Bedwetting is something we’ve been having trouble with for a long time. It’s been just over two years since we first started trying to get The Boy dry at night, with very little success. It’s been upsetting and frustrating and must have cost me an absolute fortune in bed mats and washing powder. If it’s advice you’re after, I don’t have much, but if you’re going through something similar, know that you are not alone.
The boy is five and a half now. Around three years ago, he said “mummy I want to wee in the toilet” so he did. Potty training was done! He was amazing at it, he had a potty in the living room, just in case, but we live in a small flat, so most of the time he went to the toilet, he’s even done it standing up from the start. Pooing was a little harder, for a few weeks he went to fetch one of his night time nappies and asked for it to be put on every time he wanted a poo, for some reason he just didn’t like the idea of doing it in the toilet, but even that only lasted for a few weeks.
There’s been the odd accident, normally when he’s been very excited, and on one very memorable occasion when I think he must have been a little poorly. We were on the tram home when he suddenly started crying and said “Mummy I’m pooing, it’s coming out, I can’t stop” we rushed off the tram and found somewhere to change him, but he’d wet also, so it was the biggest pooy mess there has ever been. He then proceeded to wee as I was changing him, all over the clean set of clothes, so by the time we got back to the tram stop he was wearing my jumper as an odd dress-type garment. Once on the tram, it happened again, this time much closer to home, so we stayed on, then as I attempted to run home pushing a poo soaked stroller and child in the pouring rain, he started throwing up. It was honestly one of the worst hours in my parental journey so far. But as I say, accidents were odd, few and far between, and none for maybe 18 months now.
So when he was 3, I naively thought night time training would be the same. I was wrong. One problem I think we have is that he’s a very very heavy sleeper when he is wet, he still sleeps through until morning totally unaware. Another issue is that he isn’t a very good drinker, so often hardly goes to the toilet in the day time, so we use a reward system for that, if he drinks a set amount through the day and goes to the toilet at regular intervals he is rewarded, whether or not he is dry that night.
Sometimes we’ll have five dry nights in a row, and think we’ve cracked it. Sometimes longer. And then we’ll have three weeks when he’s barely dry at all. Occasionally you can tell why, a late night, bad sleep, late dinner, drinking late, a life change (like being back at school). Then other times his routine is exactly the same and he’s wet all week, there doesn’t seem to be a trigger.
I know the worst thing you can do is get angry. I don’t think I do. I certainly try not to, it’s not his fault, but after days and days of wet nights it’s hard not to get frustrated. Especially because he doesn’t seem to care. Waking up wet never seems to bother him at all, sometimes he even stays in his room playing and doesn’t come and tell us. All my friend’s kids when they wake wet, cry their eye’s out, so I start to wonder if maybe he isn’t trying if he doesn’t mind being wet, why would he try to be dry?
Then today he ran out of school saying “mummy I’ve got something really exciting to tell you!! I’ve had five dry nights in a row! I know I’m going to do ten this week!” (he’s been at his Dad’s the last two nights) So happy, and so proud of himself. It was a clear reminder that he does care, he does want to be dry, and he is doing his absolute best. So I guess my advice is, keep at it, really celebrate those little victories, and try not to be bothered about the accidents because that’s what they are.
And get lots of these: