Those two words that all parents dread: Toilet training.
What the hell do you do when your kid just WON’T POO ON THE TOILET! I mean, trying to train a little person to pee and poop on the toilet and not in a nappy/undies/on the grass/in the bath (ugh!) is not a fun activity for parents in any shape or form (ha!) and boys can be harder than girls to get on board with the idea.
I started my oldest just after age 3. That could be considered quite late but everything I read said that boys can take longer to be ready and forcing them to start early if they’re not ready can be a battle of wills that ends up with the unpleasant side effect of taking longer, more accidents and regression. Cohen also had a few communication issues with his speech delay which spurred me to hold off (and he turned 3 in the middle of damn winter, not an ideal TT time of year!).
In the lead up he point blank refused to sit on the potty or the toilet or the special toilet seat for little kids we bought for the toilet. Nope, no, no. He wasn’t having a bar of it thank you very much. Eventually when he was about 3 and 2 months we just put him in undies and decided that was that. Of course, he hated having wet undies because he is the kind of kid who will stand in a puddle in the bathroom and get a wet sock and it will be the end of the world as he knows it. So wet pants? Terrifying.
It took only 2 days to toilet train him for wees and he’s had only a handful of accidents in that regard since then. It was surprisingly simple in the end and I think that come back to waiting until he was old enough to understand. He started standing to pee after a week and has done ever since. Which is great when you are out and about at the beach or the likes and they decide they really need to go to the toilet, like NOW but not so great when they get complacent about paying attention to where they are aiming (ie. not aiming for anything in particular and even spinning around mid stream at the sound of a voice to see who’s there).
Poos on the other hand? Poos will be the death of me.
He is now 4 and point blank refuses to go poos on the toilet and holds it for a night nappy. We have tried bribes. Charts. Punishment. Begging. Praise. Discipline. I think I may have even yelled at him (not my proudest moment). Nothing, I mean nothing works.
I asked him the other night what he plans to do when he is my age and his response was that he was going to invent a pooper scooper out of the grass and the twigs and the leaves and the rain and it was going to be a poo catcher to catch the poos. What the … where did this child come from?!
I think the only thing left to do at this point is just take away the night nappy. On one of my particularly tired nights the other night I forgot to change him from undies to a nappy before putting him to bed and I then had a very distressed little boy beside my bed in the middle of the night who had wet himself. He was distraught as he never wets himself so I’m a bit worried that we may have a recurring theme of wet = distraught = interrupted nights of changing sheets = very tired mama at work.
Why are children so damn stubborn?! The problem is though that the more you focus on this particular problem, the more of a complex he seems to get over it and the more stubborn he becomes.
I think the main issue is that he is using it as a means to being able to get back up after going to bed at night. He goes to bed and then about half an hour later we see a silouhette in the doorway of the lounge …
‘Mummy, daddy. I have a big problem. I just did poo poos in my nappy and I need you to change it. It’s the biggest poo poo you have ever seen! And the colour is brown!’
Every. Single. Night.
The other night he was grinning ear to ear with this announcement and I told him extremely exasperated ‘Cohen, this isn’t funny, you need to do it on the toilets like a big boy!’
Do you know what he said back?
‘Mummy, it is a little bit funny’
*Pulls hair out*
He is so smart and yet so damn stubborn! And he has an amazing sense of humour so he always ends up making us laugh which does not help the cause!
I am at my wits end with this child.
It is with great pleasure that I can announce that we have now sorted this very poopy problem! We had to sit in the toilet with him holding his hands and bribing while in equal parts encouraging and promising cheeseburgers and playgrounds and beaches and told him that the poos go to poo poo land where they join all the other poo poos (gross but it worked!). This of course led to a million questions ‘Are their poo poo people?’ ‘Yes’ ‘What about poo poo dogs?’ ‘Poo poo houses?’ ‘Poo poo McDonalds?’. You get the gist.
Thankfully my second son has not had this same problem. Phew!