Potty Training NIGHTMARE!

Ashley - posted on 03/24/2011 ( 32 moms have responded )

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Ok so I think Im going to lose it.... SERIOUSLY! I've tried to do everything I could to get my child potty trained as he should be as he is 3....and its not working. He has now come to the point where we change him in the morning, but then he poops in the clean pull up... and we dont want him to get it stuck to him so we want to change him, but then we dont think we should condone what hes doing. Hes costing us alot. Hes been in pull ups for over 18 months! This should be done but Im to the point where Im so upset about it that I think by the time our second child comes october/novemberish... our first child will be back in diapers too! I seriously need help on where to go from here... he hasnt pooped on the potty since December 31st, 2009 but he pees more frequently... but makes a big deal of it when I try to get him to go when we are out... he says he has to go potty, I get him there and all he does is scream and cry and throw tantrums.... HELP PLEASE!

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Elizabeth - posted on 03/24/2011

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I completely understand your frustraion ...however ..You are being way too hard on your child and stressing yourself out unnecessarily. Children regress ..it happens and probably will happen again when your new baby arrives.
Did you know the average age of a potty trained child ...pee and poo ..is 4 1/2 years old.

Children have a keen sense of when something new and different is coming...you are pregnant..he knows something is up.

I have 2 daughters and a baby on the way ..our oldest is almost 5 ..and we have a 2 yr old as well. Just so you have some background.

The more you push ..the more he will resist this potty training thing. What I learned from potty training 2 children is that YOU don't get to decide when they are potty trained...THEY decide when they are going to comply with this new rule. Believe me ..I know it sucks.

Getting things started again:

1. stop with the pull ups..put him back in diapers or go to underwear..they are more affordable and in my opinion pull ups just hold up the process and make it take longer

2.take him to the bathroom with you when you go and have his little potty available to sit on IF he wants..don't push

3. Talk about what we do on the potty .." do you know where pee pee goes? ", " where does poop go?" ..when he answers correctly praise him for it

4. look for signs that he is ready ...he shows interest in the potty and he can stay dry for a few hours at a time

Never punish him for having an accident..it will discourage him from trying all together. Be patient ..poop takes a LOT longer sometimes to be done in the potty and don't expect dry nights for a while either.
Your child is intelligent..rest assured you won't be putting pull ups on a 10 yr old.

[deleted account]

It sounds like it has become a battle. I think the best thing you can do is to drop the entire thing for about a month. Put him in diapers and just ignore the fact that he 'should' be using the potty. Once the pressure is off... make sure he knows the potty is available, but leave it's use entirely up to him. Does he have little friends that are potty trained that he spends time w/?

Hang in there!! This won't last forever, but the more you push.... the longer it will last.

Sheryl - posted on 03/24/2011

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Try leaving him in a brief during the day and see if he will ask for the potty. If he is always in the living/sitting room, put it there for easy reach. Good luck!

Kristi - posted on 03/30/2011

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I think you are being pretty tough on yourself and your kid. It IS hard work to potty train, and it's hard to be consistent every day. That's the hardest part for our family, and we spend a lot of time commuting by car, so that's a challenge too. What I don't understand is why so many people do pull ups. I only used them on vacations for overnights instead of my cloth diapers. My 3 year old daughter is still potty training, but gets it right most of the time. When she's tired or sick, she has more accidents. Make sure he's getting enough sleep, and when you're home, don't let him wear anything at all below the belt. Let him go naked. He will be aware of his potty needs. Pull ups are not an option. If they wear pull ups, they know it's no big deal to go to the bathroom in them. If they aren't wearing anything, they will pee or poo on themselves in the beginning and it's yucky to clean up, but it won't happen for long. When you go out on the town, wear underwear, not pull ups. Yes, they do occasionally have accidents in the carseat, and that sucks bigtime. However, they are aware of those potty needs, and once they've had a few accidents in their undies, they know how awful it is, and they'll let you know they need to go potty. A couple of things for you to do. Don't delay. If the child says he has to go, take him right away, no matter what the hassle. Drop everything and go. He may be nervous using strange potties. Might be helpful for you to get a little folding jobby for your backpack to keep with your two sets of spare clothes and your wetbag. You will need those for awhile. Some kids are just freaked out by those big public restroom potties - especially the magic ones that flush by themselves. Terrorized my children! Try laying a strip of TP over the sensor so it won't flush on him while he's sitting. Also, if he's a standup kid, try sitting all the time for awhile. Sometimes the potty sensation of going pee while he sits will carry over the #2 muscles. Good luck! Be patient. Lots of 3 year olds (boys, especially) are just not ready, or not perfect at potty training yet. Hang in there, and be kind and warm. Don't rush him. As my daughter's preschool teacher says, you can say anything as long as it's with the warmth of the sun. :)

Carly - posted on 03/24/2011

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He is probably attention seeking with you being pregnant, so I wouldn't freak out too badly right now.
I was also going to say put him in regular underwear during the day. You'll be washing a lot of drawers, but you won't be shelling out the cash for pull-ups. He needs to feel the wetness and poo and then he might change his mind about the whole potty training deal.

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Leah - posted on 08/28/2012

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Well your not alone lol I completely understand your frustration also, I have a 3yr old girl who point blank refuses to use either the potty or the toilet :( I have been trying to potty train her since she turned 2yrs old... feel like I'm just hitting a brick wall here. I have an elder child who potty trained with ease and was dry from 2 and a half (night and day) I understand that may have been a little forward, she always has been and has a strong sense of independence but with my youngest quite a few things have been more difficult. I have purchased a wet dolly, stickers, a singing potty and her favourite character toilet seat and step etc all the jazz to make it a little more fun for her but nothing is working... she's about to start nursery and they have a no nappie / no pull up policy there so as you can imagine I am secretly pulling my hair out under this cool exterior. I want her to attend nursery and have fun like all the others but I am lost... I will continue to try to potty train her regardless of what ever hurdles are coming my way :-S

Kellie - posted on 04/08/2011

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I had the same problem with my son. Except he was in underwear during the day. I finally had him run around without pants and underwear for a little while, when he had to go he was asking for his pants and underwear. So we sat on the potty for a minute. He went with no tantrums or tears, and we haven't had trouble since.

Jenn - posted on 04/08/2011

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Kresha-There is really no need to use Pull-ups for day and nighttime pull-ups for night, except that it will cost you more...I use plain Pull-ups day and night and it works fine!

Jenn - posted on 04/08/2011

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I fell your pain, my son turned four N november and he will pe in the potty no problem but WILL NOT poop, this stemmed from him being very constipated a while back and it hurting to poop, he was doing very well prior to that but now he has been back in pull ups for what feel like ever. He is starting a school in September so i am beyond stressed about it..I feel like i have tried everything!! Just know that you are not alone. If you find any good answers please PLEASE pass them on!!

Jade - posted on 04/08/2011

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maybe try taking the pull up's off all together while at home? that helps my 3 yr old who has the same problem...she even takes herself to the toilet to do a pee..but when it comes to the poo's she'd rather do it in the hallway???? lol..all we can do is try and try again i guess? GOOD LUCK :)

Elizabeth - posted on 04/07/2011

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diapers or pull ups at night only and naps



Kresha, night training can take a lot longer sometimes up to age 10. Not for all children of course but due to a few things it can last longer



-hereditary

-lack of bladder maturity ..which corrects with age

-deep sleeper

Kresha - posted on 04/07/2011

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I hear what you are all saying about the pull-ups, but what do you use at night? I've been using "nighttime pull-ups" only for night time wetting. What do you guys do for this?

Torie - posted on 04/07/2011

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My only suggestion is be patient and don't rush him.. I thought my son would be 16 asking me for pullups but he's not. I tried to train him when he turned 3 and I would catch him sometimes but it was mainly that, me catching him. He never said he needed to go.. So what I did was back off him and let him tell me when he was ready. Low and behold about 2 months after I stopped he came and said he wanted to wear big boy drawers and from that day on he's been in them. He barely has any accidents and he was fully trained by the day 4 or 5. He also sleeps in his undies at night, so I got to donate all those pullups to the daycare. So again, my advice is to let your child tell you when he or she is ready. Trust me, eventually they will. Oh yea, also you have to remember that our kids feel our frustration and if the child feels your frustration with the potty they will resist, so you may want to try to make it fun when you do it, and hopefully that'll help.. Good luck

[deleted account]

My daughter was almost completely potty trained at 2 then regressed and we just got her potty trained in the last 6 months (she's almost 4 now) we had to back off for quite some time because she was using her poop as paint! Most disgusting thing ever, knowing it was a potty training issue we tried not to punish her but when it got to be a daily occurrence you bet she was punished!!! We backed off the potty training and tried again later, I highly recommend completely skipping the pull up, it's just another diaper and they know that, my daughter sometimes asks for a pull up (she still wears them at night) because she's to lazy to go in the potty. Go straight for the underwear or back off completely, after seeing it with my friends' children I've noticed that if children are almost or just barely potty trained when #2 comes along they regress and try to get attention from mom by having to have a diaper changed just like the new baby, if I were you I'd anticipate having issues with potty training again when #2 comes along.

Leanne - posted on 04/03/2011

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my son is just over 4 and he's still not potty trained. the advice i've been given is to not push it-when he's ready, he'll go. he's showing more signs of interest now, and i'll encourage that interest. when i get stressed about it, i reassure myself that he won't be starting high school in diapers....he'll figure it out on his own. relax and let him guide you. take care!

Robin - posted on 04/01/2011

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I would put him in training pants..cloth! It is a pain in the butt I know but I think they feel it more and it helps them realize when it is coming out! For my kids if they poop their pants we walked to the potty took off the underware and put the poop in the potty where it belongs and show them they made their underware yucky! Then I have them sit on the potty! Also I think the key is leading by example! Show them when you go potty and for a boy also let them watch Daddy..all boys want to be like daddy! :) Oh and for my boys they love baths...so no baths when they mess them selves! Clean them up as best you can with wipes wash clothes and soap whatever it takes just don't reward them with a bath! LEt some time pass and then when they are dry for a little bit then give them a bath! My son peed his pants I told him to go the the potty and he pointed at his pants and pointed at the tub...kinda like I pooped...can I have a bath now! :) It is hard to figure out what is best for your kid but it will come! :) Oh I forgot with my second it helped when we got him Thomas underware and told him not to get Thomas wet...when he did..we would say Ewww you got Thomas wet he is sad, then showed him the potty and told him to put his pee pee in the potty not on Thomas! Seemed to work for him! Good Luck! I am on potty training number 3 and he just got mad at me looked at me and peed on my floor so I am feeling your frustration! :)

Sandy - posted on 03/31/2011

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It happens in time. I had to let my daughter run around naked for a several weeks. She had accidents.. even just a few weeks ago. We still use a Pull-Up at night, just in case. Stickers and treats didn't work with her. She didn't care about them. Instead, I used a lot of positive reinforcement when she used the potty, lots of cheering and high-fives and kisses. When she had an accident, I didn't scold, but reminded her to use the toilet to go potty/poopies/pee-pee repetitively with the sad/disappointed voice. I took her to the toilet to clean her up when possible or the shower when necessary. She'd apologize and then I'd give her kisses and hugs. It's a real test of patience, and she takes all of mine. ☺ Good luck!

Christy - posted on 03/31/2011

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My son is 3 yrs, 9 months old and STILL not fully trained. He pees (for the most part) on the potty and refuses to poo on it. Frustrating but I believe he will learn in time. Just stay consistent and try to figure out when you think he will poo (and pee) on the potty and stand/sit him on it each time. Even if he doesn't go, it's OK. The more you stress him out about it, the more he will regress. Make a HUGE deal when he does go on the pot and give him a small reward like stickers, small piece of candy, whatever works.....

Jen - posted on 03/31/2011

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It's actually not uncommon for him not to be trained yet. The average age for a boy is 4. One thing I learned is that if you're showing the child you're frustrated, they're going to be frustrated. So take a deep breath and relax.

I would get rid of the pull ups. They're nothing more than an expensive diaper. Put him in underwear and start a reward system for going in the potty. As he gets the hang of it, start cutting back on the rewards. Encourage him to be a big boy so that he can learn to be a good big brother.

Stephanie - posted on 03/31/2011

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i wish had some great advice but really i just want to commiserate. my 3 1/2 yr old does pretty well with going pee pee in the potty but has yet to poop in it. as for the cost of pull-ups we stopped except for overnight. 3 mom friends of mine said to just put him in underoos and accidents will happen but eventually thier kids got tired of being gross and "got it" so here's hoping! :) i wish you the best!

Nicole - posted on 03/31/2011

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We had a set back like that with our daughter. We started pushing it after her 3rd birthday. I started her off with a potty chart and she'd get one sticker for trying, two for pee, three for poop. That lasted a while (about 2 months or so) then stickers lost their finess. She started having accidents after successfully doing both on the potty. We explained to her that she was a big girl and that it made us sad when she went in her underwear/pull up b/c we knew she could do it in the big girl potty and we were SO PROUD when she did do it, now we're sad. She started going again in the potty and we made a HUGE deal of it, again. And since the stickers were lost on it I made up a song of 'pee pee and poo poo in the big potty' which she still sometimes sings (she's still only about 3 1/2 yr. old). She had also started holding her poop about the same time and we bribed her a bit w/ going and going in the big girl potty with muffins/special dessert type thing and it worked for us. And no, we've broken that too so we don't have to make something special every time she goes! Hope the transition moves along somewhat painlessly and before your next one is due! Good Luck!



And I agree with others who posted to get rid of the pull ups. It's a pain to clean the mess, but once we switched she hated that the pee would drip down her leg and her outfit would be soaked so she'd go to the bathroom. I'd ask her periodically if she had to go and if it had been a while, that she needed to try to. But underwear helped over pull ups.

Michelle - posted on 03/30/2011

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There is a great book called Stress-Free Potty Training: A Commonsense Guide to Finding the Right Approach for Your Child. When my son was 2.5 (a year ago) my *husband* decided it was time for him to be potty trained, b/c he was peeing frequently in the potty at school. So he pushed it, and boy did things go backwards. Luckily a good friend recommended this book (if you have a Kindle, you can be reading this tonight!) and it was a *lifesaver* for us. It helped us realize that our little guy wasn't ready, wasn't showing the signs. So we waited a few months, and in July, one uneventful Friday, he told us he was ready for his Lightning McQueen underwear and that was that. He's has a few accidents since last July (less than 5 in 8 months) and the "switch" was pretty much a non-event. Hang in there and GOOD LUCK!

Lisa - posted on 03/30/2011

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ditch the training pull-ups. They are just glorified diapers. That's how kids see them. My daughter had no problem peeing in them all the time, we used some that were given to us for about a week then stopped. She got regular panties and she was fine peeing in the toilet earning her stickers, and pooping got her applesauce (since she really loves it). I would make sure to read potty training books to your son, repeating that going in the toilet is what big boys do, make a big fuss about how he's so big he can eat yummy foods and not icky baby foods anymore (give him a taste of something green with meat in it in the baby food section--its gross!), then go on with how big he is. He will feel proud of himself. Then put him in underwear that you got especially for him because he's a big boy now. When he pees in them, say, "oh, that was an accident, but next time let's pee in the toilet" then have him help clean up the pee. If he poops in the underwear (hopefully you can catch him in the process and put him on the toilet) then say, "oh that's gross, big boys go potty in the toilet" don't make a huge fuss over it, don't try to shame him or bully or anything else, but have him help clean it up. Hopefully, with the huge fuss over being a big boy, and rewards when he does right, he will keep doing right. It does take time. I had a 5 yr old that backtracked because he didn't like his new step-dad. He cleaned his own underwear out and never pooped in them again!

Cheryl - posted on 03/30/2011

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Like Elizabeth said, They do it when they are ready -not when we are ready. At one point I had 3 in diapers because my oldest would not be pressured into potty training. She finally decided it was time when my 2 year old son started. Took my daughter nearly 2 years. Took my son 3 days. He was sleeping through the night by the end of the week. so, anyway, step back take a deep breath, and for the love of God, never mind those expensive pull ups!

Bridgie - posted on 03/30/2011

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I am actually going through same think.I try keep him in under pants but I have days non stop wet other day uses toilet.But like that he used to poo in toilet then started in pullup and clothes.Driving us all mad here too.still getting pullups and washing all the time.

Lisa - posted on 03/30/2011

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Sweetie i understand i was feeling the same with my 2yr old. What i did was take her as soon as she woke up and sat her on the potty holding her. i had it in my mind she was like me when i get up from sleeping i have to go so i take her after naps and a long night sleep. When she pees i reach my hand in the air and say YES with a big smile on my face and she thinks thats so funny. Now i havemy mom doing the same when she wacthes her. My daughter loves goingto the potty now because she can praise herself by marking my mom and me by saying YES with cheerful hands. Just be creative and i'll be praying for you and your family

Elizabeth - posted on 03/30/2011

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pull ups are a confusing mess...and waste of money in my opinion Sophie. Either go cold turkey to undies..or stay in diapers..pull ups are basically a diaper..he won't feel any different ...for him to notice a difference he needs to feel the discomfort of being wet or dirty.

The diaper companies loooove pull ups..it guarentees them money for several months longer than they would usually get.

Sophie - posted on 03/30/2011

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Hi, I totally empathise. Our three and a half year old son is in the same boat! I think he's using it partly as a control thing now. Sorry, I have no solutions myself,- will be curious what happens in your situation.

We have been seeing a naturopath who diagnosed our son as having a gluten intolerance. This has 'firmed' up the poos so it is easier for him to do them. However he still has resistance about doing a poo in the toilet, but has no problem with the wees bit. My partner now wants to spend this weeknd marching him to the toilet whenever he shows the signs of needing to go. I am doubtful whether pushing the issue will help in the case of a child who is so bright but very obstinate about doing everything when HE wants to and never when it is suggested to him by someone else!

We are meant to be seeing a paediatrician but had postponed it to see what the naturopath said. The naturopath still thinks we need to be patient, which is more my inclination-although I shudder to think about cleaning out pull-ups after his 4th birthday! Good luck, maybe I can share my findings if something changes here with us!

Amber - posted on 03/29/2011

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My daughter was the same way...she knew she was supposed to use the potty but when we tried pull ups she would go in them every time, and then tell me afterward that she had to go. It made me so frustrated that finally after like forever of trying with the pull ups I just said heck with it and put her in big girl panties. And you know what? within a week there were no more accidents. I just had to come to grips with cleaning the mess and let her give it a try, and I was amazed at how easily and quickly she got it. I also gave her a breather and some space before I made the switch, as much for her as for my own sanity :) He'll get it, girl, hang in there!

Elizabeth - posted on 03/28/2011

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Thanks Melissa...it was well earned knowledge ..believe me it came with a lot of frustration for both myself and my oldest

Melissa - posted on 03/27/2011

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elizabeth nailed it on the head they do it when they want and it sucks, i have been trying with my 2 year old and he freaks out near potty now i just gave up and switched to cloth to save money :(

Amber - posted on 03/24/2011

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Another thing is make it fun for him...We did a candy dish in the bathroom...We let my daughter go to the store and pick out a type of candy for the dish and she only got a piece of it when she used the potty...
Also my daughter went through a phase where she was TERRIFIED of the potty and I spent HOURS in the bathroom just showing her what the potty does and how it works...I would drop toilet paper in there and let her pull the lever. I also am dealing with a stubborn little boy, but I do know that boys are harder to train..You just have to remain calm and show them what you do...People have suggested that I put fruit loops in the potty and make him aim for it to help make it fun...Those are just a few suggestions...I'll post more tomorrow...I am exhausted and now going to bed...Night I wish you the best!!!!

and by the way...PULL UPS are a waste of money in my opinion...Diapers or underwear are the best way to go...I prefer underwear...They are CHEAPER and all it takes is you using your washing machine...LOL

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