The bright side to having Encopresis – the expansion

In a previous entry I wrote about my top 11 positive things I have learnt from my personal experiences with Encopresis (entry here: http://themagicwithinus.com/2013/03/30/there-is-a-bright-side-to-having-encopresis-my-top-10/ ), and this post is an explaination of each one. Feel free to comment and share your thoughts and stories.

1) You are not alone (even when you feel you are).

Throughout my life with Encopresis I always felt alone as I didn’t know anyone else (apart from a guy I grew up with) that did what I did. Not a single person, friend, celebrity, fictional character, role model…nothing. Even in the modern techonological era we live in today with the Internet and Social Media outlets, it is really hard to find and connect with other fellow survivors/battlers willing to open up (and the majority of those that have are on old abandonded forums). It is a huge relief and a wonderful feeling when I realised I’m not alone. There are others in this world with this condition (or had it) and exist. If more of us Encopresis survivors, battlers and the parents open up, maybe we can encourage more to open up and reach out. Talk to me (or e-mail me: naturegirl015admin@themagicwithinus.com), I’m here to help and be there for those that need it. I know how much it means the world to find and communicate with another that knows exactly what it’s like to have Encopresis or know someone going through it.

I  now regularly  communicate with several Encopresis survivors/battlers and the parents since I began my journey last year joining groups and opening up (James Parkin is an Encopresis survivor too and you can read his blog here: http://writingfrom7.blogspot.com.au/2012/12/my-shameful-childhood-secret.html ). The more I talk to others the more I learn about it too from the parents angle, so thank you for sharing your story too.

2) Even though I may stink (with Encopresis) it’s others attitude that stinks more.

One of the horrible side effects of having Encopresis is losing friends because you stink. The few friends I had I am grateful for as they never once complained about it or acknowledged it (maybe I didn’t actually have soiled underwear when around them). I understand how hard it is for families (and those with Enco themselves) to not take negative comments to heart about stinking, having a bad parenting style (obviously you aren’t bad parents so don’t ever blame yourself for it) and other misconceptions because society in general doesn’t know what is going on. I’m not a bad person, I just had a medical problem that wasn’t diagnosed. It’s hard to be a strong and confident human being when those around you aren’t interested in who you are. Some of the negative comments I have heard personally or from the stories others have shared are so horrible, and that really stinks.

3) The body’s urge to go “number 2″ is never taken for granted.

It’s as simple as that. While I had Encopresis I rarely got any indication (if at all) I “had to go”, and when I did it was already too late (by a few hours). Now that my body is more regular and I actually do get that “so obvious” signal to go, I can recognise the difference. I will verify that if your child says he/she can’t feel it…to believe him/her. No one believed me then (or now), but based on the little indication I had I was speaking the truth at the time..my body’s indication of the truth. I have 2 previous entries about this here: http://themagicwithinus.com/2013/03/23/is-being-suddenly-cold-a-sign-of-the-body-needing-to-go/ and http://themagicwithinus.com/2012/07/09/is-it-true-your-child-cant-really-smell-or-feel-that-heshe-had-an-accident/ .

4) If you have a diet allergy/sensitivity, Encopresis can be a sign that something is wrong.

There are several parents in the Facebook group I’m in whom have come to the conclusion that a food sensitivity/allergy is contributing the Encopresis. Gluten and dairy being the main culprits.  Here is a blog from one parent about this particular topic (and I will expand more about this in my book): http://www.momsguidetoencopresis.com/

5) Encopresis can help strengthen a family bond, not hinder it.

I’m fortunate to have a loving, supportive and caring relationship with my family, reguardless of my Encopresis. It never stopped us from doing things and enjoying life. Don’t let Encopresis stop you too from living your best life. Many parents have found that by opening the communication with the child (and children), everyone can understand how everyone is feeling and if something hurts or not. I’ll expand more on this in a new entry (and in my book). What are your experiences?

6) ) You can be whomever you wish to be and not let Encopresis define who you are.

What does this statement mean to you?

7) Your true friends are there with you now, reguardless of if you stink or not (those that disappear truely aren’t your friends).

You’ll know who they are are in your life, and if not then you’ll know that too. For me I have redifined who my “friends” are and whom are not.

8) I am here opening up, talking and being there to those that need someone to talk to (my book and blog, Facebook, Twitter, e-mail)…because I had Encopresis myself.

As mentioned in my the first statement, what I’m doing now is something I wish was available when I had Encopresis. “Be the person you wish to see” is a phrase that speaks very true for me, and my goal/dream now. You can e-mail me: naturegirl015admin@themagicwithinus.com , Follow me on Twitter @naturegirl015 and you can LIKE my Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/themagicwithinus?ref=hl . I’m always here to chat about my experiences (and yours) or a shoulder to cry on. To find and communicate with someone that has this condition or a parent of someone that is means the world.  The more families I can help and the support, the more love I can share. 🙂

9) There are more support groups, communities, charities (ERIC UK), information and more…all at your fingertips via the internet and word of mouth.

Although I’m not affiliated with ERIC UK, I am honoured to help them as best I can and be included in their campaign “Lets talk about Poo”. ERIC UK is a not-for-profit Charity in the UK that specialises in Incontinence & Bedwetting in children (see link here:http://www.eric.org.uk/). I highly recommend them and they are a very friendly organisation.

If you know of any that I don’t, then please let me know and share your stories/experiences with them.

10)  There is light at the end of the tunnel…I’m living proof it can be a past medical condition, and here if you ever need me.

I’m not the only Encopresis survivors out there, you can be one too. 🙂

11) One day I’ll be on the Ellen Degeneres Show sharing my story, my book (and blog) and my love….a role model for those with Encopresis.

The first statement has this one in mind and heart. Who knows how many more lives can be saved or inspire when on The Ellen Degeneres Show.  I always love it when Ellen shares inspiring stories of obstacles people have gone through and what they’re doing now in helping others. She inspires me in so many ways (also Dean Cain and Doctor Who have a huge impact on me and my life). I dream big. Please click on the link, fill in the form and spread the word (Link here: http://www.ellentv.com/be-on-the-show/666/). Thank you.

For many years of my life I always referred to Encopresis as a curse (and I’m sure there are others that feel the same way). Now I want to turn it into a blessing in disguise. Remember: “With an open mind, and an open heart..anything is possible!” (my saying). What are your thoughts on all this? 🙂

Your Support Team (you are never alone)

You are never alone in life. It may feel that way at the worst times, but you aren’t alone. You have your support team. If you want to lose weight or get a healthier perspective in life you have your personal trainer, doctor/nutritionist, and a select few family & friends along the way. If your child has encopresis, you need to make sure you have a support team too.

I have heard from parents asking (even begging) for help, support and love and feeling like there isn’t anyone there. Even doctors/psychologists won’t always completely understand enco and what is involved (some will, some get their training from what the person taught them). I’m not a doctor nor do I claim to be, however I am someone that has personally had encopresis…and willing to tell the tale. I am here. I am a part of your support team.

Your support team needs to include professionals (doctors, nurses and others), teachers/school (if your child is currently attending school) and support from your family & friends. You may not get everyone you need, you may have to swap people to create that unique team. You may need someone that will let you cry your frustrations out and come up with a plan (ideally don’t get angry at your child, no matter how frustrated you feel….I will share what that feels like in a later post). If having treats, books/games or even a silly dance helps your family come together and create toilet time one of the best times, then that’s what you need too. For me personally (and whilst I had enco myself), I have learnt that by having a book or video game to occupy my mind, my body can relax and help to pass the time while trying/pushing to poop. I will also explain more in another entry.

If a doctor tells you to yell/punish your child and it’s a “mental problem”, and some have told parents this from what they have shared with me (including other suffers/battlers/survivors of enco), you have to ask yourself honestly if you feel that’s the right response or not. If you feel that punishing your child isn’t making any difference, or don’t like the idea of that…then definitely try something else.

It’s hard enough to convince society (or the school system at least) that this is a medical condition that exists and very rarely spoken about. You want the school to be a safe haven for your child (with and without enco), and trust me, it gets worse when the teachers bully you (as they did to me), isolation and allow the other peers to bully your child. It is one of the most horrible experiences of enco, and emotionally isn’t a good thing, and is also not fun to come home and get similiar treatment at home (not their fault, I just wish they knew then what I know now..it might’ve helped me, hopefully it can help you). If people aren’t willing to help and support you, or try to understand the condition, then you have to do what’s right and remove them from your support team.

I hope this makes sense, if not you can tell me. Let me know what you have in your support team, why you have/have not what you do, etc. I’m here to be a member of YOUR support team, whether it’s an e-mail (naturegirl015admin@themagicwithinus.com), on Facebook, Twitter. If you need someone to talk to or share ideas/experiences, then I’m here. I will always be here. You are never alone!! xx

An Ode to CAN

There has been an ad on TV recently for the Commonwealth Bank, and they use this beautiful poem. It’s powerful in its meaning that I thought I would share it here. I claim no ownership and no copyright infringement intended. Grammatically it should be edited but that’s how it’s written. If interested here is the ad (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2psopYv5sZs) Enjoy…

AN ODE TO CAN

There’s a four lettered word

As offensive as any

It holds back the few

Puts a stop to the many.

You can’t climb that mountain

You can’t cross the sea

You can’t become anything you want to be.

He can’t hit a century

They can’t find a cure.

She can’t think about leaving

or searching for more.

Because can’t is a word with a habit of stopping

The ebb and flow of ideas

It keeps dropping itself where we know

in our hearts it’s not needed

And saying “don’t go”

when we could have succeeded.

But those four little letters

That end with a T

They can change in an instant

When shortened to three.

We can take off the T

We can do it today

We can move foward not back

We can find our own way.

We can build we can run

We can follow the sun

We can push we can pull

We can say I’m someone

Who refuses to believe

That life can’t be better

With the removal of one

Insignificant letter.