[Solved] Potty training issues
Hope you all had a great christmas with your families.
I've had a good time so far. My son, who is 3 next march, has come to stay with me since last tuesday and is going home next tuesday. We had a great christmas day and for the most part he has had a super time.
Prior to me picking my son up from my ex's home, she told me that she wanted me to continue potting training him over the christmas period and she would carry on too when I take him home.
The thing is, and I was sort of shocked by this, that he gets really upset at the slightest mention of the potty, and really kicks off screaming and crying if i take him to the bathroom to use the potty. Whether this is related or not, I don't know, but when I tried to bath him too, he kicked off screaming and crying. It seems like for some reason he hates the bathroom now. Normally, when I visit him in his home town and we stay at a premier inn, I bath him and wash his hair no fuss at all. So for the life of me was so surprised to have this issue now. When he came to visit me in my house last september, he went and had baths and hair washes no problem at all. So in my mind I was thinking that something has changed over the last few months.
I have tried making fun and game out of both potty time and bath time but with absolutely zero success over the last 4-5 days.
I was doing a bit of FaceTime with the ex tonight so that she could speak with our son and have a chat with him before bedtime. Before she went i asked her about how regular he poo's at home, and she said normally once every few days, and sometimes longer. I then told her that he hasn't had a poo since tuesday when I picked him up, and she then said something to me that kinda took me aback, which was that she takes him to potty and actually holds him in place against his will until he goes, even if he does cry and scream. She told me that is what i am going to have to go to get him to have a poo.
After that chat I took my son to the bathroom and took his nappy off, and before I even got him on the potty, he kicked off big time. I just couldn't bring myself to do restrain him. In fact, it broke my heart to see so upset. It's like he genuinely fears the bathroom now.
Am I just weak in that I can't do what needs to be done in order to get my son to use the potty? Or am I right in thinking that way my ex is doing in terms of potty training is just downright wrong?
My son is in good spirits during the days with me so far, having a good fun and good times. He has eaten meals normally and plentifully and taken on plenty of water. He has slept without any problems. He is fast asleep now as I type this.
I guess I really need some advice on the whole potty training thing, as everywhere I have read says that it should be encouragement and should never be about forcing a child to use the potty. The other thing is, any tips of getting a toddler to have a poo? He hasn't been since tuesday and I'm a little concerned about that. I'm worried the experiences he has had at home make him fearful of doing it.
I think I'm going to have to have a serious discussion with my ex about what goes on in this regard - but am worried about doing so really as the relationship we have is civil, but can turn sour very easily I think. Don't want it all to kick off when things are going so good.
Any advice or pointers here would be great.
I found your post quite distressing, it is completely wrong to force a child in that way and its little wonder he is reacting the way he is. Most children are 3 or 4 before they are completely potty trained...he's not even 3 yet and six months in his life is a long time. Forcing the poor child will only store up problems for him.
Going for a poo once or twice a week doesn't seem regular enough to me, but Ive read that it can happen, however I would definitely have a word with the doc or health visitor about it. As long as the consistency is good and the colour is normal then it's ok....is he constipated?
I would look at his diet, introduce plenty of fruit, grapes (as long as you don't give them to him whole due to risk of choking), fruit juice and water, anything that will get his bowels moving.
You could try a different style of potty, perhaps one of those seats that fits onto the normal toilet....my grandson wouldn't use a potty either, he went straight onto the toilet.
There are lots of books about potty training and without fail not one of them would advocate holding your child on it by force. Try and find information that you can share with her to show her that its wrong to use force and have suggestions of alternatives. The important thing to realise is that every child is different and they will get there with patience and consistency.
As far as a fear of bath time, maybe you need to get some bath toys, or even get in there with him to reassure him!
Best of luck with it.
WTF is she doing forcing the poor kid to have a poo that's unreal I defo wouldn't feel pressured into trying potty training whilst you have him it's no surprise he is scared of the bathroom jesus poor kid :/
That does seem long to go without a poo my 2 year old sometimes goes one day without one but never for more than 48 hours as MOJO has suggested take plenty of toys in there with him kids love simple things like plastic cups to pour the water in and out of my girl loves filling the bath with them cheap plastic balls.
I shower or bathe with my girl every night when she's with me she still doesn't like it to this day but I know she's not that used to it as her Mum very rarely bathes her which does my nut.
I bet your lad is constipated as he literally dare not have a poo as it's so traumatic going for one with his mum I know it's a nightmare having a word with mum about it due to her probs kicking off try doing it nice and subtle tell her you were struggling to get him on the potty so you researched about potty training and give her what you found hopefully she will read it 🙂
Glad actual contact is going sound mate it's good to hear and thanks again for all your help with my case 🙂
Hello Simon, I too found your post upsetting with regard to your Ex's method of potty training. I wholeheartedly agree with Mojo and Slim.
Cereals (roughage), fruit, vegetables (vitamins) and preferably water or weak squash ( to make sure he is hydrated) taken daily should enable him to have a normal bowel movement.
If being restrained has made him fearful which would appear is the case, his muscles will be tense and make it more difficult for him to go to the toilet.
I personally would not do any potty training for a while but concentrate on the fear I think he is associating with going to the toilet and the bathroom due to being restrained by his mother. I would also make bath time fun and of a short duration. If he shows signs of distress about going into the bathroom for a bath I would stand him in the kitchen sink and give him a quick wash down in there and avoid the bathroom. I do believe his distress has to be sorted before the potty training can be resumed.
I do wonder if a confidential talk with your G.P. may help and for the doctor to check your son's tummy for constipation.
Well my son was in a lot of distress yesterday when he woke up. Despite all my encouragement I could just not get him to have a poo. Not in the nappy or on the potty. He was crying to the point that I felt I had no choice but get medical help as I couldn't see any way he was going to pass that poo.
I took him to the local emergency care centre for kids and they immediately knew he was severely constipated. An examination revealed an impacted stool that was very very solid. So the poor guy had to have a suppository to help it pass. After about 20 minutes he did have a motion and I swear I've never seen a poo so solid in my life. No wonder the poor guy couldn't go. Must have hurt him a lot to be trying.
Other than that he has been given a short course of laxatives to help with clearing the rest.
All in all it was a very distressing and upsetting day. I'm knackered.
Going forward I think that there are issues that need to be addressed asap because suppository isn't a long term answer. I'm sure there are dietary solutions to the problem as well perhaps stopping or modifying the potty training. As long as he's fearful he won't want to go to the toilet. It makes me sad that I have to try to sort all this out from a distance but I will try my best to have a good chat with his mum to hopefully work something out that helps him go to the toilet regularly.
Thanks for your input.
It is a very distressing time for you and your little boy but now you know what is happening and what is needed you can begin to solve the problem. Given a little time and patience, I am sure all will be well.
...poor little man, thank goodness you took action to sort it out. Did the medical team discuss his diet or make any comment about his potty training?
At least now you have a very valid reason to start discussions with her about her techniques for potty training and his diet, you're right, constipation can be avoided with the correct dietary intake and plenty of fluids.
I think it's a good idea to put his potty training on hold for a little while, to allow him to get over what must have been a very traumatic experience for him.
With potty training, if a child senses tension or stress it will make the task so much harder, it needs to be handled in a calm and positive way, accidents will happen and shouldn't be dwelt upon. It's important during the process to keep him as dry and clean as possible and then he won't want to be wet or soiled, he won't like that feeling on his skin. Trainer pants are a good idea and pull up nappies that can be pulled down and up again to help with going to the toilet.
All the best.