Life Video

By Lucy Notarantonio


A mum-of-two praises her new underwear for making her feel ‘sexy in the bedroom’ after years of feeling ‘ashamed’ of her ileostomy bag.

Rebecca Birtwell, 38, finally feels ‘liberated’ after 15 years of wearing high wasted and specifically tailored underwear.

But her new Calvin Klein briefs changed it all and prompted her to share photos in her undies on social media to show encourage others to be ‘proud’ of their body.

Credit: Miss Jones Photography

Credit: Miss Jones Photography

Credit: Miss Jones Photography

In the images, Rebecca from Bedford, is oozing with confidence despite her ileostomy being on show.

She said: “I have spent years feeling embarrassed and worried about what other people might think.

“During my 20’s I would wear high wasted bikinis or wrap a sarong around me whilst on holiday as I didn’t want people to see it.

“I was always scared about how men would react to my Ileostomy but I’ve been very lucky and no boyfriends ever reacted badly and my husband Chris, 34, accepts me for who I am.

“But I have always liked low rise pants, but I didn’t feel sexy even in front of my husband – I was self-conscious.

“But one day when I was shopping, I thought ‘sod it’ and purchased a Calvin Klein set – the pants don’t cover up my bag completely but hold it in.

“I felt proud and sexier than ever before in the bedroom, Chris certainly hasn’t complained.

“I posted the photo online as I wanted to show other people to be proud of who they are, it doesn’t how old you are or what medical condition you have.

“I was super excited to share it and the feedback from others has been amazing.

“I hope the photos of me help at least one more woman feel sexy and comfortable in their own skin.”

The photo was shared over 70 times with over 300 likes.

Rebecca, who is self-employed, was diagnosed with ulcerative colitis as a toddler and has had an ileostomy for almost three decades.

She adds: “I wish I had done it sooner because the specifically tailored underwear wasn’t for me, I hated how I looked in them.

“I don’t let my bag stipulate what I can and can’t do eat or drink and now I certainly don’t let it determine what I wear.

“Calvin Klein’s may be a little bit more expensive than high street brands but they are comfortable and worth it.”