12 July 2010

Potty Talk

I feel like I've been writing about our adventures in potty training for years on this site. We've had a love/hate relationship with potty training for what is going on 18 months.

Benny started telling me that he pooped when he was 18 months. Nate and I got a little excited about this development and bought a little potty for Benny. We talked a lot about going on the potty and even put Benny on the potty a few times in those first few months. One morning he peed on the potty, so I rushed to Target and bought Benny some big boy underwear. That must have been before Benny's 2nd birthday.

Fast forward nearly a year. Benny still isn't potty trained. Our delays have come in a variety of forms: I started working full time, Benny started daycare. We tore apart our kitchen starting in December and it remained that way for a good long time. We travelled a lot in May. Nate and I never really thought we could devote a lot of time to the potty training ordeal, especially because Benny has been very opposed to sitting on the potty.

This kid has a will of steel - and, as it turns out, a bladder that's even stronger. This winter I attempted a pants-free weekend. I read somewhere that most kids do better at potty training when they aren't wearing any pants. You just need to pump them full of liquids and remind to sit on the potty. Benny and I did a potty dance for an entire day. I gave him all sorts of things to drink and sat him on the potty every 30 minutes or so. He ended up going to the bathroom on the carpet. And then proceeded to tell everyone who visited that he peed there. The expirement lasted all of two days before I gave up. Benny would hold out going to the bathroom until 1) I put a diaper on at nap time, or 2) I put pants on when someone came to the house.

I felt as though he was sending me a pretty clear message: He was not ready to sit on the potty. So, we continued to talk about the potty and tried to bribe the little booger to sit on the potty. After a couple of days, the bribes didn't even work. We would ask if he wanted to sit on the potty. He would answer, NO! We would remind him that he would get a treat (sucker, small cookie, whatever). H would answer, I don't want a sucker/small cookie/whatever. Now the message was crystal clear: He was not ready to sit on the potty. We gave it a rest.

As Benny's third birthday approaches, however, Nate and I decided that we need to do something to encourage him to sit on the potty. So, about two months ago, Nate told Benny that when he is three, he'll have to sit on the potty. Benny, being the bright little whipper snapper that he is, reminded us that he's not three, he's two. He will sit on the potty when he's three.

As of late, we've revisited the pantless tactics. Benny has gone in the potty a few times, but mostly just holds it. And holds it. And holds it. One day he held it for SEVEN hours before I had to put a diaper on him for a nap. Then he peed to his heart's content. Last night, he was running around, doing the pee pee dance for about 30 minutes. Every time I tried to sit him on the potty he screamed and got up. Eventually, I took my eyes off of him for two seconds and he peed on the floor.

We're at a loss here. We feel like we can't go back to full-time diapering because that sends the wrong message. But, I'm still not sure that he's mentally ready for this next step. His teachers at daycare said that he's a smart kid and smart kids tend to hold out. I'm not sure whether or not that's what's going on here. At this rate, he'll be 10 before he goes pee in the potty! And we haven't even started addressing the poop factor!

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