Week long toilet training nightmare

I don’t know why I get complacent when things seem to go right around here.? You’d think I’d learned my lesson by now.? Like, oh, my website is working just fine and then Habib’s Hosting service decides to do server upgrades when I want to test new designs and my site suddenly is slower than the wireless at the trusty SIL’s house.? Or wow! that nice little drizzle sure did a good job of knocking the pollen out of the air.? Wait!? What’s that?? Day 28 and it’s still raining.? Oh look!? My roof is leaking again.

Yeah, like that.

So Monday started out like a gem.? I used my standard line of, “if you want to go to school you have to go on the big boy potty.”? I put him on the toilet.? He peed.? We rejoiced.? I set a timer for 45 minutes.? I put him on the potty, he peed.? Every 45 minutes.? He peed.? All. damn. day.? Lots of rejoicing.

Tuesday was this.? Still lots of pee.? Not a lot of actual in the toilet.

Wednesday degraded itself into a day that I would like to forget as a parent.? So much so that the acupuncturist didn’t stick me in the calm down and relax spots.? She stuck me in the help my stomach not burn so much spots.? It worked, but I was still a cranky bitch.? I think the boy spent more time on the naughty chair than off on Wednesday.? Then there was lots of fighting about the fact that he didn’t want to go on the potty, but he didn’t want to wear diapers either.? Oh yeah, I cleaned up 4 pee accidents before I got really pissed and just threw a diaper on him.? Much screaming happened when he went anywhere near the potty.? Both by him (because he didn’t want to go) and by me (because he puts wads of toilet paper in the toilet just for shits and giggles).? The day ended with me downing almost an entire liter of Coke and a sleeve of Girl Scout cookies.? (You know it’s been a bad day for me when I ask for Coke.? It is my biggest vice.? Especially if I pass up a glass of good red wine for a Coke.)

Thursday I resigned myself to be a better parent. Preschool occurred without incident.? We had a nice time at the farmer’s market.? The boy asked to try on the potty at the market.? He tried.? Didn’t pee.? He said he still wanted to be a baby and I told him that baby’s get rocked to sleep (he’s now in a I want to go to bed “by self” phase).? I rock him to sleep for his nap.? We resumed potty training after nap to which he declared that he didn’t want to go on the big boy potty nor did he want to wear diapers.? I obliged and offered him the only other alternative.? No pants.? You would think I would have seriously maimed this child by the hysterical sobbing at the fact of me taking away his pants.? Don’t most kids want to run around naked?? Not mine.? I finally gave in just to shut him up.

Today.? He’s wearing diapers.? I can’t stand it anymore.? My child is much smarter than me.? The only thing I can figure out is that on Monday I said he had to go on the big boy potty to go to school.? He did so he got to go.? That was the end of that.? He won.? I lost.? Clearly black and white in his little world.? More of the I’m going to rip my hair out? and scream in mine.

16 Comment

  1. Jenny2 says: Reply

    You know how they tell people if their house isn’t selling to take it off the market? Is it possible to take a break from the potty training? Remove the hair pulling stress for a bit? It just seems like you’re all tired and that’s not good.

  2. Mom says: Reply

    You probably don’t want advice from your mother but everyone knows I can’t keep my mouth shut. Girl, you need to relax. This potty training can only be achieved by patience and hysteria from either of you turns a rewarding experience (that’ s what it should be) into a nightmare. I can’t stress enough that it won’t matter when he’s grown at which age he left the diapers in the trash! Don’t play tug of war with him. You have to realize what you think he’s perceived is really only fragments of that idea. Keep it light and rewarding. Without punishment or threats. This is not a war!
    Luv ya,

  3. Sounds like loads of fun. I think Sabrina can just wear diapers until she is 13.

  4. Yeah so do you want to rethink that “boys are great” thing? Can’t wait for the potty training….

  5. iamnot says: Reply

    As grandma Michaelina used to say “Small children, small problems. Big children, big problems.”

    Something to look forward to….

    (Hello by the way. We have a mutual boxing friend.)

  6. I’m not even considering potty training until the czar is like 3. I have enough problems getting stuff in, nevermind the stuff that comes out.

  7. Good luck, you poor thing! Do you have a potty seat for the “big potty?” I tried getting Quin to use one last year, and he was so excited that Blue (from Blue’s Clues) was on it, he wanted to kiss it! (No pictures, unfortunately.) Well, it has been sitting in the closet for quite some time, but yesterday Quin’s 2-year old friend, Avalon, came over, and needed to use the potty. (Avalon has been using it for quite some time – I’m so jealous!!) I offered the Blue’s Clues seat so that her mom didn’t have to clean up the “little potty,” and Quin was very excited about it. So much so that he asked to sit on the big potty for the first time EVER! Today he asked to sit on it again! What I’m getting at is if you don’t have a seat, maybe make it a big event to go out and get one. Or, if you have one, maybe go out and let him pick one out. It’s hard to relax, and there are days that I just want to scream at him to just use it! Last winter he seemed to be really close, but then he started school (toddler school, where potty training is 50% of the curriculum) and stopped being interested. That was extremely frustrating.

  8. Jenny says: Reply

    Elle, No assvice here..just that totally blows and it must really suck and you sound really stressed out. so, just try to relax a little when you can! Potty training…soooo not looking forward to it.

  9. Tricia says: Reply

    The first step is admitting that your 3yo is smarter than you.

    I would take your mom’s advice… But what do I know! Both my babies (dog and cat) already came potty trained.

  10. Lena says: Reply


    1, Take a deep breath. He will be potty trained, eventually. He will not begin high school wearing diapers or pull-ups however unlikely that may seem at the moment.

    2, Listen to your mom.

    3, Ask him if he wants to go to the store and pick out a potty-seat by himself. If he says no, don’t push the issue. Wait another month or so, ask again.

    4, Since he is allowed to go to pre-school with diapers, just back off for a while. You have already a nice agreement with the teacher, so why don’t just go with the flow (pardon the pun) and let him enjoy preschool and new friends. Ask the teacher if they have certain times of class when they ask the kids to go potty, make sure he is involved in that, but not pushed to participate. Peer pressure and wanting to be like the other kids could finally make him want to do it.

    5, Remember this is his body and he decides. You can’t control his body, he wins this one every time. Just wait, a few more months mulling over the concept may just what he needs before it clicks.

    I will shut up now with all my advice, but I do have the first-hand experience of potty-training little boy and we waited until he was 3.5 years old and two months later he flew trans-Atlantic flight without a diaper.

    Hugs to you!

  11. Raissa says: Reply

    It’s survival mode. You only do what you must to survive the day.

    It so sucks that you can’t make other people do what you want, especially when “other people” are your children. I wish my son suddenly wanted to go in the potty. But I am still grateful that he sleeps through the night, in his own bed, and is weaned.

    It’s nice to have a baby again that I can dress, feed, bathe, carry, etc., etc. and she doesn’t complain! It’s like my own doll! One of my children will let me do whatever I want!

    And, yes, I know that having more and more children doesn’t solve any problems.

    We are with you in spirit, toilet-training mama!

  12. Lee says: Reply

    Lena and your Mom have it nailed. Yes, it’s frustrating, consistancy is the key. Losing it and yelling doesn’t accomplish much, just ends in tears for both of you. It. will. happen. Just remember Lena’s advice, it’s great.
    I would get rid of diapers all together and use the pull-ups for out of the house time and big boy underwear at home (except at night, unless he is consistently dry when he wakes up). Does he have a stool to be able to get up there himself and have you showed him how to hang on? Maybe the “by self” approach would work?
    Maybe ask yourself why it is so darn important to you for him to be potty trained RIGHT NOW. Your anxiety just rubs off on him and he doesn’t know why your upset. It should be viewed as an exciting milestone or accomplishment for the kid and you. Celebrate when it happens and when it doesn’t, say “Good try, maybe next time!” and leave it at that.
    My thoughts are with you and my nephew.

  13. Rhonda says: Reply

    Just remember all of the crap you went through to get that child to eat, stop throwing food, etc. He is such a good little eater now! Soon, he’ll be the same with the potty. Hopefully you’ll have some hair left by the time its all done.

  14. Nicole says: Reply

    Oh, mucho fun. There is a book about a psychologist who trained a bunch of mentally retarded adults to be toilet trained in a day. My husband wants to use those techniques on our son.

  15. Lauri says: Reply

    I think Oleg is one of those kids that just one day will decide on his own he is ready.

    Don’t feel pressured by his age or society that he is not potty trained yet… he will be soon enough. I would take a mini-break for awhile and act non-chalant about the whole deal. Easier said than done I know….

    Hang in there

  16. Wendy says: Reply

    My son was the same way. One day was success, then he would just refuse. We would back off and try again a few weeks later but it just wasn’t working. I tried all the things that worked for my two daughters but he just wasn’t having it.

    So here is what I did. It may not be a popular idea but in 2 days he was completely out of diapers and peed and poo poo’d in the potty with no accidents.

    Buy a bunch of little toys, snacks, etc plus a package of brown paper lunch sacks. Separate the items into three groups. Little prizes (a cookie, one piece of gum, etc) medium prizes (super ball, small plastic crappy toy) and bigger prizes (squirt gun, crayons) Place the items into the paper bags, and tape shut. Place the three piles of prizes in plain sight, but not where he can reach them. Explain the game.

    1) Sitting on the potty earns a small prize
    2) pee pee in the potty earns a medium prize
    3) poo poo on the potty earns a big prize

    Put him in underwear with no pants on, set his potty chair in whatever room you are in and relax. The rest is up to him. Occasionally ask if he has to go, but it’s better if you leave it up to him. Believe it or not, after two days Levi didn’t even ask for a present any more. He told me when he had to potty or just went and did it himself. The trick is that HE did it. Little control freak (don’t know where he gets that from 😉

    dollar store prizes…. $10
    potty trained boy…Priceless

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