I have been EC'ing my 6mo old for a few weeks now and it is going great. We are catching most pees and poops. I've noticed that DS strongly prefers going in the potty (and why wouldn't he?), but this is presenting a problem at night.
He seems to pretty actively squirm and fuss in his sleep (which I'm pretty sure means he needs to go potty). The problem is it's cold so he is fully clothed and wearing a cloth diaper. How on earth am I supposed to undress him, open his diaper, potty him, and get him back to sleep? It seems like it would help him sleep better if he could go potty, but not if I have to wake him up that much to go. It's a vicious cycle.
Is he in bed with you? If so, I'd just leave him in a diaper and potty him in bed in a bowl or something without even getting out of bed. We did this with our girls and it worked well even on cold nights. If he's in a crib or something, I dunno. That does sound hard because being warm enough is more important than ec!
Mama to Nell (11/15/06) and Maggie (10/9/10) . AFTER 2.5 YEARS, I AM AN AUNTIE!!! HOORAY TEAR78 and welcome Anika and Brand New Baby Boy!!!! Circumcision: the more you know, the worse it is; please leave the decision up to your son!
There are split-crotch or open-crotch pants you can buy from ECing suppliers. You can just tuck a trifolded prefold under the front and back waistband before bed. Then when it comes time to potty, pull out the front, potty him, lay him back down and tuck the prefold back under the front :)
Or; pair those same pants with some ECApants if you want a more waterproof-oopsie option than a prefold. That way the front of the ECApants just need to be pulled down, and then pulled back up when he's done.
Or forego pants, put leg warmers on to ensure his legs stay toasty, and put him in a sleepsack! That and some ECApants or a prefold and a prefold belt would work great too.
If you are feeling tempted to go with less protection for easier pottying, thrifted wool blankets are a cheap and airy way to protect the bed. We have two under the sheet, and the bed itself has never become wet. We have been diaperless at night since 19 mos or so, and have had MANY sheet soakings, but the bed is as good as new, and we never have that sweaty feeling you get with a plastic bed protector. I really wished I had been brave enough to test them out earlier. We use the split crotch pants at night now, which we find both cozy and easy.
I second the ECA pants recommendation as well - I didnt' use them for nighttime myself, but my sister used them exclusivley until they started going nakey butt, and she swore by them (with a few inserts).
I literally logged on so I could post the exact same question. My DD (almost 8 mos) has been a 4am pooper since she was about 8 weeks. The only problem is that now she will not go back to sleep after a potty trip which is not good for any of us! I am a high school teacher and so sleep deprived that I've occasionally ignored her cues in the interest of sleep; however, she seems totally programmed to hold her poop until she gets to the potty. She's in her crib in our room until about 2 am and then comes into our bed at that point. Our house is cold, so she's often in diaper, pj's, and a sleep sack which makes taking her to potty quite the ordeal! Ugh. Not sure what to do, and not psyched that the end of daylight savings next week will likely make this a 3am problem!
Ismama - you might want to reduce how much you move her as much as possible. Find some kind of container that she can poop and pee in efficiently without a mess while still laying down. I stopped ECing at night because moving our son around not only pissed him off when all he wanted to do was nurse and sleep, but woke him up too much. But if you can catch their mess while they're still laying down, it's all the better :)
Thanks for all the info. @Ma Cactus - I'll keep my eye out for some wool blankets. When your LO misses at night the blankets absorb it, but does it wake him up? I don't like the idea of him laying in his pee if he goes at night.
Right now, he still wakes up once or twice at night, we change him, nurse him, and he goes right back to sleep. I think we'll start offering the potty at the changes (even though he has already peed in the diaper). This afternoon he held his pee for almost 2 hours while we were trick or treating with friends and he was in the sling. He went in the potty as soon as we got home. I'm thinking that if he knows we'll offer him the potty at night, maybe he'll start to hold it until we put him on it. Hopefully that won't be any extra undressing than what already happens.
@Ismama Is your potty right near the bed and do you keep the lights down? I'm sorry she won't go back to sleep for you. I hope you find a solution.
my "issue" is that she really doesn't poo lying down anymore. we'll have maybe 1-2 poo misses per week when I'm not home and she's with my DH who isn't quite as tuned in to her cues but tries anyway. the rest of the time she poops like clockwork upon waking in the am somewhere in the 4-5 am range. i think her little clock is wired early - she goes to bed early (6 - 6:30 pm) wakes once or twice to nurse and then is ready to wake at 4 ish. she wakes up and pops on and off until she finally passes gas and then she seems to relax but she starts cooing like she's awake. then i end up convincing myself that she's pooped and needs to be changed, but it turns out that it's only gas so we go to the bathroom and so begins the day. may try a little potty near the bed. thanks for the ideas.
We cosleep, so I usually wake up if he pees! I'm not really sure if he would on his own or not, except that he has always been one of those babies who pretty much does not pee when asleep, so he must be awake when he does it. We replace any top covers that got wet, replace or just pull off his pants, and put a receiving blanket over the wet spot, then change the sheets in the morning.
I was going to suggest a sleep sack as well with just the diaper and warm socks on underneath. If you have a small wool blanket, wool sweater or what-not you could also probably sew it together loosely to make your own sleep sack that is also waterproof, then you don't even need the diaper cover.
They go thru different phases at different ages I find. So if Ds doesn't want to be pottied at night and I want to potty him, I nurse him with a prefold tucked between his legs then put the diaper back on after he has peed on the prefold. Mostly I don't bother at night, though, but we get quite a few hits in the evening when I am trying to get him to sleep.