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Putting ds back into pull-ups after a year in pants? Good or Bad Thing?

(46 Posts)
QueenEagle Wed 21-Feb-07 15:14:54

ds3 was 3.3 when I put him in pants after several false starts. He wasn't really ready but I felt it was time. He seemed to get it but was never bothered if he had wet or pooed himslef. It is becoming more apparent the older he gets that he has a social/communication disorder, possibly mild autism but he is being observed and monitored by all professionals involved.

To date he nkaes no attempt to go to the toilet, in fact he screams the place down at the mere mention of toilet. Star charts, picture cards have worked to a limited degree but he then loses interest and motivation. We have tried nice mummy/cross mummy tactics. Nothing and I mean nothing works.

He avoids the toilet at playgroup and goes because I insist at home after. He poos on the floor or in his pants. At home we just clean up after him and hope one day he will be motivated enough to want to be clean.

He starts with a c/minder next week and he had a settling in visit today for 2 hours and he wet himself twice whilst ther, all over the chair, carpet, toys and carpet. c/m suggested pull-ups which tbh we have ummed and ahhed about for a while but wonder if it would be a Good or Bad Thing to do?? He is 4.2 yo.

hairymclary Wed 21-Feb-07 15:18:43

i would do it.
he clearly isn't ready, and despite all your efforts is still not using the toilet.

don't make it harder for you all, especially if he does have special needs.
no child will potty train until they're ready- so if he isn't ready then there's no point.

UniSarah Wed 21-Feb-07 19:43:38

good thing if it will get you a bit of respite from constant clean ups and keep you a childminder who is willing to have a child who may not be easy to care for. You don't have to use them all the time at home if you don't want to.

beansprout Wed 21-Feb-07 19:46:14

I would go with pull ups too.

This may be utterly irrelevant and useless, but my friend's son couldn't potty train for ages either. When he was 3.5 they established that he had a dairy allergy and it practically resolved itself overnight. Sorry if that sounds a bit odd but I just thought I would mention it in case.

QueenEagle Wed 21-Feb-07 21:25:24

Yes, I am thinking it would be far more practical to use them on occasions especially those when he will be at the childminder's.

Is this likely to cause confusion for him?

QueenEagle Wed 21-Feb-07 22:13:36


QueenEagle Wed 21-Feb-07 22:24:28


QueenEagle Thu 22-Feb-07 07:53:36


colditz Thu 22-Feb-07 07:58:09

QE if he isn't trained anyway, it's not going to confuse him IMO.

FiachraFrogakaDave Thu 22-Feb-07 07:58:42

I wouldn't necessarily tell him that he's in pull ups - just treat them like normal pants, keep encouraging him to go to the loo etc. it will however make things easier for you to clean up afterwards.

One thing that worked with my son was getting him to go to the toilet at nursery at the same time as his friends - I clearly remember going in there one day and seeing the three of them in a row on their potties, reading books!!! Try making an adventure of it.

Good luck.

colditz Thu 22-Feb-07 08:00:21

Have you tried chocolate buttons? very very simple reward, very easy for them to 'get'

nearlyfourbob Thu 22-Feb-07 08:36:34

Put him in the pull ups - he is obviously totally confused - so couldn't get more so.

because of his age/medical condition - can you get something on prescription?

anorak Thu 22-Feb-07 08:40:57

Someone once said to me of toilet training, you can start at the age of 3 and have a year of uncertainty.

Or you can start at 3 1/2 and have 6 months of uncertainty. Or at 4 and have a week of uncertainty.

If children are not ready they are not ready. Why go through all the angst? I would be surprised if in a year's time he still isn't ready, all this will not seem to matter then.

Def put him back in pull-ups. Boys take longer than girls too in my experience.

QueenEagle Thu 22-Feb-07 12:44:36


Gently persuaded him to put a pull up on. OMG he has kicked off big time! Went into toilet, he resisted all the way (as usual), despite protesting otherwise he did a huge wee and he had soiled his pants a bit. So put the pull up on but he screamed it was too lumpy and he didn't want it. So he just took it off and screamed for half an hour solid.

An hour later when he had calmed down I told him it was either the toilet or the pull ups. He said toilet. I asked him where the wee and poo goes - he replied quite clearly - toilet. But I have told him very firmly if he poos or wees his pants again today, the pull-ups will go on.

though. If he KNOWS where poo and wee goes, WHY THE BLOODY HELL DOES HE CHOOSE NOT TO?? Is this a power struggle or what?

Please help, I really am at my wits end witht his, have cried buckets in front of his physio this morning

QueenEagle Thu 22-Feb-07 13:03:34


morningpaper Thu 22-Feb-07 13:17:02

I agree, stick back in pull-ups but don't make a big thing about what they are - just treat 'em like pants

princessmel Thu 22-Feb-07 13:18:56

I agree with hairymclarys post.

MegaLegs Thu 22-Feb-07 13:20:53

Don't know what to suggest yet but saw you were upset and wanted to try and help- what kind of pullups are you using? I was just going to google some reusable types.

southeastastra Thu 22-Feb-07 13:21:39

yes treat them like pants. it could be a power struggle, my ds(5) had pants at about 3.5 as he needed them for preschool and it was very hit and miss!

he was also in night time pull ups until about 4.5! it's really hard and can drive you mad. i would put him in pull ups and just not mention anything about the loo, see what happens, he'll probably want to use the loo!

boys are (ime!) very lazy when it comes to the loo

geekgrrl Thu 22-Feb-07 13:23:18

QE, sounds like a bit of a nightmare.
I would also suggest going back to pull-ups for now - and by the way, you can get free ones for a child over 3 with SN, your HV can arrange it.

MegaLegs Thu 22-Feb-07 13:23:45

something like these
Do you think the fact that they are so different from disposable pull ups and look more like proper big boy pants might make a difference?

jenkel Thu 22-Feb-07 13:25:19

No experience of this, what is your health visitor like, would she be able to give you any advice or can the people that he is seeing for the mild autism help at all.

I tried my daughter at 2 1/2 had a horrendous time, tried her at 3 1/2 and it was fine and took a few days with no accidents.

When does he start school, my dd started school at 4.1 years and I dont think they would have been too happy with her in pull ups.

I guess black mail doesnt work.

coppertop Thu 22-Feb-07 13:25:53

I agree that pull-ups sound like the best idea atm. If not then you'll find yourself getting very stressed out by it. Ds2 (4yrs) is still nowhere near being ready. Like your ds3 he understands that the toilet is the place where it's meant to go but doesn't yet do this himself.

It's fairly common for children on the autistic spectrum to dislike public toilets and pre-school/school toilets. If you have sensory difficulties they can be horrible places. Ds1 still avoids them wherever possible because of the smell, the lights and the noise from hand-driers in the public ones.

Another issue is that sometimes children on the spectrum don't receive the same "I need to go soon" signals that other children do. As the Paed explained to me, whereas we get a "I'll need to go soon" and then a "I've really got to go" signal, children on the spectrum sometimes only get a "I really need to go right now - ooops too late!" signal.

Heavenis Thu 22-Feb-07 13:25:57

If he doesn't like pull up what about training pants ?

dejags Thu 22-Feb-07 13:26:54

Right - I have had a think about this.

Your DS is picking up on your anxiety about toilet training - without a shadow of a doubt.

I truly doubt that putting him into pullups for a few months will affect anything. Try to remove the stress from the situation and you might be pleasantly surprised in a few months times as to his reaction.

Dirty pants and constant wetting can be very undermining to a childs' confidence - especially when in a new environment. He is well within normal age limits to be using pull-ups.

Good luck

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