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3.5 yo regressed and now having several accidents a day

(10 Posts)
ReshapeWhileDamp Tue 11-Oct-11 17:16:26

What is going on?? confused 'Quick' history: DS1 was a relatively late potty trainer. We tried soon after his 3rd birthday and he absolutely refused to comply, so after a couple of weeks we stopped. Then tried again a couple of months ago and magically, he got it and was dry from a few days in. He was even dry at night (still wearing nappies overnight but they were bone-dry by morning). He responded to jelly bean treats for a wee, something slightly more enticing for a poo, and the odd and random larger treat (like a new dinosaur) to keep him interested. After a few weeks, he stopped demanding the jelly beans after a pee and we quietly discontinued them. Never did a reward chart this time round because it didn't bother him the first time.

Now, for the last few days, he's been waking up wet (god knows how he's managing this as he's still in a nappy at night, but we've had the mattress top layer in the wash every morning for days), and having at least one, but more likely two accidents a day. He has reverted to not wanting to respond to requests that he see if he needs a pee (I wasn't reminding him after the first few days of potty learning, as he was very good at listening to his bladder!). He gets pretty cross if you ask/remind, let alone haul him off to the loo.

Today, he woke up soaking, had another accident at the children's centre (he was engrossed at the time) and just wet the sofa comprehensively, after an hour of my asking him every 20 minutes if he needed a pee. angry I'm afraid I was really cross and sent him upstairs to change, and told him to stay up there for a while. I know this is Bad and counter-productive but I was bloody cross, after asking and asking him.

Does anyone know why this regression happens? What's the best tactic for dealing with it? I've told him we're going back to jelly beans and me asking him/reminding him to use the loo. And have moved the potty back into the living room as a reminder/convenience.

(He has had a mild bug, a cold, for the last few days. Does this have anything to do with it?? He's also recently gone back to preschool - there were the holidays and then he missed the first two weeks because we were on holiday, so he's only been back for three sessions, and had accidents at two of them.)

masuki Tue 11-Oct-11 17:20:06

We are in same boat and i am at wits end so I really feel for you. I want answers too! it is so exhausting for us isnt it, and I got cross today sad too.

bigbadbarry Wed 12-Oct-11 13:43:27

Coming in a bit late here but I would say it is almost certainly his cold - both DD1 & 2 wet when they were getting one and even now (aged 7 and 4) they have to RUN if they aren't to have an accident. I dont' quite understand it but my mum says she also gets desperate all of a sudden when she has a cold, and since she has said that I have noticed I do too hmm

ReshapeWhileDamp Wed 12-Oct-11 16:20:04

Hi BBB! smile

Hmm, DH and I suspected the cold, but maybe the changed preschool routine too. I wonder what the mechanism is? I mean, is it because they're feeling a bit rubbish and therefore distracted, or is it something more physiological? DS1 isn't that poorly with it (though it's waking him up at about 5am every.bloody.morning. and DH has to go and settle, because it disturbs the baby, who promptly latches onto me!) but I suspect this is what's happening.

We've reverted to taking to the potty and asking, and rewarding autonomous pees with jelly beans. So far today, no accidents, in contrast to three yday.

alittlebitshy Wed 12-Oct-11 16:20:22

Yes the same here. Feeling very down about it. I know rationally that it will click again but it is the sudden change from knowing when he needed to go and often taking himself off etc to having accidents (sometimes gushes, sometimes just a drip in the pants before telling me) almost daily (on his 3rd pair of pants today but yesterday was a dray day). And the weeing having being asked if he wants to go rings a bell too.

I feel your pain - and am keen to hear if you guys get any improvements/ insights. Nice to feel I am not alongsmile

hillyhilly Wed 12-Oct-11 16:27:57

I would say that it's both being under the weather and the change in routine, as both can distract him enough to forget.
Although it's really hard, I would also suggest that you try not to nag him to the toilet, I think. I asked my dd so often at times she just shouted "no" without even thinking about whether or not she actually needed to go and then promptly wet herself anyway. Back off a bit, try not to get cross (remind yourself that he is not doing it on purpose) and he will probably come right again quite quickly.

ReshapeWhileDamp Wed 12-Oct-11 17:29:14

Hillyhilly, I have 'Bored...Minor Response...Don't shout!' biro'd on my hand to remind me. grin I'm also trying not to nag because he really resents it (can't blame him) but there's a fine line between nagging, and reminding him effectively so he can restart his excellent progress and not have several accidents a day. If I say nothing at all, he wets himself.

Still, if it really is to do with the cold, and something physiological, he can't help himself and that makes it a lot easier to deal with. smile

TettyLouBar Wed 12-Oct-11 21:15:16

Another DD here in the same boat. Later toilet trained than most, only just got hang of it after 3rd birthday. Did fine for about 4 months them BAM! weeing everywhere, COMPLETELY denying need to wee then peeing all over stairs, bed, room, lounge. I am at wits end but know it is due to MASSIVE changes in routine. DH has been away in HM forces on detachment for 4 months and we've had some difficult times. She now just getting used to pre school and adjusting to having a little sister (8 mo) and DH's return this weekend just gone, I think all of this has resulted in regression.

But it doesn't make dealing with it any easier. I'm struggling to not react and not get mad. I know she needs a wee as she touches herself and jiggles around - I prompt her to go - she goes MENTAL and screams that she doesn't need a wee - few minutes later she's weeing all stairs/lounge floor. I have tried to be understanding but have relented and put her back in pull ups for night times. Changing the bed at 2am this morning was the last straw for me last night. Ive told her I'm not mad at her and that she's not in trouble but I just couldn't cope with anymore wee-soaked clothes-bedding-duvets-mattress-sleepwear. sad

I know what she's been through is enough to make anyone have difficulties. I just can't cope at the moment. She's coping home from preschool every time with a wee-soaked carrier bag full of clothes. The house is starting to smell like a wee. I'm at a loss as to what to do. sad

TettyLouBar Wed 12-Oct-11 21:16:59

* coming home not "coping" home blush

ReshapeWhileDamp Fri 14-Oct-11 11:15:32

Tetty, sad. I know what you mean about the all-pervasive smell of urine. I wouldn't have believed that a 3 yo could make a room smell like a pissoir. And I notice that if I sling the trousers in the machine but then don't put the rest of the wash on for several hours, the washed trousers still smell, faintly, of pee after they've been washed. hmm I wash at 40, haven't ever noticed food smells, for example, lingering. So now we have to soak stuff, which is such fun with a baby who likes to tip buckets over.

But DS1 is improving. I reverted to watching him like a hawk and giving him treats again, and asking him regardless of however much it pisses him off. I even took him, screaming, to the loo the other day, because he was at a play session and totally engrossed, and I could see how easy it would be for him to forget.

Tetty, can you try a different strategy to whatever you used when you potty-trained initially? Perhaps a new set of enticements, or a different way of doing it (chart, if you didn't use one, or cereal in the jar and a treat at the end of the day) might re-boot DD. I really empathise - it's totally demoralising as a parent to have to go back to the start of this pretty unpleasant task. They must be finding it hard too. sad

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