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Kudos to My IBS Buddies

I have learned so much from everyone who participates on this site. While I have a lot of experience working with illness (both my own and others), I think sometimes we don’t realize how someone else’s experiences, both good and bad, can affect the way we go about living our own lives.

I am admittedly a “white knuckler”

In my work with people with mental health and substance abuse issues, we refer to the process as recovery. Recovery doesn’t usually mean “cured.” As with IBS, many illnesses don’t have a cure. Through my work in recovery, I am slightly ashamed to say that I am what they call a “white knuckler.” This often indicates that someone does not always take the required steps to help themselves feel better, but only suffers “valiantly” through the pain the illness causes. A “white knuckler” just gets used to the pain and the idea that it is better to just get through it than to make it better.

While I have done a lot of work over the years trying to get a better handle on the IBS, I find more periods than not, that I just sort of accept it and continue about my life, even if it is excruciating. I have learned from the people who contribute to this site that not only could be a lot worse off, but I could be feeling much better than I am right now.

One day at a time

What happens is that I will find a diet or exercise routine or medication that works and then all of a sudden it doesn’t. I know this is a particularly common theme with IBS. If my life is relatively calm at the moment, I will take some steps to try something new and get myself back to equilibrium. If my life is particularly stressful at that moment, I will not take any steps. I take the attitude that I just must get through, one day at a time. While the one day at a time approach is a good one, it does not mean that nothing should be done one day at a time.

I push through with only the satisfaction that I “made it.” This is not a good way to manage illness or to make the most of our lives. This is hard. Why not make some attempt to heal ourselves. I find it interesting that people with illness will often exhibit a particular strong suit. One person is so well versed in the latest supplements and diet, whereas another simply keeps trying and keeps an extraordinarily positive attitude. One specializes in exercise, while another may excel in supporting others.

Thankful for this IBS community

I think if we take a look at ourselves, realize where our ‘weaknesses’ lie and agree to learn from others, we will find that we are much better at managing our illness and improving our overall wellness. So, thank you for all you’ve taught me and will continue to teach me. I could not do it without you. 🙂

This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.


  • Ebriand
    5 months ago

    One day at a time for sure! I am in recovery for IBS and in retrospect, have had the symptoms for many years but just never knew or was afraid to find out what was plaguing my colon. The doctor ordered tons of blood work which all came back negative. He handed me a FODMAP diet program. He didn’t say anything else, no follow-up appointment..that was it. I plan on seeing a naturopathic for follow-up. So, I was on my way to following the program and immediately I had positive results. That’s not to say that I haven’t had a flair up, once, since my appointment Thanksgiving week 2019. I have gotten a lot more serious since then. I purchased a book on Amazon titled Low-FODMAP and Vegan written by Jo Stepaniak, MSed. I thought I was eating healthy but didn’t realize that a lot of my food was irritating my colon…that I was eating too much fiber and high carbs, fructans, etc. But the info in this book has given me more options for knowing what to eat. It has charts for all the different food groups, a grocery store chart to shop with, a 7 day plan of meals, recipes…it’s very informative. I haven’t felt this good in a long time. Sure, it has changed my perspective on food with a greater respect and my social time has changed also. But I am still in the healing phase with optimism and I know this will get easier.

    What? No onions or garlic? I didn’t realize these two food items were wreaking havoc with my colon. Well, I learned that ” infused” garlic oil and/or infused onion oil is safe. You can buy these or make them. Found recipe online. I freeze it in ice cube trays to use when needed.

    Anyway, I have lots to share in future posts. Take care. Happy New Year with abundance blessings of good health!

  • Elizabeth Alvarez moderator
    5 months ago

    I am so happy to hear that you have found a regimen that has offered you relief from IBS. Thank you for sharing. It’s such a great idea to advocate for yourself and get out there and research diets and read books. The more knowledge you know about food and how your gut operates, the better equipped you are to manage the syndrome.

    Keep us posted! I wish you continued good health and keep up the good work!

    Elizabeth (team member)

  • Sam Costa moderator
    5 months ago

    I love the idea of freezing the garlic-infused oil to use for later in the ice cube tray! Thanks for sharing! – Sam, Team

  • tmholland moderator author
    5 months ago


    Thank you so much for sharing. It sounds like you are very committed to managing the illness and I’m always very pleased to here when someone is having positive results. Some of the ideas you bring to the table are very, very interesting. Thank you again and Happy New Year to you, as well. -Todd, Team

  • Elizabeth Alvarez moderator
    5 months ago

    I also love learning from others. It is amazing what community can offer when it comes to living with IBS. Everyone has their own niche at what they are good at like you mention and you can always learn something new that benefits your situation. Community is so important!

    Elizabeth (team member)

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