Hello. I read the thread about the 7-year old nephew who was pooping on the floor in the bathroom. My situation is slightly different... my son is 8 1/2. He is loved by two parents and is provided for (love, food, shelter, toys, etc). We did move across the country about 8 months ago. He tells me all the time he loves our new place and never wants to move back. He seems very genuine about it, but I'm sure the move was difficult. His dad spent 6 of the 8 months back where we came from because of work. My little man and his dad are best buddies, and this separation was visibly difficult for him.
About 3 months ago, I noticed feces in my son's room and on the bathroom walls. I thought it was one of our cats in the bedroom, but unsure about the walls. After a little while, I got rid of the cat (gave her to a good friend-she's quite happy in her new home), but I still continued to find feces on his floor. We started to think it was human poop but found it so hard to believe. I asked all my children, even though it seemed absurd. We started taking major steps to stop it from occurring (locking the door, buying a nanny cam) as we thought it was one of the older children in the home who has had some behavioral issues only to find out it was the our 8 year old. He was pooping on the floor and hiding it in the room (behind toy boxes, under the dresser, etc).
I'm shocked, angry, embarrassed, and disappointed. I don't want to try to find an excuse for why he would do it (like he's being bullied, abused, etc) because I do not think any of those things are happening. I love him more than the air I breath everyday. I'd do anything for him and I do. He's a very good boy and sweet... I'm so confused. I plan to take him to our family doctor ASAP as I'm gravely concerned for him. His dad is home now so I would have thought if it were caused by him being gone, the pooping would have stopped since he's back.
The only peculiar thing is my son looks nervous now that it's out in the open. Not nervous because we know but like he wanted to say something but wouldn't. He just stared at us virtually unemotional like he wanted to say something but wouldn't/couldn't. I am still curious if the older child I referred to earlier has done something to harm the 8-year old or if he's just simply acting out. It's very uncharacteristic and I'm worried for him. Anyone have any advice or thoughts?
Thanks so much.
He's 8 year's old. Other than some nervousness, he's an average, healthy, happy, outgoing, all-boy boy. The feces on the floor is random and he is unable to explain why he does it. He acts as if he wants to say something but doesn't. He is never alone... we take him and pick him up from school. We've already seeked professional help but it's a slow process.
OP, I think ghannit means how old is "older child" in your home that you mentioned in your original post (not your 8yo but the child older than him).
Kate, mom to 7 year old Djuna and 4 yr old Alden. Missing our good friend Hal the cat who died June 2, 2010
Sorry... she's 16. We limit one-on-one exposure because her choices are not role model material. Clearly she's around and there is interaction still. We don't seclude anyone, just try to monitor in general and avoid alone time. This may be complicated but we're sharing a house with a friend. The 16-year old is her daughter.
Regarding the question of is it possible for the issue to be physical... yes it COULD be however it's very unlikely. He is not alone ever... we take him to/from school, he has 2 sisters who help out, etc. I fear that as well and refuse to discount the possibility but nothing has come from that concern yet.
A few other things I failed to mention are: (1) we relocated 2000 miles across the country almost a year ago, and (2) his dad spent 7 months away from us working. Both of those things have caused stress, and it may be just those events that is causing it... I do not believe that but again I am not ruling anything out yet. His behavior is sooooo off and unnatural for him. Makes me very, very sad.
I would check physical issues first. There are a lot of physical issues that could make him do this. The fact that you can see it on nanny cam will help you decide if it's physical, or if he's really just being sneaky.
Kids this age, DO love gross things. It's not that odd that he would be interested in his own poop... it's a little weird that he'd be doing it for several months though... I could see him experimenting, but not continuing for three months. My daughter's twin cousins pooped into ziplock baggies when they were 8 and hid them in their snow boots. Kids are weird. But, they only did that once... didn't find it particularly fascinating, and never did it again. (that anybody knows of)
I remember pooping in the yard once to see if it looked like dog poop. But, again, it was once, and it wasn't all that interesting.
It's possible that for whatever reason, he still finds it fascinating. So, don't panic.. it might just be that he's really into super gross things. Hopefully now that he realizes you have it on Nanny cam, it will never happen again. But, you still want to find out why he's doing it at all.
(Is he doing this after he's been asleep?)
you say he's not alone ever... and yet, he IS alone enough to be pooping on the floor on the sly. he's alone when he does this, right?
can you find some way to connect with him when it's just the two of you, and promise to listen to what he has to say and not react or laugh or whatever fear is causing him to hold back on telling you what he wants to tell you. you noted that there is something he wants to say but is not saying. draw it out from him. it may take awhile, but don't give up and DO NOT get mad. show him your compassion, and be patient.
I knew an 8 year old who smeared poop on the bathroom walls at school for no apparent reason. Just acting out/being gross it would seem.
I agree that you should talk to your son about what might be leading him to this behavior, being as non-judgmental as you can. You didn't specify what the 16 year old girls issues are, but if you think that she might be a part of your sons problems, you might want to address that with him. I'd try to let him know he can safely confide in you.
Mother to DD born Jan 2008 and DS born Nov 2011.
I knew a kid 8 or 9 yo who smeared poop on the walls of the school bathroom and left his poopy underwear in the corner of the stall. When pressed, he was very embarassed and had had an accident in his pants and didn't know what to do to to clean up; everything he tried just made things worse and then he had to get it off his hands and didn't see any other option than smearing on the wall. All that to say, somethings that can seem quite horrifying can have simple explanations. Does he use the toilet to go at all? does he go in some toilets but not yours?
There are a lot of great comments, and questions. I sincerely appreciate all of them. So far, there isn't a significant change. He's still mildly uncomfortable, but has moments that he's just himself. He's talking to a psychologist now as well. We switched him out of his bedroom and put him closer to ours. He seems to like being closer although still insecure. We have embraced this as nothing more than he's having a difficult time expressing himself. I explained to him that he has to use his words, draw pictures, or write when he feels scared, sad, or angry. He responded to that well and we haven't seen any more poop in the house. Being afraid of the bathroom may be an issue, so I will stand at the door with him and wait while he's in there. I've also found that when I tuck him in at night that it helps for me to sit with him for a few minutes (and of course I'm willing to stay until he sleeps if necessary). The only time he's "alone" is when we're all home - he has free reign of the house and back yard. He doesn't go out front alone or leave the house alone. Not because of this, but because this isn't the same world I grew up in as a kid (strictly a safety issue).
We're pleased with his progress and hopeful that this was simply a way of expressing himself. Thank you all again for your comments. I'll update again later when there is a change. Best to all of you.
Sounds like you are doing a good job on helping him through this issue. I would still suggest that you get him a physical if you have not already. My ds who is 6 has encoparesis. This is a condition where the child becomes chronically constipated. He has accidents all of the time and sometimes he hides the feces in his bedroom under the bed, behind the bureau,etc. He does this, I think, because he doesn't want us to know when he has accidents. He also sometimes wipes his fingers on the bedroom or bathroom wall. And, our issue started after a move and a new baby sister. So I thought it was worth mentioning that your son could have a real physical issue going on.