IBS Network
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Did you suffer from encopresis (stool withholding) as a child?

I have been diagnosed as IBS-C (I'm not convinced!) and have been reading recently about constipation to see if I can find any clues to my problems. I've long been aware that some of my problems might be my own doing because I have a (very) bad habit of not going to the toilet when I should, particularly if I'm busy doing something else.

I've become aware that the signal from my body has got very slight nowadays, and I know that this is probably because I have ignored it for years. I do often wonder why I do this and know that it stems from when I was child and my mother tried to toilet-train me on the adult toilet. This scared the living Bejesus out of me. So much so that I had a toilet phobia for many, many years and still don't like toilets that make sudden noises or have over-violent flushes (I hated the automatic flushing ones when they first appeared in the UK!), and I cannot use a darkened toilet at all. The terror is unmanageable. But I have improved hugely over the years in mastering my fears. But alas, I still don't go to the toilet when I should.

I just wondered if this was a common problem among IBS sufferers. They say there is a higher than normal amount of child abuse sufferers among IBS sufferers (I'm one of those too) and I wondered if this might be related to bad toilet training from mothers, or other traumas around the toilet from childhood.

Anyone think their problems may have stemmed from this kind of childhood trauma.....?

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