I'm not sure if this is the right place to post this, but I was wondering if anyone had any advice regarding my 5 year old SD. We've been having some issues with her mother and therefore haven't been able to see her since the beginning of January, until this past weekend.
In January, she was with us for her two week break and she had a couple small accidents during the day. She peed a little before realizing she had to go, and she pooped once without realizing as well.
This past weekend, we had her for one overnight and she wet the bed. I very calmly just cleaned her up, no big deal. Her dad asked her if this was happening at Mommy's house too and she said yes. She's not always good at explaining how often but she said it happened a bunch of times there.
She's been fully potty trained since age 3. She was with us May-August last summer and never had a single accident.
What can I do to help her? It seems like the issue is getting worse and I'm worried that it's stress related. She lives with her mom but mom's new boyfriend moved in with them after three months and he's the one that takes care of her during the week, including bath and bedtime. She tells us she only sees her mom on weekends. We don't have a custody agreement in place now though we are working on making that happen as soon as possible. Her mom is definitely the type to act like everything with SD is going perfectly at her house, she doesn't share information with us to help us all create a complete picture of what's going on. In fact, I'm sorry to say it, but she really doesn't seem to be concerned much with her child at all.
Her mom hasn't allowed us to see her or really even talk to her in months, after we used to have her for at least one full weekend a month, all school breaks, and summer break. I'm just concerned, feeling more than a little helpless, and really wanting to do whatever I can to help my SD get through whatever is going on...
Stress can cause a child to have potty accidents but so can health issues. The child should go to the doctor to discuss the possible causes. Does your DH have court ordered visit's? He will have to be the one to bring up going to the doctor. Depending on the custody orders he may be able to just take your DSD to her doctor himself. Suddenly having accidents after using the toilet for two years is not normal and pooping without realizing it sounds like a bigger issue. How does the child seem, other than the accidents?
Thank you for that, I hadn't even thought of health issues. She has pretty severe asthma but she seemed to be doing alright when she was here. We were only able to have her here for about 24 hours. My DH does not currently have court ordered visits, they were never married and have never been to court. We are working on changing that right now.
I don't think her mother will take her to the doctor if we ask her. She denies that there are any issues when my SD is at her house, even though my SD told us that she's having regular accidents there. She doesn't even take proper care of her health when she gets legitimately sick, she delayed getting her medication for over 24 hours when she was last diagnosed with severe pneumonia. So I don't really expect her to work together with us to get to the bottom of things.
She is coming back tonight until Saturday morning so I'm going to pay close attention to how she is and try to determine what to do. It is really hard to be able to keep up with her when we see her so infrequently. My SD seems happy overall but I don't know that she would give us much indication if something was wrong either.
Who is this this new boyfriend of her mom's, and do you trust him? Bathroom problems can be a sign of abuse. I hate to be a fear monger, but I don't want something potentially serious to be overlooked, it has happened to people I know.
We don't really know the new boyfriend, and so I wouldn't say that we trust him or don't trust him necessarily.
Believe me, you're not saying anything I haven't thought of. We've had conversations about safety and what kinds of touching are not allowed, and conversations about not keeping secrets about anything but christmas and birthday presents.
I don't know how we would know other than for her to say something if there is abuse going on. My concern is that she just wouldn't say anything. I haven't seen any physical signs, though she's certainly become more aware of her private parts, but I think that's pretty normal for her age group...
Wetting the bed at her age is totally normal at my house, but if it's not normal for her, that could mean something's wrong. It's the daytime accidents that would worry me. At the same time, barring abuse and medical issues (as far as you can!), it sounds like a pretty mild stress reaction to me! If she seems happy and calm and well, herself overall, I would just make sure to have a relaxing, loving, fun time while she's there and let her get through the changes her life is going through. Hopefully this boyfriend is a great guy who "steps up", and it sounds like he has the potential. Not too many casual boyfriends would agree to do that much one on one with a five year old for one day, much less all week every week.
Step mom to Malakie, Cameron , and Aurelia
My kid's half-sister, had a bout of going in the bed and other random places in the home around 5 as well. It turned out to be an anxiety thing, with changes going on. She wasn't seeing her Mom a lot at that time either. Her Mom had gotten a promotion at work and her grandmother and uncle were doing most of the care of her. She was in counseling briefly, but I had noticed a large positive change in her while she was able to go to counseling.
Proud Single Mama, Birth & Postpartum Doula
Student, Aspiring CNM
DD ~ 1/7/09 DS ~ 9/22/10
Look for doctors in your area that have Saturday or even Sunday hours.
We found out our insurance company has an agreement with a few urgent care facilities that we are charged a regular copay.
It could also be related to chronic constipation (encopresis).
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