Mothering Forum banner

1 - 5 of 5 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
241 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Not too long ago, I thought my 4 yo had finally mastered the toilet. Aside from the occasional accident, he has been keeping himself consistently dry day and night for a few months now. But for the past few nights, he seems to be back to wetting the bed-- with a vengeance. The other night, when he woke up in the middle of the night, I tried to get him to go to the toilet, but he threw a tantrum, loudly exclaiming that I don't know if he needs to go. After about half an hour of screaming and crying, and keeping everyone in the house from sleeping, he calmed down and went back to bed... without having gone to the toilet. The following morning he wet the bed after he woke up. It just seemed like he couldn't be bothered to get up and go to the toilet. The following night he wet the bed again, and again last night, he soaked himself from head to toe. I had made sure he went before going to bed, but as he had a night of deep sleep, he never got up to go to the toilet. Even if he had woken up, he may just have thrown another fit if I tried (no matter how gently) to get him to go.

In the daytime, too, I'm having trouble getting him to go when he needs to. He's become so defiant, and tells me that I don't know anything.

I need to know how to talk to him in a way that will be effective. I admit, I'm very frustrated over this, and as a result I'm not saying the right things to him. It's hard work to wash his sheets, mattress protector, and mattress (as the mattress protector gets soaked through too) every day, especially since I don't have a washing machine right now. Guilt tripping him won't work, naturally, but I want him to understand that when I'm busy cleaning up after him, we have less time for fun stuff. He absolutely refuses to help me clean up his sheets and jammies; to try to do so is to trigger another tantrum. There is no punishment that will be effective. It's not going to work to make him feel bad. I need to find a way to motivate him to do the right thing, to help him re-learn to use the toilet and develop those muscles to keep him from wetting himself all the time.

I know this isn't a major issue, it could just have to do that he recently got over a cold and is sleeping deeply at night and is periodically grumpy, as his body heals. But I do want to know what I could say to him that would help rather than harm.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
7,580 Posts
Hugs to you this is very frustrating, but I need to let you know this is not a discipline issue, gentle or otherwise. Some children just can't do it and some don't have a specific chemical signal in their bodies that helps them with night time dryness.

Please don't treat this as an issue that he can control. He is not choosing this. Most children will be dry if they can!

There are lots of threads in the Childhood Years on this topic. I wonder if you would find a lot of advice doing a search in that forum. If you can't find those threads please let me know and I'll pull them up for you.

In the meantime, despite all the laundry and frustration, please do not blame him. :frown:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,461 Posts
I was going to say the same thing. This type of tantrum is very familiar to me because it happens all the time over here: the tantrum that happens when they're being disciplined for something they can't control. Telling him, however reasonably, that you'll have less time for him because you have to wash sheets is just rubbing salt in the wound. It would be a totally reasonable thing to use as a natural consequence if he was, say, dumping water on the bed. The nighttime tantrum, also familiar, usually happens when my DD simply can't wake up enough to be cogent. This is probably why he's wetting the bed, too - sleeping really deeply.

If I were you I'd get a good waterproof cover that goes over the sheets, or just revert to using pull-ups at night for a while longer. He'll get there eventually.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
241 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
Thanks, everybody. I did find those threads after I'd written this. Probably should have posted there instead. I've also taken steps to further protect his mattress and will definitely be more patient with him!
Sorry to be short with my reply, but my computer is suffering from a power supply issue and is about to die.
Thanks, again!
 
1 - 5 of 5 Posts
Top