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Hubble bubble toilet trouble


Registered User
Mar 2, 2017
My wife's hygiene and toilet habits are getting worse. She is not incontinent but is increasingly confused about how to use the toilet and wash herself, and hostile to the idea that I might assist her in any way. Soiled clothing and frequent changes are becoming more common.

I managed to get her to change into a clean set of clothes this morning (having worn yesterday’s clothes in bed). Her knickers and trousers were soiled but not excessively. Later, after she had been sitting in the kitchen whilst the hairdresser was here, I noticed staining on the (faux leather) chair. Closer inspection and cleaning showed this to be faeces that had come through her trousers. I encouraged her to undress again and to clean herself in the toilet before putting on another clean pair of knickers and trousers. I’m not sure how successful this was.

Dealing with this problem is becoming very difficult for both of us. I don’t want to go down the route of incontinence products yet if this can be avoided. I know that this would be distressing for her and challenging for me. I am rather hoping that by finding her a place in residential care the sensitive task of keeping her clean will stop being my responsibility. I don’t think that I’m being selfish, just acknowledging that I am no longer able to cope on my own. Knowing one's own limits is important and I feel that I am nearing mine ...


Registered User
Feb 25, 2014
South coast
I don’t think that I’m being selfish, just acknowledging that I am no longer able to cope on my own. Knowing one's own limits is important and I feel that I am nearing mine ...
Thats not being selfish - thats being sensible and sensitive to your wifes needs


Registered User
May 21, 2014
It's not selfish but care homes have staff problems and I would question their ability to keep your wife clean without the use of incontinence products. Usually, that's the first thing most care homes use, I'm afraid. You say your wife is not incontinent but I would describe her behaviour as typical for someone who is. If you don't want to go down the route of inco pads, it's up to you as long as she can be kept clean and her skin damage free, but sooner or later she will probably end up in them, and for me OH's early introduction and reluctant acceptance was vital to tackling the problem.


Registered User
Feb 27, 2018
My mother's care home try to keep all the residents continent for as long as possible. They do this by taking each resident to the toilet on a regular rota, rather than waiting for them to ask. A year ago my mother had a couple of 'accidents' and I thought she was on the verge of incontinence, but they have kept her continent by taking her to the toilet every two hours. She does wear an inco pad at night in case they don't get to her at the right time (and there is a plastic mattress cover). So it's possible a care home could help your wife stay continent for longer, if she will accept help from a female carer.

(When my mother broke her hip and was in hospital for ten days last summer, the healthcare assistants told me she was incontinent - but when I suggested they proactively take her to the toilet and not wait for her to ask, she suddenly became continent again.)


Registered User
Apr 24, 2013
Yes it does take effort to set up a routine. I Get up twice during the night and take my husband to the toilet but if I get the timing wrong then he is wet. I use large size pads during the day and direct him to the toilet regularly and at night I use the pads plus plastic pants and Kylie sheets. I have never made an issue of all of this or even discussed it much with him but just got on with it in a matter of fact way. It needs to be done and I don't much like doing it but if it has to be done then it has to be done.

If he becomes regularly doubly incontinent then I will think again. I can deal with an occasional accident but .......


Registered User
Jun 30, 2017
I started my husband off in pull-ups which were more acceptable than pads but had to start using pads when he refused to change pull-ups during the day - it meant taking off his shoes and trousers and this he refused. He's still was resistant to lowering his trousers and the pants that were supplied with the pads so sometimes went all day without changing. Made it difficult to go anywhere in the afternoon or evening, or have visitors.
He has now been in residential care for just over a week and I noticed he went off quietly with a carer to be changed. Thank goodness!


Registered User
Jul 23, 2017
N Ireland
I use prompts to keep my wife dry as she has become less able to read the bodily signs or to anticipate need.

Inco products aren't required yet but I talk about them to, hopefully, get my wife used to the idea that she may need them in the future.

I also talk about the fact that it isn't an issue for me and so shouldn't be one for her either as we love each other and each of us would deal with it for the other, in the hope that she won't become so embarrassed that it will lead to agitation in the future.

My plans may not help but we can only try.


Registered User
Mar 2, 2017
I acknowledge all you say @Beate and have no issues with the use of incontinence products, it is just my own reluctance to start down that road ... Maybe some advice from a continence specialist would be a good place to start.