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Potty Training
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LAC1961 Offline
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Posts: 299
Joined: Jul 2012
#1
Potty Training

My 5 y.o. daughter was just diagnosed with SPD, sensory seeker. Potty training her has been and continues to be a nightmare. We have tried EVERYTHING!! Her success never lasts more than 2 weeks. I think she misses the wet feeling after a couple of weeks of using the toilet and just throws in the towel. She will be starting OT in a couple of weeks, and potty training is #1 on our priority list. We were afraid to put her back in Pull Ups because we felt like we would sabotage her success, but after 18 months of cleaning up pee, we just couldn't handle the stress and put her back in Pull Ups. We saw every specialist known to man, and no one could explain why this was happening. Then one day her speech therapist made a passing comment about reading the book The Out of Sync Child. Wow! I was stunned when I read it and had her evaluated within two weeks. We've tried timed voiding, a potty watch, rewards of every kind (candy, stickers, toys, computer games, movies), letting her decide completely on her own, naked bottom method, 3 day method--all of them worked, but only for about 2 weeks. I've recently bought the book Toilet Training for Individuals with Autism or other Developmental Issues by Maria Wheeler. Has anyone attempted her method?
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Marci Offline
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Posts: 88
Joined: Jul 2011
#2
RE: Potty Training

Have you invested so much in this struggle that it is now about power and not the potty? Does your reaction to wetness give your daughter attention she seeks but does not receive otherwise?

Sorry to be so blunt, but those are the two impressions I get from your post.

With my son, whose SPD was not then diagnosed, the adults had to get completely it of the issue and let him work out the whole process (after he'd been shown/instructed/seen video's a hundred times) for himself, because that's the way he learns. In the end I offered him a bribe - a toy he wanted - and told him to let me know when he'd managed to be dry for a certain number of days and he could have training pants until then. Other than that, I shut up and ignored the issue. He was 4+ when he managed it, but once I gave ownership of the issue to him, both of us were a lot less stressed.
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LynnNBoys Offline
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Posts: 277
Joined: Dec 2010
#3
RE: Potty Training

Sometimes it's good to step back. I had mostly given up trying. I had hoped that with the birth of my younger son, we could help older see that babies needed diapers and big boys used the potty. But that didn't seem to make a difference.

I had a newborn son, as-of-yet-undiagnosed hyperthyroidism, and a preschooler (with undiagnosed SPD) who didn't use the potty on his own. I was run-down and tired, so potty training wasn't high on the priority list. Maybe it finally clicked with him once I wasn't focused on it. I don't know.
Lynn Shy
mom to 2 boys, one avoider and one seeker
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LAC1961 Offline
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Posts: 299
Joined: Jul 2012
#4
RE: Potty Training

Being a blunt person myself, I understand where you're coming from. I can't say I never overreacted when she peed all over something, but 99% of the time, we just said, "let's get you cleaned up." Right now we're letting her decide for herself, and the only time of day she goes on her own is right before bath, which results in lots of hugs and praise. The book I mentioned in my first post recommends asking her questions about how it feels when it looks like she's going or has gone in her diaper, like "Are you peeing?" Can you feel that?" Does your pull up need to be changed?" I'm willing to try it, but in the past we either get a blank look or "I'm not wet." I suppose it could be a control thing, but I'm more inclined to think she just doesn't feel it or likes feeling wet.
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Marci Offline
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#5
RE: Potty Training

(07-11-2012, 10:28 PM)LAC1961 Wrote:  Being a blunt person myself, I understand where you're coming from. I can't say I never overreacted when she peed all over something, but 99% of the time, we just said, "let's get you cleaned up." Right now we're letting her decide for herself, and the only time of day she goes on her own is right before bath, which results in lots of hugs and praise. The book I mentioned in my first post recommends asking her questions about how it feels when it looks like she's going or has gone in her diaper, like "Are you peeing?" Can you feel that?" Does your pull up need to be changed?" I'm willing to try it, but in the past we either get a blank look or "I'm not wet." I suppose it could be a control thing, but I'm more inclined to think she just doesn't feel it or likes feeling wet.
Just my experience, but asking a kid with SPD about what he feels is an exercise in futility. If he does feel something out of the ordinary, it bugs him so much that the whole world hears about it. If he's not telling me about it, he doesn't feel it.

Maybe rethink the "lots of hugs and praise" attention? Sometimes over-emphasing a behavior, even a desirable behavior, has unintended consequences, and it may be saying something negative to your daughter, like "Mom only hugs me for peeing." Try downplaying every aspect of potty training, lose the book, and give lots of unconditional, not-event-related positive attention would be my advice. Your daughter owns the process of controlling her bladder and in the absence of a medical problem she will get there when she's ready and not before.

Also, at 5 she should be cleaning herself up. Set a plastic bin in the bathroom for her to deposit wet clothes, put the Pull-ups where she can reach them, and tell her that since she is getting to be a big girl, she's ready to change her own pants if she needs to. Enable and respect her successes in life, because she will have to work harder for them than the average kid.
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LAC1961 Offline
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Posts: 299
Joined: Jul 2012
#6
RE: Potty Training

Yikes! I feel like your accusing me of not giving my daughter enough affection and attention except when she goes potty. She's the only child in our house, we adopted her after our adult sons had moved out, we love her unconditionally and hug, kiss and tell her we love her throughout each and every day. Because of the SPD diagnosis, it's the first time in two years we've had any hope or encouragement that her inability to potty train is not our fault. For a mother of a child with SPD I would have anticipated you would be more understanding and supportive. Unfortunately, you come across as arrogant, opinionated and judgemental. I'll have to rethink this whole forum participation thing. I feel worn out, guilty and down in the dumps most days after working and devoting every spare moment to a child who requires constant supervision. I thought joining this forum would brighten my day, give me some encouragement and expose me to experiences others are having with their SPD child, but thus far it's just adding to my load of stuff that makes me feel like crap.
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Marci Offline
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Posts: 88
Joined: Jul 2011
#7
RE: Potty Training

(07-13-2012, 01:31 AM)LAC1961 Wrote:  Yikes! I feel like your accusing me of not giving my daughter enough affection and attention except when she goes potty. She's the only child in our house, we adopted her after our adult sons had moved out, we love her unconditionally and hug, kiss and tell her we love her throughout each and every day. Because of the SPD diagnosis, it's the first time in two years we've had any hope or encouragement that her inability to potty train is not our fault. For a mother of a child with SPD I would have anticipated you would be more understanding and supportive. Unfortunately, you come across as arrogant, opinionated and judgemental. I'll have to rethink this whole forum participation thing. I feel worn out, guilty and down in the dumps most days after working and devoting every spare moment to a child who requires constant supervision. I thought joining this forum would brighten my day, give me some encouragement and expose me to experiences others are having with their SPD child, but thus far it's just adding to my load of stuff that makes me feel like crap.
I was asking you to onsider carefully the messages you are sending, based on your own descriptions of your actions. Sometimes we lack insight into our own actions and an outside perspective can help identify problems that we do not see: I work with OT's and a variety of doctors to get my son the help he needs, and part of the process includes getting feedback, both positive and negative, on how I deal with his issues. That's how I learn to be a better parent and solve problems. I participate in fora, like this one, both to learn from others and to share what I have learned.
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Dan Online
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#8
RE: Potty Training

(07-13-2012, 01:31 AM)LAC1961 Wrote:  Yikes! I feel like your accusing me of not giving my daughter enough affection and attention except when she goes potty. She's the only child in our house, we adopted her after our adult sons had moved out, we love her unconditionally and hug, kiss and tell her we love her throughout each and every day. Because of the SPD diagnosis, it's the first time in two years we've had any hope or encouragement that her inability to potty train is not our fault. For a mother of a child with SPD I would have anticipated you would be more understanding and supportive. Unfortunately, you come across as arrogant, opinionated and judgemental. I'll have to rethink this whole forum participation thing. I feel worn out, guilty and down in the dumps most days after working and devoting every spare moment to a child who requires constant supervision. I thought joining this forum would brighten my day, give me some encouragement and expose me to experiences others are having with their SPD child, but thus far it's just adding to my load of stuff that makes me feel like crap.
Hi LAC1961. *Hugs*

I don't believe Marci was intending to make you feel down about yourself or your choices. None of us are perfect, and none of us have all the answers. The best we can do is to be supportive and offer suggestions.

I believe you've been doing an excellent job so far at this. You really have been. This is not an easy disorder live with, or to help a child grow up with, so things like this are incredibly common. Many SPD kids love diapers and have a hard time moving on to using the toilet. I know; according to my mom, I was one of them, lol. It takes time, patience, and the eventual point at which they become ready to move on.

I really think the OT she'll be getting soon will be beneficial for her, and for you. The OT should hopefully have some suggestions and advice for you, as well as protocols to help your daughter move beyond this developmental snag.

Best wishes to you, and please, I don't think anyone here is trying to be judgmental toward you. This is hard enough to deal with without that stuff, so I seek to put that out whenever it occurs. I want to remind everyone here that if they are feeling attacked or judged by another member, please let me know about it privately. Thank you. Smile

Best wishes as you work on this challenge!
Hi, welcome to SPD Support! Have a free cyber hug! hug
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Jaffa Offline
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Posts: 112
Joined: Oct 2011
#9
RE: Potty Training

Lac1961 my adopted son with SPD was not potty trained till he was four. And even now at nearly six has difficulty with it. He occasionally has accidents but it is not laziness. Been there done that. Tried bribery when younger and praise etc. I don't think the feeling of wanting to go is there until it almost happens. Then it is a dash to the loo which he doesn't always make.
At the moment his fine motor skills is a problem too and wiping his bum is a difficult task. At school they seem to think he has mastered it cos he doesn't shout them anymore. Well I will tell you they are wrong, he does have a go in school but sometimes it ends in an awful mess which he doesn't tell anyone about. I discover it or sometimes he sheepishly says he has poo in his pants.
I have come to terms with him having trouble and we get on with it. He always looks upset and sorry to be in this situation. I just hope one day he will be able to do it and not shout me to come wipe him. He usually does it when I am eating my dinner or cooking Smile. Please stick with it and this forum is good, the people on here are truly helpful. You sound very stressed to me, don't let other people close to you, who don't understand what it's like, make you feel you are doing wrong just cos most kids manage it, our kids ARE special.
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LAC1961 Offline
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Posts: 299
Joined: Jul 2012
#10
RE: Potty Training

(07-15-2012, 05:19 AM)Jaffa Wrote:  Lac1961 my adopted son with SPD was not potty trained till he was four. And even now at nearly six has difficulty with it. He occasionally has accidents but it is not laziness. Been there done that. Tried bribery when younger and praise etc. I don't think the feeling of wanting to go is there until it almost happens. Then it is a dash to the loo which he doesn't always make.
At the moment his fine motor skills is a problem too and wiping his bum is a difficult task. At school they seem to think he has mastered it cos he doesn't shout them anymore. Well I will tell you they are wrong, he does have a go in school but sometimes it ends in an awful mess which he doesn't tell anyone about. I discover it or sometimes he sheepishly says he has poo in his pants.
I have come to terms with him having trouble and we get on with it. He always looks upset and sorry to be in this situation. I just hope one day he will be able to do it and not shout me to come wipe him. He usually does it when I am eating my dinner or cooking Smile. Please stick with it and this forum is good, the people on here are truly helpful. You sound very stressed to me, don't let other people close to you, who don't understand what it's like, make you feel you are doing wrong just cos most kids manage it, our kids ARE special.

Thank you so much. I appreciate hearing about your experience. My daughter starts OT on Monday, and the OT knows this is something we want to focus on. For now we're assuming she either can't tell she's going or likes the wet feeling, so we've put her back in pull ups. I'm interested in the ideas in the book I mentioned in my first post, especially using picture cards to guide her through the process, but I won't start it unless the OT recommends it. I was just wondering if anyone had tried this method and what their experience was.
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