Potty training with a buried/small penis....not going well...help please?(72 Posts)
I've posted before about my concerns for my little boy. Background: he was born with a congenital buried penis that is also below average in size (about 3.5 cm and he is 2). Basically, the penis developed normally in utero but the shaft skin around it did not and was fused to the scrotum so it looked like all he had was foreskin and no actual penile shaft. He had surgery to "correct" the anomaly and now, a tiny bit of shaft pokes out but the rest is concealed in his pubic area (although he is not chubby, he has a little bit of fat there). I worry every day for him (about future teasing and adult relationships) as his penis looks nothing like other boys and appears minute.
Anyway, on to potty training. He sees his little friends using the potty and wants to try. When he sits down, nearly all of his penis retracts in to his body with maybe just 1cm of foreskin poking straight out. He CAN sit on the potty backwards and wee and the back of the potty stops the wee shooting out on the floor. He CAN sit on the trainer seat on the adult loo and, if he sits far back and leans forward, he can just about direct the stream against the splash guard so it kind of goes in to the loo. He tries to push what little of his penis pokes out of his body down to direct the stream.
The problem is, with both of these methods, he has to remove all clothing from his lower half so he can get his legs far apart. At preschool and later, school, they are supposed to go independently and I've no idea how this can work for my boy. Is he going to have to take all his lower clothes off every time he needs to pee for years to come? I got so upset today as I decided to try to have him sit on his trainer seat towards the front of the loo so he could keep his legs closer together and keep his trousers on. The result was that pee went right over the guard even though he tried his best to push himself down. In that position, there was literally nothing for him to push down as it all disappeared into his body. We both ended up covered in pee, he got upset and said "Sorry mummy". That just broke my heart and now I am terrified he is going to feel bad as all his friends can use a loo normally.
Does any one have any advice please? I thought about trying to get him to pee standing but there's so little to hold and he will need to learn to sit for when he needs to poo and wee at once.
is he having some kind of surgical correction in the future? it doesn't sound like he can be left like this long term
Or post too soon - sorry.
I don't have any direct experience of the problem, but two thoughts:
- Many children wee all over the place while potty training/learning to use the toilet. My two DS, with 'normal' penis's have both done so on occasion - it takes a while to learn how to direct the flow reliably, and there are still mistakes in to primary school. So your DS has more difficulty, but he won't be the only one getting wee on floor, clothes etc.
- Talk to school / nursery about it. If he has reason to need to remove more clothes, they should help him to do that.
Is there a longer term plan for further correction, or will he need to manage with how he currently is?
No, the very curt urologist said surgery is now complete. Does 3.5 cm sound tiny to those of you with two year old boys? Just don't know what to do.
Are you in continuing contact with anyone medical about your son's condition? He isn't the only one, and hopefully occupational therapy or his team may have some ideas. Initially I thought of a toddler urinal, they are available in Aus and you could possibly fashion something similar yourself (but I'd hope OT can help). Here's the info and video guide.
Regarding preschool, they should deal with this sensitively and adjust their rules to meet your son's needs, as with any other medical issue.
Your post is so compassionate, and your son sounds lovely. Hopefully your fears for the future will be alleviated before he reaches that stage. Who knows what will be available by then?
Aaagh! The checkbox should convert by default!
Cross-posted, 3.5cm sounds fine, it's the positional retraction then that's the issue I assume?
Thanks for kind messages. Am sitting here in tears at thought of him having to have special treatment and all the seft esteem issues that could come with it.
He could use a She wee type device ( if you haven't seen one, they are a little funnel that means a woman can pee standing up and clothed in an emergency) I know it would not be ideal at school but it would help at home.
Get a second opinion about further surgery if you can.
Poor little fellow! You sound like a lovely mum. Good luck no ideas.
Oh, he and you sound lovely - sorry to hear you are having to deal with this worry.
2 year olds are still naturally quite chubby and the pubic fat pad can be quite pronounced. His penis is likely to 'emerge' a bit between 3 and 4.
3.5cm does not sound terribly small to me, but I can see if his penile shaft retracts when he sits how this could be a problem.
We have a potty with a raised front to increase the chances of randomly spraying penises making less of a mess . Might that help?
DS4(3.10) still likes to take ALL the bottom half of his clothes off to go to the toilet, so I'd keep that a battle for later tbh.
Is he at nursery/preschool yet? I agree, they should just adjust to his issues - it's a special need like any other. I like the idea of the toddler urinal.
Ah bless you both.
As others have said little boys tend to wee all over the place so school and nursery should have seen that all before
In my mind 3.5cm doesn't sound all that small for a two year old. I have 2 boys but the youngest is 8 now and the elder is a teenager so I've not seen his for years !!!
Don't forget the role hormones will play in later life - it will grow some I would have thought. Why don't you have a chat with your gp again. Surgery might be complete but there might be other options out there.
Aw, you cannot help to be upset for him because you are looking ahead and are foreseeing problems which he may or may not have in the future. I know I would too. But it does not actually help.
Try and stay in the here and now and deal with the issues right now, not potential future ones.
Has he had an OT assessment?
He is doing so well to be potty training at 2 - my 4 boys were all around 3 and they had no extra challenges to contend with.
How do you think he will get on with weeing standing up? He might need a sturdy step to stand on, but toilets in schools and nurseries are usually much tinier and he would be more likely able to manage without a step.
And I agree with pp about all small boys tending to be a bit hit and miss - so he wouldn't be the only one splashing.
I know, of course you feel that way. Can I say though that the right preschool will be sensitive to all the children's needs- he will not be the only child needing assistance with toileting. And he'll be ahead of some peers in some developmental areas and behind them in others. The 2yo I know are oblivious to this, it certainly wouldn't register to mine!
Is your GP able to help access support or another opinion?
I got in to even more of a state because two other Mumsnetters that had sons with buried penis' wrote to me in response to other threads and said they would tell me how it all turned out for their older boys..and then never wrote back! So I am sat here wondering if it all turned out awfully and that's why I never heard from them again.
Well, people can be fickle - don't read too much in to a broken promise from an internet stranger .
Or would you PM then and nudge them for a reply?
My impression is that you have 2 issues here: your DS's physical problems and your anxiety around them. Do speak to your GP about them both
I did PM them and nothing.
I would absolutely not consider a Shewee as it would make him feel even more different. Maybe the urinal would work.
I've just had a google around for support groups for genital malformations.
What is the technical 'name' for his particular problem? It does not sound like he has a hypospadia, does he?
He is not alone, he really is not and he has lots of growing up still to do which will affect the size and shape of his penis.
If it helps at all my ds is 2.4 yrs and would measure the same. As far as I know he is 'normal' sized; and anyway this bears little indication on how he will measure / look as an adult.
Oh that post made me well up as I can just feel your worry and anxiety about it.
I know you said that they have basically discharged your son from care in regard to this problem, however if it was me I would be going back to the doctor (possibly a different doctor?) and asking for advice or a referral explaining that your sons penis is retracting as he urinates.
Be a pushy Mummy and get don't more medical opinion on it if you can xx
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