**WARNING** The following post is not for those who are light of heart, don’t have children and/or don’t want to know the dirty side of parenting. Proceed at your own risk.
My son is 3 and a half now, and we’ve been making very ssllllooowww progress in the potty training department. In fact, I blogged about it last year around this time. He’s at the point now where he will go when I ask him and can stay dry for most of the day, but he won’t tell me when he needs to. And pooping, well, that’s a whole other story altogether.
I don’t get it. The boy can dress himself, find the states of Washington, Iowa and North Carolina on the map, and can sing the entire alphabet song. So it’s not that he’s incapable of learning how to do it. I can only imagine that I’m holding back his progress by being a helicopter mom. According to this site, I need to drop all reminders completely, give him the control and opportunity to know when he needs to go, and reward all efforts and forgo any punishment. I haven’t been too good at that last part in the last few weeks of frustration.
I also apparently need to drop the use of Pull-ups and use underwear only. Um, ok. I guess I’ll just spend the next several weeks cleaning up messes. Good thing we spend most of our evenings outside. I’ve tried it for all of 24 hours and so far, it hasn’t had much affect on him.
I just don’t understand why it’s so hard. It seems especially difficult for boys. I have friends with girls a year younger than my son who have been trained for almost a year now. Yep, trained at 18 months. What the crap? Is it me? Or is it my son? According to this site, it all comes down to two possible factors: constipation or temperament. I know it’s not the first one, at least not on most days, so that only leaves the second. Did you know that 10% of people are described as having difficult temperaments? Difficult toilet trainers were more likely to be “less adaptable,” meaning that, even with multiple exposures, they have more trouble adjusting to new situations. They were more negative, demonstrating more crying and whining, and were less persistent, becoming frustrated and giving up more easily.
Now I haven’t thought of my son as having a difficult temperament, but he’s definitely strong-willed. I think this blog post from the humbled homemaker had the closest resemblance to what I’m going through with potty training a strong-willed child. He won’t do anything until it’s his idea, so I just have to keep the bathroom door open and wait until he decides that he’s tired of stinking thinking.
Ok, that’s it. I’m done now. No more posts on the subject, I promise.