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Hunter Copelands' Story! - Fetus in Fetu! (FIF)

Updated: 5 days ago

A unique story from a member of the community living with Fetus in Fetu (FIF) (and other conditions!) 💜

*Readers are warned that the content described in this story contains medical information and may be upsetting to some people. Please read with caution. The content has been supplied by a person living with Fetus in Fetu. We advise discretion and highly recommend you do not self-diagnose and seek advice from a medical professional.

A picture of twins within a womb!
Fetus in Fetu

Hi, I'm Hunter (she/her)

My ostomy is a result of being diagnosed with Fetus in Fetu! (FIF)

Fetus in fetu (FIF):

Is a rare congenital anomaly in which a malformed fetus grows within the body of its twin.

I've had my stoma (Snail) since May 1, 2023.

I named him "slug" originally, due to seeing the sugar trick that makes prolapsed stomas retract. It reminded me of a slug with salt.

I call him Snail because I think of the bag like the shell!

I have my ileostomy due to absorbing my twin in the womb. I carried my twin (teratoma with 13 teeth, hair, an eyeball, and a finger bone) for 21 years of my life. It took my ovary, my hair, my ileum-cecum valve, and some small intestine. 

A year after teratoma removal surgery, I was the most sick I had ever been. I started begging for an ostomy bag. Doctors refused to give me one.

 I was in the bathroom for 6 hours a day, unable to eat or sleep. More than 20 trips to the bathroom a day meant I could not leave my home. I was removed from school, lost my job as a mechanic, and I slowly watched my body die.

It was hard to keep fighting, but I did. After many specialists, scopes, scans, biologics, infusions, worthless trips to "world renown" clinics, and many ER visits, Finally one doctor listened to me!

When placing my ileostomy, my surgeon saw my Twin's umbilical cord TIED AROUND MY COLON.

Without my ileum-cecum valve, my colon was unable to close to process waste.

Now I have no colon pain, and in theory, I could try a reversal. However, I don't want one. I am the healthiest and happiest I've ever been! I can eat, spend time with loved ones, and travel.

Since becoming an ostomate, I've accomplished many things!

I was able to go swimming, celebrate holidays with family, EAT (even a couple of giant SALADS), leave my house, grocery shop, my husband and I finally got married (in a Walmart haha!), I became the president of my local support group (UOAA), I started the BagOut movement on Instagram @yourbagout, and I have made many friends in the ostomy community!

I'm so proud of myself for working so hard to be where I am. I trusted my gut, and because of that; I get to live again.

A proud ostomy recipient!
Hunter Copeland

Proudly brought to you by Hunter Copeland and My2feet!


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