Toilet Training

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Toilet Training

Postby laurenhall08 » Fri 19 Apr, 2013 1:18 pm

Hi there,
just a after some help, my son is now 3.2yr old and proving to be tricky with toilet training. He originally showed signs of being ready at 22mths but got nasty gastro and has never been interested since. I have tried reward charts, praise lettting him watch us even giving him a chocolate when hes been etc but he never wants to do it. He used to scream at the prospect of using potty or the toilet and can now get him to sit there with only a small amount of protest and will sit for a substainal amount of time once there but he never does anything. I have been putting in just jocks so he knows when hes wet or dirty, but he never tells me if hes wet or dirty just waits for you to discover it. When asked even when hes done it if hes wet/dirty he gives the answer of no. Im lost as to what to try next, i take him to the toilet every 1/2 - 1hr, cos when i ask if he needs to go i just get told No no matter what. Im lost as to what to try next?
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Re: Toilet Training

Postby NgalaOnline » Fri 19 Apr, 2013 10:41 pm

Thank you for your post Lauren. Sometimes the toileting journey can be a confusing one for all involved. It sounds as if you have been working really hard on this and trying lots of different things to help your son. The issues you are experiencing with your son can be seen as developmentally appropriate for his age. Complete independence with toileting requires a large number of skills to be brought together. These skills may not all develop at the same time. Your child has to be able to learn to recognize the sensations of a full bladder or bowel, hold onto his bladder / bowel contents for long enough to get to the toilet, manage clothing, successfully use the toilet, and then begin to take responsibility for organizing their playtime and delaying more interesting activities in order to go and use the toilet when required. It is quite common for children to be able to manage some of these steps, but to take a little while to be able to develop independent toileting.

Many children are not comfortable with independently toileting until they are 3 to 3.5 years old and will need just a little more time to fine tune these many skills.
Sometimes toddlers can also have a drive towards asserting their independence and autonomy, as they develop a sense of themselves as an individual. Typically there are not many areas in a toddler's life where they can exert full control, and often toddlers will realize that they can control what goes in and what comes out. It is quite common for toddlers to exert strong control over these two areas, and some “conflict” can occur. Strong encouragement and lots of attention to toileting can sometimes lead the toddler to retain control over this issue, and sometimes they are more likely to be resistant to what the parent is requesting. Some parents find that they may be able to use a reward or incentive that works well to encourage the child, but many parents find that this does not really help.
If toileting has become a source of tension (or attention) between parent and child, perhaps try a few weeks of not mentioning or discussing the topic at all. Often the child begins to take the initiative with toileting when they feel that it is in their realm of control. After resting from the topic for a few weeks you may like to slowly reintroduce the topic in a relaxed manner and leave things to progress.

Toddlers also often take some time to develop the concept of delayed gratification, so it is possible that your little boy may not yet be developmentally ready to be able to delay what he is doing, and organize him to go to the toilet at the appropriate time.
Again, if you think this may be having an impact, try to set up small breaks which maybe focus on a snack and a toilet stop so the focus is not necessarily the toilet. However if you have been prompting him every half an hour see what happens if you try to prompt much less frequently.
These are just a few ideas to think about. Please feel free to contact the Ngala Helpline if you would like to discuss this further.
Hope things go well.
This information is general in nature and should not be used as a substitute for the personalized assistance that can be received from the Ngala Helpline by telephone.

For families residing in Western Australia you can also contact the
Ngala Helpline
Telephone 9368 9368 or 1800 111 546 for country access
Available 7 days a week, 8am to 8pm
or request a callback online

For helplines in other Australian states please follow this link
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