Sudden change just before 5 weeks. Will things get easier again? - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 6 Old 12-06-2012, 07:29 PM - Thread Starter
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I started using EC with my daughter a few days after her birth. Started out by taking her to the bathroom one night and offering her the "potty" (it was actually the sink). I got lucky and she actually had a dry diaper and went. That happened twice that night and didn't really happen other nights... Since then I've gone through a bit of a process figuring out her routine. I've had good days and bad days, but generally felt like it was going well even though I felt discouraged at times. Although I figured out her basic patters, her cues were a bit more difficult to decipher. I did, however, successfully potty her on occasion even when the pee or poo didn't fit within her basic routine. When her routine first changed a bit, I figured it out again within a few days and things were awesome. Then a few days later, both her cues and her routine changed and I haven't been able to figure things out. I even offered her the potty only to have her pee once I put a clean diaper on her... It was as if she was waiting for the diaper. So basically, I had some ups and downs with my daughter over the first month but generally felt successful. Now that her second month is here, I feel completely lost with it all. She's five weeks old as of today. Is it just hard right now because she's going through a lot of cognitive development? Does it typically get difficult around this time? Do I just need to wait this out? Do I need to basically start from scratch? This isn't like the other little bumps I've come across. What are your experienced EC words of wisdom for me???

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#2 of 6 Old 12-06-2012, 09:36 PM
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Is she possibly just signaling earlier? All my kids did that at some point. They give you more notice, but you're used to moving fast.

Sometimes things get trickier around teeth and milestones, so she may also just be getting ready to do something.

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#3 of 6 Old 12-06-2012, 10:38 PM - Thread Starter
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No, it isn't her simply signalling earlier. She's going less frequently at times and going at different times. The change in routine is throwing me off because I never quite nailed down her signals, so I would rely on them being within an expected routine. When they were not in that routine, I would sometimes catch a pee, sometimes miss a pee, and sometimes try to potty her when she didn't need to go. At the point when I wrote that post, I was checking a lot when she didn't need to go and she was peeing a lot in diapers. I would think she was signalling, but then she either didn't need to go or she went in her diaper. I think I caught 2 or 3 pees yesterday. This evening I caught several as well as a huge poop. I don't know if things will just improve from here or if they'll go back to completely discouraging. I suppose it should improve eventually... I wish this was a normal practice so I could mention it to just any mom and have her be able to relate.

Her being fussy in general lately doesn't help either.

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#4 of 6 Old 12-07-2012, 08:02 PM
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Don't stress - remember this should be you and the baby learning to communicate. At only 5 weeks you have a long way to go. Try to keep it as positive as possible. There will be plenty of great days and plenty of misses. The most important thing is that you are a loving and attentive mother who is trying to meet your baby's needs.

That being said, plenty of diaper-free time helps make baby cues more readable.
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#5 of 6 Old 12-10-2012, 01:18 AM
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Totally agree with MDoc.  It will get easier.  And then harder.  And then easier.  And then really annoying.   And then easier.  And then...


What has helped me is to try not to be "goal" oriented in a "get the pee in the potty" way, but to shift my focus to the communication.  In that way "Oh! You peed in your diaper, let's get you dried up.  That will feel so much better won't it?" has as much value as a successful "catch" in the potty.  I've found that the times I'm really focussed on "success," we both end up frustrated, but when I can relax and just consider EC to be one of the tools in our arsenal of ways to calm a fussy baby, it was a wonderful thing.

It sounds like you're having catches, which is so great at this age!  With my second (my second time ecing too, so I had an idea of what to look for), she didn't even like being held over a potty until she was a bit older than your babe.  I just opened her diaper and lay her flat on it and let her pee/poop there until she felt better hanging 10 while I held her over the potty.  Again, I saw it as just part of the communication--I would cue her, say "you're peeing, doesn't that feel better?" and then change the diaper under her.

It sounds like the routine really helps you, so would it work to just offer at regular times and then be okay with whether she goes or not?  Then you can slowly add in "likely" times or times that you think you might be seeing a cue as it feels good (10 minutes after nursing, immediately after waking up, etc).  But really, in my humble opinion, the more relaxed you are about it, the happier and more successful (in the long run) you'll both be with this.  Have fun!  Easier said than done when you are wrist deep in poo, I know...


Good luck!  I hope you're feeling better, I know it can be really frustrating to not have any other moms to talk with about it!

Mama to Nell (11/15/06) and Maggie (10/9/10) . AFTER 2.5 YEARS, I AM AN AUNTIE!!! joy.gifHOORAY 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!

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#6 of 6 Old 12-10-2012, 07:59 PM
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It's not really common to have problems at 2 months already, but you do and that's where you are. Honestly, all babies are different and so are all the ladies who do EC. What I would do is try to start over, recording everything during diaper free time (even if just in your mind), after waking and after feeding, just starting with those 2 pivot points to do timing and to learn her natural timing a little bit more. If she's not signaling still - you said it was all wonky and it has been up and down - depend on her natural timing and also what I call generic timing, which are times that most babies need to potty, such as upon waking, before or after using the car seat or high chair, before or after taking her out of the carrier, during all diaper changes, etc.


It's always good to have a good starting point for EC and to really equipped with that information, so if you can find some kind of a resource that gives you everything in a simple manner, then do that.  Start from a place of knowledge, and do it all with confidence that you're doing the best to meet your child's needs, because you are. I commend you for sticking with it.


Another thing that's really great is to not offer the potty quite as much, not focus or think about potty quite as much. It sounds like it's pretty consuming for your day. About 90% of all resistance is caused by too much offering, so keep that in mind while you do all of this. Also, look at if there's been any additions or subtractions to your diet, if you're exclusively breastfeeding, and see if there's any change in your own stress level or if you're having any kind of postpartum sadness or anything like that, it could also affect things. But it sounds like she's kinda still in her 4th trimester and trying to get her rhythm of life down. So follow along as much as you can and know that you can't really ever get it perfect, and you won't really teach her that she needs to go in a diaper until around 5 or 6 months, when it will become a lot more difficult. So just hang in there and don't put too much pressure on yourself. Good luck!

Andrea Olson, LOs = 5yo, 2yo, + 5month old all ECed from birth
Author | Go Diaper Free & The Tiny Potty Training
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I teach new parents how to ditch diapers with elimination communication at
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