Coping strategy for very stressed mummy pls ? - ERIC

ERIC
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Coping strategy for very stressed mummy pls ?

I was wondering how parents have been coping with constipation and constant wetting? My daughter is 4 1/2 and has been constipated since birth. We were ignored by the doctors for 3 years and now under a consultant and a nurse. However i rarely get appointments and am left alone to manage medication and work out whether my daughter is impacted (again) or whether it’s overflow or soiling. I get no help at all off family or my husband and feel like I can no longer cope. My relationship with my daughter is going to be irretrievably damaged as I am that stressed with constant wee and poo accidents abd the stress of trying to sort it out before school. I find myself shouting at her and I know I shouldn’t but it’s constant mess. Can anyone offer any coping strategy at all? Thank you

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Hi ya. I think alot of us have been where you are. You will go through these periods and it is natural.

What I find is we don't ask for help and people think you are fine. So perhaps my first bit of advice is ask for help and explain to your husband how you feel and what it is doing to you.

When you are getting angry with your child i used to count to 10. Sometimes I would do it out load and my child would laugh at me and we would both end up laughing.

I do something for about half an hour each week for me. I find it takes.me away from the problem and allows me to forget and refresh myself. Then I go back to the whole lifestyle again.

I also found talking on here and with friends has helped when things are really bad.

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Hi it's awful isn't it. The key is not to stress over it, I did and it made me ill I blame myself. Now 2 years on I'm more relax and I spend some alone time getting out the house away from it all going for a walk or meeting up with friends that has help me alot.your hubby needs to help and support you too. Your not alone were here for u.

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I know your pain all too well - it’s just such a difficult problem to deal with. The mess, the stigma, the distressed moody child, and the constant trying to work out if laxatives are too high or too low - it’s a pretty toxic combination and it is normal to struggle with that at times.

One thing that really helped me was to realise that I couldn’t control whether my son wet or soiled or not. However, I could control my reaction to that, making sure we got into appointments, monitoring the situation, getting him to take his medicine etc. Can’t say it’s made life a bed of roses, but I no longer react to every accident as if it were my personal failure.

Sounds like an honest chat with your husband about how he could help is needed, but appreciate these conversations can be difficult when everyone is stressed and you are staring at a huge pile of laundry! Can anyone babysit so that you and your husband could have have a chat about things when you are away from the house and more relaxed?

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I would agree with Pink. Try to remember it is not your daughter's fault and it is not your fault. I would write to the nurse and say that you need more support in managing this condition, and what kind of support you would like (e.g. phone consultation every 2 weeks?). These things can go on for a long time whilst the medics try to find out what's happening but there should always be a plan with clear guidance for you and next steps to try. You could also talk to Health visitor to get them on your team. Sometimes its good to have a friendly professional to hassle at a higher level on your behalf. Be a squeaky wheel, they are the ones who get oiled!

Have your got DLA? This would be worth applying for as you have to give your child more care than average child of this age. Cerebra have a great good online guide as do Skybadger.

In terms of school, cross that bridge when you come to it. If she goes to nursery get them to document all you are trying. They can do a document called an IHP Individual health plan which shows what care she needs whilst away from home in a setting - any meds, continence care, cleaning up etc. This will be useful to have in hand so that when she starts school they can provide continuity by creating an IHP as appropriate when she's 5.

The school nurse service (sometimes they cover more than one school) should also be able to help with this.

I have one with our son's school. He is 9 and has daytime urinary incontinence. We have tried to get help from when he was 4 or 5 and since 7 have been with continence nurses, now up to consultant level. Just about to start a new med, the third one we will have tried. We had a nightmare with school last year (uncooperative teacher) but sorted now after some determination. You should never have to go into school to change her - they legally have to have ways of managing her condition including making sure she is clean and dry after accidents.

It is hard, but please, please cut yourselves some slack and try to enjoy your little one. Its so easy to get bound up in what they struggle (I've got the T shirt, trying to remember to take it off more often) with it can be easy to forget to make the most of the positives and have fun together. Happy memories will last you and her long after all this is sorted. The days can seem long, but childhood is not that many years. Get the practical help, but make the most of having your beautiful daughter and telling her you love her and will always try to help her. You can be honest with her though and say 'mummy gets sad when your bum doesn't work, and we have to keep cleaning up but its not your fault. Silly bum!' What you say is what they will say to themselves. Think what you'd say to yourself in a kind way if it was you as the child. In our house we make it about bodies sometimes being a bit wayward but trying to help them work better by trying things like meds. That way the child doesn't feel guilty. As she gets older, you can encourage her to know/tell nursery/school when she needs to get fresh clothes/have a wash and have more independence xxxx

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I love the reminder to enjoy this time. It’s so easy to get caught up and angry. I needed to hear that. X

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Have you considered speaking to a GP about your stress levels and ability to cope? Counseling may help. For me, I have ended up back on anti-anxiety medication (I do have a generalized anxiety disorder which I used to take medication for but was ok without medication for a number of years before the stress of my son’s wee and poo accidents became too much for me to cope with.. like you, I really feel the time pressure with school fast approaching). I have found medication to be really helpful. I feel much less stressed and angry (though the worry doesn’t just disappear completely, just now it’s not unbearable!). I feel like I can enjoy my boy again. I know it’s not for everyone though.

Good luck. You aren’t alone!

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Hello - lots of really good advice here but just another message to say I hear you and I know!! We also talk about my daughter’s naughty wee and naughty poo and I always tell her I am not cross with her, just that it makes me sad I can’t make it better for her. But I have had to work SO hard to control my stress about it and to actively try not to let my daughter see it. Hard as it is, this is one of the very few things in this mess we can try to control. Gross generalisation but husbands, on the whole, find it hard... They like stuff fixed I think.

To reassure you about school, my friend that is a primary school teacher tells me that our issues are so common. I’d be really surprised if you were the only one in your class dealing with this (there are three if us in my daughter’s class!) and all children will still have some accidents in reception from time to time. The good news is this means other kids won’t bat an eye lid, it’s just not weird enough at that age! You’ll hear far more stories about so and so eating a worm or licking someone’s toes than wee or poo. I think the pre school bit is the most stressful point when you realise this is an issue for the long haul...

Focus on rewarding your little one for telling you about accidents and helping put stuff in the washing bin. We ended up with a box of clean pants and trousers in the loo so it was really easy for her to get changed once I’d wiped her. Make yourself a little team to tackle it together. And we are all here for when it gets too much..

Final thought - our local continence nursing team (do you have one?) let’s us call for advice. I ring pretty much every other week to discuss doses/ strategies and really helps me xxxx

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It can be so stressful because it is with you constantly. My daughter who is nearly five took a whole year to empty old rotten impacted poo out, it was so revolting. My daughter has x2 movicol a day, then on day that she needs to go we up the dose to help her go. I know that on this day we will have leaks, ect...So fed up of daughter telling me poo has come out by its self, and they really cant help it.. I put long sanitary pads in her pants and she feels better, and I dont have 100 pairs of pants on the radiator...lol...It can be exhausting , because we are also worried for them, its so frustrating and some days are spoilt because she is leaking poo, so she cant go to ballet ect....Things will get better, just make sure that all the old poo comes out. My daughter nearly died when her poo backed up, her bowels stretched and she got sepsis... Things will get better, you will hopefully put this stress behind you, dont let it strain your relationship, she cant help it, just give her lots of cuddles. xx

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Just wanted to echo replies above really. This is an incredibly tough thing to deal with and the impact it has on us as mums is huge. Look after yourself and remember you are doing your absolute best to manage the situation.

Have you spoken to the school yet? This time last year I was making myself ill with worry. Nursery organised a transition meeting with my son's school and it was the best thing I did. They completely set my mind at rest by assuring me they would deal with it (and that they had plenty of experience of dealing with it- in fact in the current reception year they were dealing with 5 children with continence issues!). They discussed strategies and made me feel a hundred times better about the starting school thing, which relieved so much stress! Don't bottle it up- speak to your husband if possible, confide in a friend?Xx

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Thank you to everyone for their messages of support. I find it helps massively to know I’m not on my own. Will speak to school now and hopefully they will put a care plan in place xx

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Glad you're feeling a bit better. Forums like this have been a life saver for me. Helps no end to have somewhere to rant and be reassured and get a fresh perspective. I would have imploded with stress by now were it not for online communities like this! Good luck xxx

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Thank you xx

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Hi, you sound as stressed as I was when my daughter was preschool.

My daughter is now at the end of year 1 and will turn 7 in October. She’s just as wet as when she was 2! However I’m less stressed now than when she was preschool. I think that’s because at almost 7 ( and she’s a bright girl) I KNOW the problem isn’t her fault or mine. Lots of the stress came from me putting pressure on myself to sort her before school age or constantly wondering is it her fault or not.

Now she’s this age ( and she hates being wet) I know it’s 100% not her fault and 100% not mine so I’ve moved from the ‘trying to train her’ stage to the ‘accepting her incontinence may always be an issue’ and weirdly I’m finding that easier.

I think that also as they get older other people ( friends, family, professionals) start to accept they’ve got an issue that they can’t help and that takes the stress off. Prior to age 5 everyone treated us like this was a potty training issue ( and it wasn’t! She’s the brightest of my three kids by far and very grown up!).

So even if the constant changing clothes doesn’t improve, your stress levels might.

My daughter is in pads now. ( has been since age 5 and a half). That helps too. Means less washing! And her school have a care plan for her and change her regularly.

Wishing you all the best.

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Thank you for this. You are 100% correct that the stress is trying to train my daughter and also worrying about school. The whole thing is really effecting our relationship as I simply do not understand how she can just keep wetting herself and soling and not be bothered at all. She has her medicine etc but nothing works. I will let school know and hopefully get a care plan in place. That will take the pressure off to resolve everything before sept when we have little chance of that. Thank you x

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Our care plan involves teacher making sure she’s drinking enough, teaching assistant checking her every 90 minutes. If her pad is wet she can now change it herself but if it’s soiled then they’ll help her clean up. She has pads kept in a box at school and there’s a bin for her in the toilet cubicle and nappy bags etc.

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