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My son won't stop pooping in his pants and I don't know what to do

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Old November 11th 05, 03:08 AM
Necole3 Necole3 is offline
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Location: Gilbert, AZ
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Unhappy My son won't stop pooping in his pants and I don't know what to do

I have a four year old son that keeps having poppie in his pants. My husband and I are fighting all the time because we are both so frustrated with what to do. We tried going to the doctor and they gave us some powder stuff to put in his drink and an enema. But then that just makes it liquid and he can't sit on the potty all day. I get so embrassed when I go to pick him up from daycare and have to hear about the accidents that he has had. They have even been putting him on the potty every hour and a half for me. We ask him why and he says I don't know. I am at my wits end. The funny thing is up until two months ago, he would go potty every night on the toilet. Now he refuses to go so then it comes out in his pants. When he does sit on the toilet, he pulls up and holds it. I just don't know what to do. Any ideas?
Old November 11th 05, 07:15 AM
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Default My son won't stop pooping in his pants and I don't know what to do

I could suggest that maybe he is being sexually abused but that would
be sadistic on my part considering the way I feel about the whole

Talk to the child about it calmly and quitly than maybe your son could
tell you why he dose not go poop in the potty. There have been some
strange stories such as the child coming to believe they are losing a
part of themself like some usefull part of their body is falling into
the potty or other such things. Also if you can't get into his head
try a shrink they may be able to help.

Old November 11th 05, 08:25 PM
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Default My son won't stop pooping in his pants and I don't know what to do

You need a better doctor. Its a common problem, particularly in boys.
Its called encopresis or "withholding".

What happens is that for whatever reason, a child starts trying to hold
in his or her stool. This can start from some painful constipation,
fear or dislike of the toilet, whatever. A vicious cycle gets set up.
The child's colon becomes packed with stool and stretched out.
Eventually, normal function and sensation is compromised. The kid
really cannot TELL when they need to go. The colon gets so packed with
stool that it HAS to go somewhere, and small amounts are involuntarily
squeezed out - hence the endless small stools ending up in their pants.
They cannot control this. They cannot tell when they need to go. It is
not their fault.

Unfortunately the reason I know all this is because MY middle son had
this issue at the age of 4, and like you I was completely pulling my
hair out because I thought he was doing it on purpose (you know, smart
healthy kid, what the heck is wrong that he seemingly won't use the
toilet and is continually pooping in his pants???). It was a really
intractable and frustrating problem, and we realize now that we should
have been to our pediatrician sooner about it. I had never heard about
this problem prior to our family experience with it, but it is actually
much more common than I ever would have realized.

Fortunately, our pediatrician knew all about this problem, and knew
what to do. It did take several months to get the problem completely
under control. What we had to do was start with mild laxatives. We
started with mineral oil, which didn't work that well, and had to move
up to ducolax. The doctor had us play with the dosages until we got him
having at least two TWO good bowel movements a day. The purpose of this
was to get his colon empty, and keep it as empty as possible, to allow
it to shrink back to normal size, and allow normal function and
sensation to return. This will not happen overnight - be prepared for
it to take a while, for the kid to be able to recognize and act on the
urge to have a bowel movement.

Here is an article - you will find lots of info on the

Mary G.
Mom of three (now 7, 11 and 14)

Old November 20th 05, 12:24 AM posted to misc.kids
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Default My son won't stop pooping in his pants and I don't know what to do

maybe he does'nt like the water to hit his bottom or he's fallen in the
toilet and now he's afraid he'll fall again. Also he could just be
putting going to the potty off because he thinks he's going to miss out
on any activities that are going on aroung him. My son had that same
problem. Only he didn't mess his pants he peed his pants. Try limit
some sweets or putting him back on a toileting schedule

Old November 21st 05, 07:43 PM posted to misc.kids
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Default My son won't stop pooping in his pants and I don't know what to do

Try this....

COMPLETELY IGNORE IT!!! When he has an accident, don't give any
attention to it at all. Just say, "We have dirty pants... lets go
change those." That is it! Do not punish him. Don't ask him why.
Don't argue or make faces of disgust. Don't let him see you and dad
arguing about it. When he has accidents at school, just take his stuff
home and wash it without a word. It would also be very good to get his
teachers cooperation on this. Using shame is such a poor poor use of
discipline. It damages their spirit. I'm not saying you are doing
that at all, I was just wanting to point that out. Some parents feel
that they can embarrass their child into behaving, and that doesn't
work. It will just make it worse.

But here is the important part. When he goes in the toilet, make it a
very BIG DEAL!!! Praise him. Talk about it. Say things like,
"Doesn't it feel great not to have dirty pants!" "You are such a big
boy!" etc... Consider a reward, like taking a bike ride, going to the
park, renting a special movie, or going to the movies, etc...

The point here is this: Give attention to the behavior that you want.
Giving attention to the behavior you don't want, can create anxiety in
the child. An then you are just in a vicious cycle.

Or perhaps he is doing it for attention. He is wanting attention from
you or Dad, and he is finding that by going in his pants, he is getting
that, even if it is negative attention. Do you have a new baby at

He may really have another problem going on, as some of the previous
posts mentions. Even if he does, it is not his fault. Just bringing
attention to it by punishing him or shaming him won't help.

And one more thing... give him a big hug & tell him you love him no
matter what!

Good Luck, Necole! He will get it. Keep in mind, he is not the only 4
year old who has had trouble potty training.


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