I have bipolar disorder and panic disorder and schizo aff disorder. I was sexually abused as a child. my question is that is wearing diapers wrong? For some reason, they relieve my anxiety and and make me feel relaxed, safe and secure. I find nothing sexual about it at all but I feel like a freak. is it ok to do this if it helps me cope? I am on many medications too and I also cant hold it during the night, I sleep too deeply. I feel ashamed. should I be?

A. There are many adults, male and female, who wear diapers. They may be called incontinence devices, protective underwear, absorbent briefs, etc. For the people that wear these products, they are a godsend. It enables them to function normally in life. They can go to work, participate in sports, go to the fitness center, etc., all without the fear of embarrassment. The protective undergarments that you wear, act to make you feel less anxious and of course it does exactly the same thing for others who wear these garments.

Some people wear these garments 24 hours a day and others only to sleep in. When you walk down the street or sit in the park and watch people walk by, do you know how you can identify people wearing protective under garments? You can’t. Many people have problems with incontinence of one type or another but as a society we simply don’t talk about it. We may see the commercials on television to alert us to this condition but it would be very rare for a wearer of adult diapers to be discussing this in a casual conversation.

Things that people find embarrassing or things that people think would cause others to think less of them are simply hidden. Many people cannot urinate without catheterizing themselves. They must carry either a disposable or reusable catheter with them wherever they go. But this also is not talked about and again we might not even know about this if it were not for the commercials on television, selling such devices.

It appears that wearing adult diapers reduces your anxiety and makes you feel more secure and from your provided description, harms you in no apparent way. I hope this has helped in some small way. Thanks for writing.

Dr. Kristina Randle