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Posted: 9/2/2004 5:07:51 PM EST
I'm at my wits end with our 3 year old son. He knows when he needs to pee and poop but he absolutely refuses to tell us when he needs to do so. If we make him pee, he usually throws a fit and cries about it but will go. He refuses to poop, period. He will poop almost every night after he is in bed and then he hollers at us and tells us he made a poopy diaper. If we ask him if he needs to poop, he will tell us no and then poop in his pants after we leave. If it's during the day, he will go to another room and poop and then come tell us.

I don't know what else to do. I am sick and tired of changing diapers on a three year old who knows what it's all about. He's just being stubborn. My wife is taking care of our new baby so it's hard for her to make him go to the bathroom during the day. He hasn't started this since the baby came, he's done this for months. It's driving me nuts and I'm past annoyed.

Fathers, what's worked for you and at what age?
Link Posted: 9/2/2004 5:10:41 PM EST
Leave him in the pooped diaper.....


Tough, but it works.

In my case, the girls just clicked one day and, aside from a few accidents, went right into potty-trained mode. One took much longer than the other, but she rolled into it eventually, too.
Link Posted: 9/2/2004 5:11:16 PM EST
Link Posted: 9/2/2004 5:22:31 PM EST
I was just explaining this to a friend - the more you insist, the more the child will resist. This is especially true if the child is stubborn in other areas. This is the first thing in a child's life in which they have complete control.

I would suggest getting him out of diapers and into some 'big boy' underwear. Soiled underwear are quite a bit more uncomfortable than a diaper that keeps the moisture away from the skin.
Link Posted: 9/2/2004 5:25:47 PM EST
With my then 3 yo, now 7yo daughter, we went through almost the same thing. Except most of the time she wouldn't go even if we put her on the pot. Two minutes later she'd be wet or dirty.

One Saturday morning I decided I'd had enough of that. Right after she woke up, I put her on the pot with the usual reaction "I don't have to go". I knew better and told her to go anyway. Then the protesting started, I told her I am off work all day, so we are just going to sit here til you go. What followed was some of the most horrific screaming and crying I have ever heard. I was so bad, my wife went into the bedroom and cried too. After an hour of that she went, and that was the last time she ever wore a diaper.

Now my youngest daughter, who is now 4 would happily go if put on the pot. But would never tell us when she had to go, We started trying right after she turned 3 too. Nothing seemed to work to get her to tell us. She didn't even complain when she was wet or dirty. After a couple of months of that, I had sort of an epiphany while watching a diaper commercial. You know how comfortable and dry the new diapers are supposed to be, well I though maybe they are too comfortable. I told her they quit making diapers, and she'd have to wear big girl panties now. She liked that idea, until she had an accident. Thick cotton undies just aren't comfy when wet. A couple of weeks of frequent clothing changes, and we were all done with that. It did however take almost another year to get rid of the pacifier.

Mike
Link Posted: 9/2/2004 5:58:57 PM EST
[Last Edit: 9/11/2004 9:09:51 AM EST by AMHsix]
.
Link Posted: 9/2/2004 6:37:13 PM EST
My little brother was apparently hard to toilet train so one day my Mom kept him in the kitchen all day (she was there too) with no pants or diaper on. When he tried to pee on the floor she yelled at him and got him onto the pottie. Of course he did grow up to be a liberal.....

GunLvr
Link Posted: 9/2/2004 6:43:23 PM EST
Cheerios in the toilet for peeing... try to sink the Cheerios. Make a game of it.

Poops... my sister-in-law did the incentive thing... a "Poop" board or something where every shit he took he get s a sticker to put up on the board that shows he took a dump. Cheap and it worked. Before that he used to hold it for as long as he possibly could and started to have serious problem with getting backed up.
Link Posted: 9/2/2004 6:53:10 PM EST
One thing that seemed to work with some of the older kids was to tell them they neede to go "on the potty" so they could teach their younger brother/sister. It worked for a couple. It kind of made them feel more grown-up. The "leave him in the dirty diaper/underwear thing worked on a couple too. You just have to try a few things and see what works the best. I personaly don't think a "reward" (candy,etc.) thing is a good idea. Alot of praise and "Atta boys" sure , but no prize.

Link Posted: 9/2/2004 7:04:57 PM EST
Duct tape em to the toilet and tell em your gonna leave him there until he poops and pees.
Link Posted: 9/2/2004 7:10:29 PM EST
[Last Edit: 9/2/2004 7:13:47 PM EST by Hydguy]
The way it happened for us was I forgot to get pullups on the way home from work.

Had a few accidents, but she learned..
Link Posted: 9/2/2004 7:13:23 PM EST

Originally Posted By pathfinder74:
Cheerios in the toilet for peeing... try to sink the Cheerios. Make a game of it.

Poops... my sister-in-law did the incentive thing... a "Poop" board or something where every shit he took he get s a sticker to put up on the board that shows he took a dump. Cheap and it worked. Before that he used to hold it for as long as he possibly could and started to have serious problem with getting backed up.



+1
I used to run a Early Childhood Center and this is haow we would help the parents with potty training. If one kid could do it, then usually all the other kids would want to try.
Link Posted: 9/2/2004 7:17:54 PM EST
Use some of the reward systems mentioned above. With our son, all it took was a bunch of praise - but that was his reward. Right now, your son if comfortable with the method he is using now (diapers). Try to provide some incentive for him to want to move out of that method. I'd hesitate using some type of punishment at this age.

You need to think of your son as a reluctant mule that you want to move into the barn. Would it be easier to beat it over the head with a board or coax it in with a carrot?
Link Posted: 9/2/2004 7:19:35 PM EST

Originally Posted By firstelc:

Originally Posted By pathfinder74:
Cheerios in the toilet for peeing... try to sink the Cheerios. Make a game of it.

Poops... my sister-in-law did the incentive thing... a "Poop" board or something where every shit he took he get s a sticker to put up on the board that shows he took a dump. Cheap and it worked. Before that he used to hold it for as long as he possibly could and started to have serious problem with getting backed up.



+1
I used to run a Early Childhood Center and this is haow we would help the parents with potty training. If one kid could do it, then usually all the other kids would want to try.



+2

We simply took the diapers away except for at night when my boy was a year or two old (I can't remember...) We'd spend lots of time outdoors and if he went to the bathroom it was a totally different feeling than he expected. He'd feel piss running all down his legs and wonder WTF was going on. He caught on real quick. As far as #2 goes, we got a small gumball machine full of M&M's just for him that he got a penny every time he took a dump to get candy with as a reward.
Link Posted: 9/2/2004 7:20:39 PM EST
m&m's worked for my cousins.

My parent's bought me a sort of small portable toilet for kids when i was little. Hell, I'd put that bad boy in front of the T.V., pop a squat and watch Sesame Street and The Dukes of Hazard all day. But eventually I got too old for it and started carrying the T.V. to the bathroom.
Link Posted: 9/2/2004 7:21:54 PM EST
[Last Edit: 9/2/2004 7:22:15 PM EST by BigDozer66]

Originally Posted By pathfinder74:
Cheerios in the toilet for peeing... try to sink the Cheerios. Make a game of it.

Poops... my sister-in-law did the incentive thing... a "Poop" board or something where every shit he took he get s a sticker to put up on the board that shows he took a dump. Cheap and it worked. Before that he used to hold it for as long as he possibly could and started to have serious problem with getting backed up.



That is sort of what we did.

BigDozer66
Link Posted: 9/2/2004 7:27:43 PM EST
I feel your pain. We've got a 39 month old that just started doing both. Pee'ing he has been doing fine for months but he was the same way and refused to poop. Finally took him into the throne room and let him observe daddy perform.....after a few times and some POSITIVE reinforcement he finally decided to go. But he doesn't want us around; however, he will call for us to clean him up promptly after he finishes. He still wears Pull Ups right now as a precaution. He hasn't messed one up in weeks [YESSSSSS].........
Link Posted: 9/2/2004 7:29:04 PM EST
[Last Edit: 9/2/2004 7:46:18 PM EST by The_Macallan]
First of all, don't stress about it. When they're ready - they're ready.

Encourage them but don't make it a power-thing. Don't FIGHT with them about it. Try working for a few days or a week and if it isn't working, back off for a while.

Relax.

- Try the reward thing. A small toy or snack. Have them in pullups and don't be all panicky when they make a mess, just take them to their toilet and let them finish or show them where they have to go.

- Making a game of it is a good idea. Tell them stories or read to them on the potty - even books about potty-training. There's lots of "I'm learning to go to the potty now" books for kids.

- Have them show by example or have them "teach" your new baby or their favorite teddy bear or their Buzz Lightyear toy how to sit on the potty and pee or poop. Nobody likes being at the bottom of the totempole - and little kids will feel more pride if they can teach someone else (even if it's just a toy) something.

- Have them watch someone else - a sibling or cousin who's close to the same age. They'll respond better if they know that one of their peers can do it and they'll want to emulate them.

But whatever you do - relax. It WILL happen.

EVERYONE gets potty-trained.

Don't stress about it. Just be ready for a few messes - and tell'em it's okay and bring them into the bathroom to finish.


BTW... Boys are especially slower in potty-training.

Ours wasn't potty-trained until almost four and wasn't poop-trained until after his 4th birthday. One day, it just started happening - it was like a light went on in his head and he just felt ready.

Good luck.
Link Posted: 9/2/2004 7:39:09 PM EST

Originally Posted By The_Macallan:

EVERYONE gets potty-trained.





Did you see the demonstrators in NY?
Link Posted: 9/2/2004 7:44:48 PM EST

Originally Posted By MissouriBob:

Originally Posted By The_Macallan:
EVERYONE gets potty-trained.

Did you see the demonstrators in NY?

Hippies pee themselves on purpose.

Link Posted: 9/3/2004 5:18:39 AM EST
Thanks for the advice guys. I guess I'll try to remain calm and try the approach of teaching his brother. The reward thing doesn't motivate him; tried that before. I just hope he learns pretty quickly.
Link Posted: 9/3/2004 5:33:18 AM EST
Put him in regular underwear. As long as he has diapers, he will will go in them.
Link Posted: 9/3/2004 5:33:25 AM EST
With our son...he's almost six now, one day, out of the blue when he about 3, I put him on the pot...just sat him there....

He didn't do anything, but I started a routine..every hour, I'm a Stay-At-Home Dad, I would put him on the potty...

About a week later, he pooped....after that, and a ton of praise, DON"T FORGET THE PRAISE!!, he started going when I placed him there...same with peeing.....

At about 3 1/2 half, he was going on his own and wiping....

Now I hope I have that good of luck with our 2 1/2 year old daughter...
Link Posted: 9/3/2004 5:50:47 AM EST
I used to put some of the wife's hair mousse into the bowl to give my son a reactive target. He thought it was fun to melt it away. After that, he was trying to go even when he didn't....
Link Posted: 9/3/2004 6:01:54 AM EST
Link Posted: 9/3/2004 6:16:35 AM EST

Originally Posted By The_Macallan:
First of all, don't stress about it. When they're ready - they're ready.

Encourage them but don't make it a power-thing. Don't FIGHT with them about it. Try working for a few days or a week and if it isn't working, back off for a while.

Relax.

- Try the reward thing. A small toy or snack. Have them in pullups and don't be all panicky when they make a mess, just take them to their toilet and let them finish or show them where they have to go.

- Making a game of it is a good idea. Tell them stories or read to them on the potty - even books about potty-training. There's lots of "I'm learning to go to the potty now" books for kids.

- Have them show by example or have them "teach" your new baby or their favorite teddy bear or their Buzz Lightyear toy how to sit on the potty and pee or poop. Nobody likes being at the bottom of the totempole - and little kids will feel more pride if they can teach someone else (even if it's just a toy) something.

- Have them watch someone else - a sibling or cousin who's close to the same age. They'll respond better if they know that one of their peers can do it and they'll want to emulate them.

But whatever you do - relax. It WILL happen.

EVERYONE gets potty-trained.

Don't stress about it. Just be ready for a few messes - and tell'em it's okay and bring them into the bathroom to finish.


BTW... Boys are especially slower in potty-training.

Ours wasn't potty-trained until almost four and wasn't poop-trained until after his 4th birthday. One day, it just started happening - it was like a light went on in his head and he just felt ready.

Good luck.

+1 for everything he said. take a few days or a week off and just let it go, then take him to the store to pick out his very own big boy underwear, but only get him 1 or 2 special pairs with his favorite characters, the rest should be plain white or gray. This way, he will soon learn that his special underwear goes away after 2 accidents. Let him run around the house in just his underwear so that he can see them. Treat every oops as an accident, and help him clean it up without yelling at him.

Whatever you do, don't turn it into a power struggle. You'll wind up with a child who has to have enemas to poop, and that is far worse than dirty diapers.
Link Posted: 9/3/2004 6:20:30 AM EST
What we did for our 2 year old is let her wear panties. She had a few accidents and it made her uncomfortable. We would also reward her with a small piece of candy whenever she went potty. I made her a small stool so she can use the toilet and now @ 2.5 years she has not missed a beat.



Samuel
Link Posted: 9/3/2004 6:23:29 AM EST
I was trained when I was promised a pair of Spider-Man under-roos. Then one of the most traumatic experiences of my life happened after I received the Spider-Man under-roos and I had an accident in them. I still remember crying out "I peed on Spider-Man. I peed on Spider-Man."



Last month was a ruff one for me.
Link Posted: 9/3/2004 12:05:33 PM EST
My son didn't get potty trained until around 3 1/2 (that was 6 months ago). If we told him to go potty, no problem. But he could never seem to figure out when to go on his own. We too were expecting another baby boy so it was even more critical to get him going. Here's basically what we did:

* Put him in training underwear. They're thicker than regular underwear so they contain accidents better. But, they're not absorbent like diapers so he could feel when he was wet.

* Reward system. He would get one M&M if we went potty on his own. (he never really got candy, so 1 m&m was a lot).

* Potty schedule. Tried to keep track of when he last went and not let it get more than a couple hours. Also made him go after he ate or drank. If he had an accident, he had to stop playing with his toys for a while. The idea being to make him understand that going potty is more important than those other things and if he forgets, those things go away for a while. I feel certain that my boy knew he needed to go potty, but didn't want to stop drawing or playing with his trains to go.

* Associate going potty with being a big boy. I don't know about little girls, but my boy is fanatical about being a big boy. Telling him something he's doing is what babies do is the best psychological warfare weapon I've ever discovered. However, I try to explain it matter of factly and not in a demeaning way. They KNOW you are disappointed when they have an accident and feel bad, so try not to make it too hard on him. Like someone else said, get him some new "big boy" underwear with his favorite cartoon character or superhero on them. Explain that he doesn't get to wear those until he can go a couple days without an accident. Hyping the big boy underwear was probably our best overall tactic.

I think at that age, little kids are still afraid to grow up. They understand they need to grow up to do bigger kid things, but they're afraid to give up things that mean security like drinking from sippy cups or using a diaper (all he's known for the last 3 years). I don't think it's a question of feeling the urge to go and knowing when to go. I think it just takes time for them to understand that growing up is okay and this is all part of it.

Also, believe me when I say that most parents of little boys go through this. I don't know why, but boys just have a much harder time with this concept than girls do. Truly the hardest part is not getting him to go potty, but dealing with your own frustration at the situation.

Good luck,
LL
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