Woman Posts Inspiring Bikini Photo To Raise Awareness Of Crohn's Disease
While many of us just use Instagram to post a few selfies and obsess over our favourite celebs, one woman is trying to raise awareness of her 'invisible illness'
Twenty-year-old Bethany Purnell, from Wales, posted a bikini snap to raise awareness of Crohn's Disease - a health condition she's been living with for a number of years.
Despite over 115,000 people living with Crohn's Disease in the UK - and millions more worldwide - it's still a condition that some people know very little about, and the cause is still unknown.
Bethany's suffered from the condition for half of her life, but she wants doesn't want to hide it from anyone around her. Bethany had the whole of her bowel, rectum and anus removed four years ago, and now has a stoma.
She explains in her Instagram post that a stoma is where a small section of her bowel comes out her stomach, and she wears a bag to collect any output.
She proudly shows off her ileostomy bag and bikini body in her Instagram snaps to her 11,000 followers. Bethany has also shared pictures on dating profiles of her bag, as she never wants it to be a secret after years of being 'embarrassed'.
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Bethany told Met Daan: "I just wanted to post a picture of me to show how invisible this illness is.
"You'd never ever be able to tell that I no longer can go to the bathroom the 'normal' way and I have to wear a bag on my belly, you'd never be able to guess that I have been months without food and having to be fed by a feeding tube, you'd never even insinuate that this young and healthy looking girl has spent countless of days away from home and in a hospital bed all scared and alone."
Bethany went on to explain that she's proud of how much she's been through.
"I'm genuinely proud of myself and my body for handling all that has been thrown at it. I've never hidden away, I've always worn what I wanted and I've always been proud," she continued.
"I have always been open and honest about my bag and any questions are always welcome. Personally I've NEVER had a bad comment made about me/my bag."
Featured Image Credit: Instagram/Bethany Purnell