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Bethany Townsend colostomy bags in bikini: Elegant picture applauded by many

Bethany Townsend shows her colostomy bags while wearing a bikini.
Crohn's and Colitis Facebook page

Bethany Townsend is being called brave today as she breaks a barrier of modeling that has been in place since this profession emerged. Battling Crohn’s Disease since she was a toddler, the model was fitted with colostomy bags a few years ago. This is something most hide underneath bulky clothes, but Townsend dons a bikini showing her colostomy bags to the world.

According to NewsMax on July 3, Townsend gave up modeling four years ago when her intestines burst almost killing her. This is when she was fitted with the colostomy bags. It was Townsend’s husband who encouraged her to put on her bikini and come out to the pool when on vacation.

Townsend said her husband had been after her for a while to put on her bikini like she used to do, but she said absolutely not. There was no way she was going to be seen like this. It was on vacation when she gave into her husband’s urging.

She allowed this picture to be taken and felt that it might help others who battle with Crohn’s Disease, so she posted it on the Facebook page of Crohn’s and Colitis UK. She became an instant hit, as people with and without Crohn’s Disease applauded her for breaking out of the mold of a patient.

The gorgeous young woman told BBC how her colostomy bag is always on and it affects her everyday life. She has to take it into consideration for many aspects of her life, like "eating, going to the bathroom and feeling sick."

Along with the picture posted to the Crohn’s and Colitis UK, the 23-year-old makeup artist posted a brief biography of her battle with the disease. She has had the symptoms of Crohn’s since she was three, but it wasn’t until she was 11 that she was diagnosed with the disease, the BBC News reports.

She’s had five operations, with her bowl bursting four years ago. That is the event that awarded her two colostomy bags. The doctors thought that the double bags would help, but just a month later the symptoms were back.

This photo went viral, which is not something the former model expected. She would like to return to modeling part time. She said it’s been three and a half years since she was given the colostomy bags and it has taken her this long to build up the confidence to be seen in a bikini.

She hopes to give others with the disease the confidence to be like she is today. “We have nothing to be ashamed of” said Townsend. Actually she has a lot to be proud of, she’s gorgeous and it sounds as if she has a husband who will never let her forget this!