Thursday, August 11, 2011
having fun with his potty
example of Joey saying "I'm ready"
Joey is 16months old. at 14months old he started to consistently take off his diaper and pee on the carpet/tile/toys/whatever was there. I bought him a little potty to get used to and now he's consistently keeping 4-6 diapers dry per day. So I've done some reading in an attempt to catch up to Joey's willingness to learn more about getting rid of diapers.
I feel like I've read the spectrum of potty training theories to come up with my own. From the 'wait until the child is 3 years old and meets all of these signs' as found in the Potty Train Your Child in Just One Day to the ultra hippie Diaper Free book learning about the world of EC (elimination communication). What a huge spectrum! from stickers, charts, and rewarding your child with candy for a poop to never putting a diaper on your infant.
Alan and I think we've found a tactic and theory that's working for our family. It has nothing to do with 'training', that's not the right word. More like we found the right form of encouragement for Joey and his pee-pee. I guess you would say we lean more towards a late start EC that I learned more about in this diaper-free book. Goals for encouraging pee-pee in the potty: Learn to love sitting on the potty, Learn to relax on the potty (we read books), predict typical times when Joey pees and poops, never putting any pressure on Joey to pee in the potty, no scolding Joey for not peeing in the potty (even when he pees on my carpet), and being attentive to Joey's communication to us that he has to pee especially taking him to the potty when he starts tugging on his diaper. I do not agree with excessive praise towards peeing and pooping in the potty. Examples of excessive praise: giving him candy for peeing and pooping, singing and clapping while watching poo get flushed down the toilet, a sticker chart...it gets so complicated when a normal behavior gets lavish treatment. The best example of why not to do excessive praise I read somewhere is learning how to use the potty is like learning how to feed yourself. Even though the baby/toddler is feeding themselves, they still need assistance preparing food and monitoring food intake; just like learning how to use the potty, assistance with clothing and monitoring the process is still needed. Don't get me wrong, we make going to the potty fun; but my son is not getting an M&M for every bowel movement. I guess I could rant some more, but I will restrain.
He pees right when he wakes up from the night or a nap, so we ask Joey to put his pee-pee on the potty. When he starts tugging at his diaper, we take him to the potty. We try to teach him the ALS sign for toilet as another way to communicate with us. We give him a cue word when he's peeing: 'PSSS', and he repeats it when he's peeing. He typically poos right after breakfast and after lunch. We like 'helping' empty the potty and flushing the toilet, and then enjoy washing our hands together. I would call us "part-time late-EC'ers". We have not successfully used the potty outside the house, but he has peed on his new babysitter's floor when she took off his diaper to check to see if he was wet. Joey is trying to tell us he doesn't like peeing and pooping on himself.
Joey showed us he was ready and we are trying to listen.