I have a 4 year old who just started preschool, and the problem is that she uses her underwear at night and all day. She doesn't wet the bed. She doesn't use the pull ups anymore. But my problem is the pooh pooh! She will pee in the toilet and not pooh. So what can I do or what method shall I use to accomplish it? I sit her on the toilet to pooh. But just sits and does nothing.
Isabel from Corpus Christi, TX
I had the same problem with my 4 year old boy, Ethan. He would go pee no problem, but could never go poop in the potty. I tried everything! He was still in daycare and my provider recommended that I try a suppository to make him go. I thought this was a terrible idea, so intrusive!
Well, a few months later, after buying another of a long line of "last" packages of diapers, I decided to give it a try. My husband and I inserted the suppository, sat him on the potty and hunkered down to keep him there. It took less than 5 minutes and we had success. We all danced around the house like maniacs, doing a "potty dance". He was so pleased. About an hour or so later, we see him running into the bathroom. Success again! The potty training was done. I think I still have that package of diapers hanging around, 6 months later.
I believe that the reason that this works is because Ethan just really didn't have any idea what muscles to push. We would have times where we knew he needed to go. We would sit him on the potty for 15, 20, 30 minutes waiting for him to go. The minute we would let him off, he would poop in his underwear (or on the floor when we were trying to keep him bare bottomed). But once he was shown how to do it, it all just clicked. I certainly wouldn't try this until all other avenues have been exhausted, but it was the only thing to work for us.
Good luck. I know it is one of the hardest parts of parenting (until the teenage years!)
I've read the feedback above, and have very little to add except: make sure he's not constipated. My little granddaughter had the same resistance when pooping hurt her. Once she regularly ate "soft poopie food" like raisins, ripe bananas, and veggies, and increased her fluids, she wasn't constipated any longer and could poop without being afraid it would hurt.
Good luck and let us know how it works out!
By Nancy from Florida
I am having the same problem. My son is 3 1/2 and for awhile was going pee all the time in the potty and we were thrilled. We thought potty training was going to be quick and easy. We had thought wrong. He to this day has not and refuses to poop in the potty. It as gotten to the point now that he rarely pees in the potty.
From our experience all I can say is stay very positive with your child. If you are negative or aggressive to your child all it will do is cause them more fear and reservations about going to the potty. Most kids just want mommy and daddy to be proud of them, so if you stay positive with them, and always praise for the good things they will progress. That is all I can say and remember too that all kids progress at different rates. You have to be very gentle with your child's readiness and development. (08/10/2007)
Rewards! I don't care what any book says. I have been doing daycare for 10 years and rewards work. Start with small things like a couple of M&Ms or a Starburst, then if that doesn't work, get some cute dollar items at Dollar Tree. Rewards work. Don't stress over the mistakes and really get excited over the pooh-poohs in the potty!
Good luck. (08/13/2007)
Often boys using potty chairs will scoot back so far on the chair to pee that they are too far back to poop. When it was time to poop, I sat my son backwards on the adult potty (with the seat down, but without the child insert). This way he was facing the tank and could hold onto it if he needed to bear down but more importantly his legs were spread out slightly more which allowed him to poop more easily. This is also a good way for kids to pee or poop in a public restroom when you don't have access to a potty chair or toilet insert, as they feel more secure and less like they are going to fall into the adult size toilet bowl.
Same thing with my granddaughter. She has been trained to pee since turning 3. But, she was well past 4 when she learned to poop in the potty. It came down to no choice, my daughter had to start a new job and had to get her into a preschool, so she finally had to learn to poop in the potty before going to preschool.
And believe me, this was quite an ordeal, but in the long run, my daughter pulled through. It doesn't help that my granddaughter is as stubborn as they come. We had held back one present from her birthday and promised it to her when she had finally pooped in the potty. (that didn't work!) We told her Grandma would do the "potty dance" with her. We even promised her everything from a special frozen yogurt treat she just loved to a new tricycle from her dad. None of this worked!
So, my daughter finally fed her bran cereal in the morning and baked beans in the evening (because of the high fiber content). She was on this diet for about 3 or 4 days. When it looked like she had to go, (she would go and hide in the corner or the closet where no one could see she was going in her pull-ups or underwear).
My daughter would set her on the pot and not let her get up until she would finally poop. Believe me, this was quite an undertaking. My daughter would have to sit there with her for sometimes half an hour or more. But with the bran cereal and beans, and knowing what time she went every morning and evening, as well as, knowing she liked to hide in the closet when she went; all it took was not letting her get up from the pot! (of course she would have books read to her while on the potty). But, once she finally did go, we gave her all kinds of praise. And that was that. No more problems! She was just afraid to go, but, my daughter had to finally lay down the law. Either that, or she couldn't get her into a daycare or preschool. (09/21/2007)
There's a new DVD out with Elmo that teaches preschoolers all about potty training. It's very helpful. You can rent it or buy it at any Blockbuster video, even online. I'll try to find it and put it in this post. I watch my 3 1/2 year old grandson weekdays and have since birth. His other nana has him a lot of weekends. So we have had a hard time getting the potty issue because he floated around a lot from place to place.
We all tried different methods of our own and tried to share what ideas worked. For a long time now he has the pooping perfect. He can be doing anything and when he gets the urge he'll run to use it fast. But the peeing he just did not want to go do each time. Kids don't like to stop whatever they are doing to go do there business, they think they'll miss something. I kept reminding him that whatever it was will be there when he gets back. And you have to remind them to go pee ever so often.
So after I knew he had drank liquids and could go pee with results, I kept a few markers by the toilet and would draw some shape on a piece of toilet paper lay it inside the toilet bowl and make it fun and say, "let's go see if you guess what I drew while you try to pee on it" and he found that fun while guessing the drawing like heart, airplane, etc. It also helped with his aim to try to hit the target. I would ask too what color is it? he learns his colors and shapes that way too. It takes the boredom out of it also.
He started preschool this year two days a week. The peeing in pants came back this first few weeks, most kids do because they feel insecure until they get a routine going and realize granny or dad is coming back for them.
On the person who posted they give laxatives to there 2 1/2 yr old daughter, maybe the laxative is causing her pain. Laxatives should not be given to young children unless a doctor recommends them and even then only on occasion. Pick certain fruits she likes and give that fruit 2-3 times in a week and she will stay regular. Pineapples are a great natural laxative and will do her body good, no harm like laxatives. You can put a tiny amount of prune juice in with her usual drinks and that will help with no harm to her just healthy intake.
If you try to make it a fun time in some way they will get it. You can even take their favorite doll with them and act like dolly is going to pooh first then it's her turn. I did that with my grandson, he loves Ernie his boy doll. But the Elmo potty training video really helps. Even now we pop it in the DVD player every so often to keep the idea fresh for him. Elmo has lots of DVDs to help kids learn. One with fire safety, bath time Elmo. This is the potty time video I spoke of you can rent it or buy at Blockbuster and I'm sure Netflix and others have it as well.
Our 3 1/2 Year son also refused to poop in the potty, long after he was in underwear and peeing on his own. But he was always constipated even with high fiber. Our pediatrician reassured us that it was very common in children that have become constipated. We became diligent in our daily doses of Myralax (a must for constipated kids) and fiber (including Benefiber). We stopped begging and bribing him to go and if he is getting a good dose of each he poops every other day now. At first there were frightened tears and now he just tells us he needs to go. Now that he is "regular" his personality has even improved. We realized that some of his moodiness was constipation. He is a joy to be around. (02/05/2008)
A friend suggested to me to put my 3 1/2 year old in the bathroom and have him take off his pants. Tell him the doctor wants him to poop on the potty and I will be waiting outside and to call me when you are done. Then just turn and walk out and wait outside the door. Don't make a big deal out of it when he goes. It worked. This is after 1 year of trying. (02/11/2008)
My son had that problem bad. It turned out that we found him in the bathtub during bathtime and I pulled the plug out and he totally freaked out. What was really happening, tub and potty, was that he thought he was going to go down the drown or be flushed down the toilet. Once we found out and had long talks and played some potty and drain games. The problem was cured. (08/20/2008)
By K Hoffman
While I have not read through all of the posts, here is my story. My daughter, now 4, as of one month ago would not poop in the potty. She has had issues with this since she was about 2.5. We potty trained her on the tinkle part at 3, but she would have nothing to do with pooping on the potty. Several ER visits later for imp actions, we felt it was more important that she go than make herself ill by not. We used pull-ups for the pooping when she asked for them and Miralax (ala the impactions). Man that girl is self-willed!
Finally, about a month ago, we decided enough; no pull ups. So, she started to wet her bed every night (for 3 weeks), pooped her pants instead of going on the toilet. But we kept on.
I am so glad to say, that now she poops in the potty and is happy about it, no Miralax, no pull-ups. For the past week she has continued to stay dry at night. If you have a self-willed one, trust me, be even more self-willed and you will find your solace. I am so proud of my girl! I've been there, I hear people say, they will go when they are ready.
If you know your child is ready and just not doing it, they need your help. You just can't wait until they decide they are ready at this point. Trust me, in the end, you will find yourself free of soiled sheets and undies. Find your inner strength, and hold on for the ride. Really, I am so happy that this Thanksgiving will not revolve around my daughter's BM or her doing the poopy dance in the corner because she refuses to just go!
As a parent, I feel your pain and am proud to say, you can fix it! I don't want to sound like an info-mercial, but really, this is the best bliss I have experienced for some time. Take away the pull up, take away the underwear in the home if they continue to soil. It's a security blanket, a sort of seclusion.
My daughter got the most upset when we took away her undies after pooping in them and refusing to go on the potty to finish. Eventually, you have to go right? You either go on the kitchen floor or you go in the toilet. The toilet won, and with some continued perseverance, so did we.
I am so proud of her. I hope this helps you in your plight against the pooping holders. My last post on this topic 1.5 years ago was me saying I would have to take her in for a psychiatric evaluation. Now I realize, patience and perseverance will win. (11/18/2008)
Yes, we've been dealing with this for nearly a year, my son is almost 4. Rewards haven't worked for us, neither have the educational songs, Citrucel and extra fiber and juice, prune juice, etc.
He has recently started pooping in the potty occasionally, maybe once or twice a month, which has been an improvement. He stays dry all day and at night. He just poops in his underwear wherever he is after holding it for a couple of days. When the time is near he will just roll in a blanket on the floor and lay around and say I ache, alternating with being hyper and wild. Anyway, we did finally have a little success the other night, I didn't want to give a laxative because I knew it was on the verge of coming out and he just needed to go. (his aren't hard most of the time, just really big).
He would agree to sit on the potty for a while, and then pull back up his pants and wrap up in the blanket as if to hold it in. He was asking for medicine, So I invented some medicine. Mine was Koolaid mix, sugar, and prune juice in a medicine cup. But the clincher, was that I finally said, "if you have to wrap up in something, wrap up in toilet paper! It's okay for poop to go on the toilet paper." Then he didn't wrap up in it, but said, "oh, really, can I put it in the little potty?" When I said yes, he took a bunch off the roll and made a little nest of T.P. in the small potty. Then he put it just where he wanted, and squatted, and pooped, just like that! It took a while to get it all out, but he made the face and said, "that medicine is working!". But I think the thing was the little potty full of toilet paper to poop into. Weird, maybe he liked to feel something soft to put the poop in? Okay, maybe someone else can try it if your child will only poop in their underwear. (03/10/2009)
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