My 6-year-old keeps having accidents: Thoughts?

My 6yr old son won’t stop pooping his pants. My son has been fully potty trained since he was 3. When he was 5, we had his sister, and things were good for a while. Well, he started having accidents, not peeing on himself, always pooping his pants. We chalked that up to the new baby, sat him down, and explained things, and things went back to normal. For a while, then he started back up with the accidents. This has been an on and off thing now for almost two years. It doesn’t matter where he is; he has done this at home, at school, at relatives. When you try to ask him why we get “I didn’t want to miss anything” or, “I thought I could hold it” or “I didn’t know I had to poop”. We have tried sitting down and talking with him, we had him go to a behavioral therapist, we’ve tried positive reinforcement, (ie, going out for a special treat for a week w/o an accident) we’ve tried negative reinforcement, (ie, making him wash his own underwear out) and finally we got some diapers (generic goodnights) for him. I told him he could have his underwear back if he could go for two weeks without pooping himself. It wasn’t even a week, and he was back at. Nothing has really made a difference. His father and I are scratching our heads as to why and how we can get him back on track. What are we missing? What haven’t we tried?

231 thoughts on “My 6-year-old keeps having accidents: Thoughts?”

  1. Tell him to go to the bathroom randomly throughout the day. My 11 year old has chronic constipation due to him not wanting to stop what hes doing or to have to miss anything. He also has severe ADHD as well. He would have accidents through the day and most of his were bc he damaged the nerves down there by holding it and he lost feeling of when he has to go. I have to tell my son 3-4 times a day to go poop.

  2. Could he possibly being molested? I take no pleasure in mentioning the possibility, but the “pooping” incidents usually follow due to muscle control problems…it could be why its sporatic occurances..varying access to the child. I have experience in the subject. I know you asked him, but he will probably never feel he can tell you…l pray it’s not the reason at all, but please dont rule it out.

  3. Honestly sounds like he just wants attention and doesn’t know how to get the right kind of attention. Set time away from his sister to do stuff with just him.

  4. My friends son is 5yrs old and kept on having accidents like yr son, the specialist told her to start potty training again as his brain is not connecting to the nerves in his bowel. He just didnt realise he needed to poop. So far so good.

  5. Have you had him tested for medical issues. My cousin done this for years, same excuses (because thats what he thought his parents wanted to hear) until he was 13 and almost died do to a “back up”

  6. My grand daughter has a sacral dimple with a possible tethered cord. The neurologist said she may not have good signals that she has to go. So definitely check w the dr first. Also if he’s constipated he may be avoiding the potty. Contrary to popular belief fiber may make it worse. Meat and healthy fats will help him go.

  7. My doctor said sometimes it’s behavioral. Strong willed child wants your attention. Maybe ignore him when he does it. But offer rewards when he puts it in the toilet himself.
    Sticker chart.
    My oldest regressed with the 2nd baby. I just let him wear diapers and treated him like a baby… Lasted about 2 weeks. Lol– he didn’t get big kid privelages, so he thought better of it.

  8. I suggest taking him to his doctor. My son kept doin this and I took him to his pediatrician. He was so constipated, that his intestines and bowel was so full, it was causing poop to just come out of him. I had no idea!! Had to give him castor oil to flush him out, and he never had the problem again.
    Take him to the doctor and make sure theres nothing g physically goin on

  9. My daughter has been fully potty trained after her first bday. An around 7 she was having little accidents come to find out she was backed up an she couldn’t feel it coming out. She takes fiber gummies daily an had to take a certain med to help she was better. Now she is 10. No problems

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