‘Elegant’ title to this post I know! Is there anything remotely elegant when it comes to catheters though?
Yes, I know as I write this that all those blokes who have been searching the keyword ‘blonde’ found me and sent ‘hey, can we talk’ direct messages, will take one look at this post title and promptly unfollow me in disgust. Same as all those fashion and beauty bloggers who ‘like’ my photos and make me miss my pre-children waistline – adios senoritas. I am going to talk about catheters and nope, this is not a sexy subject!
From the age of two, I have suffered chronic urinary tract infections. I am now forty, which essentially means that for over three decades, I have spent an unfathomable amount of time doing the following
- Drinking gallons of water
- swallowing shitloads of antibiotics
- lying starfish in a tepid, salt bath
- gagging over bicarbonate of soda drinks (which if mixed in the wrong consistency will cause epic, most publicly humiliating bouts of cramping, farting and follow-through – just warning you)
- Crying in agony – a lot – as it feels like you are getting finger fucked by Freddy Kruger. Yes, that’s a crass way of putting it, but it really gets the point across don’t you think?
- second guessing every conceivable cause of UTIs which includes, bathbombs, bubblebath, soap of every variety, swimming pools, food allergies, booze, sex, masturbation, my beloved bullet vibrator, not drinking enough fluids, drinking acidic fluids, fabric conditioner, toilet paper, wiping with folded instead of scrunched bog roll, drip drying, wearing the wrong knickers, wearing no knickers and my all time favourite, not hopping on one leg after I pee (Yes Mr Consultant at Neville Hall Hospital, I think your diagnosis was THE ultimate bag of shite theory – and you went to bloody medical school? *pah*)
So, during my 38th year, I had a massive bleed accompanied with so much extreme pain (and I am a double hard woman when it comes to pain, so trust me when I say that this fookin hurt) that I blacked out. I spent four days in hospital. They said I wasn’t emptying my bladder correctly, gave me more antibiotics, of which I already had shelves full of, and sent me home.
39th Year, same thing happens again only this time, the consultant informs me that I am incapable of emptying my bladder properly and I am retaining several hundred millilitres of urine after peeing. I am then told that unless I learn to catheterise myself on a daily basis, then I will suffer kidney failure. Catheter – sounds simple – except for the fact I have been struggling with PTSD, as a result of a brutal childbirth experience, and any medical people going anywhere near my foof, is such a mahoosive trigger, that repeated attempts at sedation still couldn’t stop my violent shaking. In the end, I had to be put to sleep in order to have the thing inserted – then taken out a week later due to another UTI.
I was given a catheter goodie bag to take home. Oh yes fellow bloggers, you may get sponsored goodie bags from pretty dress and beauty companies, but I get a 3 monthly delivery of piss poking tubes – how jealous are you right now?
As a woman, trying to see what you are doing by looking down is impossible, unless you are one of those mega bendy ladies! From Google search results, I was amazed at how many people didn’t realise that women have three holes down there and bafflingly believed us girls pee out of our vaginal passage. I couldn’t see my pee hole, so resorted to using a mirror which was incredibly difficult to hold still with one hand, whilst trying to guide a greasy tube into my urethra with the other – forwards looked backwards, backwards looked forwards.
Have you ever tried to Google ‘how to insert a catheter’? I needed guidance that didn’t involve a white coat in the room. The images are all illustrations rather than graphic photos thank goodness but I never dared to youtube it; what a grim vlog that would be! There is naff all out there, as far as I could find, that gave you honest ‘how to’ and what to expect info, so my lovelies, I am writing it myself from experience. All you peetuber virgins out there, get ready to cringe and all you expert users who think it’s no big deal, well, er.. you can compare notes.
- Get as comfy as you can, either on the toilet, in the (empty) bath or laying on a towel perhaps. Don’t forget the towel, the first time can get messy. (Experience tip no:1)
- Make sure that there is nobody around to interrupt you – including spouses, kids, dogs etc as you know as soon as you shut the bathroom door, that’s when they decide that they need you for everything, which they didn’t need you for 10 minutes ago! (experience tip no:2)
- Wash your hands
- If not on the toilet, then you need a pot for the pee to flow into – make sure its big enough, as overflow which you cant do anything to stop is not good (experience tip no:3)
- Find the tip of your clit (this is why you don’t bother asking a bloke to help) and pull back. Your peehole is in that area.
- Position your mirror so that you can see what you are doing
- This is where you need a third hand, because now you need to take the catheter out of the packet, avoid touching the bit that’s going in and don’t put it down anywhere as this increases the risk of infection
- I personally found that at this point, that I abandoned the mirror and just started poking the tube in the vicinity until I felt it go in a bit
- Breathe deeply and get it over with – DO NOT yell out “Shit. This burns” and pull it out, as then you know what you are in for and you will be reluctant to try it again for the rest of the day (experience tip no:4)
- Once it is in, yes it burns a bit, but keep threading it up until pee starts to flow out. Keep it there until all the pee is out and then you can withdraw.
- Get a fan, sit legs akimbo and get some cooling air on your foof whilst you sulk about how shit it is that you will have to do this at least 3 times a day, potentially for the rest of your life.
- Go to Google and research bloggers who handle this better than I do and aim for some reassurance; we don’t want this post to put you off so much that you prefer your bladder to explode than to use a catheter. (experience tip no:5)
For more information on urology stuff that medical people would prefer you read, click here
For my past post on urology stuff, click here
For info on Childbirth Trauma support, click here
For my past posts on Childbirth Trauma, click here
Bloggers, to get your own catheter goodie bags use my discount code WelshPEE4U 🙂