The Crazy Kitchen: When Toilet Training Doesn't Go To Plan

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Monday, 27 February 2012

When Toilet Training Doesn't Go To Plan

If you're venturing out on the whole potty training experience I'm sure you're armed with lots of advice about decorating the potty, buying pretty pants and using reward charts. Whilst all this advice comes with well meaning it doesn't necessarily mean that what works for one will work for another - what if you have a little one that refuses to be in the same room as a potty or toilet training seat let alone decorate one, what if your little one screams the place down when you attempt to take their nappy off in the hope of putting a pair of pants on or leave them bare bottomed and what if your little gorgeous bundle of joy is not tempted in the slightest by receiving stickers to stick on a chart - my stubborn little man was one of these 'not like you read in the text books' kind of child.

Our potty training experience this time around started on January 3rd after one of our regular 'nappies are for babies' conversations - this time Jack agreed that he was no longer a baby and would like to wear pants and do all his poos and wees on the potty like a big boy. In the past we had struggled to even get Jack near a potty and he would never entertain the idea of wearing pants and would definitely never go without a nappy, or trousers for that matter, so this was a huge breakthrough. I had on more than one occasion taken him shopping for a toilet seat or potty but he wasn't tempted by the brightly coloured potties and seats adorned with Thomas or Iggle Piggle, and on one occasion kicked one across the shop.  We did, however, own 3 potties and a padded toilet seat so we were well prepared for that day, should it ever come.

I started off by sitting Jack on the potty every 30 minutes or so whilst watching tv or playing on the ipad but, despite drinking plenty, he still hadn't produced a wee by late afternoon so I knew he had the ability to hold it. For the next few days it was hit or miss whether he did a wee on the potty or it ended up on the floor. I got into a routine of sitting him on the potty every 2-3 hours and after a while he managed to relax enough to be able to produce a wee within seconds of sitting - once I knew he was able to do this I would get him off the potty if he didn't do one within the first 10 seconds or so, whereas before it had been taking 15-20 minutes for him to stop fidgeting enough to relax. 

Even though Jack was managing wee's on the potty he wasn't asking to go and if left would just wet himself.  We still had the issue of poo's to overcome and by the Friday of the first week I was feeling extremely stressed when, by 10am, I was dealing with the second pant poo of the day. I was ready to throw in the towel, admit defeat and go back to nappies but instead decided , against lots of advice out there, to give pull-ups a go. Over the next few days we concentrated on getting the wee's sorted and the pull-ups took the pressure off the risk of pant poo's and by the follow Wednesday we had a result....a poo, albeit a very small one, on the potty - problem was I hadn't realised Jack had done a poo until he sat on my knee and I wondered what the whiff was!

Two days later I posted this photo, which says it all really...we were ecstatic!


Knowing that Jack was capable of doing poo's on the potty we went back to pants and the following week, on his first day at preschool for that week, I received a phone call from him to tell me that he had done his very first poo on the potty there.

Uploaded from the Photobucket iPhone App 
Even though things seemed to be going so well Jack still wasn't asking to go so we were still having accidents. Most of my afternoons with him were spent on 'poo watch', looking out for the signs that he needed to go, and if I let him out of my sight for 2 minutes I knew that I would find him in a corner looking sheepish with a bulge in his pants. I was at my wits end and I had no idea what to do. I had been through 18 months of 'accidents' with Hanna and I really didn't feel up to going through that again - we'd tried bribes rewards of stickers, chocolates and dinosaurs - he would get one whenever he produced a poo on the toilet, but it still seemed to be only happening by luck rather than judgement and however much Jack was saying that his next poo would be in the toilet and not in his pants it would only happen if we spotted the signs and whisked him onto the toilet in time. The week before last Jack finally asked to go for a poo on the toilet, and went - I was overjoyed and thought we had turned a huge corner. My joy was shortlived though as the next day he returned to doing it in the comfort of his pants...until Saturday when he asked to go, not just once, but twice...and produced each time. 

Uploaded from the Photobucket iPhone App
showing us how many poos..

Yesterday and today have been the same and I am now all out of cars and people that I bought on Saturday morning, at Jack's request, as a reward. Today I have been so proud of him as he told me he needed a poo, climbed up onto the toilet by himself and called me when he'd finished. I'm hoping that we have now turned the final corner in our toilet training journey, tomorrow at Pre-school will be a big test.

I am linking this up Mummy Central's Parentonomy, where they say that potty training 'can be the most stressful experience of our lives' and they're not wrong there. In my experience of being a parent (11 years) I think it has been THE most stressful part so far, and the only useful piece of advice that I can offer is

 'use your nappy budget to buy wine instead, you're gonna need it'

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for the link. Jack sounds a bit like Bud. Fingers crossed we turn the corner soon.



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