4 and 5 year olds having potting issues - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 6 Old 01-09-2013, 08:00 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Ok, I recently took on the care of a sibling group. The 3 youngest were never potty trained. The youngest is almost 3 but I am not worried about her so much. However, the 4 year old refuses to even try to potty on the potty or even tell me she has gone and needs a change. The 5 year old has regular accidents and wears a pullup daily. He does ok when he is reminded to go to the bathroom every hour or less. Sometimes he will use the bathroom and then poop twenty minutes later. He rarely tries to use the bathroom on his own and says he doesn't know when he has to go. Does anyone have any suggestions on how to work on gettting these kids potty trained? My own 2 year old is not potty trained yet but he will willingly sit on the potty and tries to go each time. Any ideas on how to encourage the older ones to do the same? Thanks!


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#2 of 6 Old 01-09-2013, 03:42 PM
 
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They have been placed in your home?

 

I think I would start with an edible reinforcer for each success on the potty for the 5 year old, and for simply sitting on the potty for a few minutes for the 4 year old. One jelly bean or M&M.

 

I'm assuming medical issues have been ruled out. Is there a possibility of sexual abuse in their history?

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#3 of 6 Old 01-11-2013, 06:59 PM
 
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Salty snacks with their favorite drinks to encourage the need to go. Treats for going on the potty and treats for staying dry/clean for a period of time. The 5 year old may need to learn to feel the sensations because he has learned to ignore. Put them in underpants, protect carpet and furniture with waterproof pads. Let them take responsibility for the clean up. This is not punishment it is ownership.

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#4 of 6 Old 01-11-2013, 07:09 PM
 
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My 6 yo still uses a nighttime diaper and even has daytime accidents. It is because of inflammation, and it is not within his control. I would never make him clean up. He is already VERY embarrassed! I also try to note to my children when I accidentally pee. I am pregnant, and if I sneeze without peeing first, well, I make a bit of a mess. Oh! Mommy peed! That happens sometimes. I'll go change. Rewarding children for doing what they already want to do seems strange to me.

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#5 of 6 Old 01-11-2013, 08:05 PM
 
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Yeah, but these kiddos don't seem to want to learn to use the toilet, so they need a bit of extrinsic motivation.

 

OP, are these foster kids?  I wonder if maybe they are withholding in order to feel autonomy over something in their life...can you honor that need by allowing them to make lots of seemingly small choices each day?  Like what to eat, what to wear, what game to play, etc. 

 

I feel that probably the children could use counseling to work through whatever issues are holding them back from toileting properly.  Also a good medical eval to make sure it's not a physical problem.  Maybe their muscles have atrophied or something due to not usinghtem properly?

 

My older son wasn't out of dipes in the AM until 3y9m.  Don't worry over the littlest one for now, but maybe you could have an honest talk with the eldest and even the middle one.  Draw them out and listen to their expresions and then you'll have some idea of how you can help them find the motivation to ue the toilet.

 

Best wishes!


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#6 of 6 Old 01-14-2013, 11:04 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks everyone! We have started using M&Ms as a reward for the 4 year old. We started last week with one for each time she sat on the potty. This week it is one for every time she uses the potty. So far it has really helped her. She is now using the potty every time but still has a wet pullup every time. The 5 year old has been doing great too. He has only had a couple big accidents in the past week. He still needs a pullup but he is showing some signs of improvement. Oh, and they are foster kids.


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