Sunday, September 16, 2007

a new strategy

Shrek and donkey have been pooped on. Several times.

Princess has been soaked.

Nemo and Dory were abandoned in the garden.

So much for the character underwear.

I've tried to dress the children in only a t-shirt and their new underwear to make accessing the potty that much easier, but it's turning in to a free-for-all over here.

Kids are running around naked, and I'm seriously afraid of what is going to happen to our couch.

Although not consistently, the girls certainly seem to be getting this whole potty-training thing a lot better and faster than the boy. I've heard that girls train faster than boys - but William is so darn smart, I thought for sure he'd be leading the charge.

I mean, while we were at the zoo today, Charlie and I were looking at one of the less popular animals and couldn't remember the name when William pipes in "Dat's a Malayan TAPIR!"

Seriously. When it comes to animals, this kid is Tonight Show material.

Yet when I gently remind our zoological prodigy, as I see him start doing "the dance", that he needs to go poo-poo in the potty ... he'll snap "ME NO GO POO-POO in the POTTY. I GO POO-POO ON DA GWOUND!!"

Yeah. Like a Malayan Tapir.

I have really wanted to avoid rewarding the children with sweets during this whole potty training endeavor ... but tomorrow, I'm going to go buy chocolate.

Lots and lots of chocolate.

(And a plastic cover for our couch.)

If that doesn't work, I'm going to take Cesar Millan's advice and spread newspaper on the floor and make them sleep in a crate.


  1. And the saga continues. Hey, it's making great blog material. Poo poo on the ground like a Malayan that's great!

  2. jen,
    not to poo-poo this subject (oh yeah, i'm funny), but i just wanted to tell you i read your 10-part preg/nicu saga today and i was really touched by your story. hang in there. no child graduates from high school in diapers. i promise.

  3. A mom in the midst of potty training9/16/07, 11:11 PM

    Don't beat yourself up too much, I was never lucky to have the weekend potty trained child, my first child took six months, that is right six months to have him finally always be successful and really want to take the initiative to do the whole potty thing.I did find for peeing that a cheerio worked really well in the pot to get him to stand and pee, he really enjoyed the "target" practice.
    Right now I am in the midst of potty training our two year old girl who is just as resistant as her brother, no character underwear will change her mind, just sticking to the routine, constant encouragement and not losing my mind in front of my children has been the only thing that has worked. Good luck to youand I applaude you that you are doing it with three not one.

  4. Jen- I started training mine at 2.5 and they were finally totally trained at 3ish. I "started" 6 months too early if you ask me now. My other friend started hers at nearly 3.5 and hers took like a week or something.

    Greggers pooped in his diaper every night before bed for 6 MONTHS! 6 MONTHS! I wouldn't let Greg say a word about it. I figured the kid would eventually use the potty and he did. It only took 6 months and 183 wasted diapers with him and as soon as I offered him a treat he did it!

    I could have traded 183 diapers for an M & M. Go for the chocolate!

  5. At least you are getting some PRICELESS pictures out of this whole ordeal! I am not looking forward to potty training one darn bit...I've got another 8 months, (at least) before I start feeling the pressure to attempt it!

  6. Potty training can be so frustrating with one, I can't imagine trying to train 3!

    My daughter was a late trainer (about 3.5) and I have to say, it was well worth the wait! I initially started trying to train her at about 2.5 but then got so frustrated that I stopped "trying"... Every day I would ask "do you want to go to the potty" and every day she would say, "NO". And I would say, "ok, let me know when you are ready". Just sort of reminding her that it is an option. Eventually she became more and more interested in what I was doing in the bathroom and then one day she informed me that she was ready to be a big girl and not wear diapers any more! So I put some underwear on her and that was that. She has had a total of TWO accidents!!

    I know every child is different and that type of approach may not work for some, but I knew that my daughter was just not ready when I was. I think that by not pushing her too hard I saved myself a lot of stress! I also have a 2.5 year old son and I am attempting the same passive training with him... Call me lazy!

    I guess it is a lot different when you have four in diapers!

  7. Hi Jen,

    I've been reading your blog for months now but never posted. YOu're great mom and have great kids!
    I have twins 3y.o. and just wanted to share our potty training experience with you. We started with M&Ms but in a week or so my son didn't care about candy anymore and didn't want to go potty as well. So what worked for us. I got bunch of little toys like frogs and snakes and lizards (you can buy whole packet with like 10 of them for a buck in WalMart), got some hair clips and little babies for my daugther, and some other little toys. I put them in a box and told them everytime they go potty they can pick a toy from the box. They liked it very much. However after couple days when I asked in the morning my son to go potty so he can get a toy from the box he told me he has all toys from the box that he liked. So after that I made sure every evening after they went to sleep I'd pick ALL toys they got from the box during that day and put them back in the box. It worked for us.

    Good luck with your potty training.

  8. Jen - I too have been reading your blog for a while but have not posted. I have two boys - almost 4 and almost 6 - both potty trained late at about 3.5. Neither one would even try and it became a major power struggle, so I stop. When my oldest starting standing in front of me and telling me he was peeing, I told him after the case of diapers we had, I was not going to buy him anymore. I think he had 2 accidents after that. The other one, we just went cold turkey into underwear and it was a pain but he did get it after about 2 months.

    One suggestion is to use plastic pants, like the ones that go over cloth diapers. They can still feel the wet and dirty but it somewhat minimizes the mess. Then you don't have to sit on a plastic covered couch! We also used positive reinforcement in whatever form they wanted - jellybeans, chocolate, skittles, sticker charts and after a week of dry/clean toys. We let the kids pick out the candy.

    Good Luck!


  9. What great ideas. I like the cherio in the pot. Frank was 3 when I said I would buy him a flashlight if he went potty and that worked. It will happen.

  10. I hate giving parenting assvice because every mom and kid are SO different. But, I dropped a comment on your last post and I'm doing it again here... Nobody (not even adults or two-year olds) do anything 'just because.' We have to be motivated by something. If your kids are motivatable now... find out what they LOVE, let them pick it out, and then use that as the reward for going potty. I would never go to work for free. And few kids are going to go pee in the potty for free. The trouble is, you have to figure out what their "currency" is. Keep up the good work!