Monday 17 June 2019

What I'm Really Thinking ... about bed-wetting

‘We were in it together until we failed to sort it. Then I was on my own’
‘We were in it together until we failed to sort it. Then I was on my own’

I wet the bed the other night. I don't like to admit it, but I wet the bed a fair bit. Maybe one or two times a week. I don't do it every night, just some. My parents have kind of given up on me. It's got to the stage that mam will just roll her eyes when she sees the sheets in the bath (she doesn't like me putting them in the laundry basket with the other clothes, because they smell). If dad notices, he just won't look me in the eye. I think he is ashamed of me.

I guess he's probably right to be ashamed. I feel kind of ashamed myself. I am 12 after all. Bed-wetting is what babies do. Not what lads about to finish primary school do. If any of the boys in school knew that I wet the bed, I'd be tormented. It'd be horrendous. I just have to hope that my little brother never says anything. Sometimes he threatens to tell…when he really wants to get me back for something. So far, he's kept his mouth shut. But I do worry about everyone knowing. I think I'd die if everyone knew. It'd be so embarrassing.

Mind you, like I said, it's embarrassing anyway. I'm way too old to be wetting the bed. I know I am. I should be able to stop. I know mam and dad are cross about it still - like they think it's my fault or something. But it isn't. Not really anyway.

I never know I'm doing it. I certainly don't deliberately do it and I can't seem to stop doing it. I feel like I should, but I just don't seem able. I hate that.

When I was younger, we tried so many different things. My parents were different about it back then. My dad used to see it as some kind of thing that we were in together, if you know what I mean? Like we were fighting this thing together and that sooner or later we'd win. I really liked that. Even though I was still wetting the bed, I felt like dad was on my side. Not anymore. We were in it together until we failed to sort it. Then I was on my own. That's what it's been for the last ages. I'm on my own with it.

Mam still helps me wash the sheets, but I have to sort out the mattress if it goes through the mattress protector. I'm sure my older brother laughs at me when he see the mattress propped up against the bed. He's usually okay about it, but we still share a room and I know he's asked mam can he swap. He says he's too old and needs space for study, but I think it's mostly because I wet the bed.

It's a hassle too when I get invited for a sleepover. Lots of the lads have sleepovers. I never have them. I rarely go to them. I did go to a couple of them. When it became less regular, like down to maybe a couple of times a week, I felt a bit more confident to try staying over somewhere else. But it was so stressful. I spent the whole evening afraid to drink anything, even though I was dying of thirst. I didn't sleep hardly at all then, because I was so paranoid that I wouldn't wake up if I needed to go to the bathroom.

That's the main problem. I sleep too deeply. That's what the doctors have said. How am I supposed to change that? I dunno. I dunno if I'll ever sort it. It's awful. I hate it.

I wish too that my mam and dad were still as understanding as they used to be. It just makes it lonelier now. It's like it's my problem… and only my problem.

As imagined by David Coleman

Irish Independent

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