Daytime accidents at 8 years old

Dad needs help

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Dec 11, 2021
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I'm sorry if this has been asked before, but I'm at a loss and hoping someone has been through this before and can help. My 8 year old daughter is having daytime accidents at school almost daily, and won't change when the teacher tells her to. The doctors say there's nothing physically wrong with her, after ultrasounds of bladder and urinary tract. No UTI, or bladder infections. I've had good talks with her about it, she understands the hygienic issues involved. She doesn't seem to care about the social stigma that comes with 3rd graders having accidents. Has anyone else been through this before, and if so, what did you do to help the situation? Please give me some advice. Her teacher is growing more and more impatient with her not changing after an accident, understandably.
 

Moonstone

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I only have a tiny one in diapers but I know this forum isn't super active so hopefully even without experience I can help you figure this out. Sometimes all we need is someone to bounce ideas off of.

Have you had a serious talk about why she does this? You mentioned you've talked hygiene, but what about her feelings, outside not caring about the social stigma?

Since she's 8 I imagine she must have a reason she's doing this and she might even be able to tell you. If not you (I see that your username is dad) maybe mom? (If mom is in the picture. If not, would you be ok to share details about that?)
 

Dad needs help

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Thank you for the reply! I've talked to her, and she's always very open with me with anything bothering her. She only says she doesn't realize she's had an accident, then says she doesn't want to talk about it. It's frustrating, but I don't want to force her to talk about it.

Mom is in the picture, but not the best Mom in the world. Not bad mouthing her at all, but giving you an idea of how she is....I have to pay her to stay at my house with our daughter while I'm at work to babysit her own daughter 😔. She left when our daughter was 3 years old, so about 5 years ago. She spends most of her time on her phone video game, but does make sure she gets to and from school, and feeds her. Mom hasn't worked since the day she found out she was pregnant, and to be able to pay for everything, I unfortunately have to work a lot of hours. She's not a bad mom, but the maternal instinct that I've seen in so many people is definitely lacking in her.
 

Moonstone

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Does the school offer a child psychologist? Have you privately talked to her teacher to explain the family situation?

You claim mom is a good mother, and I believe you believe that, but as a mother myself I can't imagine expecting payment to watch my own child! I love my daughter and want to be with her and interact with her everyday. In fact, I'm in the hospital right now because I'm expecting twins and I need to stay here since they're at risk of being premature. Because of Covid restrictions my daughter isn't allowed in the hospital. What I wouldn't give to have all the hospital facilities in my home so I could be home with her! But unfortunately I don't think insurance will cover having a full Neonatal suite and live in nurse in my home and I'm not a millionaire so that's not in the cards lol

I'm no professional but I imagine your daughter is picking up subconsiously on her mother's disinterest. Added that you work a lot and probably unknowingly bring some stress home with you, not only from work but also with the situation with her mother. It's probably causing your daughter to maintain some infantile behaviors, even if she doesn't realize it herself.

I'm sorry the two of you are going through this. It sounds like you're doing everything you can do as a father. And, again, you call the mother a good mother, but I respectfully disagree just from what you told me. In my view, a good mother would want to do anything to be with her children, wanting to engage with them, and certainly not expecting payment to watch them. Even if your daughter doesn't know her mom gets paid to babysit, she can probably sense that her mother isn't there just for her sake.

Have you talked to your daughter about how she feels about her mother? You also say in your daughter gets to a point that she doesn't want to talk about it. I think you need to break that barrier somehow, either between just the two of you, or with a school psychologist, or someone else your daughter trusts. I think if you can crack that wall you'll be able to help her move forward. It may cost a lot of tears, and may change the dynamic with mom (does she get paid significantly less than a typical sitter? Is there other family, grandparents maybe, who would be happy to watch her just because they love her?) but I think you need to get to the core of your daughter's feelings, and do whatever will be best for her in the long run.
 

Moonstone

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I wanted to add it would be great if mom also talked to someone about why she doesn't have that maternal instinct and how to tap into it. Do you think she'd be willing to do that?
 

Dad needs help

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Thank you again for responding. I think I misspoke when I said she was a good mother. By that I mean she's not abusive in any way, and she makes sure she's clean and fed. She's not the "typical" caring mother that I grew up knowing. There's no chance that she'll ever talk to anyone about herself. I don't know the medical term for it, but she is a person who believes she can do no wrong.

Yes, I've spoken with her teacher about it and she says there's several kids in the school that are having this issue. I've made an appointment with a child psychologist, but they're only doing virtual visits at the moment, and I don't believe it will go as well as an in person visit would, but we're definitely going to try it out.

I pay Mom $700 a week, so not a tremendous amount of money, but for our area, that's a decent amount, and I'm not educated, and have a construction job so $700 is a lot to me haha. I make it a point to never bring my work home with me, with the exception of being tired sometimes, so I'm hopefully not bringing any of that to my daughter. The problem with having a different babysitter is my schedule is not consistent. We will work days sometimes and a night every now and then. Sometimes we work for 12 hours, sometimes it's 16. It is to hard to find a babysitter willing to be on call like that unfortunately. I know I'm just as at fault for this as her mother, so I'm not trying to place blame by any means.

Congratulations on your twins and good luck with them! I'm sorry you have to stay in the hospital, but it will be so worth it when you have all three of your babies together!!!! Thank you again for responding while you've got so much more going on!
 

Dad needs help

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I need to add, all of this being said, my daughter is a fantastic kid. She's A/B honor roll, very well mannered, and generally a truly happy, well adjusted child. I don't want to seem like I'm complaining. I just want to get this issue under control and try to do better by her and do whatever I can to help her feel better, whatever the issue may be. School Child psychologist is a great idea outside of the virtual visit I've already scheduled. I'll talk to the school tomorrow about that. Thank you!
 

Moonstone

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Of course! Actually talking like this gives me something to do and think about other than my situation so I appreciate it a lot too.

I hope the psychiatrist can help but yes I agree that an in person visit would be much more beneficial. But, you gotta take what you can get. Are you going to be present during the session? I'm curious if you've given that some thought (if you're even able to make that decision) because I could see a case for her having a confidential talk without you but also a case for having you there supporting her. Maybe a mix of sessions?

I think the word you're looking for for mom is narcissist. Luckily, or unluckily, there are a lot of people out there who have parents like mom, so that means there's lots of spaces online that, once she's older, she'll be able to utilize and maybe cope, or at least have people to relate to and vent. One place I know of is Reddit's r/raisedbynarcissists. I don't really like to link things since I personally don't click links on forums but at least with that you can search for it yourself. If you have time it might be worthwhile to look at the top rated posts and see if there's any tips to help your daughter. Actually, if you made an account I'm sure you could post about your daughter's situation there and get some feedback by people who lived through it what they think would've helped them when they were her age.

Also, is mom the only one in the area who can watch daughter? I ask because I kind of think anyone else, grandmas or grandpas, aunts or uncles, might be better for your daughter. Of course, I know it might be tough with your work schedule, just trying to help you consider all options and why I think they're important. The reason why I ask about other options is because I imagine spending time with a mom who doesn't want you (even if mom never says that outright, her attitude, or "aura" might give that off. Kids are very sensitive to that stuff) is a lot more painful than getting almost that same attitude from someone who isn't her parent.

But, if you really have no choice, obviously she'll have to work through this. It'll be hard, but at least she does have you in her life. Things could be much worse. She could be stuck with just mom. Lots of kids go through that unfortunately.

I'm trying to decide if it'll be helpful to her bringing that up. Probaby not right now because she's pretty young and might not understand. Plus she has the accident hurdle to overcome first. But, that might be good to keep in your back pocket whenever it seems right.

That said, do be careful and mindful of your daughter! I have a recent example of my dad trying to be nice and, luckily, I was in a pretty bad place when he said it, so at the time it did make me feel better, but looking back if I wasn't in the mental place that I was it probaby could've really broken me.

So, a few weeks ago when I was instructed to go to the hospital for my situation, I was very distraught, calling my folks to let them know the news. My dad said "you know, your grandmother miscarried twins. If she hadn't I probaby wouldn't be here". I was basically rock bottom for me in that moment anyway, so knowing I wasn't the only one who had gone through this made me feel better, but the next day I reflected and thought "you know, that's probably not something you want to say to your crying, pregnant daughter who's going to the hospital" lol
 

Moonstone

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Glad to hear your daughter is otherwise excellent despite the situation. Sorry if I'm over analyzing things. I have a tendency to do that. And, like I said, it's nice to talk to people and keep my mind off my own situation. Not that I'm having trouble, I have my Nintendo to play and books to read, but at least with something like this I can feel like I'm helping someone. I live to serve. It sucks being stuck unable to serve my family. Well, I kind of am by taking it easy and growing these babies, but I wish I could do both ya know? XD
 

Dad needs help

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Please don't be sorry about overanalyzing. It's really nice to be able the get someone else thoughts on this, and I appreciate it more than you know.

I would love to be with her for the first appointment, simply as a meet and greet type of situation if nothing else. I'm not sure how that would work from the psychiatrist position, but I doubt they'd have a provlem with that especially since it's virtual.

I, unfortunately, don't have anyon else to watch her. My dad is 89 years old and doing great, but not great enough to watch an 8 year old at the drop of a hat😂. My mom died 15 years ago, so she's out too. And my brother works almost the same schedule as I do. Maternal grandmother is exactly the same as mom herself, so she's out for babysitting. Maternal grandfather, and aunt are fabulous people, but lives 5 hours away.

My daughter is aware that her mom is not like other moms, but I've only let her talk about how she feels. I won't tell her what I think until she's old enough to ask me what I think. Right now, I just listen and reassure her that she is very loved and an awesome kid.

Your dad sounds like a good dad. He believes he's saying things to help you but accidentally adds to the anxiety lol. That's why dad's need to ask people if they're handling things right sometimes 😂😂
 

Moonstone

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He is, and you sound like a great dad, too. :) I'm sure your daughter will grow up to be a tough cookie. And I hope the session(s) with the therapist goes well.

Even if this is all for now I've been on this board for almost a year and a half. Even though it's not very active I make a point to check it out every day or at least every few days just to see if anyone wants to chat so I hope you keep this place in mind, too.

There are a lot of ad bots but hopefully those don't discourage you. XD I'm not sure how active the mod team is so I usually just ignore the bots or once in a while mess with them lol
 

corgiwiggle

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Jan 24, 2022
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What is the school policy on bathroom use. If multiple kids are having issues it makes me wonder if the teacher isn't letting them go or drawing attention to those who ask to use it