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Crohn's & Colitis
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Tired of hearing comments about your Weight?

People struggling with their weight because of Crohn's share their reactions to uninformed comments on their appearance.

Weight is an emotionally charged subject for many people. For those living with Crohn’s disease, it’s an even more difficult topic, as weight loss and gain aren’t always in their control. Between flare-ups, courses of steroids, and sometimes even surgery, fluctuations on the scale are a somewhat inevitable part of living with the condition. One thing that certainly doesn’t help? Judgmental, hurtful, and rude comments from those who don’t really understand what they’re going through.

“One of the biggest things I had to go through when I got Crohn’s was the drastic weight loss,” wrote Vern, a Crohn’s advocate and blogger behind Leaving the Seat Down. “When I say drastic, it came hard and fast. It was scary at the time, and there was nothing I could do about it. I just stopped eating. It hurt way too much after I ate. I had dropped so much weight, at one point a stranger on the street asked if I had AIDS. Keep in mind, this was the late 80s and AIDS was a big ‘thing’ then. That comment hit hard for me and I didn’t want to go outside anymore. I didn’t want anyone to see me.” 

Even if you think you’re complimenting them, commiserating with their struggles, or saying something that you feel is more about your own weight than theirs, it’s clear that remarks related to weight, food, and diet are more likely to make someone with Crohn’s feel worse rather than better.

And if you yourself are dealing with comments of this nature being directed at you, there are some productive ways to deal with it.

“I like to reply with: ‘I would trade my weight for not having Crohn’s any day!’” says Federico. “I’ve found by using polite but direct ways, I can get my message across, and it usually ends with the other person agreeing with me.”

It can also be helpful to understand that the comments are generally coming from a place of ignorance rather than cruelty.

“I like to give people the benefit of the doubt and try not to think of their words as malicious,” Hayden explains. “Rather than smiling or laughing along with the comments, communicate with friends and family and teach them about how the disease impacts you physically, mentally, and emotionally.”

“Since IBD is an invisible illness, it’s easy for us to mask our pain and suffering. As soon as you share your story and talk with those close to you, you open yourself up to support and better understanding.”

Read full article at

Recommended reading:

Two of  Kind: Sisters with IBD 

Posted on: December 12 2018

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