tales from a stay-at-home mom of four boys

Archive for the category “Adventures in Potty Training”

Shit happens

Shit happens, sometimes in my bath tub.


Potty training part 3?

Maybe it is too soon to know, but this fall might bring the beginning of my third and final time potty training.

My 21 month old came walking into the kitchen this evening while I was making dinner and started pointing at the bathroom. I thought he just wanted me to help him wash his hands, but then he began pulling on his diaper. I asked if he wanted to sit on the potty and he gave me one of his huge, head bobbing “yes”s. I sat him on it, but can’t tell if he actually went, but he did sit for a while. Afterwards, I asked if he wanted to start to use the potty like his brothers. He thought for a minute, began to shake his head no, and then changed his mind and gave me another big “yes” head shake.

I guess time will tell, but how much am I going to love life when I no longer have any kids in diapers!?! Now if only I could get them to wipe their own butts.

Potty training: Round two

Well here we go again. We are attempting to potty train our second child. Why I say “we”, I’m not really sure, since I do the majority of the work, but that’s probably a good thing, since my husband has no patience. Anyway, my middle son is about a month and a half shy of 3 and has been showing all the signs that he’s ready, so I decided to give it a go. I probably could have tried a little sooner but my first son wasn’t potty trained until almost 3 1/2 and, well, it is a pain to potty train.

Training a child to use the toilet is hard when it is just one kid, but now I have three. Okay, so one is pretty self-sufficient when it comes to using the bathroom and the other isn’t quite walking yet so he’s still pretty portable, but still, with three kids, I’m busy. I’m constantly on the go, taking the kids to school, lessons, play dates, and activities. We aren’t always around bathrooms and my oldest is so good about holding it and going to the bathroom on his own that I never really think about it anymore. I drive a minivan, I can always change a diaper in the back. Plus, it isn’t easy to drop everything and run a kid to the bathroom when you are out with three kids either. I trust my oldest, Who is almost 5, to go into single occupancy bathrooms on his own. Not to mention, for the first few months, during and after potty training, you have to carry extra clothes and the portable potty everywhere; that takes up space in the purse and I have enough stuff in my tote bag already. Then of course, there is the extra laundry to do from all the “accidents”. None of that is as bad though as the accidents themselves; especially the poopy ones. This is what I’m most frightened of. My oldest had a hard time with making it to the toilet for poops for several months after he was completely out of diapers. Luckily, most of his poops were nice solid nuggets that easily dumped into the toilet, so the occasional soft one was just thrown out with the underwear. My middle son, however, well…he loves his fruit, and that doesn’t translate well for potty accidents. I think this was the biggest factor that made me hesitant to potty train him.

Of course, I finally had to just tell myself that no matter how much of a pain it was going to be to potty train, it had to be done. Besides, once it is done, I won’t have to worry about my middle child’s horrible fruit poops, or carry around diapers for two kids anymore and I’d be saving money. Once it is done, life will be a little easier, at least until I have to potty train the third one. By then I should be an old pro at this though and maybe it won’t be so bad. In the meantime, I hope going through this for a second time isn’t too bad and doesn’t provide me with too many stories to blog about. A mom can dream right?

Boys and their poop

Boys seem to have a strange affinity for poop that girls don’t tend to have. I’m not saying that boys like poop or something weird like that, I’m just saying that they deal with it in a different manner than girls. Personally, I want nothing to do with it and can’t wait for all three of my boys to be potty trained and wiping their own butts.

Unfortunately, potty training my two and a half year old has not progressed much, not that I’m really pushing it yet, but my son has picked up on an equally important skill, one which my four and a half year old has yet to completely master; the skill of wiping ones butt. Now he hasn’t mastered this skill and the butt he wants to wipe isn’t always his, but it’s a start. It started the other day after I discovered that he’d pooped in his diaper. I asked him why he hadn’t gone in the potty so he could get jelly beans and then told him to get me a new diaper. He returned and proceeded to strip off his clothes and then lay down like he was ready for me to change him, but then he began to take off his diaper and reach for the wipes. I stopped him here for fear of a pooptastraphy. He freaked out a little and insisted I give him some wipes to hold and then attempted to wipe his own butt as I changed his diaper. The next day he insisted on wiping the babies bum when he saw that he’d pooped. Maybe once he’s finally potty trained he’ll have this whole wiping thing down and I won’t constantly hear a shout for me to wipe his butt at the most inopportune times, like I do now with my oldest child

My oldest son, on the other hand, might not have completely mastered the art of butt wiping, but he does seem to be discovering something else about poop; poop is hysterical. My son has learned the age old wisdom of males that poop is always humorous and has begun to broad his poop humor forte. He has moved beyond fart jokes and pooping sounds. The other day I heard my oldest giggling hysterically down the hall and found him in the bathroom, standing over the open toilet, my camera in hand. When I looked at the pictures he’d been taking, sure enough, there was a picture of his tiny turd floating in the toilet. Today, he alternately screamed for me to come wipe his butt and for his two and a half year old brother to come to him. When I came in, I asked him what he wanted his brother for. He told me with a giggle that he wanted to show his poop to his brother.

I’m not sure what it is with boys and poop, but I’m glad I’m a girl. On the other hand, I do have three boys. I think their dad should be the one to deal with this, of course, he might just encourage it.

So it begins

And so it begins; potty training round two! My two and a half year old, who has taken to running around naked more often (probably because it is summer and he constantly thinks he is going to get wet) decided the other day to actually pee on the potty when I told him to go sit on it. Not too long after, he ran, completely unprompted, to the potty and pooped. I made a big deal about it with lots of shouting, dancing, high-fiving, and prizes given in hopes that he will continue on this route.

Since I’m not yet ready to set aside a full three days necessary to do the boot camp with him, I’m just kind of taking my cues from him and letting him go short periods of time with no diaper while reminding him to go and try sitting on the potty occasionally. I’m really hoping that doing this for a second time around with be easier for several reasons. First, I have a better idea of what I’m doing and what worked the first time. Secondly, I’m hoping that the fact that he wants to copy everything his older brother does right now will work to my advantage in this case. Lastly, well, I just can’t have it take as long as the first time, so it just has to go faster and be easier (isn’t that a valid reason?). In the meantime, I’m sure there will be plenty of not so funny at the time, but really funny in retrospect stories to follow. Wish me luck!

Poop report

So my plan for my two year old to only poop when his dad is around has far from worked. Today he took at least six horribly disgusting poops just for me. Apparently he’s not hip to my plan.

Oh, and my four year old pooped on a tree at the park tonight. Awesome.

Poop happens

Potty training has got to be one of the worst parts of raising young children. Don’t get me wrong, I hate changing diapers, especially poopy ones, but there is something infinitely more easy about changing a diaper than teaching a child to use the potty. I mean, sure it is no fun wiping my child’s butt while he lays there, hands clasped behind his head, smiling like he’s enjoying it. However, the mishaps during the exhausting potty training period are grosser than the smelliest, yet contained diaper.

My oldest son is the only one of my three boys potty trained so far and soon I will need to embark on that harrowing adventure again with my almost two and a half year old. I admit that my oldest son wasn’t fully potty trained until shortly before turning four despite having started the attempts at it before he was two. Even now he still has occasional accidents, as well as the occasional “screw you for sending me to my room” non-accidents.

Our potty training journey was ripe with “incidents.” For instance, there was the time my son, almost two at the time, was taking a bath, which promptly ended when we peed in said bath. I took him out of the water and wrapped him in a towel, but before I could get a diaper on him, he was off like a shot, shedding his towel in his haste. He ran into the kitchen where his father was, knelt down on all fours and crawled over to my husband barking like a dog. He then proceeded to stop in front of my husband, squat, and poop one solid turd in front of him, then he was on his way again. I have to admit, at that moment I was proud; he’d managed to hold his poop until the end of the bath. You have to celebrate even the smallest victories when potty training.

Even just a few days ago we had an “incident.” Even though my son poops on the potty now (most of the time, occasionally he prefers near a tree in the backyard), he has trouble with the whole bum wiping. Nothing delights me more than to be just sitting down to a quiet moment, finally getting a chance to eat lunch, when five treasured little words are hollered down the hall, “I need my bum wiped.” Oh yay! Upon entering the bathroom, a greeting like no other is given, as a tiny little bare bottom faces the door with hands spreading cheeks and aforementioned butt awaits wiping. As I relished in this wonderful event the other day, I couldn’t help but notice the poop to be a little, well… squishier than usual. I began to ask if my son was feeling okay, when, mid wipe, I received a sudden surprise of more poop deposited into the wipe. “You’re pooping again!” I yelled as I as tried to figure out how to get the tiny bottom back on the toilet without the poop getting all over the freshly cleaned bathroom. Eventually I resigned myself to my fate, realizing that I was better off just catching the poop in a wipe or two than risk getting it everywhere and creating a big mess that I would have to clean. This was not one of those moments to celebrate.

So I admit, when I questioned my two and a half year old yesterday, as I changed yet another fruit induced near blow out, if he wanted to start pooping on the potty and he defiantly shouted “no,” I breathed a little sigh of relief knowing that his answer had just bought me another month before I’ll need to start down the potty training road again. In the meantime, I will just encourage him to save most of his pooping for evenings and weekends, when his father is home.



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