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How I ended up this way, and how I've dealt with it...kinda

I've posted here a couple of times through the years, but I'm mostly a lurker. I figured I would post about my experiences in the form of a recap. Maybe it will help others.\n\nI'm 28 now, and my incontinence issues first started when I was 20. I was in college at the time, and I started having problems with being able to hold it long enough to actually get to a bathroom. The urge would hit, and I'd generally have a couple minutes to get to a bathroom before it would let loose. I had a couple of wetting accidents, and some sessions of sitting in my truck trying to dry my pants out with the heater, before I finally took to diapers to manage the problem. \n\nI was content to ignore it until I had to start using diapers as a safety precaution. Within a week of putting on my first diaper, I was at the doc's office getting checked out. That was an incredibly embarassing visit as I was wearing a diaper at the time. The nurse was checking vitals, and she noticed that I was wearing a diaper while she was checking breathing. She asked if I had spoken with the doctor about it, and I informed her that that was the reason for my visit. Being very new to this entire facet of life as I was, I found this to be one of the most embarassing things I had ever had to deal with. \n\nAt any rate, the doc came in, was confused, and referred me to a urologist. I went through the full gamut of tests over the course of a couple months (IVP, urodynamics, etc.). The urologist couldn't find anything physically wrong with me in any of these tests. The only thing they could come up with was that my very enlarged colon (born with) had caused nerve damage to my bladder after two decades worth of pushing against it. \n\nThey diagnosed me with urge incontinence, and then came the endless rounds of various medications to try; none of them helped. So, then the doc brought up the option of surgery, but he said that there was only about a 35% chance that it would work as well as running a high risk of leaving me with complete urinary incontinece. I'm not a big fan of being cut on, and those odds certainly didn't make the notion more appealing. So, I decided that I would just stick with wearing some form of protection, mostly diapers.\n\nThis brings us to what's happened since then. I've used just about everything on the market outside of caths. I still cannot understand why someone would want to cath themselves, and walk around with a bag attached to their leg just to avoid having to wear a diaper. Personally, I'll take the diapers any day. \n\nPullups at the time were frankly horrible, and not suitable for anyone other than women who pee a little when they laugh/cough; they held nothing. I gave up on those, and stayed with a mix of Attends and Depend Max. \n\nDealing with this in college was, needless to say, awkward. I would wait around forever for a bathroom to clear out so I could hurridly get changed and dispose of the wet diaper before anyone would come back in. This was a huge source of stress for me at the time. I was terrified of someone finding out. \n\nI finally got out of college and entered the work world where I was faced with the reality of having to change my diaper in a public restroom where there were always people present. We have about 500 people in my building, and 5 restrooms. Clearly, finding an empty restroom wasn't a realistic option, and I lived too far away to go home and change. \n\nIt's been 5 years of working here now, and I'm just now getting to the point where I can change without really caring who is around. I still don't like it, but I can at least tolerate it now without going into some state of nervous shock. I've been fortunate that I've never had any rude remarks, or laughing, while I've been taking care of business, I've certainly had my fair share of confused looks. \n\nThe problem has gradually gotten worse, and I'm at a point now where I wet myself at least twice a day. I had to start wearing diapers at night about 6 years ago, and I rarely ever have a dry night. The underwear for men have greatly helped daytime discretion, but they aren't always practical since I can't really take my pants and shoes off every single time I need to change. However, they are leagues better than the pull-ons of recent years (would be perfect if the padding in the back came up a little higher, and held about a cup more). I still come back to Depend Max being my favorite diaper, because they fit me very well. Far more comfortable than anything else short of an Abena X Plus, or something similar. I'm not a fan of wearing something that thick in public, so I'll live with having to change after every accident. Though, it would be nice if KC would either redesign them to be more absorbant, or expand the line to include a genuine overnight duty diaper. Right now, I use Attends Breathables at night, and they are more than sufficient; I have leaks about once a month at most. \n\nI got married two years ago, and my wife doesn't care about the problem at all (yes, they do exist). We joke about my "pampers", as she calls them, all the time. She helps me out with stashing an extra in her purse for when we go out shopping, or whatever.\n\nI honestly don't think the nervousness of buying diapers in stores, or changing in public ever really goes away. I think it's just a matter of being able to deal with it without falling apart. I get strange looks all the time when I run out to the store to pick up stuff in a pinch. I've had some people inquire, and I openly admit that they are for me. I think people are shocked by it, because I don't look like I would need diapers. I'm 6'2, weigh about 220, and I keep myself in pretty good shape. So, when people look at the outside, they think I couldn't possibly be wearing diapers. However, can't judge the book by the cover. \n\nOne of the more awkward moments that I have had in public was at Walmart. I was standing in line with a couple bags of Depend Max, and there were a lot of people behind me. When I get up to the cashier, she asks me how I like them. I didn't know exactly what to do, so I just ran with it. I told her that I loved them, because they save me a lot of wet pants. She said she was curious, because her husband wore diapers when he was doing yard work as he would wet himself when doing anything strenuous. She said she had just been buying the Assurance brand, but was curious if Depend was any better. I told her that I believed they were, and that I found them to be very comfortable with regard to fit. As I was paying and finishing up the conversation, I turned to look at the line behind me, and noticed that nobody would make eye contact. LOL\n\nAnyway, this is a long one, but I wanted to post it as I don't see many thorough posts on "how I ended up this way, and how I've dealt with it" posts on the board. Maybe it will help someone. It's been a very rough journey to get to the point that I'm faily comfortable discussing the topic with any random stranger/friends, but it does get better. People are generally understanding, and often just curious. I personally would never dream of inquiring about something so personal to someone that I saw buying diapers, but to each his own. \n\nI could go on forever, but I'll stop in the interest of keeping it at, what is already, an unreasonable length.
by   brianr  |   Dec 30 2011 06:00 PM   Likes (1)
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