4 and a half and still not potty trained

(14 Posts)
user1483387861 Sat 04-Feb-17 19:56:00

I don't know what to do. I've always been fairly relaxed on the potty training front preferring to follow his lead rather than impose something on him before he was ready. We had a potty in the front room and asked him now and again whether he wanted to use it which was always a negative. We also got him a potty book, other than that we left it alone.

We decided to potty train him last July as it was the summer and he was nearly 4. He wasn't showing signs of being ready. He had previously gone through a stage of telling me before he did a poo but that was some time earlier. I was sick of having 2 in nappies so tried anyway. Total disaster, 8 days of accident after accident. He would deny he had weed and pooed and was perfectly content to sit in it. We tried a reward chart, chocolate buttons and promised him a toy if he started doing it. This had no impact other than sometimes he would then sit on the potty to 'get a toy' but then he would never do anything.

He told me after 8 days that he didn't want to potty train. The HV advised that he wasn't ready and to try again in a few months.

We're still nowhere several months later. In fact, today I've realised why he sometimes sits on the potty nothing happens. I thought it was a frustrating coincidence but it's deliberate.

Today I could tell a poo was on its way so I told him that if he did it on the potty/toilet that I would get him a rescue bot that same day. After a while, he said he needed to poo and sat on the potty and then the toilet. Nothing happened but he insisted on staying on there so he could have a rescue bot. Then suddenly he decided it wasn't coming so he got up and I put a pull up on him. He went upstairs and two minutes later, there was a poo in his pull up. He got off the toilet because he knew that the poo was coming!

I know we're going to have to go cold turkey again and put him in pants but I really feel that it's going to be last July all over again. His fear of pooing and seeing on the toilet is that deep seated, he would rather have accidents.

He starts school in September and we desperately need this sorting. Does anyone have any advice?

Theaprilfool Sun 05-Feb-17 18:18:14

flowers you have my absolute sympathies, unfortunately i have no advice.

SmallestInTheClass Mon 06-Feb-17 11:37:24

My experience with my two (like you close in age so had two in nappies) was they only got it after spending time with no pants on. Both of mine were happy with wet pants, maybe because we'd used cloth nappies, but they just didn't get it. What worked was we did three full days with no pants on (round the house and garden, not going out!) and accepted that there would be many accidents. It absolutely made a difference and helped them understand. It's incredibly boring for you as a parent to spend those days entirely at home and you will need plenty to entertain you and your little ones, but it might be what it takes. It depends on how desperate you are. I would also change them immediately when they have wet clothes, if they get used to being wet, then you're teaching them that it's OK to walk around with wee on your clothes and it's very hard to undo that. Good luck! We all learned to potty train once, and he will too.

SmallestInTheClass Mon 06-Feb-17 11:38:21

My experience with my two (like you close in age so had two in nappies) was they only got it after spending time with no pants on. Both of mine were happy with wet pants, maybe because we'd used cloth nappies, but they just didn't get it. What worked was we did three full days with no pants on (round the house and garden, not going out!) and accepted that there would be many accidents. It absolutely made a difference and helped them understand. It's incredibly boring for you as a parent to spend those days entirely at home and you will need plenty to entertain you and your little ones, but it might be what it takes. It depends on how desperate you are. I would also change them immediately when they have wet clothes, if they get used to being wet, then you're teaching them that it's OK to walk around with wee on your clothes and it's very hard to undo that. Good luck! We all learned to potty train once, and he will too.

delawar Mon 06-Feb-17 11:50:12

My youngest I just took pull-ups and nappies away , I let her run knicker free at home , start when you have no where to go , if need be potty in every room ( I had one dining room , lounge and up stairs ) then wake your child and before anything on the potty , if he wees ( hopefully being first pee of the day he will) make a huge fuss we sang danced and clapped ( he's old enough for a reward Chet too ) then every 30 mins or so remind and take him to the toilet , don't expect him to go on his own , when he's started doing a few lengthen the time ,
Poops are some what difficult for some children so you need to reiterate it's ok , we often make a big thing about us going toilet too. Hth
If he continues to struggle it might be worth talking to your gp , my oldest boy had a very small bladder and couldn't hold his urine , he ended up needing tablets for a while ( he was 10 when they weaned him off he's 14 now and all good)

Dangermouse1 Mon 06-Feb-17 11:59:14

A few thoughts. Get him to change himself out of wet/dirty pants so it becomes a chore for him but keep your cool (if possible!). If he is worried about pooing / sitting on the toilet then maybe try and teach him to wee standing up as he may find this less scarey (easier if you can delegate this to your dp!). Try the app poo goes to pooland. Potty sits 20 mins after each meal (5 or 10 mins max). There is a good phone line you can call for advice - Google ERIC for the number.

Dangermouse1 Mon 06-Feb-17 12:04:02

Also I think at some point you do need to just insist he sits on the potty / toilet regularly even if he doesn't want to. My ds would always refuse the potty but we started insisting on sits every 2 hours. If he's 4 maybe ditch the potty and get a training seat and step for the toilet as it may be uncomfortable for him if he's reasonably big?

arwenearlythereyet Mon 06-Feb-17 12:06:30

It's a tough one! I think the most important thing is to keep up the calm and patience with your DS, otherwise the whole thing turns into a horrible drama - and it sounds like you are doing that brilliantly - well done flowers

I wonder if the Eric charity has some help / advice for you? They were great when I was struggling to get DD out of nappies at night (she was 6). www.eric.org.uk/

Frouby Mon 06-Feb-17 12:11:10

I have just trained ds. What worked this time that was new was a jar of sweets (little chocolate kinder eggs) on the cabinet in plain sight. Every wee on the toilet got a sweetie. When the jar was empty he got to chose a toy. For the first couple of poos he got a toy. Only from the charity shop across the road but he loves going in there.

He got an instant reward and a longer term goal to work towards that way.

I left him naked from the waist down. We had a few accidents the first day, 2 the second and non the third. Touchwood he has been dry for over 2 weeks now.

Stepmum123 Tue 14-Feb-17 22:32:18

We got DSS (who was very content peeing and pooing in his nappies) to physically throw his own nappies in the bin, he split them into 2 piles, a daytime pile and a night time pile. The night time ones got to stay and DsS threw his day time nappies in the bin himself (into a fresh binbag so we could get them back out when he wasn't looking - who wastes good nappies?!) We had already gone shopping where he picked out which big boy pants he wanted (we bade a massive deal about how big boys wear these awesome pants not nappies)

Anyhow he really seemed to understand that as he threw his own nappies away there wasn't any other option but to pee and poo in the potty. We had him a little trainer urinal which was so handy and easy for him to use.

Would any of this help your DS? Definitely recommend the urinal, it's a little frog and there's a spinning thing that if they aim at it spins round.

user1483387861 Mon 20-Feb-17 21:43:48

Thanks all.

We're going to give him a bit more time before we bite the bullet again and put him in pants. I want the weather to be warmer so it's more comfortable for him to be without pants and it will be easier to get washing dry. I will utilise some of these ideas. He's often promised toys if he goes on the toilet but if he sees them, the reality as opposed to the idea might make him more willing.

At the moment, we're putting the contents of his pull up down the toilet. So far, it's not making any difference but I shall battle on.

user1483387861 Fri 17-Mar-17 20:41:10

Well, he's more or less trained in the space of a week! I bought him a toy, put it out of his reach on the shelf and said he could have it when he started using the toilet. He also chose some big boy pants. He requested to wear the pants the same day and had constant accidents. Within a couple of days, he started to wee on the toilet at nursery and then at home. He's hardly had an accident at all apart from the poos which he's still finding difficult. He's getting there though.

I'm so proud of him. I honestly thought he would be starting school not toilet trained, I'm so relieved!

It just goes to show how important it is to wait until they're ready. It's been so much easier than expected!

Rainatnight Fri 17-Mar-17 20:46:34

Terrific! Delighted for you. Well done both of you.

SinkyMalinks Wed 29-Mar-17 22:18:06

User - don't know if you'll see this but I'm in exactly the same boat as you were last month!

Did you just get the toy then go to pants and accept the constant accidents?

I tried a day of this and after 5 wet changes and one where I had to scrape poo out of his pants, I gave up blush.

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