What is going on?

My daughter is almost 7 and still pees and poops in her pants.  The teacher also told me she has concerns because even though my daughter is very advanced for her age, she can not focus enough to get her work done.  She has been seeing a urologist and a gastrologist.  They are both thinking it is a neurological problem.  I am so confused.  I want to fix all her problems but I do not know where to start.  Also, she has Celiac.  Poor kid.  Does anyone have any advice or insight into what this could be or how to help her?

Can you do home schooling until the situation is resolved? i know a mother in NC whose type 1 daughter is still messing her pants. She will be in kindergarten this fall. She is going to home school her daughter until there is no more problem. Her daughter also has learning disabilities, but is very intelligent in many ways.

It's funny because she can read, add, subtact, write in cursive, etc.  She was in a charter school last year and this year went back to public school so I thought since the classes would be easier that she would do ok.  However she brought home a paper today that had one line done.  It was 2 sided and she only did 1 line.  She said she had too much on her mind.  Not sure what to think of this.  She is only in 1st grade so its not like she has a lot of pressing things to be thinking about during school.  I am letting her try public school before homeschooling.  She really needs the interaction of other kids.

[quote user="Kathie"]

My daughter is almost 7 and still pees and poops in her pants.  The teacher also told me she has concerns because even though my daughter is very advanced for her age, she can not focus enough to get her work done.  She has been seeing a urologist and a gastrologist.  They are both thinking it is a neurological problem.  I am so confused.  I want to fix all her problems but I do not know where to start.  Also, she has Celiac.  Poor kid.  Does anyone have any advice or insight into what this could be or how to help her?


Some kids take longer to become fully bathroom trained, and having celiac probably doesn't help in her case.  I don't want to go into detailed history here, but I was 8 years old when I finally stopped having certain problems with that stuff, and I didn't/don't even have celiac.  Very few people carry those problems into adulthood, though, so just keep encouraging her to go the normal way without trying to force the issue, and it should resolve on its own a few years before puberty hits.  If not, she'll eventually be at an age where she can likely identify what's making it so hard for her to go the normal way, so you can work from there.

As for the school stuff, it's hard to make out what could be going on there based on the info you provided.  She could be ADD, she could have have a teacher whose instruction style isn't well-suited to the way she learns, she could feel out of place because of ostracism from her peers (even at the first grade level, I remember girls trying to force me to play House when my tomboy nature had no such inclination - the social cliques aren't as elaborate as they are in high school, but they can still exist at that age), etc.

Have the school evaluate her. They have 30 days from when you ask I would do it in writing as well as verbal to get started. She might have add or something else and schools are the best place to start with these things. My boys are high functioning autistic so I have been through the mill on all of this. Also ask for your parents rights hand book and look up all the laws for your state. Also federal laws. Some schools are happy and willing and give you no crud others with give you a line of bull 5 miles long. In the end its up to you to do what needs to be done to make sure your daughter is getting the education she needs.

I agree with Jessica, have the school do an evaluation even though she's obviously advanced for her age.

I had some minor issues in elementary school.  Coming home with one line written on a two-page assignment?  That was totally me, even though my teachers insisted I was very bright and could read and write at advanced levels (except for my terrible spelling skills).  My IQ was good, but it turned out I had a mild learning disorder that made my work very hard to do.  Primarily, it made it difficult for me to look at the written word and then process onto paper.  The simplest example of this is simply copying:  Most people can read a few words, copy them all down, look at the next few words, copy them all down.  But I could only look at a few letters, copy them down, look at a few letters, copy them down.  So it wasn't a problem for me to write down an answer to a question because it came straight out of my own head, but if a teacher required us to copy the question down before writing the answer, I'd never get through an assignment in the amount of time most kids could!  And I was more likely to get frustrated with the difficulty and embarrassed that I was the last person to finish and just quit.

(Oh, and it also explained why my spelling was terrible even though I had advanced writing skills.  I simply couldn't learn to spell it as a whole that way.  I remember, before this evaluation, my dad getting sooooo frustrated with me while helping me study for a spelling test.  I was doing terribly, so he decided to have me practice by copying the list of words a couple times... then he saw that I wasn't even copying them correctly, and he was simply beside himself with frustration.  And I felt so guilty, like I must not have been trying hard enough.)

They also discovered I was missing things in class because the teacher would start to teach something that I already knew or that seemed like "common sense" to me, and I'd get bored and stop listening... which meant I'd miss the rest of the lesson and anything in it that would have been new to me.  Knowing this helped my teachers and parents keep me focused by engaged and challenging me.

So perfectly bright children who seem very advanced can have learning disorders, or even just problem areas.  What you discover may not explain her bathroom problem... or heck, maybe it could.  Child development and psychology is pretty complicated, and I'm no expert.

I was just wondering if your daughter wears a pull up throughout the day.  Does she have an assistant at school to help clean her up or is she able to do so on her own?  I would think at her age she would start to worry what others students might think.  Is she on a toileting schedule like to try every half hour to an hour on a toilet to try to get some sucesses?  Some people try to use a chart with an award system.  My friend has an almost 5 year old and she has to remind her son when to use the toilet to pee and he still will not poop on the potty.  He knows a lot, but got diagnosed with sensory integration disorder.  I would definitely get her evaluated by school or pediatric neurology.

Thanks everyone for your thoughts.  A few things you should know.  Her pediatrician tried to tell me nothing was wrong.  I went on my own to have her evaluated and they labeled her as ADHD but they told me they didn't think that was the real problem.  They told me the best thing to do would be to have her evaluated more intensly because they felt she had a sensory issue.  She sees the Dr. on Moday because we have put her on a bathroom schedule, she takes laxatives every day because she was so constipated because she just wont poop, and there is no improvement.  She wears a pull up all the time and she will pee through the pull up during the night.  She has to sleep with pads under her so she won't ruin the mattress.  We have tried taking liquids away earlier in the evening but nothing seems to help.  She has an imagination like you wouldn't believe.  She has her own imaginary world.  She talks to her imaginary friends all the time and has imaginary sleep overs on the weekends.  I used to think it was funny and normal but now I am really getting worred.  The Dr. told me that on Monday if nothing has changed (and it hasn't) that they are going to recommend an MRI of her spine and her brain to rule out things.  I am not sure what they are looking for exactly but this poor kid doesn't need anything else!!

Again, thank you all!!


I just looked up sensory integration disorder.  I think this might be exactly what I need to investigate.  I am taking the checklist with me on Monday to the Dr.  She has been seeing a urologist and a gastologist and they are the ones thinking this is neurological because nothing they are doing seems to help.  Can you give me any insight into what they do for sensory integration disorder.  The website I looked at just gave the checklist and said talk to your doctor.  I couldn't believe what I was reading...its like a story about my daughter! 

By the way, she doesn't have anyone helping her out right now.  She has no idea when she pees and poops so our agreement with the teacher is if she notices (or someone else does) they will call me and I will leave work to come take care of her.  So far she has not pooped at school, only peed so when she gets home I have her change her pull up.  The teacher has her go once an hour so that seems to have helped but she is still pretty wet when she gets home.

She has always told me she didnt know when she was wet but I thought that was immpossible until the urologist and gastrologist said they believe her and think it is a neurological thing.  My oldest daughter has epilepsy so a neurological disorder is not out of the question.  Thanks again and I will keep you posted!!

I was going to suggest another thing which was absence seizures but after reading more I am surely inclined to go with sensory integration disorders.

Therapies for the most part. I am not sure of what all they do for that but its one thing in common with autism sensory issues that is and they just need to be made away of things in a different way.

My boys were not day time trained until almost 5 years old they still have accidents but that is due to the seizures. My daughter who is almost 10 still wets at night but I was a bed wetter until well much older than most. I not worried about her yet with it.


That is great that you are staying on top of things and being a great advocate for her.  I think a classroom assistant should be helping her out and she shouldn't be coming home soaking wet or there to be the need for you to leave work.   Maybe she needs a diagnosis of something before an IEP can be set up if she doesn't have one already for all the steps to be in place to meet her needs.  One time an occupational therapist was telling me her son had sensory issues which she thought was due from the time she was in a car accident when pregnant with him.  He was knowledgeable, but would have little quirks.  Like if they were going to go into a grocery store she would be out in the parking lot rolling him on a ball to try to calm him down,so he could tolerate the atmosphere in there better.  I have heard of kids getting massages or going to the PT room to  swing.  I know my friend's son is a very picky eater and it is quite a chore to give him a shower since he hates the feel of water on him and fusses.  If he saw a child at a playground have a melt down, then he would have an issue with that also.  He was up close to where they had a helicopter land one day for a show and he absolutely loved that experience.  Hoping for the best for your daughter.

Well I took her to the dr. today.  We had a long talk about what could be going on.  She ordered an MRI of her spine and also sent a referral to a Developmental Peditrician.  She said he could help me out more if it was a sensory issue.  She is on board about having her tested, she is just not sure how to test her.  She did say it was a several month wait to get into these drs. so it is just more wait and suffer for my beautiful daughter.  Sometimes I wish there was a fast forward button so we could get past all this and find out how to help her!

My daughter couldn't stay dry at night until we figured out she had Type 1. She only has problem at night now if she has a high over 250.

Now for the other issue. Google the word Encopresis or click on the link below. The laxatives could easily explain your child's problem.  A few years ago when my oldest was in the 4th grade someone in his class was leaving an occasional "gift" on the floor of his classroom. The teacher and principal went completely insane about it and made all the boys in the class stay in for recess as punishment when it happened. Girls were never suspected. ( I am a firm believer that boys suffer from classroom biases too). My wife is really smart about kids and knew exactly what was happening and had had a meeting with the principal and teacher and explained to them that is was almost certainly a kid suffering from severe constipation She brought in a few documents describing encopresis and that finding a "deposit" on the floor is probably not from a prank by naughty boys. The teacher made copies of the information and sent it home with all the kids with a letter of what was happening in the class the last week or two. The information seemed to solve the mystery, proper dietary adjustments apparently took care of whoever was having the problem and the boys were no longer punished for what was likely done by some poor suffering kid wearing a skirt or dress. Thankfully the principal moved to another district the next year.