New here and looking for advice/understanding

I'm a 31 year old man and have suffered with IBS-d most of my adult life. When I was 17 I left home and moved into my partners house with her parents. To say my diet changed a little when I moved in with her is an understatement. My mothers favourite toy was a deep fat fryer and gave us processed quick foods most of the time. My partners mother made sure we had either salad or vegetables with every meal. Within 6 months of living on this much better for me diet my IBS started. Funny that good food upset me but I guess the big change triggered it. 

Now nearly 14 years on I am at my wits end. For the last 4-6 weeks I have been having the normal 'morning rush' to the toilet but it's the management of this that I have lost control of. I used to have a bad bout and be able to reset my stomach using something like Imodium but that's not happening any more. Sometimes I could go and the first part of my movement was normal but then turns into the normal 5 on the scale, even 'porridge like' as the doc put it . I've noticed I've lost a little weight, not enough to get concerned about. The first time IBS hit me lost at least 2 stone!

As I type this I am laying in bed feeling really sorry for myself, again! I feel tired a lot, my stomach gurgles and makes noises all day long and the dark rings under my eyes are horrible. I look a mess in my opinion. That's not too much of a change to normality but it's getting tiresome. It's embarrassing as explaining symptoms to my partner is horrible, we have a little girl and she is my world but it's tough playing dad when feeling crap!

The docs have done the normal blood tests to check on everything and he did notice that my thyroid is slightly low. After reading other sites this can have a link to IBS but as its a lifetime medication thing the doc hasn't put me on anything yet. Anyone else had the same? 

I know I am going to have to start to try a diary or a special diet to see if I can sort myself out. Anyone have any suggestions as where to start?

10 Replies

  • Hi and welcome. I can completely sympathise with you as will many others here. I've posted a recent thread about feeling/looking generally rubbish and how exhausting and demotivating it can be. Ibs-d is my issue too and I also have a young son and know how bad it feels to not feel well enough to play and take them out.  

    I keep a diary but it's more to document my habits and the frequency of any more worrying symptoms rather than a food diary. 

  • Keep a food and bowel movement diary for about a month of everything that you eat and when to see if there is anything that sets you off

    After that you could try intolerance tests like leaving dairy out of your diet for 2/3 weeks still keeping a diary to see if there are any changes

  • I suggest you try gluten and dairy free to start with and see if any difference.  You need to do it for at least eight weeks before saying whether there is a difference.  You could then try Fodmaps.  It has helped loads of us on this site.  Look at the Monash University website for details.  You can get an app from them which is based on all their research and traffic light system marked.  Eat only those foods marked with green lights which should allow your system to heal itself firstly - again for about 6/8 weeks.  There may be some on the green list which affect you but probably only one or two of any.  You can then add back in foods by group to see which affect you.  Keep a food diary so you can find exactly what affects you.  Good luck.  I had IBS-D for over 20 years but now have no pain or bloating at all.  I occasionally do get diarhoea but only if I have inadvertently eaten something I shouldn't  or choose to do so like ice cream!  It's not easy but if it makes that much difference to your life it is worth it.

  • You know the most refreshing thing from finding this site is it's great to know that I'm not the only one. Sometimes feeling like this can make me feel so lonely as no one seems to understand!! Explaining to my other half is difficult as she seems to have guts of steel! ;-)

    I've gone down the route of cutting wheat from my diet as I do seem to eat a lot of it. Breads, pastas etc. Also I am cutting out orange squash as I only ever drink that and reading other sites says the sweetners can trigger things off. I actually feel really confident about doing this and I swear I will get myself feeling better.

    Has anyone had any intolerance tests done? If so where would I go to get this looked at?

    Thank you to you all for commenting on this, I truly am thankful to you!!

  • Reading your posts struck a chord with me as I had exactly the same problems since 1986 and mine too was triggered by a lifestyle change/leaving home.  Anyway, try the FODMAPS diet as it helped me even after suffering for that long!  I avoid bread/pasta (or use gluten free pasta) which seems to help.  I also swear by plain rice with meals, rather than potato .. again it all helps me. 

    Good luck - I know how lonely you feel as I've been there too with everyone else around me having cast iron guts lol.   :)

  • Thank you Bevvy!

  • Hey, I'm sorry I don't have any advice (new to it all) but I hope you get better real quick! 

  • check for Anemia profile deficiency  (Iron / Ferritin / Vitamin B12 ) they cause extreme fatigue when their levels are decreased .may be you need supplements to boost your energy levels my case my doctor has just prescribed me vitamin B12 shots ..can't  take them orally as they may aggravate my D .I use to weigh 47 kg i'm just 40 kg !! coz of the constant  D and restricted low diet 😳 I 'm a mother too and feel sorry for my children ..Thank God  I have supportive family that help me with the kids needs ..I have just received a medicine called Silicol gel from one of my relatives..I 'm planning to give it a try ..any one had try it before  ??

  • I've just ordered some of that Silicol gel too so would be interesting to see other peoples opinions of it.

  • I agree with trying FODMAPS.  Many of the FODMAPS high foods are fruits and veggies - things we've loaded up with in an attempt to be healthier. But for many of us those are the culprits.  Also watch for corn. 

    For a food and symptom diary, download an app for your phone.  It's much easier to record on the fly, not at the end of the day.

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