not a big deal is it? I actually find it quite interesting, not the emptying bit, just how it all works and whatnot.

BergholtStuttleyJohnson Fri 06-Sep-13 22:05:56

By "no big deal" I mean it wasn't for me to empty it. For the person who has one it obviously is quite a big deal.

WandaDoff Fri 06-Sep-13 22:23:11

I've never emptied a colostomy bag, I've emptied my MILs catheter bag many times. Helped her onto the commode & wiped her bum afterwards too.

A colostomy or catheter bag is a private thing that takes a lot of getting used to. Your MIL is probably finding it quite hard to get used to it & looking for reassurance from those she cares about.

By offering to show you, your MIL is showing a great trust in you, she must feel close enough to you as a person & family member to share it with you, it might not be the most pleasant thing, but you must try to be supportive even if its distasteful to you.

I sympathise, totally, it's not nice.

Here, have some wine smile

WandaDoff Fri 06-Sep-13 22:25:04

Sorry, had it in my head it was your MIL.

Same difference though, she's looking for your support.

AmpullaOfVater Fri 06-Sep-13 22:28:50

"Personally i wish my parent would talk more openly about their bag."

Christ, I don't! My dad had one for a few months and I saw it far more times than I would've liked. But before I get flamed I was a wonderful, supportive daughter.


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