Toilet training progress

11:45 am Parenting

My boy is six and in grade one now and I still wouldn’t call him trained.  He’s doing a lot better. Over the summer he seems to have learned that it is less of an interuption to his playing to go to the bathroom than to have to change his pants.

I’ve managed to be come alot calmer about it too. At the end of school last June, he and I talked about why I thought it was important to not have accidents and why he still had them. We agreed that the worst part of having them was being stinky and not being allowed into his friend’s house because of it. We also agreed that lieing about being stinky makes it worse. Being able to have a real conversation with him about it helped. It started to feel like there was an end possible.

So over the summer we did a few things differently than we had been doing.

#1: I set alarms on my cell phone for every hour. When his alarm went off, he either had to have recently(within 5 minutes)  gone or go immediately. No ‘just a minutes’. No ‘next commercial’. No ‘but I’m playing’. No waiting at all.  At the beginning I had to haul him bodily to the bathroom several times, but eventually he got that it was non-negotiable. I gradually moved the alarms until they were about 90 minutes apart. After that he seemed not to have to use them. He was going pee on his own, just before the alarms. 

#2: If he had an accident and asked for help getting clean and new clothes then I/Daddy took care of rinsing out the underwear. If he lied about having an accident he had to rinse out the underwear (that evening) and get his body clean. He _really_ doesn’t like to rinse underwear. (Who does?) If he hid having an accident and we found the clothes in the washer, he had to rinse them out anyway. Immediately, not waiting until evening.

#3: Once a day, he had to sit on the toilet for an uninterupted two minutes. It didn’t matter if he felt he needed to go or not. Didn’t matter if he went or not. We always gave him praise if he sat for the required time without whinging and complaining and we gave him lots of praise and a Yu-Gi-Oh card if he actually went. We started doing this as part of our bedtime routine, but it got moved to about 4pm. He would start complaining that his tummy hurt at about that time. His suggested solution was candy. Sitting for two minutes seems to work better. :)

#4: Now that school has started, he rinses out the underwear. I’ll sit and read to him while he does it, but he actually has to rinse the underwear so that there are no lumps left. It’s taking longer than I’d like but there are fewer pairs to rinse nowadays then there were in August. The worst day we’ve had was six outfits. I only made him rinse for 45 minutes. After that, he went to bed and I took over.

I’m really looking forward to the day when I don’t have to spend time in the bathroom with him, but I can say that we’re making progress. The only advice I have for people still struggling is patience and consistancy. Dr. Mickey Lester says to remember that you won’t be changing his/her pants at his/her wedding. Any other deadline is too much pressure.

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