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Help ! Should I give up - can do all the hard bits but being stubborn about potty/toilet

(23 Posts)
Wheelybug Mon 30-Jul-07 15:11:10

Started potty training last tuesday - dd (2.5) can hold her wee/poo for literally hours, knows when she is going to go and makes sure she wees on our hard floors (i.e. gets off sofa, comes downstairs) and doesn't have accidents when we are out (will sometimes try a new toilet out but not always but she will hold it) . She also says she wants to wear pants not nappies. However, she refuses to use/try the potty or toilet. It seems to have come about by following the 'take them every 20 mins' idea which I started with. She is VERY stubborn and I just can't seem to get round this.

Have tried bribes of all sorts (sweets, sticker charts, showing her bigger presents but saying she can have them when she uses toilet/potty, telling her I'm taking the present back to shop).

I don't really want to give up given that I think she can do all the hard things required of potty training but it is just driving me insane.

ThingOne Mon 30-Jul-07 15:15:16

I would say chill. It took me well over six weeks before I could get my son to use the potty. In the end his childminder just told him (as she had done many times before) that he had to sit on the potty before they went to the park and he finally did.

I gave up on the bribes after a couple of days and made him make his own decision.

My son is more stubborn than your daughter, bet ya ;). <sigh>

Wheelybug Mon 30-Jul-07 15:22:41

My mum says to relax and in fact, things were sort of better towards the end of last week when I was more relaxed but then we spent weekend at MIL's who has carpet EVERYWHERE (inc. bathrooms) and is FASTIDIOUS so I was so stressed about dd weeing everywhere I got stressed again.

Its just so annoying that if she'd only sit on the damn thing she would probably be pretty well sorted by now.

HonoriaGlossop Mon 30-Jul-07 15:55:42

I'd say a child who is weeing on floors just isn't ready. I think she might be SAYING she wants pants not nappies but basically she needs to know the deal is, pants only if you use the potty or the loo.

Keep utterly un-bothered about it. It's her choice, no skin off your nose either way. If she wants pants on in the morning, she needs to sit on the loo or the potty for you.

If she won't - no worries, here's a nappy, ooooh shall you wear your sparkly top today, etc etc etc etc.

Just keep sticking the nappies on till she's made the connection and will use the potty or the loo. She needs it made crystal clear that the floor is not an acceptable alternative!

Wheelybug Mon 30-Jul-07 16:15:02

Thanks HG - but is there a difference between a child who is weeing on the floor because they have no control and a child who wees on the floor maybe twice a day because she holds on to it until she pops just because she's too bloody minded to sit on a potty/toilet ?

Bizarrely she appears to be dry at night.

I wonder if there's such a thing as pottyaphobia ?!

PrettyCandles Mon 30-Jul-07 16:16:26

Is she afraid of the loo/potty? Or of the room itself? I think Honoria's got the right idea. If she really wants to wear knickers then she must wee in the proper place first.

We have a problem with dd forgetting - or not bothering - to go to the loo. She now knows that, if she wants to watch a DVD or play on the computer, she must go do a wee first. And because she knows she won't get to watch/play until she has done it, she does it without any debate.

Wheelybug Mon 30-Jul-07 16:20:46

Thanks PC - I think I need to find something that she really really wants to do but she is just so bloody minded she'll cut her nose off to spite her face (as my mum would say) and the more I put my foot down, the more she does etc etc. I guess we're both v. stubborn and that doesn't help at all !

She really needs to be using potty/toilet before starting pre-school in Sept and we're on hols for 2 weeks so this really is the window of opportunity.

Wheelybug Mon 30-Jul-07 16:22:07

By the way, I don't think she is really afraid of the potty/toilet - I have tried all 3 of our toilets (the one on our top floor has had most success mainly because its in our spare room so a bit 'special') and the potty in various places.

She does love music though so I ahve ordered a naff musical one off ebay to see if that works... am not holding my breath !

PrettyCandles Mon 30-Jul-07 16:23:05

If she's doing it out of bloody-mindedness, then you need to remove the 'reward'. If you don't give a dam abut it, she won't have anything to be bloody-minded about. Not easy, though. But try puttingh her back into nappies without any comment, and not expecting anything of her, and see how she reacts.

Wheelybug Mon 30-Jul-07 16:24:27

yes I probably should do that PC (put her back in nappies and see what happens) but am too stubborn ( and I have NO idea where she gets it from )

Wheelybug Mon 30-Jul-07 16:25:23

Although apparently I was easy to potty train but don't know if that was

a) rose tinted glasses of my mum
b) I had 2 older brothers
c) I was younger and therefore less able to be stubborn IYSWIM !

HonoriaGlossop Mon 30-Jul-07 16:25:23

I agree with PC. Removing all pressure and expectation might do the trick.

And I know it's hard, but try not to put any pressure on about when she does this; it's apparently now not legal for any pre-school to refuse to take children in pull-ups.

Children will do things when they're ready and not before so don't let pre-school wind you up.

PrettyCandles Mon 30-Jul-07 16:27:53

BTW, dd started her new pre-school in nappies (not pull-ups, we've never used them) even though they had a toilet-trained policy, and they were OK with that.

PrettyCandles Mon 30-Jul-07 16:30:36


"...but am too stubborn ..."

You may not like what I'm about to say, but I think that, when parent is stubborn, and child is stubborn, and they are at loggerheads over something - nothing good ever comes of it. The only way the parent can win in such a situation is to break the child's spirit.

skidaddle Mon 30-Jul-07 16:33:49

hi wb,

my dd sounds similar - all the signs that she is ready but refused to sit on the potty. Then suddenly out of the blue sat down happily two days ago! Still nothing in it but a huge step forward. Maybe your dd will suddenly do the same?

At the end of the day you can't make her do it so maybe try not to let it bother you and perhaps you'll get a nice surprise... good luck

stealthsquiggle Mon 30-Jul-07 16:35:34

Reverse psychology needed. If you clearly don't care (but she is in nappies - the "big girl" pants will have to disappear mysteriously overnight) then she will do it.

Sounds like you have a child who will have to be taught by stealth cos she wants to "do it by herself" - I was the same. I taught myself to read (and drove my mother mad in the process!)

HonoriaGlossop Mon 30-Jul-07 16:42:45

PC, I totally agree.

Wheelybug Mon 30-Jul-07 16:46:30

Hey PC but at least then she might do as she's told ().

Stealthsquiggle - you have got it to a 't'. DD always wants to do EVERYTHING by herself and I guess this is just an extension of it (the times she has sat on the toilet she's had to climb up herself without any helping).

Thanks too Skidaddle.

Right I think the consensus is that i need to show I am not bothered by it.

Do you think I should just put her back into nappies so she knows I've 'given up' or, a couple of times over the w/e we've put her in feel n learn pull ups and she's treated them like pants (i.e. not weeing in them until she can't help herself) so this would mean I'm not stressing but she might still get the idea ?

Oh and how do I deal with the Alpha mummy who is a 'friend' of mine who decided to potty train her daughter at exactly the same time as I'd been saying for months I was waiting for our classes to finish. Of course, her dd is doing brilliantly. (I don't really care about this as I am used to it but its just typical isn't it ).

Wheelybug Mon 30-Jul-07 16:51:02

Thanks for the tip on pre-schools. TBH, part of me thinks she 'should' be dry for going to pre-school but on the other hand I guess it'll probably help going and seeing her contemporaries using the toilet.

I don't think she can do ballet lessons in a nappy though which will be sad as she's so excited about it (although think the fact its in the future not a good enough incentive). Also, thought 2 weeks in greece would be more pleasant for her in pants rather than a thick nappy but hey ho....

PrettyCandles Tue 31-Jul-07 11:39:56

"Oh, how wonderful, little Laetitia is potty-trained! Well done, Alpha. Oh, we're not bothered about it. Wheelybuglet is such a strong character, she insists on doing it herself. Quite amazing, really. We're going to let her take the lead."

You'll be so laid back and relaxed about it, and really rather pleased that your daughter has such a strong personality, that she'll be quite taken aback by the complete lack of competition from you.

In theory, anyway!

Wheelybug Tue 31-Jul-07 16:57:04

PC - yes, thats probably the ticket (the thing is this alpha mummy thinks my daughter's strong willedness is very much a bad thing and her dd is such an angel in comparison (despite the fact she always clobbers dd when alpha mummy isn't looking).

By way of an update, dd is in feel n learn pull up things today and she did ask to go on the toilet once and she did have a very amusing conversation with dh this morning when she said 'Mummy try so hard'.... so we'll give up for now and let her sort herself out .

Thanks for showing me the way everyone !!

stealthsquiggle Wed 01-Aug-07 12:40:23

You need to start telling AlphaMummy about character types and how all great leaders were strong willed self motivated children and does she ever worry about how pliant, conformist little Letitia will survive in this competitive world?

Good luck with the pull-ups (and with helping DD "teach herself" reading, riding a bike, and all the other things I had pitched battles with my DM about )

Wheelybug Wed 01-Aug-07 13:07:33

thanks squiggle - I'll look forward to learning to ride a bike (she already tells me not to hold onto her in a swimming pool - when she doesn't have any floatation device - and then has a tantrum when I strangely insist !!).

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