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Potty Training unready 2 year old(4 Posts)
I'm being an au pair for a little girl 2 1/4 years old. The parents are quite pushy on her getting potty trained out of the blue and load the training all onto me. I don't think she is ready though and would rather wait and do it in a more relaxed way. She is quite behind then all the other 2 year olds at the playgroups and all the ones I have taken care of and potty trained before and in my child development & psychology classes I was tought that one has to be careful. She strongly is afraid and disgusted of getting dirty in any way which she seems to have taken from her parents who clean her all the time and don't like her being messy. They are against and disgusted of the sensory activities I do with her too (cloud dough, chalking, shaving cream, painting on her hand, etc). She screamed the first times whenever she got a bit of paint on her and wanted to be washed right away. I then painted on myself a couple of times and on good days after showing her that it's fun she carefully does it too but still wants to be cleaned right away and doesn't do anything too "yucky" like shaving cream, painting with fingers, etc. She seems to be quite different and a bit behind in some areas in general and I try to work with her on improving them step by step. She did show interest in others going "potty" but now somehow just wants to get out of bathrooms and doesn't like watching anymore. She does her wee with mom on the toilet in the mornings for a week now but doesn't do anything all day and rather likes to avoid to go to the toilet. We sometimes look at a potty book. She doesn't say pee or poo yet. When her mom decided one afternoon last week I shall let her run around without nappies and underwear she didn't want to sit down and instead just peed all the time inside or outside and was in tears from the wetness.
Any recommendations of what to do?
I don't like rushing children. They will want to get out of their nappies and be a big girl at some point and be ready to let you know and feel the want to use the potty. So I'm feeling really uncomfortable and bad in this pressured training. I don't want the little one feel disgusted/afraid of her pees and poos in the end and get damaged in some way and I don't know how to teach her in the way her parents want me to as she doesn't comprehend yet what I am explaining.
You are employed by the parents so you have to try and do as they have asked, even if you feel they are wrong.
You can just report each day that she's made no progress despite you doing xyz and perhaps she isn't ready. They might decide for themselves that she should wait a bit or you'll just have to keep going - she may well get there soon.
Oh dear, how awkward for you. I wonder if a friend of your employer has a child who has potty trained already, and your employer has that feeling that all mothers get: "eek, my child should be doing that too!" I know that when I found out I was pregnant with my third, it very much focused my mind and efforts on potty training my middle one, as I was hoping not to have two in nappies!
I personally found the first week extremely challenging and I definitely wondered if my child wasn't ready. My DS at 2 1/2 was almost ready, but not quite. I was completely exhausted in my first trimester of pregnancy, and it wasn't the best combination, so we took a step back and tried again a couple of months later. It fell into place with just that bit more time and energy available to both of us!
It's really difficult to know if your charge is ready for potty training: I would guess not, from what you say. If you can discuss it with your employer, you could try to compromise with a short delay? I'm not a fan of pull-ups, but it can be helpful and isn't a full-on no-nappy way of doing things, so would reduce accidents and help this child feel cleaner than if she wets and soils herself, while you gently encourage her to visit the potty/loo.
Alternatively, you can persevere and keep your employers informed of failure/success rate.
Really difficult situation you are in, so you have my sympathy!
Very difficult but it really is the parents decision. You seem quite critical of them in general and almost implying their uprightness about cleanliness is leading to her development being slow?? I would disagree with that in any case but they may well be making her a little uptight. Having said that my 2 yr old and 1 yr old have gone through phases of HATING being dirty and cleaning all around them etc. It can be a phase or part of their natural personality.
Why don't you just try to follow the parents wishes and see how you go. The fact that she hates to be dirty might well play in your favour with potty training.
As a side note, I would have thought they were expecting you to take too much responsibility as an au pair.
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