Any idea to make incontinence awareness

FLsolarSparky02

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for us who wore diapers through all are lives thruoght school how would we make a campaign to end bullying. at schools and lest ware in life
 
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People have to be more considerate and less judgemental, society has been conditioned in the wrong directions. But it seems that times are slowly changing, alot more issues are being made aware of. 🙂
 
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I think the key thing with incontinence is that it's still seen as the most embarrassing thing ever really. I mean, as a kid wetting the bed and/or having accidents effectively made you a pariah. There was a kid at school who wet the bed on a school trip and also had an accident and he didn't live it down throughout the whole of school (which made me sad as I wet the bed and my life at school was trying to hide daytime accidents!). Indeed, I was eternally grateful that when I did wet the bed at a sleepover I had a friend who covered for me as I was worried my social life would be well and truly over.

I feel another factor is that if you're over 18 but under say 80 you sort of seem invisible. Most of the products, articles and advertising seems to be geared towards children and the very old. It's as though young adults with incontinence don't exist. I guess the thing is that it would take people to speak openly about it to normalise it (like with other conditions) but I can see why people wouldn't want to. I went to a convention recently and one of the actors openly discussed her MS diagnosis and how she was terrified of having an accident on set. That really meant so much to me as that was the first time I'd seen someone discuss incontinence in such an open way. I also thanked her for talking about disability so openly and I don't think I'd ever have gone back to doing improv if not for her discussing acting with a disability.

I think my point about advertising is key though - if the advertising and packaging of products featured young adults on the cover rather than old people then I think perceptions may change as it is just seen as a thing that affects kids and the super old.

It's a thing that's true about disability more widely though in my experience - often things are marketed towards kids or senior citizens. Most of my clothes are actually kids' clothes as they're the most affordable adaptive clothing. People don't get that disabled kids grow up and aren't magically cured! I'd love more brands I like like Hollister and Quiksilver to do adaptive clothing for young people. I was super happy to see that Vans do velcro shoes (can't tie my laces properly anymore) but try finding velcro shoes that aren't just for kids or senior citizens. One of the most frustrating things about disability I find is being limited in terms of clothing options.

I do think that the Changing Places campaign has been the best in terms of raising awareness and the need for proper toileting facilities. They've really helped to normalise incontinence and also highlighted that lots of adults need somewhere to change.
 
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InconLifer said:
I feel another factor is that if you're over 18 but under say 80 you sort of seem invisible. Most of the products, articles and advertising seems to be geared towards children and the very old. It's as though young adults with incontinence don't exist.
Wow! I'm about to turn 69, "over 18 but under say 80." I don't think it was your intention, but thanks for inferring that I'm still a young adult! If we ever get a chance to get a drink together, I'll be sure to bring my ID. LOL. Good to have you on the forum.
 
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Here in the UK there are now a lot of adverts for period pants and incontinence pants, so far all are effectively "pull ups" but my point is that they are "out there" in the public domain being advertised and that is something that was until recently never seen on TV and was only discretely advertised in magazines and the like.
Watch this space !
 
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I can see that it would be a very difficult advertisement to make people aware and less judgmental. I believe that making people more aware would make them also more judgmental and able to see beyond people’s clothing.
As it is currently without awareness as advertisement; it is known as a possibility but also ignored. The public just wants others to go about their daily lives without witnessing possible embarrassing situations. So, my point is that the “Changing Places” campaign and similar efforts to improve disability services free to the public is so much more important. Because it’s allowing people to go about their daily lives easier, others can only assume that a person has a disability that may not be visible?

School children are brutally savage and don’t understand the consequences of their actions. The teachers should have a harsher set of rules for harassment regarding disabilities. The problem with teachers is biased opinions and lack of understanding or respect towards students issues. It doesn’t matter what school children go to unfortunately there is not enough proactive thinking because the teachers are so focused on keeping coursework up to their students. They’re already snowed under doing their teaching job. There almost needs to be a disciplinary committee within the school to look over the students from a distance in a neutral manner?

The main part of the advertising campaign should be to promote safe environments for those with disabilities especially in schools maybe?
 
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IcyBlue said:
I can see that it would be a very difficult advertisement to make people aware and less judgmental. I believe that making people more aware would make them also more judgmental and able to see beyond people’s clothing.
As it is currently without awareness as advertisement; it is known as a possibility but also ignored. The public just wants others to go about their daily lives without witnessing possible embarrassing situations. So, my point is that the “Changing Places” campaign and similar efforts to improve disability services free to the public is so much more important. Because it’s allowing people to go about their daily lives easier, others can only assume that a person has a disability that may not be visible?

School children are brutally savage and don’t understand the consequences of their actions. The teachers should have a harsher set of rules for harassment regarding disabilities. The problem with teachers is biased opinions and lack of understanding or respect towards students issues. It doesn’t matter what school children go to unfortunately there is not enough proactive thinking because the teachers are so focused on keeping coursework up to their students. They’re already snowed under doing their teaching job. There almost needs to be a disciplinary coming within the school to look over the students from a distance in a neutral manner?

The main part of the advertising campaign should be to promote safe environments for those with disabilities especially in schools maybe?

I think the point about the the Changing Places campaign is a great one. What I love about the campaign is that it’s raising awareness about how many people suffer from incontinence without being too explicit about it. Plus, there are other benefits (ie quiet for people with sensory needs, bigger so easier to maneuver a wheelchair) so you can use them or argue for better faculties (like I did at uni) without mentioning incontinence.

From my perspective there’s also something different psychologically about wearing taped products versus other forms of protection. When I started wearing pull ups to uni I was super, super nervous and anxious but got over it pretty quick when I realised I didn’t smell of urine any more and didn’t have any damp spots. Indeed, one of the reasons I was keen to try them was because of how utterly miserable I was in smelly, damp trousers at school day in, day out. They were really discrete and my regular underwear fitted over the top without an issue.

When my issues worsened and I had to use taped products, I found it a whole different ball game psychologically and grew really quite depressed. Having exhausted other avenues it got worse as what became a ‘stop gap’ measure became the norm. Whilst I’d used taped products for IBS and travelling, I was never around my peers so didn’t feel as self-conscious.

I think it’s telling that most of the ads featuring younger people aren’t for taped products.
 
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The reason that bullying & teasing exists for wearing a diaper past toddlerhood
is because someone decided that shame and bullying was the best way to get people to toilet train.
Its a stigma that's been around for decades.
Diapers are for babies
Unfortunately it won't change.
 
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SparkyDog said:
The reason that bullying & teasing exists for wearing a diaper past toddlerhood
is because someone decided that shame and bullying was the best way to get people to toilet train.
Its a stigma that's been around for decades.
Diapers are for babies
Unfortunately it won't change.

I agree this is the unfortunate reality of the situation. I also think it extends to other aspects of disability more widely - if we can't do certain things by a certain age it's seen as embarrassing.
 
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I am really not sure whether disability awareness will change much as with the exception of a few organizations like Tower to Tower and a couple of other Vet and First Responders groups, the World continues to be blind or embarrassed regarding our being out and about! Organizations that have an ownership that is themselves or has a family member, which is, have excellent facilities and accommodations. ADA has been around for over 40 years and with the exception of some public buildings, few are really accessible. There is strict code, but weak enforcement of those codes.

We built a new home 8+ years ago and wanted it to be ADA (also referred to as Universal Design) compliant! Our builder boasted they attempt to get their customers to use those requirements as part of their new build. Deep into the project, it became painfully evident that they really did not understand what structural compounds are also required (a wheelchair places far more load on a much smaller patch then with the same human standing), nor the true requirements of turning a standard, let alone, a motorized wheelchair around in a bathroom. We have a home in which 60% will meet ADA, and of that about 30% is what I call ADA+.

The point is, whether fully disabled or only U-IC, the World is blind to our needs and really does not care. The constant fear in the AB/DL community about being outed or seen is sad, because they really do not understand just how uninterested the population is.

Regarding Bulling. I will admit I was a Nerd in school and when that group and others determined they needed my help to complete a class, I did not get bullied. But, I saw it and it was ugly, Asking the teachers to step-in is not going to happen. Any classroom has over 65% of the students that are on either prescripts mediation or street drugs. With the Unions and the Administration requires to meet Federal and State requirements, plus normal load of paperwork. What is happening in the corner of the classroom or hallway, is out-of-sight and out-of-mind. School bulling has been active ever since there has been schools. Sadly, I do not see it changing.

A very long way of saying, I see no end to the blindness toward our issues!
 
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Edgewater said:
I am really not sure whether disability awareness will change much as with the exception of a few organizations like Tower to Tower and a couple of other Vet and First Responders groups, the World continues to be blind or embarrassed regarding our being out and about! Organizations that have an ownership that is themselves or has a family member, which is, have excellent facilities and accommodations. ADA has been around for over 40 years and with the exception of some public buildings, few are really accessible. There is strict code, but weak enforcement of those codes.

We built a new home 8+ years ago and wanted it to be ADA (also referred to as Universal Design) compliant! Our builder boasted they attempt to get their customers to use those requirements as part of their new build. Deep into the project, it became painfully evident that they really did not understand what structural compounds are also required (a wheelchair places far more load on a much smaller patch then with the same human standing), nor the true requirements of turning a standard, let alone, a motorized wheelchair around in a bathroom. We have a home in which 60% will meet ADA, and of that about 30% is what I call ADA+.

The point is, whether fully disabled or only U-IC, the World is blind to our needs and really does not care. The constant fear in the AB/DL community about being outed or seen is sad, because they really do not understand just how uninterested the population is.

Regarding Bulling. I will admit I was a Nerd in school and when that group and others determined they needed my help to complete a class, I did not get bullied. But, I saw it and it was ugly, Asking the teachers to step-in is not going to happen. Any classroom has over 65% of the students that are on either prescripts mediation or street drugs. With the Unions and the Administration requires to meet Federal and State requirements, plus normal load of paperwork. What is happening in the corner of the classroom or hallway, is out-of-sight and out-of-mind. School bulling has been active ever since there has been schools. Sadly, I do not see it changing.

A very long way of saying, I see no end to the blindness toward our issues!

This x1000! So many people just don't get it and don't care. At a disability support group I met the person responsible for doing all the accessibility stuff for Transport for London. I was shocked to find that it was one person who was responsible for it and who had an absolutely nightmare of a time fighting for better access features, features all TFL's PR stuff boast about now but if it had been up to them none of them would be there! He said the way he came up with things on the Underground for wheelchair users was sitting in a wheelchair (he has a non-visible disability and isn't a wheelchair user) as in his mind the only way to see what issues there were for wheelchair users was to experience trying to use the Underground. I was staggered that he's the only person that's bothered to actually see how it is and I thanked him profusely for all his hard work.

Most of the time in my experience people put in work arounds they think are good for wheelchair users but really aren't and haven't tried using them themselves. I had an absolute nightmare of a time at university in terms of access when I became really physically disabled, so much so I had to take a break as the inaccessibility of the building worsened my condition and luckily I've found an accessible one I'm hoping to start at in September. It isn't right though that I'm having to restart somewhere else because of access issues. I have other issues which made me take a break but essentially the more inaccessible somewhere is, the more fatigued I get as I have to struggle around, that means my brain fog gets worse and then my neuropathy really kicks off and I have muscle spasms. It is laughable though that in the entirety of London there's only one university which fully meets my access needs. I mean, I get it, England's old and most of the buildings are old but I do think that can be an excuse as ironically, some of the best experiences I've had access wise have been in places that one wouldn't think were super accessible.

I was lucky re bullying, I always had friends and had a decent time. I am astounded I managed to keep my incontinence secret for the entirety of Secondary School though and none of my friends ever noticed. I guess I'd become a pro at hiding accidents and leakage come the end of Primary School. As I said in another thread, there were a few times I really thought the game was up, including one trip where I was completely soaked but somehow managed to hide it. It seems there's no nice way of dealing with incontinence at school - either you wear protection and get terrified of people finding out or don't and get terrified of people finding out about your accidents.
 
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So I want to ask some questions, and propose some answers, but wiser people can say if I'm right or crazy.

First, everybody pees and poops. It's a fact of life. It is interesting to me that it is a source of both vulgar humor and embarrassment, but that's a rabbit trail I see no use in following just now. Anyhow, this universal activity poses sanitary and privacy challenges to be met, but as long as those considerations are being met, why should embarrassment be applicable? If you're using a toilet, that's private and sanitary, so all good. If you're using a diaper, that's also private and sanitary, so why should perception be any different? For contrast, using the streets is neither private nor sanitary, so that's not good. Using your pants is technically private in that you're not exposing yourself, but not very sanitary. But a diaper is a wearable toilet. All can, most don't, but some practically must. Why should anyone need to feel embarrassed about it? They're meeting all the requirements for appropriate management of bodily wastes. Keep in mind I didn't ask why DO they, but why SHOULD they? I contend they should not.

Then there's the pull-ups versus taped products. Again, why SHOULD the means by which an absorbent product is held in place on the wearer have anything to do with its social perception? They're doing the same thing. Again, I think the distinction in perception is a bizarre social construct that shouldn't exist.

Now the why DO questions. First the pull-up question. They are generally less effective at absorption, and they are generally more cumbersome to change, so how is it that they are perceived so much better? Bizarrely, I think the reason for this is commercialism. Perhaps one of the most unintentionally vicious ad campaigns was the "I'm a big kid now" one, whereby "diapers are for babies" was subconsciously inbued into many impressionable young minds, giving subconscious legitimacy to shame bullying those who weren't babies but still used diapers for whatever reason.

This social pressure flows into the other DO; of course people who have been shamed for their actions by commercials and their personal contacts will become embarrassed about it at some level.

I'm not one who believes there's a quick fix for much of anything. I'm reminded of a line from Beauty and the Beast: "We don't like what we don't understand, in fact it frightens us...." and of course, the song is "Kill the Beast," an anthem of selfish narrow-mindedness. But in the end, people see that different isn't automatically bad. I think this is a theme in much of Western society right now, and surely that will have benefits in greater open-mindedness toward diaper wearing.

In the meantime, resist the urge to accept and internalize psychological bullying. You are a valuable person, and differences in your physical condition, abilities and habits don't diminish that one bit! Remind yourself of that regularly. Easier said than done, but mind over matter.

Can PSAs or even advertising help change public perceptions? In my mind, without a doubt. But it will take time, effort, and determination. In the meantime, show everyone what a great person you are, and then if they discover you wear diapers (don't wave it in people's faces), you become part of changing public perception for the better, by the association.
 
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