Thursday, January 10, 2013

Autism, why does it always go back to poop?

Now this is the story all about how 
My life got flipped, turned upside down 
And I'd like to take a minute just sit right there 
I'll tell you how I became the prince of a town called Bel-Air 

Sorry, that's not the story you're going to hear here.  I mean I wasn't born anywhere near Philadelphia. Nope. I'm gonna "go there" and tell you the tale of rapid fire emails about my boy's poop.  Now you you know why I write this without names.  Like the kiddo needs this story haunting him later on? 

Sent the kiddo off to school in the morning.  Very run of the mill start of the day.  Up at the butt crack of dawn. Many cups of coffee on my part.  Chasing him around to wear pants.  Packed the lunch, wrote the status report in the notebook to the teacher and sent him on his merry way.  I went on to my merry way to the supermarket. 

While waiting in line for cold cuts at the deli, I started scrolling through my smartphone.  (The entire population of New Jersey was ahead of me in line.  Don't you all have jobs?  What's with all you people being here?).  I see the teacher has written me an email.  Not odd to get one from her mid day.  She likes to send little notes of progress or a cute picture.  I appreciate it greatly as it gives me insight to his daily life I'm not a part of first hand. The subject line catches my eyes though. "Kiddo is crying" 

What????  He is inconsolable. Sobbing on and on.  Did anything happen at home?  Something about James and a cookie.  We don't know anyone named James and no, there was no cookie for breakfast. (Although there has been in the past desperate days of "oh dear god please eat something!!!") I quickly respond back that all was well.  Was his sick?  Did she bring him to the nurse?  Did the bus driver or aide say anything?  Has she played some music?  Maybe he is asking for James Taylor. (Yes the kiddo loves him some folk music). 

She writes back. Nope not sick.  Music is not helping.  She'll have to catch the bus aide later and ask. As I give in my order for half a pound of honey baked ham sliced thin, an epiphany popped into my head.  POOP!  Has he pooped lately?  I don't think he has. I quickly type back "make him go".  Then it was radio silence.  I gather the rest of my shopping.  Constantly checking my phone for updates.  Worried about my boy. Wondering if I'm gonna get a call to get him.  Mumbling to myself about poop as I pack my bags.  The check out woman giving me the "this girl is crazzzzy" look.  I should of just told her it wasn't about me pooping but my kiddo.  Maybe then I would of looked less crazy?  Yeah probably not.  Socially inappropriate much?  This gal right here. 

By the time I get the bags unloaded from my car at home, my phone finally "pings" with a message from the teacher.   He was happily root toot tooting on the toilet.   Calming down.  And I can start to relax.  A bit.  It's progress that he didn't do it in his pants but getting him to go on his own, well, that's still needs work.   I'm glad he's trying but man I kind of marvel/resent/wonder why I have the life where I spend 20 minutes of my day emailing about poop.  I mean, that's just kind of odd isn't it?  To the rest of the folks on the planet.   Parents to kids with autism?  Not so much so.   I bet you have emailed, texted, facebooked, twittered, good old fashioned phone called about poop haven't you?   That's just a day in our world.   When behavior is wonky, ask yourself, did they poop?  Am I right?  You think that way. 

So lesson learned today.  When in doubt, go to the bathroom. :-)


  1. Do you make his teacher give you daily updates on if he went and the details of the going? ...just, you know, wondering. Not that I need reassurance that other parents obsess over their children's bowel movements or anything.

    um, ok. Love the post!

    *walking away now*

    1. As poop is issue enough that it's in his IEP. Peeing, he's got that. poop, we see behaviors and he panics on the toilet. So yes, with her, many conversations about his poop. LOL

  2. My guy was (little) 5 but same as your anxious. A therapist gave him a foot stool and he got more comfortable. Apparently my son had some serious sensory and body awareness/position anxiety that we couldn't figure out. Many of our kids have pain and digestive problems. We haven't had a problem since we went GF. He tells us now, Thank God, when he's cheated on something because he will say, My tummy hurts Mom. I know he gets pain. Many of our kids have constipation and yes, poop, as you can tell has been a big discussion in our family. I can totally relate (and to the person in the shopping center looking at you in such a way). Oooh, a day in the life! LoL

  3. Poop, or a frequent lack of it is a big conversation piece in our house too. That and the cheering when one is done and the subsequent discussion about its appearance. Nice to know we're not alone lol.

  4. Poop, poop and poop.....especially since he refuses to go on the toilet! You have to laugh, otherwise we would be wailing heaps in the corner of the bathroom :)

  5. Amen! I think about Kaden's poop all the time. It's a crazy thing, that boy's poop. HAHAHAHA

  6. one of my autistic twins is potty trained during the day but not at night. the other one who is "more" autistic is not trained at all but he refuses to keep the diapers on. every morning i wake up to pee and poop ALL over their room! i am at my wits end with that child. i put a potty chair in there for them and it doesn't matter. he would rather go in the back of one of his toy trucks! arrrgh!! they are 4 1/2 years old.

    1. @kathryn my friends daughter was doing the same thing at night. Finally they googled it and found that if you cut the feet off of footy pajamas and put them on backwards they can't get them off....therefore cant spread poop all over.... Hope this helps... You may have tried it...