Having a stoma can be exhausting, and it’s not unusual to be affected or even depressed from time to time. Here are some strategies for dealing with those emotions.
Going through the changes you have been through is not just a physical challenge, but a mental one as well.
Losing something that you have always known can be very unnerving. This is true for everyone – not just for people with a stoma. Many people perceive their body as a sort of materialisation of their identity, and when that changes radically, as with ostomy surgery, it can shake up your understanding of who you are.
Drastic change like having ostomy surgery can spark feelings of alienation, and most people will have some level of struggle with accepting the stoma as a part of them.
With time the feeling of alienation will go away, but until it does, it is important that you allow yourself to grieve over what you have lost. Grief can be a positive and necessary part of the process – and not something you need to suppress or fear.
Of course, if you are experiencing extreme stress or a feeling of hopelessness, you should seek professional help immediately. If you are unsure of what to do, call your doctor or Stomal Therapy Nurse and let them know as honestly as possible how you feel.
A common worry for people living with a stoma is that they are a burden to their surroundings, leading some to keep their stoma a secret - or at least taboo. But letting people who care about you in, and allowing them to help you, will likely make things much easier.
Your friends and family are probably looking for ways to support you - so never feel bad about letting them help, as they will only feel privileged to be included.
When you are going through the mental healing process, it is very normal to begin to fear if you will ever be truly able to free yourself from unhappy thoughts.
Try to allow yourself some mental rest by not putting pressure on yourself to feel a certain way. There are things you simply cannot rush through or will into happening.
The mind is a strong and beautiful thing, and it can heal in extraordinary ways if we let it. But just as the physical healing process after surgery takes time, so does the emotional healing. You will be yourself again – albeit a slightly different version, perhaps even stronger than before.
If you feel you have waited a long time to feel better, don't shy away from seeking professional help. Your doctor or Stomal Therapy Nurse can no doubt help point you in the right direction, if necessary.
Are you afraid of talking to others about your stoma? Not sure what to say to children? Here are some ostomy conversation tips.Read more
Having a stoma can be exhausting, and it’s not unusual to be affected or even depressed from time to time. Here are some strategies for dealing with those emotions.Read more
Some tips and strategies for dealing with the setbacks and frustration that comes from living with a stoma.Read more
Our Care programs, designed for people living with an ostomy, offer straight-forward advice, personalized support and inspiration. Care is available when you need it. Our dedicated regional language speaking CARE team of advisors and specialists are here to help you live a better life by helping you do more of the things you love, so you can be you!1800 102 0550 Enroll Now MyOstomy App