Just lost it with DCs, I can't cope with any more f***ing poo

(73 Posts)

DS, age 6, never been reliably dry or clean since potty training, pants wet every day, poos in pants couple of times a week. Been several times to doctor, referred to hospital, scans on kidneys and bladder, nothing wrong with them. Now being referred to enurologist (sp?) to see if she can help. Also waiting for appt with school nurse continence team on 21st Dec.

Have tried reward charts, drinking more, alarm to remind him to go, Eric, nothing works.

Told him he can't go to friends after school because I can't expect other parents to change him or risk having him wee on their sofa. He doesn't seem bothered.

Just picked him up after school and he'd had to be changed twice, once after wee in pants and once after poo. Then got home and he had only been inside for less than ten minutes, I was in kitchen trying to wash his filthy clothes, went back into living room and both him and DD (age 3) had pooed in their pants. DD had been reliably dry/clean for about a year until recently when she has for some reason started to occasionally poo in her pants.

I just lost it, yelled at them both that they know full well that you do not poo in pants and if they do it again I will be very angry. They both looked terrified and burst into tears.

I've cleaned them up and apologised for shouting but said i'm still cross and upset that I have to clean their poo up.

I'm just fed up of it, I don't seem to be able to remain calm about it any more, why can't they just use the toilet?? Why do hospital referrals take months?? Why does my house smell permanently of wee?? Where have we gone so wrong???

Kittycatcat Thu 15-Nov-12 18:50:02

I don't have any answers for you but wanted to give you a hug. Hope you get the support and answers you need. I can only imagine how hard it must be. I'm sure I would react the same if that's any consolation to you.

Thanks kittycatcat, unfortunately after this going on for soooooo long i've realised there probably aren't any answers. I think I just need to talk about it.

mamij Thu 15-Nov-12 18:59:10

Really sorry to hear that. I can't even begin to imagine how frustrated you must feel. I hope something "clicks" for the two of them soon.

cloudpuff Thu 15-Nov-12 19:22:57

It must be so frustrating for you, do you think your three year old may be copying from her older brother.
Hope your referral comes through soon.

IWillOnlyEatBeans Thu 15-Nov-12 19:47:01

In this situation I don't think there is anything wrong at all with letting them know that you are cross and upset. I can only imagine how frustrated you must be and how demoralising it is.

Can your DS explain why he wees/poos in pants?

I also think your DD is probably copying your DS.

Hope things get better soon and that the enurologst can help. Could you afford to pay for a private consultation in the meantime? We did this for physio for DS while waiting for the NHS appt to materialise...

trixie123 Thu 15-Nov-12 20:20:24

oh god, my condolences and if its any help, just to know you're not alone, I was thinking this very thing today. My DS is only 3 but has been PT for about 6 months. Is pretty much dry but REFUSES to poo except in his pants. He absolutely understands the process and can control it, just won't and I am sick to DEATH of flicking / scraping poo into the toilet and washing out the pants and having the house smell. I just don't want it to be part of my life anymore. Would an ed psych be of any help maybe?

Thanks for the replies. I agree I think DD is probably copying DS, and I feel really bad for shouting at her about it, if it wasn't for the situation with DS I wouldn't have minded her having the occassional 'accident' at all.

It's been over two years since we first saw the doctor about it and during that time we've been referred to paediatrician, who we've seen three times with about five month wait between each appt. He's now referred us to the enuresis clinic, we've been to a meeting with a lady there (without DS) and have now been waiting for five months for her appt to see DS. It may be that she then refers him onto a behavioural psychologist because nobody can see a physical reason for it.

We keep asking DS how he feels about it and he really didn't like taking about it. He will say he's not bothered but it's clear he is because if his pants are dirty his personality changes and he is withdrawn. But he won't tell us he's done it, he'll just sit there with dirty or wet pants. If we ask him if he needs the loo, eg before we go out in the car, he'll always say no. But then he'll more often than not have wet pants when we get out of the car.

An ed psych is possibly the right person to see, do we need to be referred to them? I've looked into paying privately but unfortunately we just can't afford it.

IWillOnlyEatBeans Thu 15-Nov-12 21:24:37

I'd start making toilet trips before car journeys etc non-negotiable (if you are not doing so already). And maybe start using a timer set at specific intervals during the day when he is at home - and he has to go when the timer rings. I'm sure you have tried this already though.

It sounds like it's been such a long, drawn-out process sad

3littlefrogs Thu 15-Nov-12 21:32:15

Has he had an ordinary abdominal Xray?

It sounds like classic encopresis.

I agree with you that 5 months wait for appointments is absolutely appalling.

When he soils his pants, what is the consistency of the poo? Is it runny? Hard, small lumps?

Did he ever have an episode of constipation resulting in a large, hard poo that was painful to pass?

2011november Thu 15-Nov-12 21:54:41

have sent you a pm

I've asked the paediatrician if he could be constipated and he's examined him by pressing his tummy and said he doesn't think he is. The enuresis lady asked us to fill in a chart to say what each poo looks like from the Bristol stool chart. His poos have nearly always been like a sausage (squashed if in pants!), occasionally a bit looser but normally they look the same as mine and DP's (i'm told!). Sometimes when just a tiny bit comes out in his pants it is drier but I don't know whether that's because we haven't noticed it and it's been there a while.

Could it be encopresis even if he is doing normal looking poos each day? Would that also make him wet himself?

He had constipation for a short time a couple of years ago as a result of having to take iron medicine, but then went back to normal when he stopped the medication.

I don't blame you for shouting it's really frustrating, isn't it? DS had problems with pooing in the toilet, but he had problems with pooing too because he was constipated. We began to confiscate a toy every time he did a poo in his pants (which was every other day) and put them on a high shelf where he could see them. He would hide to poo so we knew when he was going to do it but stopping him meant he would withold poos which was worse. If he had dirty pants I told him it was silly and remained calm (which was very tough!) and just cleaned him up.

After 3 weeks of toy confiscation he announced that he wanted to poo in the toilet, and he went. Then he got a toy back each day he had clean pants, (and lots of praise) which was every day after that. He hasn't had a poo accident since. Maybe you could try that? Seeing the toys and getting one taken off him seemed to help. And the reward every day for three weeks of getting a toy back helped too, he goes regulary now and I spend a lot less time on washing. Hope you get an appointment soon too smile

WipsGlitter Thu 15-Nov-12 22:15:53

I've nothing to add but my sympathy. We've had battles with DS re poo. With movicol and making him go on the toilet when he "smudges" we are getting better. But it's heartbreaking. I've shouted and ranted too.

Only suggestion is to take DD aside and talk to her, it might have been a one-off, three is still pretty young.

3littlefrogs Thu 15-Nov-12 22:25:01

Unfortunately, pressing the tummy is extremely unreliable, and an Xray is the only way to diagnose impaction.

I think you have been badly let down by all this waiting for various appointments and referrals.

This is a really serious problem, and absolutely dreadful for your poor DS. Have you considered a walk in centre or going back to a different GP and asking for an Xray?

Ilovemydogandmydoglovesme Thu 15-Nov-12 22:28:35

Totally sympathise. We are currently having this with dd2 3.5. She's been toilet trained for about six months too and she has suddenly decided to wet herself and poo herself on a regular basis. It is utterly frustrating. I too am sick of the sight and smell of poo.

Dd1 6yo also still wets the bed on occasion. My washing machine is sometimes on three times a day what with the duvet first thing in the morning and then all the clothes.

Bizarrely dd2 never wets her bed. She gets out of her bed and wees on the floor.

You really have my sympathy. Let's crack open some wine.

3littlefrogs Thu 15-Nov-12 22:29:37

Encopresis causes wetting because of the pressure on the bladder, so the two frequently go together. UTIs are also very common because the impaction stops the bladder emptying properly, so germs multiply. This can also be a cause of wetting.

Generally though, a child with this problem will feel uncomfortable, unwell, miserable and embarrassed all the time. I don't think health care professionals take it seriously enough, and the length of time you have been trying to get help is shocking, and totally unacceptable. sad

We have seen three different doctors at our surgery, one was the one who referred us (although he has now left) and the other two both said we need to relax and not make a big deal about it and DS will grow out of it soon enough.

I don't know of any walk in centres near here, will look into it. Or we could try going back to our surgery to ask if they will refer for an xray, although I don't hold out much hope.

myhandslooksoold Thu 15-Nov-12 22:33:50

Oh my god there's about 5 poo threads on the go this evening (including my own)
It's a nightmare isn't it
<Takes the bottle, has a long hard swig and passes it on>

Indith Thu 15-Nov-12 22:33:51

My ds1 is nearly 6 and Dr about to turn 4. De had constipation and withholding issues, lots of soiling and wetting as he couldn't feel when he needed s wee due to the poo problems. He is mostly ok.nowbit still wets a few times a week. Dr toilet trained at before 2 yrs old but as she got older she realised how Michelle it stressed us out and started soiling for attention and she still does it.we can have a month fine then daily accidents for a month. Drives me mad.

I feel really awful for getting so cross with DS if it is impaction. It's been going on for so long i'm finding it so difficult to remain calm when cleaning up poo yet again. Especially when everyone says they can't find a physical reason for it so we're thinking it's a behavioural issue. I hope we've not done him lasting emotional damage sad

Are there really five poo threads?! It's all I ever seem to talk about!

You are not alone. I've been there, I've shouted, I've tried everything. DS1 (6) doesn't care and whilst he doesn't soil himself as regularly as he did a year ago, it's still too often. We still have to lift him and put him on the loo before we go to bed otherwise he wets it (this is irritating enough because he used to be dry all night). I lost it the other day because DS2 (almost 5) who has never had toileting problems since he potty trained, has started copying his brother. I want to weep. I can't cope with the poo either. Especially when I know they can control it when they want to. Argh. You have my sympathy.

Ilovemydogandmydoglovesme Thu 15-Nov-12 23:14:32

Dh has just come down to say dd1 has got out of bed. I've stomped through the house muttering 'she'd better not have pissed the bed again, I've just put the bloody duvet back on the bed' and dd1 is sitting on the bottom stair. She heard what I said and looked like she was about to burst into tears.

She had wet the bed though. It's all gone in the machine again and we've dug out the spare blankets. Bloody hell.

We had a big hug. I told her I didn't mean it.

[bad parent]

lelait Fri 16-Nov-12 09:12:03

Feeling for you - what about buying loads of really cheep pants and just throwing them straight in the bin if poo-ey to give yourself a bit of a break? Wet wipes by toliet etc so he has to start cleaning up a bit himself...

Bonsoir Fri 16-Nov-12 09:16:36

You need to sit your DC on the loo several times a day and make them go.

myhandslooksoold Fri 16-Nov-12 09:22:29

Well done Bonsoir I can't believe we hadn't all thought of that. There we are everybody, the problem has been solved. Any other smug advice out there? We'd love to hear it.

hawthers Fri 16-Nov-12 09:36:23

Sorry don't have any advice and definitely not any pointing out the bleeding obvious but just wanted to offer my sympathy.

Only thing I'd do is if you are waiting ages for an appointment then ring up them daily frequently to see if they have any cancellations, get the name of the consultant etc who you would see and try ringing them or their secretary directly or try contacting pals (patient advisory liaison service I think it stands for). Get them on side and they might be able to lobby on your behalf to get yhe referrals speeded up. make yourself a pain on their arse to get them to help you sooner. In the meantime lots of wine

3littlefrogs Fri 16-Nov-12 09:36:47

Indeed.

Bonsoir, this is a very distressing and complex problem.

The op has been trying to deal with this for over 2 years.

She has been badly let down by the professionals who should have helped her, and your post is only going to make her feel ten times worse.

A proper diagnosis made by someone who knows what they are doing, is the first step. Then a proper treatment plan with support in place is essential.

OP keep fighting for the proper help you need.

I am sure that there are support/advice organisations out there. Maybe someone else will know?

GrimAndHumourless Fri 16-Nov-12 10:21:46

yes agree sounds like classic constipation, impaction with overflow

press for clinic referral

lots of GPs fail to take this seriously

Thanks all again, it really helps to have this support because it feels as though we're the only people going through this in RL and it's a difficult thing to talk about/explain to people.

I have resorted to throwing pants away because sometimes I just can't face the smell and disgustingness of having to try and get the poo out. DS gets upset when I throw them away, even if they are just cheap plain ones, and once after he'd chosen some new ones with star wars characters on them he tried really hard not to dirty them. It lasted about a week but then he reverted back.

On a more positive note I phoned the hospital again this morning to ask when we might eventually get our next appt. I was fobbed off last time I phoned and they just said they were two months behind with appts, so this time I managed to be a bit more forceful and pointed out that we'd been waiting five months and she has booked us in for 12 Dec. Still a month away but at least we have a date. I also have the direct line of the consultant we're going to see.

DS is poorly today so we're snuggling up on the sofa watching Alvin and the chipmunks (awful film!). We were up a lot in the night because he has a bad cough and a temperature and at about 5am he shouted me and asked if I'd go with him to the toilet because he need a poo. I was full of praise for him, but now feeling frustrated- he can feel when he needs to go to the toilet sometimes but why not the rest of the time???!

GrimAndHumourless Fri 16-Nov-12 10:26:09

the nerves get de-sensitised over time, because the bowel and sometimes anus get stretched, so the sensation can disappear IYSWIM, hence the not-knowing-they-need-to-go

I would place a LOT of money on him being backed up to maybe his nipples if you can picture that, a scan will show how far

masses of support on here, ask/rant, we are here

Oh god you have my upmost sympathy, it is hideous. Ds1 has been soiling since he was 3, he's turning 9 next month sad ds2 (5.11) is soiling regularly after he's ill so trying to figure out whether that's copying or a digestive issue or something else. Ds3 (4) PT 6 months ago but regularly pooing and weeing in pants. There are days when within 15 mins all 3 have done something and I either cry or yell. Sometimes both. And wonder what I have done wrong as a mother. It helps to know I am not the only one in this position. Ds2 wets bed at night and I get so cross about the washing when with 4 dc I have lots anyway.

Long long saga but I too have been let down by long waiting times and consultants who don't seem very interested or bothered. Ds1 was only xrayed for first time last week fgs and they found an impaction.
I think bonsoir got a flaming but actually sitting a few times a day is one of the things paed will suggest and IMO it does make quite a difference. Proper sitting, in the right position, after meals for 15 mins that is. In combination with movicol if necessary. You really have to fight to get heard and seen and dp & I both feel let down by the system. I get better advice sometimes on here than in surgery or hospital. I have found that paying the younger 2 boys seems to rapidly motivate them btw when nothing else did grin

Lol at paying them to go to the toilet! I will try anything!

Paediatrician and school nurse have both told us about sitting on toilet regularly which we try to get him to do, eg he always has to try for a poo after breakfast before school. But he will sit there in correct position for ten minutes, even sometimes blowing balloons up, but nothing happens and we can't physically force poo out of him! I also worry that the amount of times we tell him to sit on the toilet is making it into even more of an issue for him because he gets so upset about it.

Sorry accessorizequeen, hope that didn't sound as though I was dismissing your advice, didn't mean it to sound like that. I think i'm just thinking aloud about the things we've tried and how it seems to have turned from a possible physical problem into an emotional/behavioural issue for all of us. confused

EscapeInTheCity Fri 16-Nov-12 11:07:03

Iwould
Just want to symptatize with you and pants covered in poo. We've had that for years too with ds2...

ds2 was chronically constipated. No hard stools, just very large 'normal looking' ones every 3 days or so. Plus issues with wetting himself (I think his bowels were so full that it was pressing on his bladder ifswim). And soiling.
He has no feeling of when he was soiling himself incl v heavy soiling.

Paed, etc... didn't change a thing.

In the end, what worked for us was chinese medicine. We went to see a qualified herbalist wo also had a speciality for treating children. It took a few months but soiling got less and less until it disappeared completely. As soiling got less, wetting disappeared too.
Maybe worth a try?

No problems. Is he actually on movicol at present tho? A HV suggested ds was allowed his DSi on the toilet and its been a lot easier to get him to sit since then. You do end up doing anything don't you? Our family life has suffered, there's no doubt it has a huge impact. And then there's worrying about progress at school, bullying, don't feel you can go out as much and sporting activities can be impossible. I'm just getting better after 2years of depression, this has been a huge factor. We are now trying to get referral for psych (had tried twice before with no joy) for ds1 as its clear he has behavioural issues and my paed father has suggested perceptive issues may be responsible. That was last week's bombshell I'm still trying to deal with. sad thank god it's Friday wine in fridge and Ben & jerrys in freezergrin

HullyEastergully Fri 16-Nov-12 11:16:29

Can they not wear pull-ups until the source of the problem is found so that at least clothes and bedding aren't constantly destroyed?

My ds had enuresis until he was 10/11 and he wore pull-ups in bed at night and I had bed mats on there too.

and hugs.

My boys don't want to wear pull-ups at school. Too much blush for them.ds1 did have to resort to them last week as the movicol dose was so high poo was dribbling down his legs. sad I use bed mats and pull-ups for ds2 at night he still wets the bed!! What eventually solved the problem for your ds, hully?

HullyEastergully Fri 16-Nov-12 11:23:57

No, but they could wear them at home at least. He just grew out of it in the end, it slowly grew less and less and then stopped altogether. My dbros were the same and apparently it does commonly run in families.

3littlefrogs Fri 16-Nov-12 11:36:10

accessorizequeen:

"Ds1 was only xrayed for first time last week fgs and they found an impaction"

This is exactly the problem and is so common.

A plain abdominal Xray is such a quick, simple thing to do, and would show up an impaction easily. It is really awful the way children suffer and parents are fobbed off.

The longer the problem goes on, the worse it gets and the longer it takes to treat.

My GP told me the treatment takes at least as long as the problem has existed, and usually twice as long.

It took 2 years to get dd back into a normal bowel function pattern after an anal fissure and witholding/impaction episode that lasted about 6 weeks.

Thank goodness I have a lovely, knowledgeable GP.

Absolute nightmare to get an appointment though....the good ones are always popular.

Indith Fri 16-Nov-12 12:10:42

AQ my dear I just want to give you a hug sad

I agree it is so hard to get anyone to really understand. Ds1 was at first given lactulose and we were told to keep upping the dose until he was trying to withold liquid, it was horrible. Thankfully I eventually stumbled upon a lovely GP who took me seriously and suggested a completely different tactic and we used fybogel to bulk it out and increase the sensation of needing to go then because he was still only going every 3 days with than and days 2 and 3 got progressively worse with wetting and soiling we added senna. On that mixture he starting doing a poo a day. e had to be very stric on routine and doing wees which resulted in a lot of tantrums. We found sitting on the loo for a poo after dinner before bath worked best for us as there was no rush to go to school and we read books etc.He still almost always goes then but goes at other times too. I still get so happy when he recognoses he needs to go! Wees are around 80% routine "go for a wee before dinner/before we leave the house" and 20% going himself BUT most days his pants have obviously been dribbled in and his trousers smell of wee so we are far from perfect but at least we are good enough to pass off fine at school etc.

AQ I'm interested you mentioned soiling after being ill. Dd is like that. I know it started with attention/power struggle because she knew how frustrated we got with ds1 but we bribed with stickers recently and the whole of October was accident free then she had a sick bug at half term and so far in November we've only had 1 accident free day from her sad. Normally wetting but some soiling. Some foods seem to be triggers for her, eg she can't have too much sweetcorn or she spends the next day pooing madly.

It kind of feels like a secret you've been hiding for years and then you're allowed to talk about it on here smile
Waves at Indith, big hug to you too grin
It's so interesting about running in families Hully given several of us on here having issues with more than one child. I cannot tease about what the issues are because with ds1 at least it's not just this. I've suspected Aspergers for a while but have to adjust to a different diagnosis if psych agrees with one put forward by paed. Still don't know what the outcome might be for soiling after all of that. You feel so embedded in the daily crap literally it's hard to take a step back. Your routine sounds most admirable Indith, all with little sleep for years!
Frogs, I agree it is so disappointing when nhs lets you down with even the basics. I send dp now for the appointments as he's so much more assertive!

HullyEastergully Fri 16-Nov-12 12:57:53

It really annoys me that people have to feel bad about it. It is the same as any other physical condition. It is no one's fault and it is not shameful.

Indith Fri 16-Nov-12 13:14:09

Routine saves some of the shouting.

Hully I want to kiss you for the info about things running in families. I often wonder if it is us, if it is our diet, something we do, the way we potty trained. Just something about US. But families does make sense.

Ds2 is 8 months and eating larger amounts of food now. When he weaned we seemed to go straight from bf poo to fully formed with no weaning food filled cowpats in between. He strained and strained and was obviously very constipated. He also had the sick bug when dd did so jsut milk for a while and eventually, all of a sudden while I was wiggling a poo half out of his bottom trying to stimulated him to push again and get it shiften is ALL came out. And I mean mountains of it. It was jet propelled and I ended up with a pile of poo as big as my fist which was followed by large amounts of squitty poo. I was flabbergasted and also very upset I had not taken him to see the GP before then althoug I had been planning on taking him to baby clinic when he got ill but we actually ended up in hospital with the bug and I mentioned the constipation several times but nobody wanted to know.

Since then we went back on food very slowly and things have been better, we have had more normal weaning type poos but he has just started fully formed again so I am really nervous and watching him like a hawk to make sure we have a daily, decently sized poo without too much trouble. He seems to be sensitive to dairy, he can handle small amounts but if you give him yoghurt for example he is unsettled that night and gets constipated the next day.

Oh Indith sad poor little mite. We got somewhere with ds1 when we cut down on his dairy intake but paed last week said it shouldn't make a difference. So now I don't know. Argh. Come to think of it, dd gets quite constipated tho never soils. I can't keep track of it all, my depression and ds1's behaviour problems seem to muddle my head.
Hully, I see what you mean. But other people don't see it as just another problem as with mental health. And my confidence is such that I feel completely judged and found wanting at the school gate anyway. I try to be upfront with friends and parents of dc's friends but as for the wider community I want to hide under a rock.

Indith Fri 16-Nov-12 16:21:52

We got somewhere with ds1 when we followed Jabber's advice and went to goat milk/cheese. It definitely made a difference. After several months we gradually reintroduced cows milk.

I think what gets me is that even though most people are understanding they still say things like "oh well some just take a bit longer/forget to go to the loo" or other comments along those lines like they just have toilet training niggles and you just want to yell that it is a medical issue not being lazy, that asking them if they need a wee won't work you need to TELL them that they need a wee.

Having had a poo roughly the same length as the baby this afternoon after 3 days of straining since he last had yoghurt I am not giving him any more dairy and booking an appointment with the GP. My 8 month old who eats mainly fruit and veg and prunes should not be giving himself piles and fissures.

Jingleflobba Fri 16-Nov-12 17:54:26

Total sympathy here, we had a terrible time with this, DC got tested for diabetes and got poked and prodded everywhere poor thing. Fortunatly it seems to have sorted itself out now, we haven't had an episode for months touch wood but have a hug, it can be soul destroying x

MoelFammau Fri 16-Nov-12 21:48:48

Can he actually 'feel' when he needs to go?

I had issues as a child with wetting the bed and it only stopped when I hit puberty blush. I wasn't taken to a doctor though. My DM had the idea that hitting me, shouting at me and forcing me to hand wash and hand wring the sheets was the way forward.

I never could feel when I needed to go until it was too late. And it got better... and then I had a lousy birth experience where DD slammed through my bladder and I'm back to not feeling anything. sad

Rudolphstolemycarrots Sat 17-Nov-12 09:56:57

if you think he is doing it on purpose, put him in nappies.

3littlefrogs Sat 17-Nov-12 12:14:33

There is an excellent article in this weeks British Medical Journal about this. It is surprisingly common. Hopefully some of the people who have been fobbing you off will read it OP.

TeWiDoesTheHulaInHawaii Sat 17-Nov-12 13:41:44

Oh bum.

Have been battling with this myself, though DD is younger. Was SO sure it wasn't constipation as she does poo regularly (and they seem normal) but she was very off and UTIish on thursday and this am has done some very sloppy overflow type poo.

I really didn't want this to be it. I'm not sure the GP will refer for investigation until she is 4 anyway in this area. (I know a friend had trouble getting any medical attention for her DD) And they weren't particularly helpful when the problem was toddler diarrhoea (which she had pretty much from weaning until 2 1/2). I really don't want to wait another 4 months to get things rolling in there is a physical issue.

GAH.

Those who have cut out dairy, is there a best way to approach this?

HansieMom Sat 17-Nov-12 13:53:33

I have not read the whole thread. I do not think it is encopresis either but I would still use Dr. Collins' method of
Sitting child on toilet after eating, maybe twice a day. The gastro colic reflex kicks in. I would also go to Dr. Collins' site and read there. Google his name and encopresis. I do not blame you for being sick of the whole mess.

alemci Sat 17-Nov-12 14:11:18

I am sorry, it is a nightmare isn't it. My DS only just grew out of wetting the bed at night when he was about 12 (I think) all gets a bit vague and I remember how awful it was for years'. Don't be too hard on yourself. If you shouted and got cross with them then so be it. I think I would have reacted in the same way

HalleLouja Sat 17-Nov-12 14:21:39

Ok here is my experience. DS is 4.7 and getting much better but it has taken a while. A long long while.

My plan which was started in Feb this year was to reward him to sit on the toilet. Not worrying about doing anything in it just sitting and doing a try. If he tried 4 times a day (after meals and one other time) then he would get an activity which involved focus from us. So he got to play a computer game before bed with DH.

That seemed to work - although its only now he has got properly better. He still soils but more often than not he does it in the toilet / potty. He still gets a chocolate coin if he poos in the toilet / potty.

More often than not he will poo when he hasn't got any pants on i.e. bath time. He used to do lots of poos in his pants I had to change him 10 times a day some times.

Also he did have movicol to begin with that helped things along. So to speak.

It made my life hell - so fingers crossed it doesn't get worse again.

This book came recommended. The paed who wrote it is local to me and supposed to be helpful.

HalleLouja Sat 17-Nov-12 14:22:19

Oh and we found the weeing his pants has stopped since we sorted it.

Crazyx4 Mon 19-Nov-12 19:18:02

Was just having 5 mins to myself with MN reading this thread when dd shouts down the stairs that DS is smelly. So leaving this thread I go to find he is covered in poo. All over his clothes, on the carpet etc. AAaagh. He is 4 next week. Is not a bit bothered by it and seemed quite aggrieved that I dared dunk him in the bath. So you have my total sympathies op. Totally understand the need to scream and cry right now. Off to finish cleaning the carpet!

I started this thread ages ago but things seem to be getting worse. Just had a call from the school saying DS has had three poos in his pants today. A friend is picking him up from school today because I have to work so I've just had to call her and apologise profusely about the fact that she will be presented with three bags of pooey clothes when she gets there.

Urology nurse is being really good and
has met with the school to explain how they can get funding for extra support to help with taking DS to the toilet and clean him up after accidents. But the school have now said they can't get extra support and they'll get someone to take him to the toilet at lunchtime if someone is available. Problem is this isn't happening because staff are just too busy.

DS needs someone to go to the toilet with him to get him to do his squeezing exercises that the nurse told him to do. He's also on laxatives to clear his bowel and needs to regularly be taken to the toilet to get into a routine of emptying his bowel and bladder. If sent on his own he just simply won't go.

Its affecting all of us so much, our whole lives seem to be getting him to go to the toilet, him being upset about it, cleaning
up poo and wee and just generally accessing about it.

Stressing not accessing

Missingthemincepies Tue 05-Feb-13 16:23:36

Just read the thread and feel so sorry for your family OP.

Re school, could you ask your GP to write a letter in support and go to the board of governors to complain that your child's welfare is not being safeguarded?

It is really unacceptable of the school not to help.

I'm guessing since he's on laxatives that impaction was found to be a problem? Poor little boy. Poor you.

Sorry I have no words of wisdom to help.

Thanks missingthemincepies. I'm going to phone the consultant at the hospital and ask her to speak to the school again and also see if she'll write to the LEA about funding. Apparently there isanother child in the school with a similar problem so she said there should be no problem getting funding for extra support for them both.

I am now having wine

neolara Tue 05-Feb-13 21:37:18

Did you definitely find out if it was an impaction / constipation problem?

My dd1 was a soiler for about a year. Eventually I got advice from a very experienced nursery teacher. She came up with a plan and within a week the issue was resolved. I've posted this before, but I've copied and pasted below in case it might be helpful. If the issues are around constipation this program is probably not appropriate.

"I had tried rewards, reminding, books on the loo - nothing worked. I went to have a chat to the deputy head of my DD's nursery and we hatched a plan. It worked so well that that the problem resolved itself almost instantaneously.

OK, this is what we did. It might not work for you because your circumstances might be different. I admit I was sceptical of it working for us, but it really did. Incidentally, DD wasn't constipated at all and the issues hadn't started around a period of constipation. I think this would make a difference in how the issue should be approached.

1) I stopped giving any reminders about going to the loo. Absolutely none - very difficult to do! I completely left it up to DD to make her own decision.
2) I started saying, in a very casual and relaxed way, "Mummy and Daddy do poos in the loo, all the children at nursery do poos in the loo and you need to do poos in the loo to".

After a day of this, she did her first poo in the loo for four months. I fell over backwards. There were one or two accidents over the next few days.

3) If she pooed in her pants, I waited for her to come and tell me. (Previously I had pointed it out to her.) I then said "Let me know when you want to come and get changed" and walked away. This was to get rid of the usual game where DD ran away while I try to get her changed.
4) She had to help to clean herself up i.e. she helped to pull pooey pants and trousers off, and cleaned herself with wipes. I ignored her as much as possible and got on with cleaning yucky pants. I didn't comment at all, although did help a bit to get her clean at the end. I didn't give her any praise for wiping herself but was not nasty at all. It was all just very matter of fact.
5) I gave her new pants and trousers and let her get dressed by herself. Again no praise but no nastiness.

Throughout I tried to maintain a zen like calm!

It was only while dealing with pooey pants in the method I described above, that I realised how much attention she had been getting from me previously when she pooed in her pants. Previously I really thought I was giving her lots of praise for doing the right thing and ignoring when things were going wrong, but I just wasn't. I was cleaning her up through gritted teeth and making lots of cross, annoyed comments. Also, reminding her lots and lots, which of course meant she know exactly which buttons to press when she wanted my attention."

When my dd2 started pooing in her pants following a short episode of constipation, I was initially very kind to her. However, within a week or so, poos were back to normal and she was continuing to poo in her pants. I instigated the regime described above. We had about 4 days of screaming blue murder tantrums when I refused to wipe her bum and left her in the bathroom with a packet of wipes. However, 5 days in and she was once again pooing in the loo.

Best of luck. Potty training made me angrier that just about any other aspect of parenting. But I suspect this was the factor that sustained the behaviour.

Thanks, that's really good that worked so well for your DD. How old was she? The consultant thinks DS has impaction, hence the laxatives. He holds onto poo and then it leaks out. He's having more and more wee accidents lately too but she said she can't treat the until the poo is sorted.

We have tried ignoring but he will literally sit there all day getting wetter and more smelly and will never tell us. It seems as though because he's never been dry it seems normal to him to sit in wet pants so its not an issue for him.

I'm worrying for him at school because children have started to comment on it, not in a nasty way, but as they get older they might. He'll be in KS2 in sept and mixing with older children who might be more likely to say things about it.

neolara Tue 05-Feb-13 23:01:30

I think my plan wouldn't work for impaction - that's a whole other issue. As far as I remember, with serious constipation, kids end up having very little control. And presumably with laxitives you ds will have even less control. With my dd (then age 3 1/2) it was about finding ways to get attention from me - a completely different issue.

Good luck. Hopefully now you have a consultant involved things will start to sort themselves out.

sleepdeprivedby2 Wed 06-Feb-13 14:45:20

Hi Iwouldgoouttonight, couldn't read your thread and just run as I have exactly the same issues (quite scarily so!)

I have a 6 year old DD who has never been dry and since starting school has also had poo issues and a nearly 4 year old DS who after potty training relatively easily sometimes emulates his big sister.

DD also exhibits all of the behavoural aspects you describe. It is so hard and infuriating to deal with and it ends up dominating whole family life even though I try soooo hard not to let it.

From your most recent post it does sound like impaction. My DD is on Movicol and as soon as we start getting skid marks in pants I up the dose of Movicol otherwise we start getting full poos in pants. Upping the movicol dose for a day or 2 seems to prevent this and then we only have wet pants to deal with once again, but any longer on the increased dose and she is loose so we still haven't managed to find the right balance.

The thing I find most infuriating is the fact that most people fail to understand how much of an impact it has on your day to day life. People offer advice like 'ignore it!' how can you ignore a child who is covered in poo and wee and sitting on your (or worse someone elses) sofa knowing that they will quite happily sit there all day and continue playing rather than get changed.

Your whole life ends up revolving around changes of clothes, how can they go on playdates/to the afterschool disco when you know what state they are going to be in after school and the frustration that this creates seems to seep into the rest of your relationship even though you try soooo hard for it not to.

Being wet is the norm for them. I try to see it from my DDs point of view and be understanding but this is not easy when every request to go to the toilet (e.g. just before we go out/go to bed) is met by foot stamping and screaming even though 9 times out of 10 she is already wet.

In many respects I could cope with the constant wet clothes, but the decline in behaviour that always goes with it and the daily battles it creates are far more harder to deal with.

My DS toilet trained quite easily, but we too have had episodes of him emulating his big sisters behaviour. e.g. he has deliberately wet himself so he can go in the bath first and he wet himself at the same time as DD and then they both ran off upstairs laughing about the fact that they were both wet and needed to get changed as if it was some fun game. Thankfully these episodes have all passed after we firmly explained that it was his responsibility to put it into the toilet and ignored it as much as possible.

It sounds like your school have been a lot more helpful than ours who just leaves our DD to get on with it and the school nurse has never phoned back.

Anyway, that was a lot longer than I anticipated! just wanted to say you are not alone and I know that when you look at the piles of wet and soiled pants that is sometimes of little comfort. If you want to PM me to vent your frustrations with someone who understands the feel free to vent away grin

Sleepdeprivedby2, thank you so much for your post, you have written word for word exactly what its like. I agree is often the behaviour that accompanies the accidents and refusal to go to the toilet that is worse. I found myself dreading picking DS up from school today because I know if he's had accidents at school he'll be in a bad mood, which will get worse the more I tell him to go to the toilet once he's home. From the tantrums he has its as though going to the toilet is a completely unreasonable thing to have to do and he is the only person in the world who has to!

Sorry your DD's school haven't been more helpful, we've only really had support since he's been in year 2, his teacher really wants to help him, but there just don't seem to be the resources.

I have aDD, just turned 4, and she went through stages where it seemed as though she was copying DS to get attention but touch wood she is over that now. If they were both weeing and pooing themselves I would have been convinced it was something we'd done very wrong when toilet training.

Feel free to PM me too if you want to talk about it! I wouldn't wish it on anyone else but it is some comfort to know we're not the only ones.

Ps. Our school nurse has been worse than useless too, firstly they said they wouldn't be able to even see him until he was 7/8 years old, and then when the teacher spoke to them they finally met us but just seemed to think he'd grow out on it.

The urology nurse has been more helpful so far, she was really good at explaining to the school what DS needed (not that it seems to have helped!).

WhereMyMilk Wed 06-Feb-13 17:02:25

My DS went through this with chronic constipation and pooing himself-the in reality it was overflow. I was so up to my neck in poo I regularly was vomiting-not because I wasn't absolutely OCD with cleaning, but more that I was breathing it in <yik> Even me begging him that I was getting sick didn't help.

We have long term use of movicol, but also, on top of that, he has a micro enema which I do twice a week, and if we're in real trouble then we use a dose of sodium pico sulphate, which when given just before sleep, always results in a good poo the next morning. Maybe you could try this?

I completely empathise. Our GP has been fantastic though, and we keep on with the drugs....

OddBoots Wed 06-Feb-13 17:12:58

How is his walking/balance? Have any of the doctors done neurological tests on him? Is there any sign on his lower back of anything unusual like a deep dimple or a hairy patch?

I only ask as some of the hidden forms of spina bifida cause bowel and bladder problems.

Oddboots, the consultant has referred him for an xray on his spine to look for Spina bifida but he's examined him physically and thinks its very unlikely that's what it is. He's also going to have a catheter into his bladder to check how he is filling and emptying it.

sleepdeprivedby2 Wed 06-Feb-13 23:02:47

iwouldgoouttonight, I understand completely the dread of going to pick them up from school, but then you feel guilty for feeling that way.

Twice last week I went to collect my DD from after school club and found her sitting absolutely soaked watching TV on the carpet. Because of this she will not look me in the eyes and the first thing she says to me really miserably is "I'm wet mummy". This results her being really grumpy and argumentative (putting it mildly) because the first thing she has to do when we get home is go and get washed and changed.

Today however was a better day smile and I think writing in down on here has lifted my mood about it somewhat, whereas the ERIC message board just left me depressed!
DD was dry for the first time in weeks after school (she had still had a change at school but we have to celebrate where we can) and instead of having the nightly battle over getting changed out of wet smelly clothes we were able to make tea together until DS came home with Grandma.

The thing is, because she was dry on pick up she was a completely different girl, she came up to me smiling and was not grumpy at all. It is then that you realise just how much the problem effects them too.

DD has had an ultrasound on her bladder and like your DS it was found to be normal. One thing, do you find that your DS always seems to be worse in winter. I don't know if it is the cold weather or the amount of clothes but DD always seems to be worse in winter. DD's wetting has been getting progressively worse since October and it is currently as bad as it gets, but I remember it was the same last year but I put it down to starting school but now I am beginning to wonder.

That's the other aspect of this, all of the analysing and trying to find patterns/solutions is enough to drive you around the bend, but it is so hard not to do as you are desperate to find anything that may help or be a solution.

I live in hope that one day she will just suddenly wake up and 'get it' although I have been saying that for so long now I don't think even I believe it any more.

Here's to tomorrow and fingers crossed I get the smiley DD and you get a smiley DS on school pickup smile

Really glad for you that your DD had a better day yesterday. Weirdly my DS came out of in a much better mood too yesterday. He was a bit wet but no poo accidents and no changes of clothes during the day. He was running about with his friends and laughing and we chatted all the way home, whereas normally he's silent and very grumpy if he's had accidents.

I hadn't considered cold weather making a difference, DS is definitely worse lately, lots more bags of wet and pooey clothes coming home from school. There couldbe a link I guess. Although having said that one of the worst days I remember was on holiday last year, it was a really hot day and he was wearing a wet suit on the beach, we were with another family and all the kids were in rock pools and sitting in the water together. When DS got out we find his wet sit was completely full of wee and poo, almost up to his neck! We got really cross with him because other children had been sitting in the water with him. It is so hard to keep trying to remain calm and realise they're not doing it to be naughty and they genuinely can't help it.

You mentioned ERIC, have you found them any help? I've spoken to someone there and they advised a watch which remind him to go to the toilet at set intervals, but the consultant has since told us that's not a good idea as it doesn't encourage the bladder to hold wee for long enough and they get into the habit of having to go every twenty minutes or whatever.

Anyway here's hoping for another good day!

sleepdeprivedby2 Thu 07-Feb-13 11:38:49

I haven't spoken to ERIC, but have been on their website several times.

DD has a wobl watch which I have set to remind her to go to the toilet just before school break times and lunch. However she either 'forgets' to put it on or when it vibrates she just ignores it 'because she doesn't need a wee'.

I have also tried the 'dry like me' pads from ERIC as DD said that the reason she didn't get changed at school is because she has to go through her classroom to get to her change of clothes bag and everyone will notice. So I got her the pads so she could just change them and they would be more discreet. However in reality she just wets it and then either keeps it on or puts pad in the bin, doesn't replace it and then goes onto wet her clothes later in the day!

So for now I have given up!
We cannot do it for them and until they want to be dry and acknowledge that this is only something they can do, there isn't much point wasting our time and effort. I just hope it isn't the other children at school being horrible that determines this.

Fingers crossed for a better day, although from the poo in the night time nappy this morning rather than get out of bed and the attitude that followed, I am not holding out much hope!

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now