Friday, February 29, 2008

Potty Party may lead to Pity Party

My daughters are ages 2 and 3. They are bright young girls with vocabulary skills that really blow my mind from time to time. And while every parent takes pride in the developmental milestones of their children, there's one that I'm just plain vexed by. That damn potty training.

To be honest, I feared it for long before I ever had kids. I have an abnormal memory, as far as I can tell, remembering many mundane events that happened before my second birthday. I remember the frusteration of not being able to communicate and I remember the dread and despair of potty training. Why in the world would my Mom insist that I try using a potty when the diaper thing was working out just fine? Well, probably because she was six months pregnant and didn't want to have two kids in diapers.

Man, do I understand that now. Our older daughter has been ready to use the potty for at least a year. She can tell you when she is planning on going pee (especially a pleasure in public) and she sequesters herself when she has to do any more than pee. Then, she gives you a report about her estimated size of the delivery.

It's heartbreaking.

And we don't know why she hates the potty so. We're sick of hearing people's advice on the subject because there just isn't any correlation between her and a potty-using child; there's no common ground on which to compare them. She just won't sit on the damn thing. Not for reward or punishment (though, I suppose, we stopped short of any kind of punishment, and maybe a taser would work wonders).

Our second daughter is on her way down the same path. She did like to sit on the potty, though there was never any positive outcome, as she would then stand up to pee. But watching and imitating her sister is the subject that she has most mastered and she can tell that this potty thing must be some kind of trick, trap, or otherwise undesirable type of monster. S she now refuses to sit.

I think this is about control. I think this is about power.

We're very read-up on the subject. We haven't taken this lightly, and all the advice we have heard and read about has been tried. But still, we can't get over the idea that they have mastered their digetive tracks well enough to do it and that we don't want to cause them any lasting emotional trauma.

With all of this in mind, we are going to try one more time.

The Potty Party. It's our last hope. After this doesn't work, I'm going to wait until they go to college and let the dean of student activities deal with the situation.

Tomorrow morning, they will wake up to a near-Christmas caliber event. Wrapped, new potties, one for each. Soli's favorite color is pink, and Luna's oscillates between blue and green. We will rid them of their diapers under the majesty of streemers and balloons. Their brand new baby dolls (today's payday, in case you didn't catch this expensive trend) will have to be potty trained. The girls will delight in this, of course, as they understand the wonderment of potting even though they haven't indulged.

Then, they will have to put things into action for themselves. There will be fancy, cute, panties at their call standing by for wearing. And there will be cake baking, should they make the big score.

It's silly. And, honestly, I don't want such a party every time I go potty (though a little more fanfare would be nice). And I just don't know if it will work. But I'm sick of diapers. I'm sick of feeling like I can't do it. In many ways, this mirrors the frustration that I had when I potty trained, only now I'm having it from the other side.

So wish us luck, because we'll be want for it. And I'll let you know after the weekend if I recommend your own potty party, or if it was a bust.

In the meantime, please enjoy an on-topic video:


Jennifer Chernoff said...

I am really sending potty vibes your way. I hope this can happen for you guys, if only just one of them. I remember the sense of relief I had when Jonas was potty trained, it could easily be compared to having a day at the spa. Of all the tricks we had to combine like 5 of them(new undies, dumping poo in the toilet, wearing wet undies and saying how nasty it was, Mercer Mayer book on the toilet, marshmallows or candy bribe) and it FINALLY worked. I was at the point where I wanted to just buy like 50 packs of diapers in bulk cause I was so upset that we where just going through them too fast. Do me a favor and take yourselves out when they get there, ya'll deserve it. :D

Vicky said...

Oh My! I can soooooooooo relate to your post. I have a 3 1/2 year old and one that will be turning 2 next month. We are a bit further than you because my oldest does go pee in the toilet, however he won't poop! I have tried everything, my pediatrician said he was having toilet training resistance. YEAH....WHATEVER! I even went as far as telling him this past weekend that we would buy him a $300.00 bouncey toy to put in the backyard, so everytime he pooped he could go bounce around. (which he absolutely loves.) His brother will be starting the whole toilet training thing soon and I am afraid! VERY AFRAID! I hope the potty party went well!

Tim said...

Good Luck with the potty training. We pushed our first and she was potty trained before two. Our son was 3 1/2 before he kicked he pull-ups. He didn't even want to sit on the toilet and then a week later he was in underwear and no accidents. Same thing as yours, he knew when he had to go but, never wanted to go to the potty chair.

MomOnTheGo said...

Oh, good luck! My daughter was trained early (don't ask) and I'm so glad of it because it is 100% not a problem if she pees while wearing underwear. It's a bit surprising to her but that is it. I would be knocking my head against the wall, trying to resolve the issue. I hate to offer advice but have you tried hanging out with a family with kids who do use the potty. My daughter and nephew used to sit together on the potty and read books and babble when she was trained and he wasn't. Peer pressure can be a weapon of good, sometimes. But most of all - good luck and when they won't let you into the bathroom in 10 years, you'll think this was only the beginning of the bathroom battles.