*I discussed in detail with my shrink my pooping problem. She (although I know she's being paid) didn't run, grossed out, from the room but was able to talk to me about it. Saying it out loud was good.
*I set out boundaries with my family. I need time in the morning for a 'routine', and it is not (or rarely) negotiable.
* I have been able to mention this issue with the folks I travel with and they still 'like' me - that makes me feel comfortable and accepted as well.
*When I travel, which is a big one, I discussed 'elimination methods' with my doctor, who agreed the use of laxatives short term would be O.K. Before I go away, I make sure my diet is in tune with being regular - lots of fibre and water, fruits and veg - so I have no choice but to want to 'go.' Probiotic supplements are useful as well. Then I take all methods of laxatives in my luggage, from pills, suppositories to enemas, so I have the comfort of knowing I have the ability to relieve myself. If I can't get my mind to make me go, then the laxatives will make me go! I am prepared to use them every day, (gotta keep the pump primed) for the duration of my trip . I feel empowered therefore less stressed, and have more success. Not the knowledge of the big pooping drought ahead, until I get to return to my own toilet. My last trip was actually FUN! I know it's all in my head, so even if I am purposely fooling myself that the probiotics and laxatives work I don't care - whatever gets me through! I know I can't do it on my own, so the 'intervention' does the job. For me, I have to make a conscious effort to go, it's not just a physical thing that happens. Especially if the routine (and toilet) is in any way altered. I have my 'window' and if I lose that it's game over until another day.
Don't get me wrong, I still spend a lot of time worrying about this, and a lot of preparation, but it's positive and proactive, not reactive as in the past. Some success has given me a more positive outlook, and opens up possibilities I never entertained - what a great feeling.
I hope this continues to work, or even get better. (I'm not sure that it will ever truly go away.) To think about a trip and not get my stomach (and intestines?) in knots is so great. To be less embarrassed about something so natural is good - I always felt I was turning something natural (a casual poop in the morning) to something else (the need to go back home or suffer) to alleviate an otherwise natural occurrence. That's it - I'm learning to be casual about it! Maintaining my 'routine' on a daily basis is empowering as well. I feel I spent a lot of time hoping 'this time would be the one that worked' and it never happened. I finally realized I would have to change my own habits. I hope this helps. I hope I can continue this success, that it is not a lucky blip. I'm going away next week, for a week, I'll let you know if it all still works!