Potty Training

What do I do when he just wants to stay in diapers?

I'm Tiffany, a married stay at home mother of a 3 1/2 year old boy and an almost 2 year old girl.

I am at the point of being beyond frustration with this potty training business. I feel like one of us may not make it out alive.

We started doing things with my son on the potty after he turned 2. Not really forcing it, just letting him sit on the potty. Occasionally he would pee, after a little fight of getting him to sit on the potty.

After a few weeks we backed off a little. He had a severe speech delay, and the doctor agreed that since he didn't have the language to express needing to pee or poop ahead of time (and made no signs or gestures about it either), that it would be fine to hold off on potty training for him.

So we started up trying much harder after his 3rd birthday in July 2012.

Sometimes he would go into the potty willingly, other times it was a little bit of a fight. Sometimes he would pee, and sometimes not. But when he DID pee, he was ecstatic and SO proud of himself!! He started pre-school in the fall and was getting assistance from a speech therapist, and he has comes leaps and bounds as far as expressing himself and talking, but still won't let us know before he has to pee.

The other day, out of frustration, I tried the whole going cold turkey thing.

I said when he gets home from preschool, we're going into underwear, no plastic pants over them. (This has always been a fear/problem of mine, I am very ocd and a germaphobe, and hate the thought of him possibly peeing all over the floor or furniture when it soaks through his pants).

The first day was an all out battle. He has 2 kinds of underpants he chose himself (angry birds and toy story) but refused to put them on. He threw a screaming tantrum and I put him in a timeout. He ended up telling me he would rather sit in a timeout than put his underwear on. He sat in timeout for almost 20 minutes before agreeing to try to pee and put his underwear on.

We did this for 3 days. Not once did he express that he had to pee BEFORE it happened. (Needless to say I had a lot of laundry this week). And several times he fought with me and told me he would just rather wear diapers.

 

WHAT DO I DO??!?!?!?!

My son will pee when he's on the potty, but has openly and repeatedly told me he would rather wear diapers :-(

I'm at a loss.

He is now 3 1/2 years old, and I'm starting to worry that people are just going to think I'm lazy, or not doing my job, when I end up with a 4 year old still in diapers. We can't even get the peeing down, and I feel like pooping in the potty is never going to happen. 

 

Re: What do I do when he just wants to stay in diapers?

  • IMO, he really doesn't seem ready. Kids are ready at all different ages, and even though most are potty trained by 3.5, some aren't. Don't worry about what other people think. It's not worth all the stress to you and your son. 

    The only advice I really have for you is to take a break and try retraining in a few months. Maybe he just needs a break. Also, I'm not sure putting him in timeout just because he wouldn't put underwear on was really a good idea. I was told that punishment of any kind during potty training actually makes things worse for them and turns it into a negative experience for them. If he doesn't want to wear underwear around the house at first I would just let him stay naked from the waist down. I hear you on the whole "germs" part and are paranoid about him having accidents, but they are going to happen. So you need to get over that. He WILL pee on your floors. Totally normal and part of the potty training process. If he has accidents just wearing pants and no diaper he won't like the feeling and that may be the motivation he needs to use the potty next time instead.  

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  • image lisa5ny:

    IMO, he really doesn't seem ready. Kids are ready at all different ages, and even though most are potty trained by 3.5, some aren't. Don't worry about what other people think. It's not worth all the stress to you and your son. 

    The only advice I really have for you is to take a break and try retraining in a few months. Maybe he just needs a break. Also, I'm not sure putting him in timeout just because he wouldn't put underwear on was really a good idea. I was told that punishment of any kind during potty training actually makes things worse for them and turns it into a negative experience for them. If he doesn't want to wear underwear around the house at first I would just let him stay naked from the waist down. I hear you on the whole "germs" part and are paranoid about him having accidents, but they are going to happen. So you need to get over that. He WILL pee on your floors. Totally normal and part of the potty training process. If he has accidents just wearing pants and no diaper he won't like the feeling and that may be the motivation he needs to use the potty next time instead.  

     

    thanks Lisa!

     I should've clarified, he didn't actually get the timeout for not wearing the underwear, just said he'd rather stay there than wear them! He's a piece of work.

  • look as frustrating (and messy) as it is I think you need to set a date to move to undies and just stick to it

    it took ages for my dd to consistently tell me she had to go - sometimes she'd tell me, after the initial 3 days of training, but really it took at least a week - almost 2 really before she told me MOST of the time

    now it's been 5ish weeks and I don't even have to ask her anymore, she always tells me

    stick with it - and he'll get it

    what worked well with us was to set up an immediate reward - she gets an M&M when she goes and that was a HUGE motivation for her

    GL!

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  • My ds was pretty adamant about never wearing underwear.  I did like pp said.  I chose a day, put him in the underwear, and stuck it out.  By the end of the day, he was telling me he had to go.  Since then, he has had a handful of accidents and still sometimes says he wants diapers.  I tell him they are not an option.  He does still wear one to bed but no other time.  I need to cut it out but ds has not stayed dry at night yet.
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