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Potty-training. Are my children just hideously lazy?

(7 Posts)
duchesse Sat 17-Sep-11 09:21:30

Ignominous potted history thus far:

Child 1: Took him out of nappies at 2. Proceeded to make his way through 10 pairs of pants a day. Would hide behind doors to pee on the floor rather than use the potty or loo. Not really "potty-trained" as such (as in willing to go the loo and use it as needed vs being forcibly taken) until about 4-5- still not really fully continent by reception class at 4yr 2 m. Still wetting at night at nearly 10. Big (parental) FAIL

Child 2: Got Chicken Pox at 15 months, including spots under nappy. Decided nappies were for sore-bottomed losers and wanted to use potty instead. Very reliable for 1 year, then started regressing. Had her fully investigated- GP, paediatrician, scans on kidneys, repeat screening for infections at 3 as she was basically just weeing in her pants all the time. Nothing ever found wrong. Even tried acupuncture. She was never really dry in the daytime again until about 7-8- always smelled of wee when she came out of school- and dry night-time at 8-9. Big parental FAIL

Child 3: Can't really remember but essentially started potty training in the summer she turned 2 (you'd have thought we'd have learned by then). She was not really dry in the daytime until 6, and night-time at similar age. Pretty much a FAIL

Incidentally, the older children all became dry at night in the year we moved to Canada. Who knows why- we went from washing 3x sets of bedding a night/wearing pull-ups, to nothing. Has been bliss ever since.

Child 4 is nearly 2 yr 1 month. All the bulletins I get from those moronic forums say "Your Child May Be Nearly Ready to Potty-Train" followed by a long list of signs, none of which she is exhibiting, nor did any of her siblings. She has No idea when she is about to do a poo, No idea she is about to do a wee. If she happens to wee on her feet, she still views it with utterly detached interest. No idea it's coming from her at all. Not waking up from naps etc dry as far as I'm aware. No real interest in using the potty.

So, to avoid another major parental FAIL, What do I do? How long do I wait? How long realistically can you keep them in nappies? How come we were all potty-trained at 13 months back in the day and I can't even get mine dry by 5? (although to be honest I wet the bed very late and was not very daytime reliable even at 6 although I got smacked for wetting my pants and probably focused more on it) Is it hereditary to this extent?

Any tips? People saying "oh my little so and so took a week at 18 mo, I just did x , x and x" I have never found all that helpful (understatement).

Notinmykitchen Sat 17-Sep-11 12:38:23

I would wait a while yet. I am certainly aware of many kids still in nappies at 3. I remember feeling with DS that he would never be ready, then at 2 years and about 8 months he suddenly did it himself. DN wasn't ready until 3 years 6 months. One thing I did learn was that trying to make them do it before they were ready was a messy and frustrating business! It sounds like yours get there a bit later than most, but they've all got there in the end, your littlest will too!

AngelDog Sat 17-Sep-11 21:15:02

Yes, there is a strong hereditary element in what age children are dry, which may be an factor for your children. If both parents were late to be dry, there's even more likelihood that their children will be late to train.

You could try some of the principles of EC (elimination communication) to help your DD re-learn some awareness of her toilet functions. The idea is that it's really, really gradual 'potty training' (although the focus is on communicating with your child about their toileting, rather than on getting them potty trained).

I found just talking to him about toileting lots made a real difference, as did occasional nappy free time.

Oh, and washable nappies are supposed to make it easier as they feel wet, so the child can associate the feeling of weeing with the feeling of wetness. Disposables wick the dampness away so it's harder for them to make the connection.

duchesse Sat 17-Sep-11 22:05:43

Thanks both. I think my DH was relatively late too, but I literally don't know anybody who's had the problems we've had getting ours to be clean. The problem is of course that they can't really go to nursery until they're out of nappies. She is in cloth nappies all day (well, not at the moment as the washing machine has broken down, but usually is) as were the others, so no excuses for them there!

I would love for her to be suddenly "get it" and there's much less pressure for her than there was for the older ones (having two children in cloth nappies at once is quite hard, let alone three) since she's not going to have any younger siblings, but I just doubt sometimes that she ever will just click one day when the others didn't until ridiculously late.

duchesse Sat 17-Sep-11 22:07:36

Angel, I do ask her a few times a day how her nappy is. She usually says "fine". Sometimes she says "pooey" but sometimes she's not right. She is willing to sit on the loo, because she sees me doing it, but doesn't actually do anything on it. Not too keen on the potty.

Tgger Sat 17-Sep-11 22:11:09

Wait until just before she is 3- or any time after 2.5 if she is insistent! I have trained both of mine just before 3 and it has been really easy.They are not dry at night yet tho! (nearly 3 and nearly 5).

AngelDog Sun 18-Sep-11 21:23:27

Even though DS now tells me before he needs a wee if bare-bottomed, (he's not potty trained yet), he wouldn't respond if I asked him about his nappy. I suppose our communication is more along the lines of 'You've done a poo. Let's go and change your nappy. It's much nicer to have a clean and dry nappy'.

He did go suddenly from not talking to me at all about it to saying 'nappy! potty!' when he'd just done a wee, which quickly progressed to telling me before he needed one (although he rarely does it while in nappies and he doesn't do it consistently yet).

I'm surprised about nursery being difficult. I've known children who weren't entirely potty trained when they started in reception.

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