Monday, November 10, 2008

Anybody have the Super Nanny's phone number?

I am wondering if I could hire her to potty train my kids. Yes, both kids. Apparently, one area of parenting in which I am seriously lacking is the potty training arena. Neither of my kids is totally potty training and I am going to have a newborn on my hands in about 4 months. Panic is setting in.

Danny has been partially potty trained for well over a year. The problem is, he will not poop on the toilet. I am embarrassed to admit this, but have I mentioned that the kid is 5 years old? Yes, 5! Please don't judge me on this. It is not for a lack of trying, nor is it due to poor discipline. At least I don't think so. He tries really, really hard to do it, but it never happens. Then, when he falls asleep or is relaxed, he goes in his pants.

We have tried just about everything and nothing works. I am convinced this is a sensory issue, so when I see Danny's occupational therapist this week, this issue will be on the top of my list. I know his teacher is concerned about his handwriting grip, but as far as I am concerned, I just want the kid to go number 2 on the toilet. I am so incredibly sick of cleaning his gross underwear.

So, due to lack of success with Danny, I decided to concentrate on potty training Charlotte, who after all, is almost 3 and is a girl, which according to everyone I have talked to, is supposed to make a difference. "Girls are so much easier to potty train," they exclaim. "Girls practically potty train themselves," they promise. Well, not this little girl. For the last 2 weeks we have sat on the toilet several times throughout the day, and I never, ever get the timing right. We talk about it, read books about it, but again, nothing is working.

Why is this so hard for me? I just don't get it. What am I doing wrong? It has to be something I am doing wrong, but I can't figure it out. And the thought of having to deal with three kids' poopy diapers/underwear is just about more than I can handle right now. Especially considering none of these kids are twins.

Yikes, what if I find out I am actually carrying twins right now? That would mean 4 kids' worth of excrement. I think I am going to hyperventilate. I need to get a grip.

Anyway, does anyone have any experience with this: resistance to pooping on the toilet? I would love to hear what you did about it. And how do I potty train Charlotte, who supposedly doesn't have SPD (though I do really think she has some sensory issues)?

Is anyone willing to come potty train my kids for me? I would be willing to pay. A lot. I'm not kidding.


Anonymous said...

You are definitely panicking. Stop. Breathe.

Unfortunately, I'm the last person to give potty training advice. Chee still poops in a Pullup. She won't even try to poop in the toilet. She just asks for a Pullup when she needs to poop. So far, I've not pushed the issue. Maybe soon. And she still has occasional "deliberates" - meaning, she just randomly chooses to pee on the floor rather than go to the toilet. Nothing has worked to curb that.

As for my younger, Ess, she'll be 2 this month and I have not PT'd her either. I'm waiting a little bit longer so hopefully it will be a shorter, easier training. She's very aware and could probably train now if I focused on it.

Back to Danny, I have no advice except put a pullup on him at night so you're not cleaning up dirty underwear. Seriously. I'm not joking.

I agree it's probably sensory related. Perhaps when you know he has to go and he's willing to try you could do some calming sensory diet activities first. Maybe that would help??

Hugs, friend. Hang in there. Start breathing.

Quirky Mom said...

I'm not an expert in the poop department. My kid was easily poop trained, but the pee training is dragging on. However, this is what I've heard be successful for other people:

When he needs to poop, put him in a pullup and take him to the bathroom. Let him poop in the pullup as long as he is IN the bathroom.

Step two: expect him to sit on the toilet, with the pullup still on, to poop. (It may take two steps here, one with the toilet lid closed and one with it open.)

Step three: take away the pullup!

Is he regular, in terms of a predictable time of day? I think I'd let him have a pullup once a day, if he is, rather than dealing with poopy undies. But that's just me.

a Tonggu Momma said...

No advice... when the Tongginator finally developed "pee awareness" (meaning she actually felt herself peeing), she was nearly three and it terrified her, whether it be in a diaper, pull-up, potty or even on the ground. We tried everything.

She held it consistently, for days at a time. We had several catheter experiences, where the doctors released one to 2.5 cups of liquid. Can we say ow? And stubborn?

And, yes, I truly believe it is a sensory issue.

We did have measurable success with the "Scoop On Poop" method, which is basically the naked from the waist down method of potty training. If you share your address, I will photocopy what I have about it and send it along to you. It improved things a lot, but we still faced challenges even to this day.

AC said...

Have you twied an awawd chawt, all purty n shiny. You could get it laminated at your local library and then get some of dem purty shiny steekers to put on dat chart.

SERIOUSLY. Seriously? I am in the same boat you are in girlfriend! The two most common phrases that pop in my head are:

Wish I could give some great advice, but I am sure you get enough of that any way. Just know, I enjoyed reading your blog (came here from ElzChan's site BTW!)

Good luck!

Amy Jane said...


I wish I had some amazing, no-fail advice, but I'm afraid I don't. I do believe, however, that both of your kids WILL be potty-trained sooner than later. It's just a fact that kids all do it, and they do it on their own terms. Fortunately for me, what ended up working with Nick was the fact that he couldn't put on his own diaper, and wouldn't poop on the floor. So, when he was naked and had to poop, he ended up having no choice but to do it on the toilet, since I refused to put a diaper on him. I do totally agree with some of the other people - you should definitely put Danny to sleep in a Pull-up - there's no reason you should have to keep cleaning gross undies! Good luck, and let me know if you have a breakthrough.

Stonefox (otherwise known as Heidi) said...

Patty, I'm sorry I don't have any helpful advice. My son was the same way. And now I'm already wanting to potty train the girls (who are only 1 1/2). I am with you on being sick of the excrement (although you have it much worse as the older they get the grosser it gets!) I hope some readers can give you some good advice. Or find Nanny's phone number!

BQkimmy said...

I feel for ya. Unfortunately I don't know what to tell you to try. I really do think it is the SPD though.

My little one is almost 3 and potty training has gone nowhere. He doesn't care if he is wet or poopy. He has no desire to sit on the potty and throws a crying fit if I try to take him in to the bathroom to go. I just don't know what to do with a child that has no desire to use the potty.

I have two older kids and they both potty trained so easy. My daughter was potty trained before she was 2 and my son by 2 1/2. I always said I couldn't believe there were kids as old as 3 that weren't potty trained and I blamed the parents for being lazy. Boy have I learned how mistaken i was. Now I have a child that I doubt will be potty trained by age 4.

If you find the answer... be sure to share.

Elizabeth Channel said...

I feel for you, and I totally understand why you want to get this working soon! I just don't have any ideas...Sue was resistant, too, and then finally, after she turned 3, she gradually started going on the potty. But we still have setbacks all the time, and it is frustrating.

I'd talk to the OT and see if she has any ideas...I agree with those who believe it might be a sensory issue.

Hang in there!

rainbowmummy said...

I agree it could be sensory. Hmm. Good advice from quirky mom, that's what we did. Do you have a step at the toilet for him to have his legs?

Ps if he is d=going in his pants, like egg did when he was training I used cheap pant and jut binned them, but I snipped the sides of them for easy removal. Yuck!

PS a little thank you post at mine :0)


bernthis said...

I tried a reward system. every time my kid went to the potty she got to pick three m&m's out of container that we (yes) kept in the bathroom. Just a thought.

lonestar818 said...

Our twins took a lot longer learning to poop in the potty than learning to pee in the potty. It was because of sensory issues - they just didn't like the feel of going in the toilet because they were used to going in their pants. They would resist using the toilet, insisting that they didn't have to go, and then we'd find them off somewhere doing their business in their pants. Let's just say it was not a pleasant time to be doing laundry in our house...

Unfortunately I don't have any great answers. We made it a "rule" because they were really into rules at the time (we started out with 3 main rules and they kept adding their own rules, each with a specific rule #, until we lost count). That seemed to motivate them at least, but it didn't solve the underlying sensory issues so it was still a long process.

Sorry I know this is probably not much help, but you're not alone. (((hugs)))

colleenfelz said...

I have to tell you that no where have I found information about potty issues online or in any SPD books that I have read, and I have searched since potty training is such an issue for us. I just knew that our problems were sensory related, though. Our OT and my SpEd teacher friend both say that it is EXTREMELY common to have potty problems when you have SPD.

C4 has tantrums and terrible behavior when she has to poop and sometimes when she has to pee. I can always tell that she is misbehaving because of that. Once she goes, she is fine.

My unscientific solution that seems to have worked for us is to reward with chocolate covered raisins. I give a few for actually pooping. I add extra if there was no tantrum, and I give even more if she goes by herself. Everyone gets some treats when C4 poops! My kids love chocolate, and the raisins keep them regular. I also have been feeding them lots of fruit like apples, pears, peaches, etc. I feed them the high fiber bread and keep them hydrated. My theory is that if the poop is soft enough, it will be more comfortable to poop (kind of like after you had a baby the hospital gave you a stool softener so you would go). For us the tantrums have decreased significantly, and C4 is pretty regular now.

Another friend of mine said her pediatrician told her to offer the pull up for pooping just like quirky mom suggested. It takes the pressure off to perform and the whole control thing is out of the picture.

Another friend said that some kids need a timer to sit on the toilet long enough. I also offer books and magazines to look at while we are sitting there. It seems to take her mind off of it and keeps her sitting still.

I hope that some of these ideas help you out! Hang in there. I know it is tough to clean up the mess, but you will find a solution that works for your family. I'm sure it will happen before you know it. It's always hardest when you are in the thick of it.

mrsbear said...

I've got nothing useful to offer. Just sorry to hear it's going so rough. Of course you want as many kids going on the toilet before the little one arrives. My five year old still wears his pull-up to bed, but we've never had poop issues.

If you're having trouble with your three year old, sometimes it helps to walk away for a couple of weeks, then revisit the training later. I had this issue with my son the first time we started potty training. A month later he caught on pretty fast.

Good luck.

kia (good enough mama) said...

Sorry, Patty. I'm no help to you at all. Little Man did practically train himself before he was 2.5. I know! This is the first and only thing that has happened easily with this child. Crazy.

We did, as you may recall, have issues with him pooping on the toilet recently because he was afraid there were snails and slugs on the toilet (honest, my house isn't THAT disgusting), but it seems to have resolved itself.

I have no answers. I'm assuming you've bribed them up to their eyeballs? That would be my only recommendation. Bribes are a wonderful parenting tool, as far as I'm concerned...

Minxy Mimi said...

I am dealing with this with my soon to be 4 yr old son... he is fearful of going #2
Some kids just dont fit into the cookie cutter mold. I hope things work out for you guys.

Betsy said...

Myrilax! Thats what the doctor perscribed to Chelsey when she was having the same problem. It is very effective and only takes a small dose which disolves clear in water or what ever they drink. It just helps them go and not hold it in. It is just soliable fiber so its not medicine per say. Also I would have to agree with the M&M Rewards. It worked when I was potty training the twins I used to babysit. You have to make sure that everyone is rewarded , even yourself so they see that if effects everyone. The last clue I would have to give is to just stay home for a couple of weeks. I know that sounds blah, but It helps. If you stay home its a less anxiety situation. They won't feel rushed to go here or there.
Just don't stress over it, and they won't stress over it! : ) I know its hard when you have poop and pee on the floor and you have already cleaned it up 4 times today. Been there, done that too many times to count! have a great day!

Penny said...

My son was over four and kicked out of a preschool before he was potty trained. One of the things that I read at the time was that some children do not like the water splashing them when the poop hits it so you might be better off with potty chair rather than the toilet. I bought 4 different ones before my son was potty trained. The other thing that people told me was videos such as Bear Goes to the Potty and Elmo's Potty Time.
One of the things that I did was make sure to change him in the bathroom and throw the poop in the toilet in front of him and let him say bye to it and flush it. I think I also read somewhere that some children felt like they were losing part of themselves in the toilet and this was suppose to help them get over that fear.
I was fortunately lucky in that I have a pellet pooper. Eventually, I was able to predict when he was going to go and he would wait for me (not go with his teachers, but need to go immediately after school) and we were able to bridge the gap and go in the toilet rather than in the pants.

Shellie said...

Oh, I feel for you! I had two in diapers when I found out I was having twins. By the grace of God alone they both stopped using diapers right around the twins' birth. I didn't do anything to train them, it just happened. Everyone learns in their own way and time and I am totally convinced that until a kid wants to train, there is nothing constructive you can do except introduce the subject and wait. It's like trying to get an alcoholic to stop drinking before they hit bottom and decide they want to be sober. I hope the therapist has some good suggestions for the poop situation. I know a lot of kids do that, and I know some adults who can only poop in their own bathroom at home.