Oh poo

27 Jan

Sometimes, I wonder, it is that hard to explain the difference between “can’t poop” and “won’t poop” to medical professionals?

I mean, really?

Yes, we’re dealing with Maura not wanting to poop again.  Which leads to accidents and disgusting laundry and frustrations with those who are supposed to be “in the know” – aka medical professionals.

When I say “Maura won’t poop”, they are quick to go “Oh, here, stool softeners.”

No.  We don’t need those.  We need something else.

“Oh…um…have you tried giving her lots of fruit?”


I’ve tried explaining it six ways to Sunday – it’s a sensory thing, she holds it, you can see her little face turn red as she tries not to poo.  She doesn’t like the feel of pooping, all the stool softeners in the world isn’t going to help that.  Not really.  I know because we’ve tried.  It just means worse accidents and her still holding it in, and watching her like a ticking time bomb after a week of Miralax and nothing to show for it.

You have no idea how scary that is.

While in Ireland, we did find something that worked, liquid Dulcolax.  We could give her just enough to stimulate things on the inside and she’d poop.  It was great.  She actually starting going more on her own and then suddenly, we thought we’d hit the end of the tunnel – she went weeks without needing any medicinal help to poo.

But then we hit a new tunnel.

And we found out that there is no liquid Dulcolax in the U.S.

(Yes, there’s pills, but try teaching the girl not to chew a little candy-like item.)

This led to talking to the pharmacist (because apparently, no good laxatives come in liquid form), Irish friends tried finding liquid Dulcolax for us, but failed (because yes, this became an international incident), and then more calls between pharmacist and doctor and me explaining that Maura can’t take pills.

We finally were given a prescription for liquid senna.  Once a day for 30 days.  Last night was the first dose.

This morning, I heard “Mom, Maura broke the toilet again.”


Here’s to leaving this tunnel behind and getting back to being more regular.  Because my hands can only take so much scrubbing down before I start losing skin.

And thus ends another segment of “The Harsh Realities of Being a Special Needs Parent – The Poop Chronicles.”  Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to find the plunger.



11 Responses to “Oh poo”

  1. michelle January 27, 2014 at 4:19 pm #

    Holy Cow. We’re going through the same thing with our daughter. I’ll have to ask for a script of Senna in liquid form.Thank you for this post!

  2. saracvt January 27, 2014 at 4:26 pm #

    Ah, yes–the Poop Chronicles. We have a slightly different narrative (but still essentially the same story) in our house. Maddy refuses to go anywhere but home (which puzzles professionals no end) and leads to great big nasty accidents. And us buying panties in bulk, since she digs in her heels at wearing diapers. So we have a long hose-type showerhead, and Mom sloshes her off once or twice daily. And lights scented candles while doing LOTS of horrific laundry, muttering under her breath.

  3. Liz January 27, 2014 at 4:30 pm #

    I can imagine it’s the same fear I have when I walk into work and the outgoing shift tells me that they gave a kid Miralax, 2 doses of pill stool softener, and senna…all in 12 hours. Or even better GoLytly at 600ml/hr through a G-Button. You go in and the kidlet is literally ready to explode…and then kills the bathroom.

    • phoebz4 January 27, 2014 at 4:31 pm #

      holy crow that’s a lot for a system! I’d be terrified!

  4. Joy M. Newcom January 27, 2014 at 4:36 pm #

    When you are ready for her to learn to take pills, I recommend practicing with Tic-Tacs. If she likes cinnamon flavor, all the better. For some reason, the cinnamon ones don’t end up as disgusting if they float in the mouth awhile before successfully being swallowed without chewing. Cinnamon Tic-Tacs. Worked wonders for us when our son was 7 years old and simply HAD to learn.

    • itsybitsymom January 27, 2014 at 6:35 pm #

      Was just about to recommend the same thing – tic tacs worked wonders for us too. My son favored the orange.

  5. sleepymotherof4 January 27, 2014 at 4:41 pm #

    I feel your pain! My father is a plumber and he gave us a “unpluggable” toilet. I was so excited, thinking I’d never have to plunge or use a popscicle stick again to get the poop down. But, my daughter managed to plug it and I could resist calling my dad to tell him she had plugged his unpluggable toilet to which he replied, “you’d better call a doctor then”, I laughed hysterically until I cried.

  6. saracvt January 27, 2014 at 4:54 pm #

    If you have to, absolutely HAVE TO, get a pill into her, without chewing or crushing, there is a way. I learned it from my years of vet practice.

    Feel her cheekbones? Run your hands down to where the upper and lower mandibles meet, and push in with one hand, forcing them open.

    Take the pill with the other hand, and shove to the back of her throat, dropping it down her esophagus.

    Rub her neck, about where an Adam’s apple would be on a boy, gently to promote swallowing.

    Give her a drink of her favorite drink (juice, milk, Kool-Aid, whatever) to get the taste of your hand out of her mouth.

    She may be indignant, but it won’t hurt her, and she TOOK A PILL. Play that up, and next time it’ll be easier.

  7. teresamcnally January 27, 2014 at 4:55 pm #




  8. Cheryl-Lynn January 27, 2014 at 5:46 pm #

    You have described how my daughter was as a child. I would sprinkle bran natural flakes on EVERYTHING…the plunger is part of our ART Deco look…Did not realize they finally have liquid senna…she could not take pills either.

  9. cndtompkins January 27, 2014 at 9:31 pm #

    from a mother of an 11 yr old autistic boy, a 9 yo boy w/ adhd and 2 NT’s – ages 6, and 3…..WELL you have my admirations as well as my prayers!!!! I have been often heard saying out loud, “Please Lord Jesus, I cannot wait until the only a-double-snakes I have to wipe is MY OWN” ….. it ain’t easy but it’s life!!!

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