This post is sponsored by GoodNites®
While the scene was the famous BlogHer conference, in my mind, I imagined we were on a classic desert isle with a group of eclectic castaways. In the old TV show, they might have been the Professor, Ginger, Maryanne, the Millionaire and Gilligan.
In our case, we were the professor, err pediatrician, the mom baker blogger, the pregnant mom blogger, the hunk movie star and me.
I was still Gilligan.
Our ships had not tossed and turned however, we had come to our little island willingly. We arrived, not on vacation, but to have a conversation about something no one else seemed willing to talk about but desperately needed to discuss: bedwetting.
Our cast consisted of:
Dr. Howard Bennett, a brilliant pediatrician with over 30 years of experience, author of eight books, and expert on bedwetting.
Ian Ziering, stunningly handsome television and movie star, but mostly a really accessible guy and dad of two. He was a bedwetter, and living proof that not only does it not inhibit your future success, you too can become the star of Sharknado. OK, well, he could anyway.
Katie Burgi, beamingly with child, devoted wife and mother of four. She knows how to manage bedwetting, especially with tools such as GoodNites® Bedtime Pants. Her blog is the tale of how her parents were each raising kids of their own and came together to form a family of 15. I told her that her story was “Brady Bunch on steroids.” Her retort: “Yeah, I never ever heard THAT before.”
Shauna Sever, cookbook author, TV host and mother of two. She had been a fellow Californian until she escaped back to her native Chicago. Even though she knows how to make a killer Angel Food Cheese Cake (I kid you not), she was there to talk about the recipe for a good night’s sleep when your bedwetter is GoodNites clad.
Like Gilligan’s Island, we had a group of strangers from all walks of life who came together and found ourselves on a singular mission. As we each talked and shared our insights and experience, a common theme occurred.
Bedwetting is a normal part of life. One out of six people ages 4-12 experience it. But no one talks about it.
As we told our stories, it was obvious that we were hitting nerves with the packed room of attendees. Ian, Shauna, Katie and I spoke of our real life adventures and how we kept our kids from not only not experiencing shame over a developmental issue, but to the point of appreciating that their bodies were growing and changing — something to be celebrated.
Dr. Bennett shared several facts that I found fascinating.
- One frequent cause of bedwetting is actually from another physical condition that parents rarely consider: constipation. In kids, the two bodily systems are related and the bedwetting can actually be symptomatic of the other problem. When it appears that bedwetting is a problem, put GoodNites Bedtime Pants on your child and consult your pediatrician, there might be a medical reason.
- One of the reasons bedwetting is not discussed is the stigma attached to it. That stigma includes the thoughts that bedwetting may be caused by secret abuse or trauma. Dr. Bennett confirmed that while those factors can cause bedwetting, they are mostly never secret, but a companion symptom to the “insulting event.” If your child is wetting the bed out of the blue with no such event, the cause is very likely developmental.
- Everybody’s situation is different. As parents experience a single scenario, and overcome it, we feel we are now masters and can dole out our secret to all parents everywhere. The fact is, there are many factors. It is better for parents to GoodNites up, and discuss the situation with their pediatrician. A great time to discuss bedwetting is during your child’s trip to the doctor for their seasonal flu shot or any other visit. Be sure to include your child in this discussion too. When kids hear from their parents and other pediatricians that they are not alone, this instills greater confidence and understanding about the condition.
Monday morning I went to work. “How was your weekend?” one of my friends, and fellow dad, asked.
“It was GREAT,” I replied and recounted my excursion to my own personal bedwetting Gilligan’s Island.
“Bedwetting,” he said back, “Oh yeah, I was one of those. Till I outgrew it.”
“My kids just got through dealing with that,” another dad who was sitting nearby, piped up. “We had them wear those GoodNites Bedtime Pants, and they outgrew it too.”
The conversation is starting. Keep it going. If you are dealing quietly with your kids on this issue, or have a past filled with personal embarrassment over it, it is time to get off your own little island. You are not alone.
Unlike Gilligan, you get to be rescued.
This post was sponsored by GoodNites. All opinions are my own.
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