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Toilet training -ASD

(35 Posts)
WireCatWhore Wed 13-Feb-13 18:12:57

Toddler will be 4 in April.
I have tried unsuccessfully to toilet train HM. In the last few months it has become apparent to me that he has ASD traits. I have an appt on 2nd April.

He is refusing to toilet train. Part of his problems is that if you do something a certain way, well that's how it's always done! A even though he does understand going to the toilet & he understands the books we've got, he will not do it himself.

As its half term next week, I am thinking of going cold turkey in the hope he will get it. Will have 9 days, including the weekends.

Did ay of you have trouble with toilet training your ASD children? I expect so, as it's a common thing.

I have lots of questions but will not ask everything at once.

Reading this forum, I am so shocked at how shit SN kids are treated.

I have already been warned to fight for everything I need & now I see why.

Thank you all.

I might try the pullups I think. But whether it will make him make any connection between wetness and loo I don't know (he is non-verbal, but can sign and indicate things).

PS wish I could re-toilet train our (very old) cat who has just pooed on the floor. Yuk. Gve me DS's ones any day!

MummytoMog Sun 17-Feb-13 14:06:17

Ah, sorry, not much help. We got it because madam gets horrid red marks on her bum from the potty, and we thought it would encourage her to sit, but it doesn't seem to have worked...

We use pull ups at night rather than cloth now because she got very upset at putting a 'nappy' back on, whereas she can call these special monkey pants (tesco).

sickofsocalledexperts Sun 17-Feb-13 13:19:17

The theory i s I think that pull-ups are a halfway house between nappies and pants, and are less absorbent - so the kid starts to feel the wetness and therefore more uncomfortable. It is supposed to lead them to want to use loo.

WireCatWhore Sun 17-Feb-13 13:17:14

thedudesmummy
My toddler got confused with pull ups. He just we'd in them all the same. And if I put pants on him, he would ask for his "elephant pants" (aldi pull ups!) when he needed a wee.

I didn't use them with my older 2, they are quite a bit older though.

They could be useful for longer journeys one LO has just become potty trained.

That seems to be an Australian make. Well, the one we have seems Ok in terms of his being happy to sit on it 9although not do anything else!).

I wanted to ask a related question if anyone can advise me. What is the deal with changing from regular nappies to pullups? My nanny tells me her friend (who has two small kids, one with ASD) thinks things would be better with pullups now. I (having no experience of any of this) would just like to know what the purpose of the change would be, is any?

WireCatWhore Sun 17-Feb-13 11:40:18

He managed a wee on the potty before bed.
Nappy was dry when he got up! He is always dry overnight anyway, but put a nappy on as don't have mattress protector yet.

He is currently holding his wee. He is contender for strongest pelvic floor in history. He is desperate to go. And last night he enjoyed his chocolate lolly after he had his wee. He knows there is a chocolate lolly when he wees on the potty.

Today he will need a poo as well (he went before I removed his nappy yesterday). That will be fun. I have new cars for pooing.

MummytoMog Sun 17-Feb-13 00:20:10

It says roger Armstrong on it, but it was second hand from eBay...

PS I also began to think this was the norm (and have not had any other children so didn't really know!). I hope we can get to the point of formed stools (amazing what one can feel excited about isn't it!)

have you got the make of the seat? We have one with handles and ladder but not a padded seat.

MummytoMog Sat 16-Feb-13 17:27:25

I used to think it was normal to never have a solid poo btw, so the change to well formed stools was amazing and very noticeable. I have IBS so maybe madam inherited my sensitive gut.

MummytoMog Sat 16-Feb-13 17:25:12

We got this spangly one with a built in ladder, handles and a padded seat. She insists on using the five pound potty from Mothercare. No one else is allowed to use the stupidly expensive potties we bought for DD that play music, so had to buy DS his own dinosaur potty this week to start potty training him. DD feels very strongly that dinosaur things and blue things belong to DS. Thank heavens for blue dinosaur potties.

WireCatWhore Sat 16-Feb-13 11:07:18

Right. He's happily got his pyjama bottoms on. No pants. That'll do!

WireCatWhore Sat 16-Feb-13 10:59:38

Complete melt down. Just tried to put pants on him.

Thanks for all your replies.
Not ignoring, just been busy, need to get house on the market x

PS what is the world's most amazing loo seat, MummytoMog?

That's interesting to hear MummytoMog. We sent stool samples off for all kinds of analysis this week, and he is to have some abdominal x-rays soon (getting him to stay still for that should be fun, hmm!). Hoping to find out if it is a bug, or an absorption problem, or an allergy of some kind.

He does watch me on the loo and finds it hilarious. Also watching his dad pee standing up, perhaps that's a bit confusing! Our ABA consultant has said he will be devising a toilet training programme for him, so we will see what he says on his next workshop, which is in 2 weeks!

MummytoMog Fri 15-Feb-13 16:01:50

DD was completely like this up until Christmas, right down to the loose stools. Luckily, it seemed to clear up around the time she had a course of antibiotics for something else, so maybe she had a low level infection that cleared up. Anyway, hope you get some advice on the loose stools, it's pretty grim (we cloth nappy too, YURK). Do you get DS to watch you/his dad on the loo? DD is very interested in what I'm up to, and I think that helped. We also used the Avakid potty app, which she loves. DD doesn't tell us when she needs to go very often at all, we just plonk her on the potty regularly, but it does feel like we are getting somewhere now.

I am starting to feel a bit stressed about this. DS is 3.8 and no sign at all of indicating when he needs to wee or poo, or even when he has done so (he is non-verbal but perfectly capable of using signs and making sounds to indicate other needs). His poos are very loose indeed (he is currently under investigation by a gastroenterologist for this) so we can't even do the fluching them down the loo thing. I am getting him used to sitting on the toddler loo seat every time we change a nappy and he loves flushing, but has no concept of the actual function of the loo!

largerleon Thu 14-Feb-13 16:59:24

DS1 was dry during the day just before his 4th birthday. Still wears pull-ups at night, he's 8 now but regularly leaks out of the 8-15 yr ones sad even though we restrict his drinking after 4pm. He's ?Aspergers & has sensory processing issues. Occasionally he will still poo in his pull-ups during the night, presumably he relaxes in his sleep. Certainly his most regular (every 2-3 days) poo time is about 4.30-5am.
DS2 is now nearly 6, he was 4.5 before I got him out of nappies during the day, it was the August before he started school in the Sept. He was much much harder to poo-train, I remember hours spent shaking his legs trying to get him to relax enough to poo anywhere, toilet or potty. His whole body would tighten up & go rigid, he would hold it for days, eat less and get progressively grumpier. He's ?dyspraxic & has sensory processing issues and still holds it for days but now at least goes when it starts to "turtle" (sorry, TMI! wink)

Both my DD's are fine grin maybe it's just boys... no, that's what my mum says hmm

MummytoMog Thu 14-Feb-13 12:17:13

DD still poos in her pants. Thankfully they are nice neat poos and at roughly the same time everyday, so we pop her in a pull up, remind her it's for pooping in and she generally pops one out within half an hour. I think that's pretty common in all children though, to be a bit more bashful/uncomfortable with pooing in potties. DD will not use a toilet, even with the world's most amazing loo seat on it. Sigh.

Even though we have to remind her every hour or so, this is SO much easier than being in nappies all the time. And it really helps me feel more positive about her other developmental delays. I completely agree with the in their own time thing, this was our third or fourth attempt and we gave up on the others when it became obvious they were going nowhere and upsetting everyone. But this feels good for us. And DS is really starting to get the idea too, maybe I'll have them BOTH out of nappies soon smile Would be lovely to have no more nappy washes smile

WireCatWhore Thu 14-Feb-13 12:08:57

Thanks all. I've been a bit busy today so will come on & read properly & reply later.
Am about to take toddler to nursery. As its my last free time for over a week I am going to Costa for a large caffeine hit & cake!
Once again. Thanks for replying x

HecateWhoopass Thu 14-Feb-13 11:39:03

Oh, it was a nightmare. I tried at the normal age but it was very quickly clear it wasn't happening, and tbh, I didn't see the point in making it a battle when it really wasn't within their control.

So they stayed in nappies and eventually got the nhs ones - that you're entitled to if your child is in nappies after a certain age due to disability.

I decided to wait for them to be ready, however long it took.

One day, when my youngest was over 5 years old, he got up and I took off his nappy, cleaned him up and put on a fresh nappy. He took it straight back off, flung it across the room and never wore another one. He didn't really have many accidents - mainly when he was so busy doing something that he wasn't aware of the need to go - or decided to not go to the loo but do it in his pants!

My eldest was still in nappies at that point (he's 15 months older) but my youngest doing that triggered something in him and he started to refuse to wear them. He had serious problems with soiling for many years after that though. Despite his paed saying it was his choice hmm I have never accepted that. He's 13 now and still has some problems, but for the most part everything is ok.

We were fortunate in that the school had no problem. They understood their needs and were ok to change nappies (they were both statemented and had 1:1 and all manner of funding).

I know that most people don't agree with me on this, and it's only as a result of my personal - limited - experience with ASD, and so clearly it's just one person's opinion - but I always say to just leave it until they're ready. Achieving control over their bowels and bladder is not a battle you can win. It's a battle THEY win. Just continue to create opportunities for him to use a potty/the loo. Carry on with of stories/comic strips about it. etc. and see how he goes. (plus them refusing can be about control too!)

in my limited experience (just my two boys with autism. I don't claim to be an expert) getting into a battle of wills with someone who is rigid is a bloody nightmare! grin

Mine did it when they were ready, when they wanted to and, as with all things, their general attitude was screw you wink I could have sat them on potties every 15 minutes for years and it wouldn't have made a difference.

ApplePippa Thu 14-Feb-13 11:26:54

I toilet trained DS at 3.5yrs. He was very resistant to the whole idea, and is another one for who if you do something one way, then that's how its always done smile. Preparing him for the change was key for us, that and heavy doses of rewards (aka giving him a motivation!).

A week before I pinned up on the wall a calender for the week ahead, with pictures of what we were doing each day culminating in "pants day". We crossed off each day at bedtime and talked about pants day and no more nappies. I also did a series of pictures showing the toileting process (go to bathroom, pull down pants and trousers, sit on potty etc) I really believe it helped DS to know what was coming.

On the big day, he was very, very unhappy at the idea of putting pants on, so I showed him a new toy car he could have if he put them on. Instant success grin. It was then a case of taking him to the toilet at regular intervals - he was rewarded with a chocolate button initially for just sitting on the potty, and then for doing a wee. Loads of accidents, but it got him used to the process.

It took about three weeks before he started to actually indicate when he needed to go (he was still non-verbal, so we used a PECS card).He had to work a bit harder for his chocolate button after that, and only got one if he "asked" to go. He was dry quite soon after that, and then I gradually phased the chocolate buttons out.

Poos were much harder because he just didn't get it. Eventually, after a lot of tears and frustration on my part, I managed to catch him in the act one day and dumped him on the potty. He was promised another new car when he did his next poo in the potty, which he managed a couple of days later. He "got it" very quickly after that. He's been clean and dry during the day for six months now. Have yet to tackle the nights...

MerryCouthyMows Thu 14-Feb-13 08:58:00

3/4 of my DC's are on the Spectrum. Awaiting genetic test results, possibly later this morning.

DD was dry during the day at 7, at night at 12y7mo. She wasn't clean until 7yo (after medication for encoparesis).

DS1 is relatively NT but school are mooting Aspergers and given family history and certain 'traits', I'm inclined to agree. He was clean and dry day and night at 18mo.

DS2 was dry day and night by 2y7mo - he couldn't walk or talk but I used a form of elimination communication as he had nappy rash issues. He still isn't clean at 9yo, and is on medication for encoparesis.

DS3 is just over 2yo, and he knows when he has BEEN for a poo, but not when he is doing it, and definitely not before he has done it. He has no clue about wees, and when he wees on the floor when he has his nappy off, becomes very distressed. He REALLY isn't ready to potty train. His speech isn't anywhere near good enough either, and neither is his Makaton yet.

PolterGoose Wed 13-Feb-13 23:14:38

Ds was nearly 4. At the time we had a handmade year-planner so we designated a day as Pants Day, and stuck a picture of pants on first day of Easter holiday. We did this several months in advance.

A difficulty with older children is that potties are too small, use a decent toilet seat, we actually bought an all in one adult and flip down child's
loo seat which was really stable, as well as a solid stool, comfort is crucial.

We had a big plastic tub of "potty presents" on the cistern for every success. These were those cheap little plastic bugs you buy in tubes, each was wrapped in tissue paper.

We were advised by our lovely HV not to have ds either sit for periods on the toilet or to tell him when to go except for about every 2 hours. Her advice was to give big drinks about every 2 hours with a snack or meal, to include lots of salty snacks to encourage drinking for a couple of days. Before every snack/meal he was to be instructed to try for a wee on loo and wash hands, which is a good habit anyway! The thinking behind not telling child to go is that it is actually really hard to expel a small amount of wee if your bladder isn't full, and that it isn't a good habit to strain to wee.

I covered the sofa in towels and bought lots of big loose pants. Ds wore joggers with socks, these stopped the wee going everywhere! Arrangement was if he had an accident he had to go next to the washing machine to be stripped off and wiped down before putting on clean clothes. It was all very matter of fact, no judgement.

First day around 10 accidents and nothing in loo. Second day we went to town shopping and he didn't wee when out shock and slowly improved. It took a year for days to be 100% reliably dry, but after the first week accidents were occasional, not every day. Poos took about 18 months, luckily he held them in while at school (mostly). Interestingly, he had a wet nappy after the first night, then completely dry at nights and he's another who has never wet the bed.

We have though for the past few years had huge problems with him holding in his wees which makes him stressy and angry (unsurprisingly) and I assume it is a sensory thing, but I've yet to find a professional who takes this seriously hmm

bialystockandbloom Wed 13-Feb-13 22:44:36

We did a similar route to Agnes (also do ABA). We spent an unbelievable amount of time in the loo playing with toys, making it a 'fun' place to be, etc. Ds was dry by 3.6, but didn't have a poo in the toilet until he was over 4. For this, we did a gradual thing of putting a nappy on but sitting on the toilet, then when he was completely comfortable with this, taking the nappy off but putting it over the loo like a 'net' (he was scared of the poo going straight into the toilet), then removing it completely. At each stage, massive rewards for mastering each step, with a ginormous reward at the end of it all.

One other thing to note is to take off pants so he's naked from the waist down (if you can do this, being at home). We found with ds that if he wore pants he treated them more or less like a nappy. When he had the sensation of having nothing against his skin he was much more reluctant just to wee on the floor, so basically no other choice than using the loo.

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