I have an autistic child - I need help on potty training

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Stacey - posted on 08/05/2010

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let them do it in there own time my son was 5 before he was clean and the more i tried the more it backfired.you can tell when they need the toilet by the look on their faces or how they sit my son is now 9 and i still have to remind him to go to the toilet

Anagela - posted on 07/30/2010

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when my son was little he hated the potty and refused to sit on it. The solution I came up with was to place big plastic cups in all the rooms. After a few months he got used to peeing in the cups and then I gradually moved the cups closer to the potty and had him start flushing the pee down. t took about 6 months, but he finally started to pee in the toilet. Let me stress that I watched him like a hawk and constantly reminded him what he needed to do. As for #2 he refused to sit on the toilet and would squatt on the bathroom floor. It took many months of insisting that he clean up the mess and then one day he just started doing #2 in the potty. He is now in high school and out of 9 boys in his class he is the only one fully potty trained. It takes hard work and don't be afraid to let him/her get dirty, it's the only way some kids can learn. Good luck

Mary - posted on 07/29/2010

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I work with a variety of special children and like they say it is up to them when they are ready. Keep using DVDs, social stories, and pictures and one day they will get it. I don't know how old your child is, but keep a routine going for them. I wish you all the best. :)

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Jennifer - posted on 12/06/2013

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My six year old twins have autism. We are trying to potty train one of them. He hasn't had an accident at night since we started but he will only pee in the shower which doesn't work for school. I have tried rewards,clapping,praising ,toilet targets you name it. He will go just a little but not relax enough to finish so when he gets up he wets his pants. We are going broke buying pull-ups please help!!

Monica - posted on 10/18/2012

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My daughter is almost 13, she's high Functioning but when it comes to using too much tolit paper, hand soap, washing her hands and using to much Conditioner it's very Frustrating! She will start going #2 in her pants, doesn't wipe very well and I've even found her with her hand in her pants and then she will put her finger in her mouth. I've talked, yelled, spanked, gave rewards, and I've taken her stuff away but nothing has worked. It's very Overwhelming because I am a single-parent and I am at my Wits end. Can someone please help. Thank you!!



P.S. I wonder if someone can Recommend a good schedule because I don't have one for the home.

Carla - posted on 08/08/2010

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my son is autistic and now 13 and was not trained til he was 6. he wouldn't use the potty for nothing. so one day i got the cheerios and asked him to potty on them. he was not verbal at the time and looked at me like i was insane. well anyway it worked. he thought that was fun trying to "dunk them". as for going #2 that was more difficult. i would sit with him, play games on a table at the potty, read, sing, all kinds of things. but what finally worked was bribery. his favorite things to eat were smarties. so i told him if he went then he could have 2 packages of them. in just a short time he was going. he even went and tried just to get them. to this day he still gets smarties!

Candy - posted on 08/07/2010

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My son is 51/2 and we got the pee pee part down (he still requires reminders to go..what I did in the beginning was use his favorite snack as a reward to go on the potty (hes only allowed to eat that treat when he goes potty) and we also made him wear underwear underneath a diaper so if he had an accident he would feel it without the mess...he did not like it at all and will hold it for hours before he has and accident...but it does take along time for them to catch on, its been a year and we are still working on to poopie part! Good luck!

Cynthia - posted on 08/04/2010

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My son was 12 years old before he was out of the adult diapers. However, he is 18 years old now and he still will not stand to urine in the toilet. He still sits. I am just thankful that he's going on his own.

Anna - posted on 08/01/2010

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I have an autistic daughter. Potty training her was a nightmare. I tried using every word I could think of (potty, tinkle, wee wee etc). One day, as I was sitting on the floor of the bathroom, I said "Please make water in the potty". That was it! She didn't understand what all those other words meant. I think she still thinks she is "making water" and she is 20 years old.

Erin - posted on 07/30/2010

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I have three kids, two are on the spectrum. My daughter who is 13 now, wasn't trained until she was 7. We did everything from dvds, to toys. Then one day we said that was it and we were going to go full force. Well, by sheer coincidence she was ready and with the help of gummy worms, wham, she was trained. Now our youngest who is almost four is starting on that path. We will try the videos even though he really has no interest, but it will just be constant trips to the bathroom. we have to get him trained because his school requires it. good luck.

K - posted on 07/29/2010

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My dd was 4.5 yrs old when she finally potty trained. Her biggest issue was sensory: she was afraid of the noise, the feeling of the toilet on her bottom, etc. She was sent home from school one day wearing panties and the teachers told me in front of her that she was ready and that they wanted her to wear panties that entire weekens, I was freaked, I just didn't think she was ready but she did fine that weekend, though of course she was skitish about the process and needed help. But because she was older and could communicate she caught on well. To this day she won't use a potty that has any spec of anything in or around it.....makes public pottys interesting. Best of luck, but the only thing that got me through it was knowing (or hoping) that she wouldn't graduate from school in diapers.

Dawn - posted on 07/29/2010

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My son was almost 4 when I finally hit upon the solution for him. I put a potty in his room. That was where he felt safe and comfortable. Once he got the hang of that he was able to use the bathroom. And I would put some toilet paper in first so that he wouldn't get a plop splash. I hope that helps.

Emily - posted on 07/28/2010

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my daughter is 6 and has autism with delays, and my 3 and a half year old boy may be autistic as well. He occasionally uses the toilet, but never poops in there. he just doesn't care! miss 6 was trained since she was 2, I tried charts, timing it, doing it after a drink, but she wasn't interested until she was about 4. I used stickers as a reward and she just started using the toilet all of a sudden - but still soiled due to constipation issues. She has just gotten over that recently but we had to use ice cream as a reward for a while - it kick started her interest! mr 3 isn't interested in stickers - he gets a lolly for using the toilet if he remembers to ask. I asked a paedeatrician and he said that was ok, but I've learnt there is no point pushing them!

Sandra - posted on 07/28/2010

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The thing that got my son to go potty in the toilet was targets. I would draw different pictures on square of tp and have a small stack by the toilet (ships, bullseyes, ducks, his sister--she was really mean, so I drew a stick person, etc). He had a great time sinking them & they were a lot cheaper & safer for septic than the purchaseable ones.
Pooh took longer because (ick) he liked to play in it. So glad that passed! Finally, resorted to constant routine (hard for ADHD me) of set times we went no matter what and M&M's. Yep, I paid candy for poo. I don't give a damn what the experts/foodies/ whatever say. When you have to scrub baby crap off hardwood floors, walls, toys, crib and wherever else my little Maplethorpe thought of painting it, you will do ANYTHING that works. He was trained by 3 1/2 except for an occasional overnight wetting incident but that's very normal up to age 14 for boys. We just cleaned it up and said his brain needed to grow to the point where it would wake him when necessary. It would happen and stressing about it wouldn't make it go away. Those stopped by age 7/8.

Bettie - posted on 07/27/2010

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I feel your frustration. My son is 4 and is autistic he is still in pull-ups and is not potty trained. I have tried everything in the books rewards, just sitting on it, praise when he did go, ya name it i tried it. Still no luck he will be 5 this december and i often worry if he'll ever be potty trained. I think his visits with his dad are setting him back because his dad dose not change him when he's there or even to my knowledge try to get him to go potty.

Letitia - posted on 07/27/2010

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My son did not potty train until he was 4! I had to use a picture schedule for him since that is how he learned better. My therapist helped to make them for hin. One day I gave up and he decided it was time to potty train. You can do it. Look for what works for him and how he learns, how to reward him.

Ilene - posted on 07/27/2010

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This is what worked for ME -- I can't promise the same for you, but we have been very successful with my daughter. Her twin brother we haven't even brought up the subject -- he's not even CLOSE to ready.

First of all, don't train based on YOUR timeline. HE has to be ready for it. If he's not, your just asking for trouble. Autistic children need routine and schedules. They have to control their situation, and potty training is something that is COMPLETELY within their control (autism completely aside). If he's not ready, you'll be setting yourself so far back and will just frustrate everyone.

My daughter discovered voiding in the toilet almost by accident. Both she and her twin would try to pull off their diapers whenever they had the chance. So, on Mother's Day (age approximately 3yr4mo), we gave them both "naked time" just prior to getting ready for bed. We noticed the signs that she was about to void (both urine and bm) and my husband put her on the toilet, just to see what would happen -- there were no expectations. Well, she DID IT!!!! There was the sound of urine hitting the water followed by a PLOP. We praised like there was no tomorrow. And was she PROUD!!!!!!! And then she became obsessed.

A week later, her school program started training her. Within 2 weeks, she was fully daytime trained and was nighttime trained soon after. But SHE initiated it all. We discovered it by accident and it was definitely what she wanted.

The system the school used was Drs. Foxx and Azrin's tecniques (http://www.nationalautismresources.com/a...). It's what the school she attends typically uses.

Just remember, no matter how you do it, POSITIVE REINFORCEMENT AND NO SCOLDING. If there are failures, look forward to the next success. If he's ready, it WILL happen.

Good luck!

Michelle - posted on 07/27/2010

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Social stories helped us as did talking books (like one with potty flushing sounds). Got her used to the sounds, then we would just let her sit awhile, even if she spent 45 minutes as long as she was working toward the goal. Now she can go most places, we havea remaining fear of toilets that flush on their own. She only partially believes that if we cover the eye, it won't flush until we uncover it. She can watch, see that it is true but it is a tough step to really believe for her. That is our goal for this year as the world opens up when we can use the potty wherever we are rather than having to look for one with a handle.

Jennifer - posted on 07/27/2010

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It took my Autistic son and the school to help him go poo on the potty most of his Kindergarden year. but help with a sign that had velcoro pictures of what to do helped a ton. After he did what he had to do he took the picure off the sheet and put it into a baggie. He was 5 1/2 and he is now 7 and still wears night night diapers. I feel when he is ready he will train for the night time pee pee. I have been told by the doctors to work each night for him to pee before putting pull up on and when he gets up in the morning he changes into undies first thing. I hope that idea that the school has works i have found printible pictures on the net just have to look. good luck to all as we navagate this wonderful world of AUTISM..... Jen

Maureen - posted on 07/27/2010

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My daughter is six, and is participating in a clinic at Children's Hospital in Boston. She is not autistic, but she does have some developmental delays. I would definitely take the advice others have posted. If nothing works, I'd check with your physician. My daughter was constipated, and this contributed to this problem. Good Luck.

Ann - posted on 07/24/2010

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I am right there with you. Help!! My son (autistic) is 3 and I have twin girls (not autistic but preemies) 2. All will sit on the potty for 3 seconds and then just play with the potties, sink what ever. I am reading "The Potty Journey" By Judith A Coucouvanis (specifically written for children with autism) The Book seems to give great advice!! I just have a hard time following the advice. Will Potty training be easier or harder if I wait ?!?

Mechelle - posted on 07/23/2010

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I have an Autistic child potty training is very difficult but I was determined. I set a timer for every 15 min. and took him even if he didn't have to go. Repeating things over and over helps us. He didn't have to stay on the potty to long each time just to get the idea. He is fully potty trained. Goodluck

Kristen - posted on 07/22/2010

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Hi!! Everyone has great ideas, I just wanted to add using a child toilet to start is not a great idea with kiddos with autism, it confuses them when they get to the big one...not always, but something to think about.. also, my son was in kindergarden and we had been trying for years, it took our wonderful teachers to do it in a different setting than home and it worked (Im not kidding) in a couple days!!!! They expect a lot at school and ask that they help..not sure how old he is..but that was the trick for us..we also do biomedical and it happened about the time we had started some new things, including the gfcf diet!!!! Good luck!!!!

Mariel - posted on 07/22/2010

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Well what I did for my daughter, she is autistic as well, I tried everything in the book...you name it. One day I decided to bring in a table to the restroom that she can reach at her level. I sat her down on the toilet and I pushed the table towards her and I got some of her toys out and I would play with her. Sometimes we would color or play and eventually she would forget that she was sitting on the toilet and then out of nowhere she finally did it :D. Ever since then now she has been fully potty trained. I got this advice from an Occupational Therapist that I was observing. Hope this helps :)

Susan - posted on 07/21/2010

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My 4 year old isn't afraid of the potty, he'll go every time you put him there. His problem is that he is comfortable sitting in his own waste so he doesn't ask (he's verbal) to go. I don't know how to get over the comfort of sitting in your own waste, he knows he's suppose to be in underwear and the whole process, he simply doesn't get it at this point. I suppose we will just have to keep trying. Your not alone, I'm VERY frustrated that I'm still buying and changing diapers on a 4 year old.

Diane - posted on 07/21/2010

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My son was nine when he was finally toilet trained. Be patient and the social stories, picture card helpers are brilliant. He is now 12 and we still have a story board in the toilet that breaks down the actions. Interesting for visitors though ;-)

Venna - posted on 07/21/2010

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my 6 1/2 year old son will not use the potty either. he wears pull ups but i really wish that i could get him potty trained. ive tried everything, he just wont do it. they say he will do it when he's ready. im hoping they are right.

Diantha - posted on 07/21/2010

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IT IS REALLY HARD MY SON GOT IT BUT STILL WONT SIT RIGHT BUT I TRY NOT 2 PUSH HIM. WHEN THE TIME IS RIGHT FOR HIM I WILL KNOW. HIS BEEN OUT OF DAMPERS SINCE 6YR BUT HE WOULD WET THE BED SO IT TOOK ALITTLE LONGER AT NIGHT. NOW HE WAKES UP BY HIMSELF AND GOS IM SO POOR OF HIM? HIS 11 YRS OLD AND HAS AUTISM?

Amber - posted on 07/19/2010

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It is hard. My daughter will go back and forth with it.... if your child is on any medication you should check with your doctor and make sure that it is not causing constipation problems. My daughter's doctor said that Autistic children already suffer from this, and that they will not go in the potty if they think it is going to hurt. Once you make sure that your child can go comfortably, make sure you integrate the potty into your child's daily routine. This can be very hard because often change in routine can be very upsetting. This has been our biggest set back, as our daughter believes that everything is more important than going to the bathroom. Do not let people upset you, it will happen eventually. Even if your child is not potty trained by kindergarten, if your child has special needs the public school legally has to provide them with the help they need. Unfortunatly, they often stick unpotty trained children in the severe special education classes, which can be upsetting if your child does not belong there mentally. Good luck, don't give up.

Shasta - posted on 07/19/2010

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my son was 5 before we were completely done...his dad wasnt around so it was just me...and it was hard..i didnt push him i just tried to show him and i got a dvd thats bear in the big blue house that is all abt potty training...and he really liked that...finally it was just out of the blue...he was trained...good luck

LINDY - posted on 07/19/2010

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hi janie my son is 5 and has autism and still has a nappy to do poos he only stands to do a poo and its been a long road but im advice is google Toms Toilet Triumph its a dvd and you can make social stories and i have cards made too on the toilet wall its a cartoon and goes through a little boy going to the toilet its very funny and you and your child will have a giggle but it has got my son to do wees in toilet and washing his hands and he will sit and pretend to do a poo so thats a start lol i think doesnt matter how much we yell and scream at our kids they wont do it until they are ready good luck and hope i have helped a little:)

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