Please help! Need to either EC or PL my 16 month old... - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 8 Old 05-07-2012, 09:20 AM - Thread Starter
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I need to potty train my 15 and a half month old boy.  Never thought I would say that, but hear me out. 


I am done with diapers. We started out with cloth and loved, loved, loved them.  The only problem was that that he would often get a yeast diaper rash.  We would switch to sposies, treat the yeast (and the diapers would get stripped in super hot water, several times, added a little bleach to the wash, etc).  Then he would get yeast again after another few weeks.  Process would repeat again.  And again.  And again.  After about 14 months we had tried every cream (OTC and prescription) on the market to get rid of it, grapefruit seed extract, treated for two weeks after asymptomatic, tried every trick in the book to strip his cloth diapers, did lots of naked time, dietary changes, tons of yogurt, he and I never eat refined sugar or flour, he is still breastfed, changed his diaper every 1-2 hours, switched to disposable wipes and the yeast rashes would always go away, but then always come back a few weeks later.  At 14 months we finally made a full time switch to disposable diapers which seemed to help - he went 6 weeks with no rash!  Fast forward to now (15 and a half months old now) and he has yeast again!  I am done with this!!!  My precious boy has spent most of his life with an itchy painful rash around his penis and buttocks and I am done traumatizing him with creams that seem to burn when I put them on. 


Over the last week, I have not put him in a diaper except nap and bed time and finally his rash has almost completely cleared.  The problem is that be pees all over the house.  And as much as I love having my boy's skin clean, intact, and healthy, it isn't sanitary to have him pooping and peeing all over the place.  Every time I see him start to pee or poop I rush him over to the potty to finish up and praise him lavishly and if I can't get him to the potty in time I gently tell him that poop/pee goes in the potty and not the floor and I clean it up. It has been a week and he hasn't shown any sign that he 'gets' that he is supposed to go in the potty.  He doesn't talk, but does know about 25-30 signs, including poop and potty (he knew this before we started potty training), occasionally he would wake from a nap dry, he goes about 2-4 hours between wetting, and poops fairly regularly every 1-2 days, and has been watching me on the potty since he was probably about a year old.  What can I do to help him 'get it'?  Is it to old to use EC?  If not, how would I go about doing this since he only pees 5-6 x day?  What about an early potty training method?  Like I said, we are DONE with diapers, and if he poops/pees all over the house for the next year, then fine, whatever, but I would like to somewhat contain it.  Please help! 

Vegetarian, breastfeeding, cloth diapering and EC'ing mama to my bare-foot, TV-free, free-range toddler and loving it!!!

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#2 of 8 Old 05-07-2012, 11:14 AM
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Hugs. It's always so hard when LOs are in pain. I'm a first time mom to my 13 month old DD and I'll tell you what we've done. We started around 11 months after diaper changes became next to impossible just with sitting her on the potty when I needed to use the toilet. To this day she has an easier time going/staying on the potty if im actually going too. If you haven't already, then plunk him on his potty while you pee on the toilet do he has company actually using the potty. Whether EC or PL is more appropriate I think depends on him. I read that around 18 months is when people generally have success with PL rather than EC but I use a mixture of things and just go with what works. The EC principle you may want to try is cueing. Since he has lots of naked time and you know right away when he pees, rush the potty under him as you have been and make a specific water sound like "sssss" or something. He should begin to associate that sound with peeing and you may be able to start getting him to pee if you make that sound. It would take a while of consistent use and I'm not sure if there is such a thing as being too old to cue but it's worth trying. The other thing is to put him on the potty as part of his routine: first thing in the morning, after naps and meals, before and after car rides, before a bath, etc. and any other time he hasn't been in 2 hours. He will probably not initiate for a few weeks. DD has just started signaling me with a special aaahhhh but we still have misses even with signals, timing and her routine.
Your DS is definitely capable of picking this up, but he will need patience, help, and consistency.
About the yeast, it could be helpful to give him acidophilus to help him resist yeast overgrowth. It's routinely used for thrush and I wouldn't hesitate to use it for yeast elsewhere on the body.

I hope that helps. I realize I'm rambling a bit so feel free to ask questions. My little monkey is hanging off me so it's a wonder I can type at all lol.
Good luck and keep us posted.
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#3 of 8 Old 05-08-2012, 04:56 AM
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If you're avoiding diapers, training pants might not be much better.  Sweatpants with elastic ankles help prevent a mess when you miss.  Otherwise, first thing after wake ups are a nice time to offer, water play can encourage a go when his bladder is ready and keep talking about it.


Good luck!

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#4 of 8 Old 05-08-2012, 01:34 PM
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Are you sure it's yeast?  We battled a seemingly similar rash problem for about a year with DS.  Open bleeding sores, that would come and go seemingly at random.  Turned out to be food allergies.  Removing the culprits resolved the problem. 


Beyond that though, it's really early to expect him to "get" that pee/poo goes in the potty if you've been telling him for all of a week.  My 2.5 yo took weeks and weeks (maybe 6 weeks?) of one-on-one time concentrating on pottying (scheduled sits every 15 minutes) before one day it finally clicked.  He's been out of diapers for about 3 weeks now.  We still have the occasional accident, but we literally went from diapers except when someone could be right on top of him, to him asking to use the potty in 1 day, at his instigation.  At 15 mos, I would expect it to take a fair bit longer. 

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#5 of 8 Old 05-08-2012, 04:11 PM
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I would second the food allergy guess. Does he eat a lot of dairy? If so, you may want to try limiting it and see if it helps. The yahoo email group, foodlabs, is a good resource for exploring food allergies and their effects. I can relate because my DS had such extreme rashes even when he sat in a pee-only-diaper for 5 minutes. It would look so bad and so painful. That is one of the reasons we EC'd. This helped a ton of course, but still it is impossible to catch everything. At 5 years old and out of diapers, my DS still will get horrible rashes occasionally if he eats candy-even if it is all natural, organic, fruit juice sweetened, no chemical or preservative candy! So it maybe worth it to explore this if you haven't already.


In terms of potty training/EC, I would try many of the techniques available. I am really only familiar with EC and the things we dreamed up for potty training. Sounds like you are doing great by getting him out of diapers during the day. Of course if you go crazy cleaning up, don't feel bad slipping some back on if you need a break. Maybe try a diaper without a cover so you can see right away when he goes. Or absorbent jogging pants. At his age he may learn well from potty books and videos. Both my kids loved 'Once Upon a Potty.' We also tried to make going to the potty super fun; races to the potty, silly songs and dances once he's on it. Try different potties (baby urinals, little potties, seat toppers for the toilet, etc)  and different locations to see what he likes. Show his toys, like a teddy bear, rushing to a potty. Have him help flush and wave "Bye Bye Peepee!" Or let him play with a toy on the potty that he usually doesn't get to play with like an old remote or something. The more interesting and fun we made it, the more our DS would want to use the potty.


You could have him help clean up the messes to an extent. That way he will understand yet another benefit to going on a potty. 


Also, most EC'ers usually try not to praise lavishly for a successful pee in the potty. The philosophy is that it is a normal function, so we shouldn't praise too much. Also, they may initially do it to get your praise, but eventually this will become old and it won't be a reason to inspire them. You could instead say something that will inspire them to see the benefit for themselves, like "Look how great it is that we can clean you so quickly now!" "Isn't it nice to not have wet pants and a big rash!" Also, IMHO, it might be embarrassing to get so much praise for it. I think it is fine to show your genuine happiness though, "Yay! So happy you won't get a rash from this now that you went to the potty! We will all sleep so much better!"


Anyway, good luck! Hope potty graduation comes soon!

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#6 of 8 Old 05-09-2012, 10:28 PM
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Lots of good advice above. I think that at his age, he is probably a little late for EC and a little early for PL. But I think if you try to keep doing what you are doing and get as much pee in an appropriate place, and keep talking about it, he will get it as soon as he is able.

Even with EC from birth, probably from age 1 to 14 months or so, we had the most success if we just kept the house completely littered with potties or "potty jars" (yogurt containers). The bigger my yogurt collection got, the cleaner the floors were! Its not great decor, but more sanitary and good for learning. I think I tried to have one within about 5 feet of DS all the time. Then when you notice him staring at that stream of pee about to hit the floor, you leap in with a yogurt container, and only have a few drops or a small puddle instead of a big one, AND your little guy is noticing that you are doing acrobatics to keep pee off the floor, and since he wants to do what you do, he will start to want to keep it off the floor too. And always talk about it- "Phew! the pee pee made it into the potty jar." "Hmmm, the pee is on the floor...where does the pee pee go? In the potty!/pottyjar!"

Part of the deal for a diaper-trained kiddo is that he probably doesn't have as much awareness of when he is going, although since you did CD, he probably has some, but has kind of gotten used to ignoring it. So the challenge for him is to know what's happening BEFORE it does. And then he will still think, yeah but I'm playing with blocks right now, so I can hold it a little longer, until the blocks are all wet somehow!

Keeping potties near him when he plays can help too.

Not sure if this bit helps, but around when DS was about to graduate around 18 months, he got super annoyed if we asked if he needed to go or tried to put him on the potty- if I knew he needed to go, it was way more helpful to be more subtle and let one of his toys do the potty dance, and say, does your bear need to go pee??? He thought it was hysterical to help the bear go potty and then he would decide to go too.

Final word of advice- toddlerhood is about asserting independence and autonomy! Avoid potty struggles by making sure your little guy gets LOTS and LOTS of support for his choices in other areas.

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#7 of 8 Old 05-10-2012, 06:16 AM
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Best of luck to you.  With 10 days of consistent work my 15 month old now has maybe 1 accident a day, when we are in the house.  We did one week on intensive work on the pottying to get thing started.  It took nearly 5 days before we got our first success, but she is on board now.  If you see my question from last week, someone suggested putting the potty in the tub and that really seemed to help for the first bit getting started.  She just now starting to prefer our smaller second potty that we keep in the play area so that she doesn't have to stop playing for long.  Every kid is different, so you will have to keep playing until you find something that motivates yours.  We don't have access to good kids books, so we watched some youtube potty videos together (Elmo, Shimajiro, etc.) and that was a big hit since we normally don't watch tv with DD at all. We are nearly ready to add new dimensions (clothing, different locations, night time, etc), hopefully it will continue to progress.  Good luck. 

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#8 of 8 Old 05-29-2012, 05:10 PM - Thread Starter
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So, it has now been almost a month and he hasn't worn diapers (except for naps and bed time).  His rash cleared up in a week, and his skin has never looked better.  We had a rough week where we never left the house, I ran him to the potty every time he peed (and hoped that some would land in the potty) and praised the heck out of him for it. But, he still wasn't getting it.  Soooooooo, I finally gave him a miniature chocolate chip if any pee whatsoever went in the potty redface.gif.  But, all of a sudden it just started to click. I never, ever, ever give him anything with sugar in it.  Ever.  He isn't even allowed to have juice.  And of course, I am totally against rewarding kids with food (especially CANDY - omg, I can't believe I did that!).  So a mini chocolate chip was a huge deal (probably actually a bigger deal for me than him, lol).  Anyway, after a few days of giving him a mini chip after getting even a little pee in the potty, his dad sat him on the potty and said that he would give him a chocolate chip if he peed on the potty, and he did!!!  So we would bribe him with a chocolate chip to pee on the potty for about three days, then we quit with the chocolate.  But he still continues to pee on the potty!  I sit him on the potty whenever he does his that little peepee squirm and whenever I 'just feel' he has to go, and 9 times out of 10, he will go. 

He still won't really tell me before he needs to pee, so I have to catch him before he does.  I really thought I was going to be able to potty train him, but I guess this is more like really, really late EC.  He has an accident every couple of days, but whatever, I'll take it! 

Vegetarian, breastfeeding, cloth diapering and EC'ing mama to my bare-foot, TV-free, free-range toddler and loving it!!!

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