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intention urination in 3 1/2 year old as act of defiance

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 

So my daughter has been toilet trained for over a year, but has recently began 'peeing' when she's upset or not getting what she wants.

For example, last Thursday she was trying to sleep in her older brothers bedroom, and it was not working out (he was complaining that she kept talking) so I told her she needed to sleep back in her bedroom and brought her there -- she's saying to me "I need to go pee" and Im saying "ok, go and tell me when you're done and I'll come wipe your bum".

She's standing at the back of her bed holding on to the rail and saying "I need to pee" to which I continue to reply "Ok Nellah, go to the bathroom".  She stands there looking at me, then a minute later says "there, im all done peeing..." and sure enough she has peed through her pajamas and there is a big puddle on her floor.




post #2 of 7

This is a tough one and I have not BTDT but what was your reaction to this?

post #3 of 7
Thread Starter 

total elimination reply -- i ignored the behaviour and took off her pj's and wiped her down and changed her sheets....problem is that now she does it within 10minutes of being put down to bed -- we'll here "mom, i peed" and she's peed the bed...

If i try putting pull ups on she'll take them off, not sure what to do...

post #4 of 7

I personally would not ignore this behavior.  Don't make it a big deal but I would matter of factly tell her that she made a mess and that she has to help you clean everything up.    This will take much longer than you doing it yourself, but it's a pretty involved process and is not necessarily what a kid wants to do for fun.  In fact if she starts doing it that frequently she should almost be able to do it herself.  But for starters.   Help her get a washcloth to wipe herself down.  Have her do it as much as possible.  Have her help you strip the sheets or get the wet clothes together and take them to the washer.  If it's on the floor help her get a sponge and soapy water.  Have her clean her mess up.  Even our 2.5 year old helps with spills that he makes.  I don't think he sees it as a punishment just a normal part of cleaning up any mess.    I hope this helps.

post #5 of 7

My 3 yr old has done this a handful of times. He's done it when he's really mad, not at bedtime though.

Definitely sounds she's found a way to get some attention at bedtime.

Maybe try something proactive..not sure what you're bedtime routine is, but maybe before she goes into her room make sure she's goes to the potty first every night. Then tell her something positive - you love her, she's safe, we sleep in dry clothes and sheets

Then if she does it again, maybe try something a little more radical. Don't talk to her at all...just go take her hand, wipe her down, change her, take her hand again so she follows you to put away the dirty clothes, and gently lay her back down in clean sheets and leave without saying a word. She may be thriving off the attention she's getting - no matter what the message is. I''m not saying be harsh or frustrated while doing it - or ignoring her...just no communication, and still include her in the process of cleaning.


Really I don't have any magic tricks...for whatever reason my DS hasn't done it a long time now, so I'm sure it will pass for you guys too.

post #6 of 7

I think it's definately an attention thing and would agree to have her clean up as much as possible. Hopefully after a few times of that she will want nothing to do with it.

post #7 of 7
Thread Starter 

Thanks for all the replies, believe it or not I have tried them all....Unfortunately (or fortunately) she enjoys cleaning a lot and when we've cleaning up her messes in the past she's quite happy to do so, but it hasn't changed the behaviour.

Here's what I know for certain:

1. this is attention seeking

2. this is a way to control her environment with something she feels she has little control over (bedtime)

3. she is spirited and independent and has been since birth (pregnancy, really :) )


I've tried changing her bedtime routine to include more stories, cuddle time and talking.  We sing before bed and I "let her be the mommy".  I will say "time to pee" to which she will reply "I don't have to pee" and forcing her to sit on the toilet is not an option.

It happened again tonight and I put her in the tub while I cleaned up the mess then put her old pull-ups on her.  She, of course did not want the "diaper" on, but I don't know what else to do.

My GP is giving me a referral to a pediatrician that deals with behaviour, and we are waiting on a child psychologist we know to fit us in, but I really feel like I'm at my wits end, I just really don't want to give her "bathroom issues/complex" and this behaviour is really wearing me out...

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