Welcome to the Parcopresis Website

What is Parcopresis?

Parcopresis can be described as: “An inability to defecate when other people are perceived or likely to be around (e.g. in the same public toilet, the same house or the same building).” This inability limits the sufferer to being able to defecate only in a limited number of ‘safe’ places thus restricting their lifestyle. The level of restriction varies depending on the severity of each sufferer’s condition but in extreme cases it can force people to give up their jobs, avoid holidays they would love to take, and generally dictate and limit most aspects of their lives. A medical description is ‘Psychogenic Faecal Retention’. It affects both men and women, of all ages and backgrounds; it is a form of toilet phobia. The term “Parcopresis” has been coined by the creators of this website since, as far as we know, no medical term has previously existed for it until now. Another name for it is “Shy Bowel Syndrome”.

Shy Bowel Book
Click HERE for details

The Equivalent Problem With Urination.

Parcopresis is the faecal equivalent of paruresis (psychogenic urinary retention). The UK support site for paruresis is at:

Can I be cured?

There may be no 100% cure; however up until now there has been very little if any research or documentation on treatment of this condition so it is impossible to say. Techniques such as cognitive-behavioural therapy and hypnotherapy appear to be useful and sharing experiences and insights seems to help too (see the message board via the link on the left). It is also worth trying to stop thinking in terms of cure/no cure... and to focus instead on 'improvement' (which is definitely possible).

How can I contact you?

You can get in touch by email. Click on the link on the left called "Contact us" for further details.

Internet based information and support:

The link to the Message Board is in the menu options on the left. There you can read messages posted by others, you can post yourself, and you can reply to existing posts. Use it to ask questions, seek support, or tell your story. You can be as anonymous as you like. Just remember it is there for support, so abstain from insensitive comments. The board is actively monitored (moderated), and any abusive or misleading postings will be edited, erased or, as a last resort, the poster can be barred.

Warning and Disclaimer

This website is NOT a substitute for medical advice and does not constitute the practice of medicine, psychiatry, clinical psychology, clinical social work or any other mental health profession. If you are having trouble defecating, you should always contact your doctor because difficulty with voiding can be a symptom of a serious physical medical condition.
The purpose of this website is to help people cope with faecal dysfunction that has a psychological or social origin. On it we are NOT practising medicine, psychiatry, clinical psychology, clinical social work or any other mental health profession.
You should have your doctor evaluate your condition before diagnosing yourself, and seek the appropriate necessary mental health counselling if warranted. The owner of this website disclaims all legal liability whatsoever.