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Potty Training

DS' school started PT when he was 20 months old at his request. A year later and he is not PT. He "gets it" but to this point has been disinterested. We turned a corner a few weeks ago and he is engaged. He transitions to underwear in the afternoon at school and wears it until bed at 7:00.  He has few accidents at school.  He has an accident every evening - he appears opposed to pooping on the potty at home.  It baffles me.  Any tips?  I feel like we are at a critical juncture and I am failing.  Layer in trying to help the two older kids with homework, facilitate playdates/study sessions, make dinner, get kids ready for sports and field work things that come up and evenings are already these crazy maelstroms. 

I have considered setting the timer on my phone to go off every 20 minutes.  I would put him on the potty at those intervals.  Current intervals are 30-45 minutes depending on the level of insanity.  Help?

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Re: Potty Training

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    Do you have another adult in the home who can help with homework/playdates/dinner so you can focus on your son? 
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    Unfortunately, no. DH travels for work. So the other night I was literally covered in poop, my bb was blowing up, then my personal cell started blowing up (same fire drill). DS consequently learned the phrase "eff it". Not my best moments.
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    On the pooping in the potty issue, I have no advice either. DS is now potty trained during the waking hours EXCEPT for poop. He really doesn't want to do it.

     Also we have offered not just treats, but GOOD treats (his version of good treats) for a BM in the potty - fudge stripe or oreos. He is at the point now where he is crying b/c he isn't getting the treat. But it's like a distressed, panicked cry like he thinks he really can't do it.

    My latest thing has been making sure he gets plenty of fiber so his stools are soft to where it doesn't bother him to go as much, but it doesn't seem to make a difference in his behavior.



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    He gets one MM for pee, two for both. There is a big lego set in the bathroom that he selected as his prize. He asks to look at it every time he potties and verbally clarifies the milestones. He has even attempted to negotiate one block per successful potty attempt, which I might break down and do.

     I really like the idea @Clarypax of giving him the option of deciding underwear or pullup. He is a little bit of a control freak in weird ways, so that might really appeal to him and make him more accountable.  My oldest was PT by this age, switched to panties no accidents. My middle was four. I really just want this to be over.

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    For what it's worth, we are in the same boat.  My DD is the same age as yours, and daycare started potty training about a month ago.  We weren't really ready to start, since DD hadn't really been showing signs of readiness yet, but we just went along with it.  She is still having like 3 accidents a day, and I really don't think it's clicking yet.  We are definitely starting to get frustrated!

    It's also created a problem for us at home because she is used to going to the potty every 30 minutes like they do at school, so she wants to go ALL THE TIME, and that doesn't always work with what we're doing.  If she were actually peeing or pooping each time then I would totally be fine with it, but I'm not sure she totally gets it yet, so we just go to the bathroom, she sits on the potty and then says "all done" even though she didn't do anything! Rinse and repeat every 30 minutes!

    I'm not going to worry about it until after the holidays.  With my DS, we waited until about 2 months before his 3rd birthday, and he potty trained in a day.  I really think so much of this is about the individual kid, and you can't really "force" them to potty train.   


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    Does he poop at daycare?

    If not, he's probably holding it in until he's home and feels safer. 

    The one thing I've learned about potty training is there's no one simple way :)) Your son's almost there, which is great!

    For DD who is interested in direct rewards, it was a gold fish cracker every time she was successful on the toilet, for DS who couldn't care less about things to eat, but is a long term planner it was the promise of a lego kit if he got enough stickers on his chart.


    Potty training was so hard for me to deal with because it requires so much patience. Good luck!
    2 children - DD born Dec 2004, DS born Jan 2007
    British born, emigrated to Canada 2006
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    Maybe he is just not quite ready?  I waited to PT until my kids were more than ready, and we have not had any problem with them pooping on the potty.  By waiting, I mean waiting to use underwear.  They both had months of practice using the potty for pee and poop before we put them in underwear.  I would at least let him choose diaper or underwear at home.  DD just switched to underwear this weekend.  I still have to watch her like a hawk at her usual poop times.  The second she starts to squat, I swoop her up and put her on the potty.  She has no problem going once I sit her up there.
    DS born 8/8/09 and DD born 6/12/12.
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    School is really, really pushing this.  The weekend was pretty insane (we were places like soccer fields, pumpkin patch, trunk or treat, jump birthday party, a school event at which I was volunteering - places where there wasn't easy access or an accident would have been a disaster) so he was in pull ups for most of it.  When he was in underwear he did well. This morning he was in a pull up and I took him to DC late - he pooped in the potty around 8 (based on DC I think this is a "normal" time for him). However, he said "the pee pee is coming" and did not pee. He only pooped. I think he isn't quite there yet physically with being able to tell.

    I have a conference this Friday, and don't quite know how to tell DC. His teacher is so adamant that he is just being stubborn. I don't see it that way at all.

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    You are the parent and DCP should follow your lead. Ask DCP to use pull-ups but offer potty at scheduled times and take him when he asks. Do the same at home. Try underwear again in a month or two.
    DS born 8/8/09 and DD born 6/12/12.
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    My DS quickly potty trained for pees last month and rarely has an accident but will not poop in the potty. At school he sits on the potty every 10 minutes but will still then poop In his underwear. We have tried offering rewards I know he wants but he still will not poop in the potty.
    His teacher recommended trying to have him not wear underwear and when he realizes there is nothing to catch the poop it could help him use the potty. She said she routinely sees boys that do not want to poop in the potty for some reason,and some of them have tried this and it worked. I think after one more week if trying to get him to use the potty we will move to no underwear and see .

    Wait, your kid is sitting on the potty every 10 minutes? That's crazy. What a horrible way to spend the day.
    DS born 8/8/09 and DD born 6/12/12.
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    I think I needed to hear that it's OK. It's hard when all of the other kids are PT and the teacher doesn't understand why DS is not. He's not because he isn't. He does pretty well. He is just not there yet. And it really doesn't have to be more than that. And yeah, he will totally be in a pull up for trick or treat and all day Saturday for Homecoming (tailgating is not PT friendly). Maybe *I* am not there yet? (is that weird? trick or treat, can we use your potty? seems total nightmare to me).
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    b0710 said:

    I would not stress about it.  If your son doesn't feel ready yet, I wouldn't push it.  My son was 3 1/2 when he finally trained with no accidents at all.  He was ready, asked to wear underwear and use the potty, etc.  Pushing a kid that isn't ready is setting them up for failure.  At your conference, just tell your DC that your son isn't ready to be fully potty trained yet, and you would rather give him the developmental time that he needs to get there.  It's ok if you aren't there either....diapers/pull-ups are much easier in some scenarios!

    This! It's totally ok for you to not be ready, too!
    DS born 8/8/09 and DD born 6/12/12.
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