Aw, shit

One Sunday morning at 2 AM, while waiting with a screaming baby who needs to be forced to go 7-hours between feeds, I decided to Google “toddler afraid to poop”.  Fun topic for 2 AM I know, but this was after a day-of-hell from Sydney that turned into a evening-of-fun after guess what…she POOPed.


Anyways…2 AM, Google, poop; the second result is a post on describing our situation except for her child tends to lay on the couch in agony while ours chooses to walk around the house (or pool, or school, or the park, or wherever we are) holding her crotch while screaming ‘My Poop!‘ or that her ‘potty hurts’ and generally acting rotten.

As I was reading through the comments on this woman’s post and the follow-up comments from the original poster I was rapt.  These people weren’t talking about poop problems because of potty training (which is common)  these women were discussing their toddlers fear to poop, even in the absence of constipation.  Here is a segment (spelling corrected) of a post from the mother who started the thread:

“We have given Miralax to our daughter every day for 5 months. She has not had a painful stool since we put her on it, but she can’t get over the fear of the pain. Although her stools are no longer painful, she still tries to keep them in, and cries and says she doesn’t want to poop, and gets very upset.”

She was describing Syndey! I’m NOT alone! Yay!

“…we have seen multiple doctors, and they have all said the same thing– Miralax. 6 months to a year.  We have celebratory poop songs, special treats, stickers, toys, trips, etc. NOTHING has helped. She still fears to go, and tries whatever she can to hold it in.”

As I read on however I noticed more and more women responding to this mother that it took them years, yes years, to solve the problem with their toddler.  Here is a segment of a follow-up post from the same mother as above…

“My daughter is now 3 1/2. She is still on Miralax, with no sign of getting off of it anytime soon. She is MUCH, MUCH, better about pooping though… I think her getting older and being able understand better has helped, but she NEEDS Miralax every day. It took about 10 months of being on Miralax and not having a single painful poop for her to be willing to go. Since then, she has had a few relapses, usually when we have not given her Miralax consistently for whatever reason, or when we tried to wean her off of it. When she relapses, it takes about a week to get over it again, and she doesn’t fight it quite as hard as she used to. Poop isn’t the main topic of conversation anymore, which is great.”

I should state that she originally posted when her child was 2…so that’s 1 and-a-half years of poop related drama and the kid is still on laxatives.  Twenty-five follow-up comments later I see a final post from the original mother who I’ve been following…

“Now, at 4 1/2 years old, she is officially MIRALAX FREE! I suppose she just grew out of the constipation. One month she needed consistent daily doses of Miralax for her poop to not hurt, the next month we accidentally missed a few days of Miralax and she didn’t have any problem, so we didn’t give it to her the next few days and again, no problem. We haven’t given her any since then, and it has been about 3 months. Yay! I thought this day would never come! I hope this gives other parents hope that there is an end as well!”

She went through this for two-and-a-half  years.

I cried.


  1. I’ve read similar things on blogs and in my toddler books before about kids being afraid to poop after a bout of painful poop due to constipation. That’s something that’s always triggered in my mind when I read about Sydney’s poop problems.

    After reading about this in toddler books and about your battles with Sydney on this front, that’s also why I’m paranoid about letting Naomi ever get chronically constipated and I try to head it off as soon as possible. She definitely has a tendency to get constipated (much more so than Jake), so if she ever goes a day or two without pooping, we’re filling her up with prunes and peaches, cutting the dairy, bananas, etc. We’ve been successful so far, and I just REALLY hope we can keep it up.

    Hope you guys don’t struggle with this with Sydney for 2 1/2 years!

    • I never read parenting blogs or books and I guess I’m paying for it now. I would be paranoid if I were you too. Ingrid will never go more than 2 days w/o pooping on my watch. And screw trying to alter it with diet (half of which I can’t control because of school)…I’m going straight for the laxatives…and you should too once Naomi starts to reject all foods you offer to her.

      Not sure what I did in my past life to deserve this misery but knowing that it could take years to get past has me in near hysterics.

  2. This must be so sad and frustrating!!! :o( On a lighter note, great blog title, JB.

  3. I have no idea how that emoticon turned out that way above…it was supposed to be a frowny face.

    • LOL. I don’t even know how you guys do those silly faces anyways! I’m not savvy enough I guess. ; D

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