Living with a diagnosis of ulcerative colitis (UC), a form of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), can lead to a lot of embarrassment and, in turn, isolation. That’s why it’s important to keep your support network intact. But sometimes, talking to your friends can be daunting. I’ve put together some helpful tips on how to talk to your friends about your UC, all while keeping your dignity, privacy, and your sense of humor.

Remember how overwhelming it was when you were first diagnosed? Let’s not do that to our friends! When you first start talking to your friends, keep your explanations at a high level so they can understand what’s going on without getting all the nitty gritty details. Hopefully, in the future, you can talk to your friends as much as you feel comfortable, but in the beginning, it helps to make sure your friends aren’t overwhelmed with information so they can understand more easily.

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