Panic Disorders/Attacks/Really embarassing..


QUESTION: Hi Iím 13 and I have a really big problem with anxiety. My biggest problem is really embarrassing. I have trouble using the bathroom around other people and asking to use the bathroom at school its just really embarrassing for me I donít know why. I basically have a panic attack using the toilet if I know somebody could come in or even know what Iím doing. Ive had a lot of accidents at school and the other students tease me so I get anxious to even go to school in the morning.

I live in a kind of small apartment with my step-sister step-brother step-dad and my mom and I really havew trouble using the bathroom. I often hold #2 for days at a time so it causes problems at school sometimes. A lot of times I usually try to beath my brother and sister home from school or wait until they go to bed and try to use the bathroom then. But sometimes I canít wait and I just pee my pants or my bed. I kind of have a bedwetting problem so I use that as an excuse but most of the time its on purpose. I also canít use the bathroom at school. Because Iím afraid to ask the teacher.

I just had the worst day of my life a couple weeks ago. I had to go #1 and #2 really bad at school. I was holding both for a really long time and I tried to hold it until I got home but right before lunch I couldnít wait anymore and tried to ask the teacher but she said we only have 15 minutes until lunch. She let me go because she knows I might have an accident but when I got to the bathroom someone else was in there so I tried to wait but I couldnít hold it I stood outside the bathroom and peed my pants. My teacher was mad because I wouldnít go with someone else there.

Then she sent me to the nurse but she was with another student so while I was waiting in the hall I couldnít hold #2 anymore so I squatted down and pooped my pants even though the bathroom was right there I was too nervous to ask. Well I didnít go #2 in almost a week so it was a really big accident and Ive been having a lot of accidents at school lately so the nurse and the teachers at school got concerned because of some health code saying I shouldnít have accidents around other students. They called my parents in and they are talking about maybe having me wear ďprotectionĒ.

I was just wondering if youíve ever heard of this kind of anxiety and if theres something I can do about it. My parents and the teacher want me to talk to somebody but its too embarrassing which is why I found this site. If I could stop having a panic attack just from sitting on the toilet it would make my life so much easier even if I have to take medication or something.

ANSWER: Samantha,
I apologize, with the holidays I have not checked my emails as often...... so sorry! WOW! I am going to tell you My opinion, o.k....? I am Not a doctor, remember that.... You may have a problem with that but, let me tell you, YOU are one Smart girl reaching out to me, or anyone about this..... Please, let me explain a few things to you. Because I am older, and my kids (now adults) are grown, I can tell you about experiences I have had both, with me and my daughter....
Being shy is very, very normal at your age. Let me ask you this question though and, I want you to think about it Very seriously...
Is it more embarrassing to you, to have someone walk in the bathroom when you are using it, or, is it more embarrassing going in your pants?
O.k.... Here is the deal!
I believe that the REAL issue now is not as much you going to the bathroom as it is, being made fun of, at this point....
You have gone in your pants in front of people and most likely, people are making fun of you, causing you a LOT of anxiety.... This may have been going on for a while now, starting out peeing the bed and being laughed at or made fun of bed-wetting by the family. Then it grows into a "Phobia" which means that, you now have anxiety about peeing the bed because you know that you are being made fun of. So, you try to hide it by covering the bed up and hiding it but, what happens is Really, you start feeling bad about yourself because, you pee the bed. You wonder why you pee the bed and you start to feel down about yourself. Are you afraid to get up when it is dark outside? If you are, you need to figure out what you can do to make that more comfortable for you. You can set an alarm at night, so you will know to get up and go to the bathroom. If you are 13 years old, there is a reason that you are not getting up to go. You may know that reason and, if it is causing you a problem, you need to go in the room, alone, and speak to your mom or dad and, tell them Everything. This is the Only way you will get the help you need.
If you are being told that you are Lazy...make double sure that you are not being too lazy to get up and take responsibility for yourself. This is part of growing up. If you are NOT being lazy, and I am NOT saying you are, then, tell them you are not being lazy at night but, here is the real reason that you are not getting up...
You can get a grip on this situation, you are a good writer and, you explained your situation very good! That tells me that you are mature enough to handle, whatever it takes to get straightened out...
I admit, it IS embarrassing to go poo in front of other people. BUT, it is also a Normal thing that Everybody has to do. The problem with holding it and not going is, it irritates your stomach, and you may have problems from it if you do not go, like you have experienced already, going in your pants because you did not get to the toilet on time. My daughter was Extremely shy when she was young. She started an acting class and, it helped her to break out of her shyness.
Things that seem devastating to you right now, will not seem like much to you when you are older.... BUT, it does right now and, that is the reason it needs to be talked about... Do not worry about the kids that made fun of you. It is mean of them to do that but, you can pick yourself back up and keep going. They need not bring down your self-esteem and, do not let them. Privately tell your parent(s) and, tell them not to talk about it, you want it kept private. They should try to get you the help that you need. If it is anxiety attacks, PLEASE, do not let this go on! Get the help you need now while you are young. If this keeps on going, you will start to get more phobia's as you get older. DON'T let that happen to you!
Please write me back and ask me ANYTHING! Don't keep this inside of you without talking. I would like to know if you are getting the help that you need and, if you are doing Everything that You can do, to get a grip on the fact that you need to find help that gets you in a more comfortable position to deal with going to the bathroom when you need to and how to handle each situation... Keep in touch!! I am here for you!

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QUESTION: Hi thanks for your detailed answer it really made me feel better. I asked the same question to other people on here and other websites but they all just said see a doctor. Well that is one of my problems. I am seeing a doctor but it is really hard to talk about this in real life. Its super embarrassing.

But I think things just got a lot worse for me in the last few days. This week at school I had to start wearing training pants at school because Ive had a lot of accidents this year and because of this health code thing that says I shouldnít have accidents around other students .They are made for kids but Iím kind of small for my age. Pampers underjams theyre called. I donít think they absorb enough though. They really leaked when I used them today. I think my bladder can actually hold a lot, I donít know if its from holding it so much or whatever. I hold it as long as I can so when I have an accident its a big one. I usually have two accidents a day One at school and one after Im in bed I just pee my bed. My parents donít make a big deal because Ive always done it

Youre right its way more embarrassing to have an accident than using the bathroom. But think of it like this when someone else is in or even near the bathroom, going in is like going into a cage with a tiger or something. I know it sounds stupid and irational or whatever but its just how I feel and nobody understands. I really want to use the bathroom but I just canít make myself go. Like a lot of times at school I ask to go to the bathroom and I cant make myself go. Even though I know I will pee my pants soon I go back to class and try to hold it but I cant and have an accident instead. I try really hard not to but I cant hold it forever. What I tried to do earlier this year in school was hide somewhere then squat down and pee my pants and try to wrap a sweater around my waist but it only worked a few times before a teacher noticed.  

Anyway I know you said you arenít a doctor and this might not be your area. but do you think something bad can happen if I hold #1 and #2 so long? Because I hold them both as long as I can every day. Also if I have an accident is it okay to keep wearing  my messy clothes? The teachers said if I have a #1 accident to keep wearing my training pants but I can change if I have a #2 accident. But having a #2 accident is so embarrassing I try to hide it as long as I can. I kind of try to dump it out and I donít get a chance to really clean up sometimes. Do you think purposely peeing my bed is a bad idea? I do it almost every night if I donít get a chance to use the bathroom in private. I know it sounds gross but its one of the only places I feel private and my parents donít mid that much.

Sorry if this is long and you cant answer my questions but it helps to talk to somebody finally.

Something Really needs to be done to resolve this.... If you are 13 years old and you are really too embarrassed to go in the bathroom then, you need some help from Someone that understands what is going on with you. No, it is not normal to go to bed at night and pee the bed...
You Must get your thinking turned around. If you believe this is causing you to pee and poo your pants at your age and, you go around smelling bad, then, you are constantly going to get people talking behind and in front of you.
This is going to bring your self confidence level down to rock bottom! You need to go to a good doctor that works with Anxiety problems... I totally understand about the feeling you get if you need to go in the bathroom and the Tiger thing! That is Bad Anxiety and, most likely it will not go away on it's own.
Talk to your mom about going to a doctor, that now this bathroom thing is so out of hand that, you feel you need to talk to a doctor about it about the anxiety you get that is causing you these thoughts and feelings! You Must be the one to put a STOP to this and NOW!
Put yourself in another position..... Think of what you would think if you knew of a person that was going to turn 15 years old but, they had the reputation of Stinking all of the time like pee and poop!
What would you think???
Would you understand it? Probably Not! You would most likely think.... Good grief, is there something wrong with that person or, that person is really ridiculous.
You would not think that, at the age of 15 years old, anyone would be walking around scared to bits to pee or poo.
I had a guy that wrote me before , he was about 22 years old, he could still not go to the bathroom in college and, he had 2 room-mates that went to their bathroom all of the time.... He was sooo embarrassed, he about passed out at the thought of it.
The only thing that you can do is address the reason that is causing you to panic... In your case, it is over-whelming for you to be using the bathroom in front or even anywhere near, where you are not away from anyone else...INCLUDING, your own family. It is literally causing you to do things that you would not normally do, if you did not have this anxiety issue.
The other people may have told you to Just see a doctor, which is true.... You do need to. But, you know that! You need the help of one of your parents to support you and see to it that you get this fixed, before it causes you so much grief that you want to stay home and not go anywhere. PLEASE, Do Not get yourself in that position Samantha.
This is a hurdle that you Can get over and live your life normal.
You have to be in control of this before you let this control You, the rest of your life....Because, at this point, it Is Controlling you...
Have you been diagnosed with ANY kind of illness or mental diagnosis that you need or are being treated for? I am only asking because, you need to understand that by seeing a Doctor about this does not mean you have a mental problem! Many, Many people have anxiety issues and, once they address the problem, they are fine. Another thing is, don't look for reasons to Not go to a doctor by thinking that you can fix this alone. You need to open up to someone, a Lady Doctor if need be, and you explain to her the reason you do this and, what you are doing exactly. You can email people and read on the internet all you want but, until you will give in and get to the doctor, you will be traveling down a road that will be leading you in the wrong direction and, you will wake up years later with many more Phobia's on top of the one's you have now. Then you will say to yourself, Why didn't I just go to a doctor when I was so much younger???
Please, talk to your parents...Please!
Keep in touch!

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I am not a doctor. I have however been on this site since 2008 and have answered many questions and helped a lot of people. You are welcome to check my stats. I love to know how you are getting along in months to come after talking with you. I do Care. I answer many questions about panic attacks from living experiences. I believe that I can save some other person from symptoms that I have been through myself. Having someone to talk to about this terrorizing experience always helps. Someone that has been through it and understands! You may ask me anything related to this subject, no matter how awkward you feel. There is nothing funny about anxiety or panic attacks and you will understand a little more about those feelings and, I will give you ways to get it under control.


I have suffered with panic attacks for the over 45 years. I have overcome many obstacles in regards to panic disorder and can answer many questions of how I overcame them. There is nothing you can ask me that I will not understand.

High school, Real Estate professional, School of hard knocks :)

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