My First Period With A Stoma Bag

by Michelle Williams

600600P15413 Ednmain Period Blog Michelle Williams

Periods with Ulcerative Colitis were awful...

Despite having my ileostomy for over 8 years, now I have only just had my first period with a stoma because, previously, I was on the Depo-Provera contraceptive injection and had no periods (I know, VERY lucky me!).

I have to admit, I was really stressing about having periods because when I used to have them before they were heavy, painful and my PMT was off the scale. I once threw a frozen apple pie at my husband, Matty, just because wire coat hangers are annoying (don’t ask)!

My period cramps used to aggravate my Ulcerative Colitis further, too, as if I wasn’t going to the toilet enough anyway.

Anyway, my last injection was way back in October so I had become complacent about my period coming. I’d gone from pretty much pulling around a suitcase of sanitary products to just having one sanitary towel – the one I keep in my stoma bag of tricks. The one in case I have to patch a leak.

I was almost hoping I’d gone through the menopause during those 8 years (without symptoms!) and I was never going to have a period again.

Surprisingly, my period post stoma surgery has been far less painful

But for the half term holiday, my son, Callum, and I decided to go up to Yorkshire and, half an hour into the train journey, my period started. Stressed doesn’t even cover it, but I had Callum with me so I just had to get on with it.

I had images of me having to stuff my pants with handfuls of paper towels until I got to York but, thankfully, my period wasn’t as heavy as usual. I’m pleased to say that it continued in that vein. I’m not going to lie and say it was wonderful but it wasn’t the horror story I was expecting.

My cramps were not as awful as they had been pre-stoma, I guess because they no longer aggravated my bowel and vice versa. The only thing I had to change ever so slightly was how I empty my bag (I usually adopt the ‘sit down, empty between legs’ method) but that was only because I was using sanitary towels opposed to tampons.

About the author

My name is Michelle; I am 36 and live in Kent with my husband and six year old son. I have a permanent ileostomy as a result of Ulcerative Colitis. You can follow me on twitter.

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