Nobody really tells you about the hemorrhoids. I mean, sure, the pregnancy books might mumble something about inflamed veins COUGH COUGH NEXT SUBJECT, but they don’t prepare you for the day when you go to the bathroom and discover that someway, somehow, you have a . . . a small balloon protruding from your rear end. Possibly several balloons.

Perhaps you will panic, just a bit, and do some Unsavory Research on the subject. You will no doubt learn that hemorrhoids are exacerbated by “straining” when you poo. In fact, that is the main advice you will read, over and over: DO NOT STRAIN WHEN YOU POO. Unfortunately, pregnancy has caused your entire gastrointestinal system to slow to a crawl in order for your unborn child to more efficiently leech nutrients from your system, and frankly, if you do not expend a little effort in your output, so to speak, you’re pretty sure you’ll never take a crap again as long as you live.

And so you have these things peeping out from inside your BUTT, and oh, you can try and pretend they don’t exist, but my GOD, it’s like a CLOWN has crawled up your ass and an entire BIRTHDAY PARTY’S worth of INFLATABLE ANIMALS are housed up in there.

You have no idea what these so-called veins look like. You suppose there’s always the option of getting out a hand mirror and taking a look, but you figure you can quite easily go to the grave without enjoying that particular experience.

At some point, it becomes time to make a Very Shameful Purchase, and it occurs to you that it would have been one thing to have your tube of hemorrhoid cream go slithering casually across the conveyor belt along with a plethora of groceries during the light of day, but it’s something else entirely to be standing in a Walgreen’s checkout line at midnight with exactly two items before you: Preparation H and Tuck’s Medicated Pads with Soothing Witch Hazel. “Yes!” you may as well be shouting to the gimlet-eyed cashier. “I HAVE ENGORGED ANAL TISSUE, AND IT BURRRRRNS.”

You assume that once you’re no longer the size of a fully-grown African rhino your butthole will return to its previously benign state and all of your innards will go back to where they belong, but ho ho HO, THEN there’s the aftermath of a C-section, a procedure which involves your intestines being wrestled around and possibly used for a quick game of double dutch, depending on the skill level of your surgical team. For a full two days after surgery, nurses will pester you about whether or not you have “moved” your bowels, and the answer, of course, is DEAR GOD NO ARE YOU KIDDING ME, but in order to be allowed to go home you will lie and describe the giant movement that you produced — why, just this morning! By god if it wasn’t the size and shape of a Russian Typhoon, Nurse! Cracked the ceramic on its descent! Oh yes, all bowels moving just fine and dandy, thank you for asking!

Complicating matters is the pain medication you are taking, a side effect of which is constipation, and while you try and put off the inevitable for as long as humanly possible eventually there will come a dark and terrible hour when you experience childbirth for the second time. You’ve heard of the expression “shitting a brick” before, but you never imagined that you would become so intimately familiar with the sensation of doing exactly that.

The post-surgery, post-codeine Movement of Epic Awfulness will leave a souvenir in its wake, of course. If they were like fun-sized balloons before, you’ve got something more like the goddamned Hindenburg now.

Eventually, the horrifying things happening in your rectal area will recede, and just in time, because now you must turn your attention to someone else’s butt and the contents thereof. Welcome to parenthood! Luckily, the last smears of your dignity have long been wiped away.


130 Responses to “‘Roid rage”

  1. Allie on January 29th, 2009 1:48 pm

    And this… this right here is another reason why I can tell people WHY I’m never having kids. I don’t want ‘Roids!! lol

  2. MRW on January 29th, 2009 2:16 pm

    Oh god I’m four months pregnant with my second and this caused me to laugh so hard I’m afraid I may have suffered the other side effect of having a child – slight incontinence. Still worth the read though.

  3. Mary Helen on January 29th, 2009 3:14 pm

    OMG you are hilarious. With my first daughter, I was on bedrest for almost three months, then had the pain killers and didn’t know enough to take stool softeners. I delivered vaginally and the nurses never asked me if I “moved my bowels.” I ended up in the emergency room the day after I came home — missing Emma’s first visit to the pediatrician — having not one, not two, but three enemas (and some *ahem* “assistance” from a nurse). It was WAY worse that delivering Emma.

    With the second pregnancy I was OBSESSED with pooping. I’m pretty sure I drove my doctor nuts at every single visit. Everything went much more smoothly, so to speak heh, but I ended up with the lovely little souvenirs anyway.

    And yes, they come back. Even 14 months later, they come back.

  4. Stephanie on January 29th, 2009 3:28 pm

    Sometimes I think I’ll DIE if I don’t get to have a baby soon, then I read about stuff like this and I’m all “I, uh, can wait…yeah, no rush, or anything.”

  5. shriek house on January 29th, 2009 3:46 pm

    The only thing worse than passing The Brick post-childbirth is passing OUT on the toilet at your friend’s house while pregnant and having an entire fire department & ambulance show up to rescue you. Yep, speaking from experience.

  6. E. on January 29th, 2009 5:51 pm

    Unrelated zombie link from gizmodo that I thought you would appreciate:

  7. Mom101 on January 29th, 2009 8:05 pm

    Oh bless you woman. Bless you.

  8. Kristin on January 29th, 2009 10:52 pm

    Oh this post brought up memories for me when I was in Spain a few years back dealing with a lack of fiber in my vacationing diet. I had to go to the pharmacy and REQUEST Preparation H from the pharmacy tech in spanish…when I didn’t speak Spanish. There just isn’t a good hand-motion for those clown balloons I tell ya… Good thing the Spanglish word “hemorrhoidos” did the trick!

    Thanks for the good laugh today. :-)

  9. Tela on January 30th, 2009 9:36 am

    And your not writing a book why?

    If you can write an entire post on this topic and we can all find it hilarious, can relate to it and still wanting more then you will be a hit in no time flat with a book. Doesn’t matter what you write about!

    Go for it Linda!

  10. Angela @ Lost In Splendor on January 30th, 2009 10:08 am

    How in my five years of blogging have I never come across this site? This post was hysterical. I am subscribing.

  11. Debbie on January 30th, 2009 10:27 am

    I came here from Five Star Friday, and yes-indeedy, it’s Five Stars!! I’m not a Mom, but I laughed ’til I cried!

    Clown Balloons!! Oh my, maybe that’s why so many people think clowns are creepy!

  12. victoria on January 30th, 2009 10:44 am

    Wow, you really touched a nerve with this one, Linda.

  13. schmutzie on January 30th, 2009 2:11 pm
  14. Parkingathome on January 30th, 2009 3:40 pm


    This should be a chapter in “What you didn’t expect when you were expecting: The ‘fuck you’ pregnancy”

  15. Missie on January 30th, 2009 10:42 pm

    I am sitting here hunched over, crying because I am laughing so hard. My husband thinks I have officially crossed the line from “kinda quirky” to “full-on Whitney Houston kahrazy!” now. All thanks to your post about a most…personal subject.

    Thanks for the laughs, I needed a good ab workout tonight. It’s like your our own public service.

  16. vickey on January 31st, 2009 12:57 pm

    I hope you are still reading comments…
    I didn’t read all of them, so I’m not sure if anyone mentioned fish oil as the Miracle Supplement of pregnancy. Not only will it keep things moving during pregnancy, but I was scared to death of the first post-partum poop, & I swear to God it was absolutely fine thanks to the fish oil. As an added plus, your kid will be smarter, you will be less depressed, & sunshine will follow you wherever you go.
    Best of luck with your butt-hole.

  17. Leah on January 31st, 2009 3:32 pm

    Simon was kind enough to inform me that I had the pregnancy ‘roids because he saw them while I was giving birth. I still don’t believe him (I certainly didn’t feel anything) and he was too horrified to take pictures. Probably for the best. I had my trauma, he had his. The end.

  18. Kate on January 31st, 2009 6:54 pm

    I just had my son a month ago and I am not kidding when I say the ‘roids were worse than actually giving birth. At least the ring of fire was gone after he came out – my butt was on fire for DAYS ON END!

  19. Gail on February 2nd, 2009 8:50 am

    After c-section #2, I also fibbed a bit about the existence of a bm while at the hospital. Upon arriving home and after moving about a little too much,I definitely needed to go, so I headed for the bathroom. I sat down and for some reason, shifted my weight a little, and immediately, my ass was pinched in the broken toilet seat! My (now ex) husband had the guys over the night before I got home and one of them had broken the seat. Screaming doesn’t begin to describe the sound I made along with the expletives. So not only did I end up with ‘roids the size of Christmas ornaments, but also a blood blister on my butt from the pinch. Good times!

  20. iamthediva on February 2nd, 2009 11:59 am

    oh my god, i laughed out loud.
    Came over via Five Star Friday!

  21. pippa on February 2nd, 2009 3:40 pm

    Besides the fact that I laughed ’til I cried (WITH you… always WITH you!), should any poor human come here looking for advice for after a c-section, it is TELL THE NURSES YOU CANNOT GO. They will give you a plethora of medication (including a suppository, but if you’ve experienced that post-c-section BM, a suppository is the least of your concerns) that will, ahem, ASSIST with the process. Much better. Only made that mistake ONCE.

  22. Ken on February 5th, 2009 9:23 pm

    Oh My God, you women are such a pain in the butt and everything in child birth is so sweet. I have 9 children and I delivered most of them myself and I didn’t get a single Hemroid, I have two twin little turds, one little poop head, three little stinkers and 1 big a-hole of a son, butt no hermroids, Yall are just so lucky, I want to try again butt my wife said no. I just don’t understand. how could this be! Mabey I was saving the wrong part of the afterbirth or what. Does anyone know.

  23. Merrily on February 6th, 2009 1:09 pm

    Oh jeezus that is the funniest thing I EVER read and so dang accurate it’s scary. Congrats on your ROFL at Oh, The Joys.

  24. Christy on February 7th, 2009 10:00 am

    I too had a C-Section. While I was incredibly fortunate enough to have help at home after we left the hospital, they all seemed to flee the building when I suddenly needed to poo.

    Yeah, I had my first “Shitting a Brick” moment with a screaming newborn right outside my door. My milk let down at that very moment too. Fun times.

    WHY can’t you find that in any pregnancy book?

  25. Leah on February 8th, 2009 7:29 am

    Oh, the memories! I was able to shock even the postpartum nurse with the size of those lovelies after the birth of my first. Since my babies prefer to come out sunny-side-up the result is particularly horrifying. In fact, after my second was born I had to call the doc to discuss them since one giant one had actually *detached* itself. It warranted a call to the OB’s office.

    “Um, yeah, well see I just wanted to know if it’s normal to have a hemmoroid fall off….no, I don’t mean that it just bled. I mean the whole giant thing CAME OFF when I was, you know, treating it….Yes, I’ll hold while you check with the doctor.”

    Apparently this is one other thing they don’t tell you about. Frankly, it was like another little birth. It was too big to be lodged there, it hurt for a bit, it bled, but you’re glad when it’s over!

  26. Sarah on February 8th, 2009 9:05 pm

    I never would have found you if not for Mom-101 and so glad I did. Thanks for the tears of laughter and recognition-probably a bad word to use in this situation, could be tear or tear :) I’ll be back!

  27. Cher on February 16th, 2009 8:09 pm

    I learned the hard way…don’t overdose on milk of magnesia after giving birth. I practically threw my sweet newborn at my mom and still managed to totally poop my pants. That was the nastiest mess I’ve had to clean up in my life!

  28. jessica @pianomomsicle on February 24th, 2009 8:29 pm

    Congrats on your ROFL. i found you via Mom-101 via Oh the joys :)
    9 lbs, 9 oz baby boy. Delivery was a snap, thanks to the epidural.
    i was crying, screaming, groaning, and figuring out suicide maneuvers during the 5 HOURS over the course of 8 hours that it took me 4 days after my son was born to “deliver” a mess of nastiness that i distinctly remember resembling the monkey heads in that Indiana Jones movie. i drank the cranberry juice, i took the stool softeners.
    Seriously, worst pain of my mother-fuggin life. i warn all my preggo friends: “Take laxatives in secret at the hospital after your baby is born. Your nurse would be mad at you, but i promise it’s worth it!”
    My second baby?
    Peri-colace within hours after she was born. First poo within 36 hours, and this time i didn’t throw up from the pain. Bonus.
    My daughter will always be my secret favorite because of it.

  29. Yeast Infections Chronic on October 9th, 2009 9:36 am

    You never can be too careful with a subject like this people need to take notice.

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