16 September 2010

The trouble with potty training

Potty training is trouble, no matter when you start or how eager the child is.

My first son had many developmental delays, so it did not even occur to me to train him until he was over 3 years old.  Then, over winter break, we took away the diapers, let him run around with no pants on, and in a couple of days he was completely trained.  Done and Done.

Many of my friends had begun training their same aged kids a year before and were still battling messes and puddles.  Their job was complete at around the same time as mine was, but it took them many months, rather than a few days.

I took this lesson with me as I planned to train number 2.  He threw me for a loop, though, when at just over 2 years, he said he wanted to wear underwear and pee on the potty.  I knew it would be a mistake to tell him no, so I went with it.  He was in underwear from that point on, but refused to go number 2 in the potty.  He'd ask for a diaper to do that.  I had always said I would NEVER do that, but it is next to impossible to force a child to do that in the potty before they are ready, so I figured I was lucky he was in underwear and just went with it, until he was a little over 3 years old and we were expecting the arrival of number 3.  I began to push the issue a bit and finally had success with him, at right about the same age as number 1 was when he was fully trained.

Number 3 was a completely different story.  He was 2 1/2, realized his brothers were sharing a room and he was alone.  I told him he could move in with them when he had no more diapers...  done!  We had a few set backs, but he was the exception.

I've already addressed the issue of number 4 in this blog.  I felt the need to train him because his "friends" are trained.  I felt he wasn't completely ready, but went ahead with it.  The method we used for training him was pretty successful, but at 2 years, 9 months, he is still working things out.  He has anxiety about number 2, so I have to watch him very closely or put him in a pull up so that I don't end up cleaning up a mess on the carpet.  YUCK!  I think I put too much pressure on him and he has had some regression, so I am backing off.  I reward the successes, talk about the accidents, but don't get upset by them, and, I am pretty sure that by the time he's 3 1/2, diapers will be a memory.

At least I hope so!

Bottom line- don't push it if it's not working.  Let your kids guide you.  Each one is different, but most kids will train by 3 1/2 and if you wait, it probably will be easier, but you have to do what works for you and your child.

No comments:

Post a Comment