[UPDATED 11 Feb 2015: See below.]
When it became clear that my bedwetting wasn’t a fluke, Mom discussed how we could manage it.
Mom was completely practical and matter-of-fact: The best way to manage it was by wearing protection. It’s just practical, for hygiene and comfort and housekeeping. It’s easier to clean up than wet sheets and pajamas. It’s more comfortable and hygienic than a puddle of urine. It doesn’t make you an infant. It’s not punishment. Nobody else needs to know, so there’s no reason to feel humiliated. It was up to me, but, if it were her, she would wear protection.
I didn’t need convincing. Sleeping and waking up in a wet bed was awful.
All my bedwetting siblings wore protection, too. So do my kids. I don’t remember any of my siblings resisting it, and my kids haven’t either. I wouldn’t force it on anyone who is old enough to make a choice. But I would always provide the option, stressing the practical and hygienic for both of us. (I don’t like washing sheets when I don’t have to, and I really don’t getting up in the middle of the night to change wet sheets.)
Mom was not much given to euphemism, but she called it “protection”. For goodness sake, she told me when I had kids, don’t ever use the word “diaper” to a person over two years old! Call it “protection” or “pants”, or use a product name. (P&G and Kimberly-Clark marketing departments spent a lot of money making sure that you don’t have to say, “diaper”.)
I don’t like euphemism any better than Mom did, but calling it a diaper is not good salesmanship for the idea that wearing it doesn’t reflect on a child’s maturity.
Update, 11 Feb 2015:
I would now put this more strongly:
A bedwetter should wear protection.
A parent of a young bedwetter should insist on protection.
A parent of a bedwetter old enough to make a mature decision should offer and very strongly recommend and encourage protection.
Why the stronger advice?
- the sleep quality of an unprotected bedwetter is significantly worse than a non-bedwetter, but
- the sleep quality of a protected bedwetter is as good as that of a non-bedwetter.
Given the importance of quality sleep for children, adolescents and teenagers, that’s a strong argument for wearing protection. That’s in addition to the obvious arguments:
It’s just practical, for hygiene and comfort and housekeeping. It’s easier to clean up than wet sheets and pajamas. It’s more comfortable and hygienic than a puddle of urine. It doesn’t make you an infant. It’s not punishment. Nobody else needs to know, so there’s no reason to feel humiliated.