Stopped going poop in the potty

iVillage Member
Registered: 01-27-2005
Stopped going poop in the potty
8
Thu, 06-04-2009 - 8:16am

I am at my wit's end with this!

James will be 4 in September. We potty trained him in March, and he seemed to take to it very quickly. Had pee figured out in a couple days, then poop within about a week. He had accidents of course, but did really well. Then in April he went about 3 weeks or so without any accidents at all! I was so proud of him. Then something must have happened, or clicked in his mind, because he stopped going poop in the potty. THe pedi's office thought maybe he had gotten constipated and had a painful bowel movement and was now afraid to use the potty to poop. This made sense, since it started happening a few days after he started his "hunger strike" - he was being extremely picky and not eating nearly the same amount of fruits and vegetables. So we started being careful about his dairy intake, and we've been enforcing the fruits and veggies. Well, let's just say he is definitely not constipated yet he still poops in his underwear (and now often it is pullups as I have gotten completely disgusted by cleaning dirty underwear). Our other theories as to why he is doing this include 1) he is just in a "control" phase and this is the one thing he can truly control 2) he has a 1 yr old brother and sees that he still gets that diaper change attention 3)he is looking for more attention from us. We have been trying to give him more one on one time. The few times that he has pooped in the potty we have made a huge deal out of it. We don't get angry at him for soiling his underwear/pullup, but we do let him know we're disappointed and big boys don't do that (being a big boy seems to be a big sense of pride for him). It's been happening so long now I think it is just the norm to him. Has anyone else gone through this, and how did you resolve it? I am trying to think of a consequence for him that is not a punishment. A friend of mine made her daughter wash her own underwear when she was potty training, but I think that he is too young for that. (BTW he has continued to be almost perfect with peeing in the potty, even when wearing pullups).

Thanks in advance for any input you might have for me!!



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iVillage Member
Registered: 03-27-2003
Thu, 06-11-2009 - 2:22pm

Hello Jean.


Yes,he has found out that not only do you look after him more and he has full control over his pooping,that he is going to continue this for as long as he can.


The pull-ups are a big help for him,as they show him,you except him going in them.


I would use the 3 strikes method as he has shown he knows what he is doing.


Buy him 1/2 a dozen pair of cheaper cloth training pants and a dozen pair of plastic pants.


Presuming he has three accidents a day,when he gets ready first thing in the morning,he gets to wear the underpants by themselves,after the first accident,he gets the second pair of underpants with a pair of plastic pants over them,same with the third,but after the third,he gets to wear ONLY the plastic pants for the rest of the day.


Once he shows that he knows what is going on,he will normaly start having only two accidents a day,so you will cut back as well,and he will be in plastic alone after the second and so forth.


This will not feel all that great on him and it will be easier for you to clean.


You can of course put him in cloth underwear when going out ,just make sure he is wearing the plastic pants as well so that he understands that going out will not save him.


I have used this method for many years and have had only a very few times it has not worked.


If you decide to try it,please keep us up-dated on his reactions.


Many Blessings.


Mac

iVillage Member
Registered: 01-27-2005
Fri, 06-12-2009 - 8:39am
Thank you so much for your reply and idea. I definitely plan to try it. We're heading to target today and I can pick up the training pants there. I'll let you know how it goes. About how long has this taken to work when you've done it?



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iVillage Member
Registered: 03-27-2003
Fri, 06-12-2009 - 2:49pm

Hello Jean.


on average it has worked anywhere from a couple of days to a couple of weeks.


Normally,once they find out that wet,messy or dry plastic on the bare skin,is not all that comfy,and they know the only way to stop wearing them is to be good with the potty,they start using it.


Just a word,keep the pants around for awhile just in case he is trying to be cute.


Good luck.


Many Blessings.


Mac

iVillage Member
Registered: 01-27-2005
Sat, 06-13-2009 - 10:57am

I figured there would be a variance in times!

One more question. Any idea where I can find plastic pants in larger sizes? he'd probably be a 4T or 5T but all I've found on line in those sizes are the cloth or 2 in 1. I can't believe Gerber only goes up to 3T!

THanks again for your help!



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iVillage Member
Registered: 03-27-2003
Sat, 06-13-2009 - 5:12pm

Hello Jean,I find a lot on e-bay at a fair price,just enter e-bay and look for "plastic pants",please be careful,there are many listed for adults. And for the bigger children,Fetware has a large inventory of sizes,but are a bit more exspensive.


I hope this helps.


Many Blessings.


Mac

iVillage Member
Registered: 10-11-2006
Thu, 03-25-2010 - 5:49pm
Just wondering if this method worked for your little boy? We are going through a similar thing with my 3.5 year old son and I'm desperate to find something that will work.
iVillage Member
Registered: 06-25-2005
Fri, 03-26-2010 - 12:16pm

This is a very effective method for a lot of children. I used a different method with my children for various reasons, incl due to my kids' poor motor skills.

With my kids, I had them wear undies during the day but they had to ask for a diaper (or pull-up) to poop in. There were penalties for soiling their undies and praise for pooping in an appropriate place (diaper).

After several weeks (8+ wks), I set a date to begin poop potty training again. A few days beforehand, I mentioned to my kids that we'd begin poop potty training in a few days (give them time to mentally prepare). I took them to the $1 store and let them pick out a pile of prizes, incl candy.

On the appointed day, when my child asked for a diaper, I took them to the toilet instead. Since they'd ASKED for a diaper, I knew their urge to poop was strong and took advantage of it. I acknowledged their fears but pointed out that it's not so scary after you get used to it and that getting the poop out of our bodies is good for our bodies. I kept the prizes obviously visible in front of my kids while they were on the toilet, and I rewarded them heavily for their success. My kids were VERY fearful the first couple of weeks and moderately fearful for another few weeks.

If you think your ds will try to withhold his poop while potty training, you can give him a small daily dose of a mild, stool-softening type laxative, such as Miralax, Benefiber, Milk of Magnesia or an Inulin product like Fiber Choice (avoid the senna-based stimulant laxatives which the body can become dependent on).

Good luck!

iVillage Member
Registered: 01-27-2005
Fri, 03-26-2010 - 3:20pm

Unfortunately, we were not able to put this suggestion in place. Before I was able to get a hold of the rubber pants in his size he started to withhold his poop, and got painfully constipated from it. We felt that using the rubber pants might exacerbate the problem, so we decided against it. On the advice of our pediatrician, he eventually went on a daily dose of mirilax (half an adult dose)which prevented the constipation. However still no luck on the toileting, so also on advice of the pediatrician we upped it to a full adult dose. And still no success in toilet training. So we were referred to the the PIP (Pain and Incontinence Program) clinic at Children's Hospital in Boston. There was a long waiting list so we only just got there last week. Our initial goal is to get him to stop withholding (the mirilax prevents this to a certain degree so he doesn't get constipated, but they did an xray at the hospital and showed a minor "backup" so to speak). On their advice, we tried putting him in underwear and telling him he had to ask for a pullup to poop, and he had to do it in the bathroom, though not on the potty. And to get over his reluctance to use the toilet, we also have mandated "potty time" where he just has to sit there for a few minutes, and he has special toys he can use only when he sits on the potty. He did not have success in the underwear, so he is back in pullups. But he still has to go in or near the bathroom (the doors are kept closed because of little brother so James can not always get in there). We do a sticker chart, and he gets a sticker for potty-time, and for going in an appropriate place. He gets a reward after every 10 stickers (the # of stickers until reward was our choice) in a category (no food rewards, and nothing really big. just a small toy or book, special time with mom or dad, extra book at bedtime). They also said we could let him have "control" of the situation (seems to be his issue) by letting him choose rewards, and length of time on the toilet for potty time. So that's where we are right now!

I wanted to add that they do NOT recommend a consequence (i.e. punishment) for soiling the underwear, or toilet training accidents at all. That can cause too much stress and anxiety in a child that already has some anxiety over using the toilet, and can backfire on you. I would also suggest discussing this with your pediatrician if you haven't already, especially if you think you need to go the laxative route.

Hope that helps and let me know if you have any questions. Good luck. I KNOW how stressful this can be to the whole family!



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