Hands up who has used their ulcerative colitis as an excuse to get out of doing something? You know, like if you don’t fancy going to see P.S. I Love You with your girlfriend, you tell a little fib and say your tummy is playing up. Ulcerative colitis has gifted us the perfect readymade excuse. And because it’s perceived as a ‘sensitive’ subject hardly anyone will ever question you. I try not to use my UC as a Get Out of Jail Free card, but if I’m being honest, in the past I have. A little bit. Not very often. But sometimes it’s too easy having the illness thing in your armoury. I know it’s wrong, but are you telling me that Superman never used his x-ray vision to take a sneaky peak through Lois Lane’s blouse? If you’ve got it, you might as well use it. Plus there just aren’t that many benefits to having ulcerative colitis, so if you can turn it to your advantage in some small way it seems silly not to. Obviously, I’m not advocating we use our disease to shirk all responsibility, like taking the kids swimming or getting Gran her weekly quarter of Dolly Mixtures. I’m just saying that every now and then having ulcerative colitis might come in handy. If used sparingly, of course. It could just mean the difference between spending an afternoon traipsing round a garden centre looking at those things bees are quite fond of or sitting at home watching repeats of Porridge.