Happily Ever After My Diagnosis

On December 15th, 2009, I was matched up on eHarmony with a man named David (for the SECOND time – long story, I’ll explain later!!!). Being tired of waiting for the men to make the first move and message me first, I sent him my initial questions. I was a little surprised when he responded, but he did and shortly after that (January 23rd of 2010 to be exact) we started dating.

About a year later, in January of 2011, the symptoms started. It began with diarrhea and rapidly advanced to severe rectal bleeding. I told David that I was having some digestive issues, but didn’t mention the blood (I mean, who wants to tell their boyfriend about their bathroom habits!?). I thought it was a tummy bug on top of vicious hemorrhoids, so I ignored it. I started going to the bathroom 20+ times a day. Sometimes those bathroom visits would produce nothing but pools of blood in the bottom of the toilet. I finally went to the doctor at the end of January and by Valentine’s Day of 2011 I had my diagnosis of Ulcerative Colitis.

As I’ve browsed the message boards and support groups, I am overwhelmed with the [...] continue the story

Date A Guy With Crohn’s Disease

Crohn’s Disease (and/or Colitis) is a chronic, incurable, immune-related disease that eats its way around your colon and small intestine. Your immune system (for some reason) starts attacking that area causing massive weight loss, painful cramps, internal bleeding, loss of energy/cognitive thinking ability, and frequent trips to the bathroom. To top it all off, Doctors don’t know what causes it or how to cure it.

But amidst all of that chaos, Crohn’s has a bright side.

I’m a big believer in making your situations work for you to the best they can. We too often let our attitudes be reflections of a situation, when really; we should be cultivating powerful attitudes to change the situations we’re in for the better. It takes a lot of guts (pun intended) for someone with Crohn’s to see the bright side of what they have, so let’s hope this can act as some sort of inspiration. Crohn’s might get angry, throw a tantrum and try to kill you, but that doesn’t mean you have to. As with any disease, the extent to which it affects our daily behaviours is minimal… unless we let it.

I’ve come across many men with Crohn’s. They’re insecure about it, no doubt. [...] continue the story

Three A.M. Thoughts: ‘Doctor’s Orders’

It is a cultural artifact that we regard medical professionals as authority figures. We expect them to command us and we are expected to obey. Hence the phrase: ‘doctor’s orders’. This relationship does not work for Type 1 Diabetes. It infantilizes the patient, which is the worst possible outcome. A person living with Type 1 needs a team of professional health care providers (endocrinologists, opthamologists, general practitioners, nurses, dietitions, psychologists, social workers, diabetes educators) to help with management of the condition. But the patient needs to be the Captain of that team. Healthcare providers should be trusted advisors, not authority figures. Healthcare providers may have relevant and necessary training and expertise in the science of the condition. I say ‘may have’ because in my experience not every healthcare provider who purports to understand T1D actually does. And a little knowledge, as they say… Many conflate it with Type 2, and seem to think that all diabetes — and all diabetics — are the same. This is one of the things that irritates me the most. As far as I am concerned, Type 2 is a whole different medical condition that is not relevant to my life or my chronic medical condition. The [...] continue the story

Useful

A short film featuring the struggles of a doomed couple.

Official music video for ‘Use Somebody’ by Kings Of Leon, performed by Scala & Kolacny brothers. scalachoir.com

Shot on Three days in Brussels and Antwerp, Belgium. 27th of February, 28th of February and 29th of February.

Official selection shortfilmcorner Cannes filmfestival 2011. Best international experimental shortfilm at the New York Independent Film Festival 2011. Young directors award at the Cristal Festival 2011.

Director: Inti Calfat Scenario: Inti Calfat & Hugo Van Laere DOP: Bjorn Charpentier Producer: Frederik Zaman & Mitchel Elsen, TRS Production manager: Thierry Vandenbussche (outlandish) Production Assistant: Mike Madelein Production Assistant: Tatiana De Pret 1st camera Assisitant: Joris Rymen 2nd camera Assistant: Jolien De Graeve Chef Electro: Peter Van Den Bosch Styling: Jan Dendievel & Xavier Make-up: Marie Brabant Production Design: Olya Tsoraeva Decor: Simon Van Laar Special Effects: Martin De La Vallée Editor & composits: Hans Desmet Grading: Veerle Zeelmaeckers Sounddesign: Gregory Caron

Cast: Wife: Marijke Pinoy Husband: Hans Van Cauwenberghe Prostitutes: Dolores Bouckaert, Leen Van Dommel, Elke Shari.

Discovering my last taboo

By Ben Davies

In this article I am going to explore the morality of paying for the company of a female or indeed male if you are a disabled person.

But first I am going to talk about relationships and the potential barriers I feel exist as a disabled person. I personally really struggle with relationships and socialising full stop, whether it’s going the pub with the boys or chatting someone up. I simply cannot do it as my confidence in this area is really low. Overall I’m ok with the boys as we talk about football and drinking, the usual stuff. But when it comes to the ladies, this is where I really struggle.

When I meet a woman I’m attracted to, I know instantly whether they are seeing me or the four wheels I’m sitting on. In my experience a lot see the wheelchair and feel uncomfortable when I start checking them out, just like any other bloke would. Then I have the added barrier of impaired speech so if I do pluck up the courage to speak to them, I get the look that says something like ‘you’re in a wheelchair and you can’t speak properly so piss off.’

The speech [...] continue the story

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