Sorry you're going thru this! We did too. Turned out that our baby hated the classic EC position (perhaps bladder pressure like heatherr30 says) so I would pee and poo him over a pad on the bed or at the sink by placing his feet down for balance and gently aiming his bottom shifted a little bit backward, basically he's facing me and I've got him around the torso and his bum is shifting away from me. He loved this position and felt relaxed being able to see me. At 8 weeks, our boy was about 14 lbs and we began holding him on the mini potty. He loved this until about 6 months when he would refuse by standing. So, we switched it up again.
Some more solid advice, excerpted from my book...hopefully some of this might help you problem-solve. Sorry for the long cut-and-paste, but it's late! : o )
"When It Stops Working"
Baby stops signaling, you miss nearly every potty throughout the day, diapers are piling up, or things just aren’t working anymore.
What to do?
1. Experiment with new positions, environments, receptacles, and cues. Sometimes a change in scenery is all it takes.
2. Review The Basics of EC and start learning each other again.
3. Wear your baby more often and consider co-sleeping if you aren’t already. Both of these practices bring you closer to your baby’s body and closer to sensing/hearing/seeing/feeling his signals.
4. Check in with yourself. Are you too busy? Have you begun to tune baby out? Remembering this is a two-way communication will help you look at your side of the conversation: are you still present and listening or have other things taken your attention? Are you getting enough rest? Are you stressed?
5. Sing, take deep breaths, and help baby (and yourself) relax.
6. Read the special section in this book called Potty Pauses for info on EC breaks that are many days long. (basically, this sections talks about relaxing, understanding that pauses are part of the process - and an important one!...that you will learn if you stay open to receiving what's going on.)
7. Check your clothing & diapering strategies and see if they support EC like you want them to or if they need tweaking.
8. Reach out to your email support groups or forums...tell them what’s going on and ask for suggestions.
9. Realize that babies are constantly morphing, learning, exploring, growing, and experimenting. Trust that your baby will get back on track in her own way and on her own timetable. Gather information, relax, and don’t worry.
10. Focus on connecting with your baby and on nurturing yourself. A happy, connected parent makes EC flow more smoothly.
"Why A Younger Baby Might Cry Every Time You EC"
Babies generally do not cry because you are helping them potty, but rather because the act of peeing or pooing is unfamiliar, uncomfortable, and/or scary for them.
Keep in mind that your newborn has been in the womb for 9 months and hasn’t had to feel that strange new sensation....it can be plain weird for the first few months.
Babies also sometimes cry during pottying because they are fearful of the position you have them in. They may feel unsteady, uncomfortable, cold, or unable to figure out how to release their bladder.
1. Find a better position that baby can relax in. Try the Cradled Classic EC Position instead of just the Classic (baby will be cradled in the crook of your elbow, while your hands hold the thighs). Or, try the Bottom-back Position (that I described above in my post). Remember that preferences for certain positions may change as baby grows older.
2. Sing a soothing song while pottying to help chill baby out (we like “Twinkle, Twinkle”).
"If a Non-newborn Baby Protests When You Offer a Pottytunity"
Babies protest in order to get you to change something. Whether position, environment, or, hey, I don’t need to go right now, here are some tips for dealing with protest:
1. Oftentimes, a little change of scenery or position helps baby release her bladder:
•try a new position
•try letting baby sit on her own (if she can)
•try a new environment (sometimes going outdoors helps)
•try a new receptacle
2. If the baby is arching her back and straightening her legs, she may not need to go right now. Try again later. Never force a baby to stay in any position.
3. Developmentally, the baby may also be interested in his new unfolding world and all the things he wants to explore. In this mindset, he is distracted by shiny objects and would rather investigate those than potty. Be patient. The newness will pass.
4. An older baby may also be learning that she can now determine when and where she goes. Be patient. She’s experimenting.
5. Try reducing your Timing-based potty offerings and allow baby the space to look to you, on his own accord, when he needs help...instead of swooping him away from what he was engrossed in exploring when (unbeknownst to you) he was not ready to go yet. Remember that, as babies get older, they begin consolidating their pees and poos. Timing-based pottying may become defunct with an older baby.
6. Let her go diaper-free (or in undies/training pants) for a while to reconnect with her bodily cause & effect. When she goes in an undesirable place, say matter-of-factly, “You peed on the floor. Peepee goes in the potty.”
7. Let an older baby have more control over the process. Trust his growing intuition and bodily awareness. If he protests, trust that he knows his body and ask him to tell you when he needs to go so you can help him.
I hope that some of this might help you!!!
Andrea & Kaiva 12 mos.