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Date of last update: 9/9/2017.

Forum Name: Pediatric Topics

Question: How do I stop my 7 year old from deliberatly wetting pants?

 maryjane123 - Thu Feb 28, 2008 2:05 am

How do I stop my 7 year old from deliberatly wetting his pants?
My kid wets his pants on purpose. If he does not get his way and has tried everything else he will threaten to wet his pants. It has gotten to the point where he does not always threaten but simply wets himself when he does not get his way. Sometimes he threatens othertimes not. When he does not get his way he simply wets his pants. He will do this anywhere. If he gets mad he wets his bed on purpose. The wet bed is always when he is mad. If he is somewhere that he is tired of being and wants to go home he will wet his pants. It has gotten to the point that when we are going to be out somewhere for the day I feel like making him where a pullup or something else. If he was wearing a diaper/pullup he might not wet because it would not ruin the day. I am at the end of my rope. I tried asking on another parents forum and some people told me that I should make him where a diaper when he does this. So when he wet his pants I put a diaper on him for the rest of the day. A few days later he got mad and thretened to wet his pants so before he could I took him too his room and put a diaper on him. I told him that if he was going to act like a baby then he would be treated like one. I also told him that from now on if he wets his pants he won't get dry pants he will get a diaper for the rest of the day and night. Before I tried the diapers I tried not changing him when he wet his pants. Letting him spend the rest of the day in wet pants like on a zoo trip. That did not work. I have only tried the diapers a couple of times so I don't know if it will work. I figure a 7 year old is not going to want to have to where a diaper out playing with his friends or going shopping. Is there anything else I can do?
 Dr. Chan Lowe - Fri Feb 29, 2008 8:04 pm

User avatar Hello Maryjane123,

It sounds like you have a very strong willed child. At some point, he has figured out that he can manipulate you into getting what he wants by wetting in his pants. So, now when he wants something he knows to do that.

Basically the solution is two-fold. One is that he must not get what he is wanting when he wets his pants, under any circumstances. This must be very consistent from everyone involved in his care (mom, dad, sitters, etc.). This way he gets no benefit from using this as manipulation.

Second, it needs to become "not fun" for him to do this. Wearing a pull up is one option if he dislikes this. Often, making him responsible for cleaning up the mess can help as well. If he wets the bed, he is responsible for changing the linens. If he wets his pants, he is responsible for washing them. There may be some other things such as removing privileges from him. If he enjoys playing video games, for example, he may loose the privilege of playing the game for a day if he wets his pants. Basically, you need to make this not profitable and not enjoyable for him.

Consistency is absolutely key. If he gets his way even occasionally by doing this he will continue to do so in hopes of this being the time he gets his way. If he never gets what he wants he'll stop doing this eventually. Be forewarned, though, that this may get a little worse and he may begin to act out more initially but if you are consistent, eventually he will realize that it is better to obey than to try to manipulate. Again, everyone has to be on board with this. If even one person is letting him get away with this without discipline your whole plan will be undermined.

Best wishes.

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