Help after workshop

Hi I went on a virtual work shop & have been making some progress using public toilets, but I’m having overwhelming anxiety when at home & I have to leave with time pressure ie I had a funeral & a trip were I was being picked up at a certain time both times I could not go even in my own loo with no one in the house , I think this may go back to a childhood experience when my shy bladder started as it started with being told to hurry. .any advice would be greatly appreciate
Many thanks

#3254 by Anonymous

Hi Michelle

Ann is away for a few days but says she will get back to you on her return.

In the meantime… it is good that you have identified the probable trigger of your paruresis. What is happening is that the adult in you – your conscious brain – has decided to have a wee before going out. The child in you – your subconscious, the amygdala if you remember about that on the workshop – is aware only of a time pressure; I have to hurry up or I will be told off.

A possible way forward is to:
a) Talk to that inner child: reassure her that, whereas then the adults were in control of her, now you are an adult, you are in control. Talk reassuringly to her about things like: an adult will not tell off another adult for this; that they have left contingency time to cope with traffic etc, so you don’t need to leave the moment they arrive.
b) Use the toilet well in advance; use relaxation breathing and physical muscle relaxation. Take a book with you to stop you having an empty mind.
c) You are probably scared of how to answer a comment like “Why are you not ready?” Such a question would be made to a child but not to an adult. However have a concise answer rehearsed in your mind just in case e.g. “Sorry I have waterworks problems”. There is no need to mention shy bladder; any hint of a physical medical issue and people will back off and say sorry.

it is really life disabling, consider going to your GP and asking to be prescribed catheters for Intermittent Self-Catherisation. Knowing that as a last resort you can always empty your bladder using a catheter will reduce your anxiety so much that you may well find you don’t need to use one most times.

I hope this help. Come back to us with your thoughts about all this.


#3255 by andrew

Hi Andrew thanks for getting back to me I will try what you have advised, I do have the catheters but am trying not to use them as I’m now worried about infections , I will also speak to Ann when she is back too, I’m struggling as I find this bit frustrating as the home part I should be the easy bit I thought it would be going in public toilets I would find harder but thanks for explaining why it’s happening to me Michelle

#3256 by Anonymous
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