❓ What is the best way someone can support you and make you feel cared for ❓

Support systems have made a world of difference in my IBD journey. When my IBD started flaring almost 2 years ago, it felt incredibly isolating. I didn’t feel like myself, I felt out of control and scared. I did not even feel like sharing with the PAC—the very people who would understand.

Though I was surrounded by people, often no one could see what I was going through and it felt like no one could understand. The isolation from IBD made even what would normally be easy—sharing with my mom how I truly felt—difficult and incredibly overwhelming and emotional. Learning to fight back against the isolating feelings has been challenging but I have received amazing support. Here are some examples:

💚 My mom has taught me how to advocate for myself
💙 My aunt researches and steps in in a moment’s notice to help
💚 My friends make food I can eat, drive me to the pharmacy and change plans when I need to
💙 My professor even made sure there was food I could eat at a lunch he was hosting
💚 The PAC has understood without even needing an explanation, welcomed me with open arms, supported me, and exemplified resilience, empowerment, and grace alongside IBD

Are you looking for ways to connect with some more support? Here are some ideas that might help:

💚 Join the Patient Advisory Council - it's a great place to find support. Don't just take my word for it though, here's what an IBD Parent (Martha) has to say about the PAC: "If you are a young patient, I encourage you to get involved with this group. Not only will you be able to share your experiences and raise awareness of IBD, but you will become a part of a great IBD family."

💬 As I mentioned above, sometimes talking about IBD is really hard (even with your most trusted supporters). The Talking About IBD page on ImproveCareNow has resources that can help get the conversation started or just give you hope and remind you that you are not alone.

🎧 Listen to PACsgiving: IBD and Support Systems - an imPACt podcast episode where my PAC communications co-chair, Vanessa, and I talked specifically about support systems!


Get #InTheLOOP with more PAC Moments >>
PAC Moments is a series of short stories originally shared by members of the Patient Advisory Council on their social media channels. They are being re-shared on LOOP as a way to reach more people and raise more awareness of IBD. We hope you'll share these with others and ask them to take a moment to read + learn more about #LifeWithIBD 💚💙

Built by Veracity Media on NationBuilder