Chronic Illness and Feeling like an Outsider

I, too, have a son with severe Crohn’s disease who was diagnosed at age 10. I researched every possible nutritional angle and diet as well as all types of complementary medicine ( Chinese herbs, acupuncture, hypnosis, etc.). At the request of his doctor (a top pediatric GI at Stanford), he gave up all solid food and drank a pre-digested drink for every meal for approximately 3 months. Talk about disrupting family meal times and vacations, this was terrible. But worse was the affect this was having on my son’s social life and social development. It was so tough! I felt so badly for him but I couldn’t let it show. I treated my son as normally as I could.

Since he was diagnosed at age 10, his growth and development were affected. However, through a combination of biologic drugs, we got him into remission in 10th grade and he grew 10 1/2 inches in one year! Later, as a sophomore in college, a study called into question the regimen he was on, so three doctors suggested we change it. My son instantly flared. With all possible combinations of medications, he did not get under control, and needed surgery just after he graduation college. Believe it or not, he was able to get into remission with a variation of the first regimen and he is doing great! He is completely gluten free as well.

If you ever need to talk to someone about this, I’ve been there. Please feel free to contact me.

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