Sunday, July 16, 2006

Potty Training redux

Since the boy is now 30 months old, we figure it's time to try again. God help us.

We've checked some books out of the library, including one called Toilet Training in Less Than a Day that involves something about you having your toddler teach a doll to use the potty, complete with doll-sized diapers and raisins as doll-poop in the diaper.

The mind reels.

It does not, of course, help that we're starting to get comments from my mother-in-law. Comments like "Well, when you finally decide to start with him, let me know, and I'll get a potty just like you have, so we can work with him when he's over here, too." and "You know, I had twins, and they were both potty trained by the time they were two!"

It's so nice to have such a supportive family.

We have this:

on DVD, which we could only find on Ebay. We've watched several times with him. It has a catchy little theme song, complete with an Mtv-like video of ultra-cute little ones singing the Potty Song both before and after the feature cartoon. It's not bad, as far as potty training aides go (not that I'm an expert).

And we broke down, because that's what parents do, and bought him this:

because he of course loves Elmo. What is it about Elmo with the kids? In case you haven't seen this one up close and personal, Elmo comes complete with his own sippy cup, potty, book on going to the potty, t-shirt and yes, a little pair of Elmo-sized tighty-whitey's. When you squeeze his left hand, he tells you he's thirsty, yada, yada, yada. If you put the sippy cup in his mouth and press down, he glug, glug, glugs, then goes through the potty routine... you get the idea. Quite often, though, as you're walking through the house, and usually when we've been gone somewhere and are returning home, we'll come upon Elmo laying on the floor looking like this

which can be very disturbing, because you're just not quite sure what's been going on. We're pretty sure the cat has something to do with it, but have yet to catch her in the act.

And, of course, we have the requisite small, plastic potty for him. When we sit him on the potty, though, he starts to cry and whimper, looks up at you with the big puppy-dog brown eyes and says 'Get off?'. Is it possible that he's actually scared of the potty? I'm starting to wonder. Maybe now, in fact, is not the time to start this again.

Shouldn't things like this be instinctual? How is it that cats somehow know to go to the litter box without much cajoling, yet it takes so much effort to teach humans to use the toilet? If anyone knows the answer to this, please enlighten me.


Teresa said...

I'm no help, I'm sure... but you could put a few cheerios in the potty and let him... ahhhh... shoot them... I know a few people who used this.

As for my potty formative years... my mother tied me down to the potty until I finally fell asleep and went...

The downside... it is severely frowned upon now days...

The upside... It worked for me.

Ruth said...

We plan to use the Cherrios idea as soon as we can get him to try to actually use the potty, instead of just standing in front of it and looking at it suspiciously...