During our potty-training days, I came to the conclusion that you have to be emotionally prepared to potty train your child. It is a hard fought battle. I'm not kidding. That shit will break you down and make you want your own momma. It ain't for the weak. Let me explain.
|Image c/o www.treehugger.com|
But, it wasn't always easy, nor were we always celebrating. After a few months, Gavin started putting up a fight about going potty when he woke up in the morning. He was tired, and he'd rather just piss himself. In order to get him to actually go sit on the potty, we had to increase the bribes. (I also maintain that it is impossible to potty train a child without using some sort of bribe. I don't care what the parenting experts say. Candy trumps everything.) So, instead of one M & M after going potty, he could have THREE. And, after a few rough mornings, we got past that hurdle and resumed our daily peeing in the potty chair routine. (On a side note, if I had to do it again, I'd forgo the potty chair. They're just gross. Pee gets where it's not supposed to, kids can pick up the "bowls," and no matter what you do, they always smell like three-week-old pee. I'm gagging just thinking about it.)
I would say that, within a few months we really had the peeing thing down. Now, pooping? That was a whole different ballgame. For some reason, Gavin was terrified of pooping on the potty. I mean, in-tears-screaming-and-crying terrified. I have no idea why; he just was. I begged. I pleaded. I bribed. Hell, I even cried. I remember once, sitting on the bathroom floor, holding him as he sat on the toilet, begging him to just wait five seconds and try to poop. He had an utter meltdown, and I started crying while visualizing all the ways in which this traumatic toilet experience would haunt him for the rest of his life. But it didn't. I know that for sure.
His fear of pooping on the toilet also made him get the longest time-out in the history of time-outs. You see, after a few months, I pretty much abandoned pull-ups and went with underwear. Why? Because pull-ups are glorified diapers. There's no consequence to peeing or pooping in your pull-up because they absorb just as well as diapers. I don't buy the "feel-wet" thing. It didn't bother Gavin at all. Now, when he peed or pooped in his underwear? That was an issue. But, pooping in his underwear didn't help him overcome his fear of going on the toilet. He figured out a way around that.
What he would do is wear his "underwear shorts," a.k.a boxer shorts. That way, when he pooped, the poo would just plummet to the floor. I found poop on my floor often. It was like having a puppy. If I made him wear regular underwear, he would still poop in them, because it wasn't as bad as sitting on the toilet. It even got to the point where he would hide or go outside so I didn't know he was pooping and try to make him sit on the potty. Sneaky bugger.
Well, I caught on to his game, but not soon enough. One day, he was outside on the deck playing, and I was inside cleaning. The next thing I know, he comes in and says, "Momma, I pooped." Annoyed, I looked at him. I had just asked him to try not ten minutes ago. "Where did you poop?" I asked him. "Outside." What do you mean, outside? Well, let me tell you. He went outside, emptied all the toys and chair cushions out of the deck box, and took a shit in the deck box. I could feel my blood boiling. Not only did he refuse to go in the potty AGAIN, but now I have to clean shit out of the deck box. Holy hell. So, I put him in a really, really, really long time-out. At least two hours. It took me that long to calm down. And clean out the deck box.
|This looks like a great place to drop a load.|
|Gavin's reward for pooping on the potty.|
And believe me when I say that not having to change another diaper or carry a diaper bag everywhere I go is WELL worth the cost. More than worth it.