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Hi. I'm a 42 year old male suffering from incontinence and fibromyalgia.
I read many topics about incontinence here, especially about overactive bladder since this is the condition i am most likely suffering from. Although i am under urologist treatment for 1,5 year now, with lots of tests, there is not yet a definitive diagnosis. My incontinence started about 6 years ago, and due to shame and ignoring the problem it took me 3 years before i told my GP about it. He was very helpful, but what i was most afraid of happened: a seemingly never ending process of doctor's appointments, trying different medication and therapies, and undergo very unpleasant tests with no result so far.
All this time i searched for the best protection. But still, i’m stuck between shame, ignoring the extend of the problem, and the need to have a normal social life. Of course there is protection for every level of incontinence, but one day is not the same as the other. Situations can change over weeks, sometimes for the better, more often for the worse. Especially in the beginning i refused to wear thick pads. It was not so much the fear that anyone could see it but more my inner ignorance of how big my problem was. So more than once i found myself with wet trousers, and soaking pads. Embarrassing situations included.
After this kind of accidents i would order bigger protection. I remember the first time i ordered a maxi pad that could hold a full bladder and i just thought omg, this can’t be true. It affected my self conscious very much and after 2 or 3 days with less leaking i would return to the smaller pads.
Not only am i an incontinence patient, i am also a man and husband with the need for a social life and intimacy. I avoid spontaneous actions, and although my wife knows about my condition, at some point it's difficult talking about it, without being a major turn down. Talking about it with friends is no option. I'm not ready for that yet.
Many times i read in comments, as an advice to others, to just get some pads and not letting your condition affect your social life. And yes, incontinence products are a blessing and a curse and for some of us it can work out well, while others struggle for years.
How do others cope with this? Don’t you ever feel depressed and when you do can you talk to your partner about it? When you tell your friends, how much do you tell them?
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