So dozens of visits to the pediatrician. And dozens of prescriptions for “lax” medicine (lax as in “laxatives”, guys). Forlax, microlax, then by their american cousin, miralax.
And everything we tried just failed.
1/ we tried pretending not to care when she didn’t go to the bathroom for days even though she was on laxative treatment (with adult dosage). We screwed up that one because everything in us kept screaming “NAYLA YOU GO POOP NOOOW”. We also screwed it up because every time she said “poop” we were jumping and dancing of excitement, which she ended up noticing and taking advantage of.
2/ we tried removing the diapers, and washing kilometers of poop she would end up doing once every three days – and which we had to hand-wash in the sink.
3/ disgusted, we put the diapers back on, and were able to notice that yes, she was only pooping once every three days (with scary screams)
4/ we talked to people who had faced that kind of experience. And then we always ended up the conversation abruptly because it was way too scary: in all cases, it had lasted for several years, and it had been a total nightmare. And in most cases, the parents had no idea why it suddenly stopped.
5/ we tried asking (more like begging) for advice from our parents. My mom, in a “poop or die” typical mode (“you leave her on the potty there until she does it, even if it has to last for three days”). My husband’s mom, in a no less typical slightly-disgusting-attempt-to-empathize (“you know my love, I do poop too”)
6/ back to square one, we had her eat spoons and bottles of laxatives, day after day after day after day
7/ we tried pretending it was a health issue and not a psychological one (this was the husband, I was strongly against it). So after looking it up and exchanging digesting texts with a friend who is a paediatrician, he figured Nayla had an anal fissure and bought a cream for that purpose. This was too disgusting and when he finally admitted it I trashed the cream tube.
8/ psychology, lesson 1: poop nazism (YOU POOP NOW OR YOU GO TO YOUR ROOM)
9/ psychology, lesson 2: (following long hour of reading psychology books for kids): just hug her and tell her we love her. Nice try, but not enough.
10/ and of course, my own personal favorite: the attempted trade “one chocolate against one duty”. And Nayla, at three o’clock in the morning when her exhausted body had finally pooped against her will, opened an eye and said “and now, chocolate”
So that’s it. I belong to this sorority of poop moms. My name is X, and my daughter Nayla has been constipated for seven months.