Thursday, April 23, 2009


With the impending arrival of Maxine's 4th Birthday I am both excited and horribly embarrassed. I'm coming out to the world to reach out and get some help, and here is my sad truth: Maxine is not yet potty-trained. I've been through hell and back with this child here's a horrifying example, but it seems like I've made no progress with her at all. I've used every 'bribing' method, I've made her sit on the potty for hours, I've used M&M's, starburst, cookies, pixie sticks (which are gross). I've put her in time out, I've pleaded, I've cleaned up ungodly messes, taken her to therapy, threatened her (not my best day). My family has been involved, her sisters try and help, and for a while I had her peeing in the potty almost always. When I had taken her to therapy they had suggested I cool it on all the methods for the time being and let it evolve from there.

During therapy they started discussing different behavior she's was exhibiting that might be helped with medication. I didn't even want to start to think about that crap and stopped taking her. Now we're at some kind of standstill. Right now at this moment I have her sitting on the couch next to me because she hasn't pooped in four days (I'm guessing she can control it because I keep her with me nearly all the time) and she's screaming bloody murder cause I stopped her from sneaking into the gameroom to presumably hide and poop.
She's never given us a real answer to why she won't even attempt to poop on the potty. One time she said it hurt, but I think the answer was offered to her by my grandma earlier that day because Max later recanted and said that it does not hurt. Then she told us just this week that the poop won't come out on the potty, but wouldn't discuss it further. So right now we're rolling with this idea: I'll cut a hole in her diaper and let her wear the diaper while she poops on the potty. This whole idea hinges on whether or not she'll tell me if she has to poop.

Ugh! I just wrote 'poop' more times than I ever thought I would. I'm done with this little blog! Before I get totally stressed wacky nuts...


Sam said...

Hi Erin,

Jarrah was a late potty-trainer, and I was at my wit's end, too. Then I went to a seminar on potty training with a social worker for Parent Connection, and she gave me some advice that sounded wack but actually turned things around in ONE WEEK for us.

I said to Jarrah: "I see we have a difference of opinion. You are not willing to poop on the potty. And Mommy is not willing to clean poopy underpants. So let's make an agreement. When you need to poop, let me know. I will put a diaper on you, you can go, and I will change it. No judgment, not questions asked. Deal?"

Well, when the SW explained this, I was thinking "Yeah, right, she's not even going to follow all that." But not only did she follow it, she started using this method immediately, once even when we were waiting in line at the children's museum! I yanked down her pants, put the diaper on, she went, and I took her to go change, full of compliments. She did that a few times, and then suddenly: "I want to try going in the potty instead."

Can't hurt to try, yes? According to this SC, having them wear the underpants full-time (instead of just staying in the diaper) gives them a sense of responsibility/control in the situation. But still the reassurance of pooping in the diaper.

Sorry I've written a post here. ;)

Sam said...

P.S. According to the SW, the "what we're each not willing and willing to do" part is key. And I did notice Jarrah glommed on to that language immediately.

Magpie said...

I can't help - but it will happen. Is she constipated? My sister had to put her kid on metamucil at a young age...

kara said...

your idea isn't a bad one. and i imagine like any little girl her age, going out afterwards and picking out the new skivvies of her choice might be a fun reward for her (perhaps you've already tried that). i've potty trained more children than i like to count and that's something that i've often recommended to parents.

and then i'd go home to my childless apartment and collapse with a cocktail filled with glee.

Prosy said...

I don't know much about kids, but I figure it must be really confusing to think its ok to just go wherever in your pants, and then one day someone tell you, like, "dude. thats gross. you have to poop in this thing."
I imagine if something that life changing happened to me now, in my mid-20's, my head would probably explode.

that was supposed to be encouraging.