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Nearly 4 year old will not sit on potty/toilet at all....

(22 Posts)
thingscanonlygetbetterrrr Mon 15-May-17 17:51:10

My DS is 4 next month. He absolutely will not sit on a potty or toilet at all. He arches his back, cries, runs away etc etc. We have taken a very hands off approach for a good few months now as we don't want him associating the toilet with distress. He can hold his wee's for hours and hours and is even dry overnight sometimes but he also doesn't consistently tell us if he has had a poo and denies it when we ask despite the Bisto kids aroma in the room. We have tried rewards, bribery, talking about being a big boy like his brother etc. We are not aware of any negative incidents at home or nursery around the toilet (they struggle to get him on as well so have also stopped trying as they don't want him to be so upset either). no one seems to manage to go to the toilet unsupervised in this house so he gets plenty of opportunity to see what everyone else is doing. He starts school in September so I'm starting to feel the pressure. Has anyone experienced a child like this? PS it's worth saying as well he won't wear pants (chose his own but it didn't work), and he hates being naked from the waist down. Won't even go ten minutes before bath time without a nappy. He also won't wear pull ups (we use cloth nappies, I've tried cloth and commercial pull ups to no avail). PPS have also spoke with HV who is stumped too. She is sending a nursery nurse round in a couple of weeks to assess his development but he is absolutely developmentally normal in every way. I'm getting desperate!

tiktok Mon 15-May-17 17:54:10

Great helpline.

user1483387861 Mon 15-May-17 20:32:30

DS was only trained at 4 and a half. I was also getting worried what with him starting school in September. We tried everything but he was so stubborn!

Our breakthrough came when I bought him a much wanted toy, stuck it on a shelf out of reach and told him he could have it when he started using the toilet. He also chose some superhero pants (I had tried getting him to choose pants months earlier but he refused). Anyway, within a week and a half, he was fully trained. I don't know if it was the methods or whether he was finally ready.

When we talked to the schools about it, they were reassuring in that they had had kids starting in pull ups but that within a term, they would be fully trained.

MrsLettuce Mon 15-May-17 20:35:13

Do you use fleece liners in your nappies?

MrsLettuce Mon 15-May-17 20:37:43

Sorry, posted too soon. I found they did an excellent job but they do stop any sensation of wetness, it might be worth trying without. Or, well, totally irrelevant / impossible.

In any case, you will find a way through this with him.

thingscanonlygetbetterrrr Mon 15-May-17 20:37:43

Yes we do use them on the bamboo nappies

thingscanonlygetbetterrrr Mon 15-May-17 20:39:22

That's interesting User. School I've said they will still take him in nappies but if ever utters the word 'no' in response to a request to change him they will ring me at work to come and do it! He usually just needs a gentle cajole and he's fine so that's worrying me too

MrsLettuce Mon 15-May-17 20:40:47

Ah, right. That's worth a try then. Boosting with the slower absorbing fabrics as an upper layer is helpful too, it's a long time ago for me but I think hemp over (yes, over) microfibre was a winner.

thingscanonlygetbetterrrr Mon 15-May-17 20:41:15

Haha Mrs lettuce! I replied too soon. That's a good point. We have plenty thy aren't bamboo so I could try using those as much as possible. Thing is when he is soaking and it's clearly hanging off him and he stinks off poo he still denies he needs changing confused

missanony Mon 15-May-17 20:43:01

Surely if you throw away the nappies he will have no choice? Just go cold turkey when you have 3 days to spare and snap him out of it. If you're sure there's no additional needs then it's a battle of the wills.

MrsLettuce Mon 15-May-17 20:44:32

Arg. We're all at x-posts, betterrrr. Yes, but, going on my own ds's ways, poo in the pants can be quite comforting and a bit of extra wee weight is nay bother. If the nappy otherwise feels dry on the skin there's no real impetus to want to have it changed.

AlpacaLypse Mon 15-May-17 20:50:01

Nothing particularly helpful to add except the quote from my mum... Nobody who isn't disabled is still in nappies when they grow up.

If he feels uncomfortable in wet and dirty underthings he's more likely to accept that he's going to have to deal with this.

thingscanonlygetbetterrrr Mon 15-May-17 20:51:43

Miss annony - we hid them over Christmas as me and OH we're off for two weeks. His level of distress was heartbreaking. He was inconsolable and I just couldn't carry on :-(

missanony Mon 15-May-17 20:59:19

sad oh dear. Could you do a dummy fairy tree type thing and post them off to somewhere for babies? I think you need to actually get rid so going back isn't an option.

CreamCrackerundertheSettee Mon 15-May-17 21:10:34

My dd was 3.5 when we finally succeeded in managing poos on the toilet. It was a mighty struggle and took months.

1. We read Poo goes to Pooland. It is a leaflet designed by a D clin student to help children with this problem. It is a story about how poo wants to go down the toilet to pooland.

2. I let her poo in nappies but she had to start crouching down/ sitting on the potty with a nappy on (I think chocolate was involved here!).

3. This is gross but bear with me.. I cut a tiny hole in the nappy so poo came out a bit into the potty. Then v gradually I cut more and more away until there was hardly any nappy left.

4. I bought her a longed for toy and said she could have it once she'd pooed on a toilet.

5. She did it. Nappies and potty thrown away!

She had a genuine fear of the toilet that we never discovered the source of but worked out in the end.

CreamCrackerundertheSettee Mon 15-May-17 21:13:21

Sorry I missed out wees. For that I made a goodie bag with a few cheap toys, hair bobbles.. that sort of thing in it. For every wee on the potty or toilet she could choose something from the bag. The novelty worked in a way stickers never did.

thingscanonlygetbetterrrr Thu 18-May-17 18:21:23

Well we identified a favourite toy that DS wants, printed a picture out, stuck it on the toilet door with stars and said he gets a star if he sits on the toilet and once he has 5 stars we will get the toy. Hmmppphh. He's having none of it! Heartbroken for about an hour when I suggested he just try. I've offered haribo to sit - nope! I've offered to read a story - nope! I've offered him kids you tube - nope! I really have no further ideas

AgentOprah Thu 18-May-17 18:35:17

I think I would take a week off, get rid of the nappies and just tough out the complaining.

DoraChance Thu 18-May-17 18:51:53

Mine was a very reluctant potty trainer - I used a similar method to Cream Cracker. We called it the Well Done Box - he could chose a treat each time he used the potty. He could rummage around so knew what was there and could plan what he'd choose next time. It's more immediate than a reward chart as there's no waiting involved. Once my DS had a go he got it really quickly. Don't worry too much, September is still ages away and they change so quickly at this age.

Lovelilies Thu 18-May-17 18:59:11

Following as DS (3.5) is a complete potty/toilet refuser, and like your DS cries even when nappy is off before bath time for some 'fresh air' 😒

thingscanonlygetbetterrrr Thu 18-May-17 19:03:13

I like the idea of the 'well done box'. I'll have a look into that. The community nursery nurse is coming Monday but I'm not sure what she can offer on top of what we have already tried. I've looked at the Eric website but can't see anything to help with our particular issue. Thanks for all the replays

lockie1983 Fri 19-May-17 16:10:59

I posted a very similar thread a few weeks back! We started by saying that they didn't make nappies for 4 year olds. Fine if he wanted them now, but once he was four there wouldn't be any more nappies in his size.

I kept changing his bum and "forgetting" the nappy, wandering off, distracting him so he got more time naked (he also hated no nappy time).

Stopped mentioning the potty.

He really wanted a book and I just casually said "I will have to save up for a few weeks. Perhaps if you wore pants for a few weeks I will have saved enough money for the book"

I swear, he literally trained overnight, he woke up one morning said he was wearing pants and we haven't looked back. Barely any accidents.

It was really worrying at the time but all those people who said he would just do it when he was ready .... They were right.

Good luck

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