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Date of last update: 9/9/2017.

Forum Name: Pediatric Topics

Question: 12 and 13 year old boys, won't pee

 ffemtdad - Sat Nov 22, 2008 9:19 pm

I have two son's ages 12 and 13, and two nephews the same age. I noticed that they were all coming home from school appearing quite desperate, and when I asked them about it they said that they didn't like going at school because of several fights that happened in the school bathrooms. I thought that it would subside with time, but even now that they have started basketball season and are gone for the best part of 12 hours, they still come home having not peed all day at school.

Recently I had all four of them out for the day, and after being gone all day, the two older ones appeared quite uncomfortable. I asked them, and they all said they hadn't gone all day "because they didn't want to use the bathrooms."

I have tried talking to them about besides being uncomfortable, it's not healthy to force your body to hold it in that long. Can it all be attributed to the fact that boys become very modest as they enter adolescene? How concerned should I be? Will they eventually grow tired of the discomfort and take it upon themselves to use the available facilities instead of forcing their bodies to hold it? I don't want to constantly bug them about it and embarras them, but I don't want them to cause any harm to themselves either.
 Debbie Miller, RN - Sun Nov 23, 2008 7:21 pm

User avatar Hello,
I would seek psychiatric help through a mental health therapist in case there has been some trauma associated with the bathroom experience. They may be reluctant to talk about the actual reason but sometimes a therapist can get them to open up in a safe environment. You might also check with the school to see if there have been any other concerns relating to reluctance to use the facilities. Pre-adolescence and beyond can be a very sensitive time for children but usually they adjust to the public restrooms. You could also discuss this with the pediatrician for ideas.

Best wishes.
 ffemtdad - Tue Nov 25, 2008 12:48 am

Thank you Debbie.

I've always had what seemed to be a fairly open relationship with both my sons and my nephews, but should the problem persist I will seek out professional help.

But physically speaking, how concerned should I be. I can tell them it's not healthy, but how unhealthy is it to force your body to hold it?
 Debbie Miller, RN - Mon Dec 29, 2008 1:44 pm

User avatar Hello,
The risk comes with the possible backup of urine into the kidneys. Try to let them know that a kidney infection is much more serious and it is not worth the risk. They should be old enough to understand that.

Good luck.

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