Wednesday, July 06, 2011

Help! Trying to Potty Train an Overactive Bladder?

I DON'T WANT TO CHANGE DIAPERS ANYMORE! I need my son to be potty trained...
Yes, my son is four and STILL not potty trained.
I have tried everything I can think of. Incentives, praise, bribery, he has Lightning McQueen and Thomas the Train underwear (his two favorite characters). I have tried keeping him in underwear. But, I only have so many pairs and its very frustrating when he pees in them every time without even attempting to us the toilet...

Booboo definitively has an overactive bladder. For example, yesterday I tried putting him in underwear AGAIN using the "special underwear" which I had originally bought for Sissy and am proud to say she no longer needs them anymore! The underwear have sensors in them which set off an alarm if they get even a little wet. That way I would know immediately if he peed.
I put the underwear on him around 2:00, he peed at:
Then I put a pull-up back on.
Not once did he tell me or try to use the bathroom and I kept asking him if he needed to go and even took him several times with no luck. Each time after he peed I would set him on the potty and the first time he went more on the potty.
I don't know what to do. How can I keep him in underwear if he is just going to pee in them all day long every 20-50 minutes... Not to mention the risk of having him pee on my couch, his bed and the rugs. Also if he is in underwear were trapped in the house...

What if he doesn't actually know he has to pee?
Very rarely he will tell me, "Mommy I have to go Potty", Ill take him, sometimes he goes, sometimes he doesn't. More often he tells me "Mommy I peed" after he pees in his pull-up.
I take him to the bathroom regularly throughout the day, I have even tried taking him every 20 minutes. All with mixed results.

He also has constipation problems. I have gotten him to sit and go poo on the potty a few times when he has been struggling to go. But lately when I ask he always refuses. I cant/don't want to force him.




  1. I'm so sorry, mama. We are having similar issues with our son. I was wondering if they are just used to peeing constantly in their diapers, instead of holding it all for one "event". Our son was doing the same thing in his underwear--and I really don't think he knows when he's going to go either. The only idea I have for you is naked time. Maybe he would notice then? Good luck!

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  2. it sure is tough...sorry to hear you are having a hard time. i had some difficulties with my son. he did ok with pee, but absolutely would not go #2. he would ask me to put the diaper on (which i didn't) or just hold it, and eventually it came out in the pullups while he was sleeping. i felt like i was moving backwards changing doody diapers at night again! i'm no expert, but here's a few things that worked for us:
    -keep the pullups on in the house, but put him in undies when he plays outside. or if you have a private yard, without undies! that way he can pee freely and get a feel for the signs. you won't be stressed about the mess, and he won't be stressed because you're stressed.
    -sit him on the potty every time you go...even if he doesn't have to go. he may get a hang of the routine and you're setting an example as well.
    -keep some books in the bathroom. have him sit until you finish reading a couple books. my son loved this.
    -when my son hit a wall and refused to go #2, i stopped ALL talk of potty training. i think it was too much pressure and it was making it a bad experience for him. sure enough, after a couple weeks, HE told me he wanted to go doods.
    -and, whatever you do, don't go backwards. once you are in pullups, don't go back to diapers. once you make it to undies, don't go back to pullups! just keep cleaning up those messes with a smile, tell him it's ok that he had an accident, and that he can try again to make it to the potty :)

    sometimes they really do need more time than others and will go when they are ready?? good luck...

  3. Have you tried doing a social story with him? Honestly, my younger child is 4 1/2, and until about 6 mos ago, he didn't understand the whole process. He still doesn't understand the difference between poop and a fart. We are working on it with social stories to help give a visual and explain.

    You can also go the ABA way and do rewards for small increments. For example, a sticker for going into the bathroom. Then one for sitting on the toilet, one for flushing the toilet, etc. until he has the whole process down. The idea is to make sure you set him up for success so he doesn't get discouraged and wants to continue moving forward. Otherwise if the effort is too great for the reward, he won't comply.

    It's really a basic human response. For example we may want a snack from the kitchen, but if we're comfortable on the couch, the effort to go get the snack may not be worth the reward of the snack to disrupt being comfortable.

  4. My middle child had a very hard time training and also had constipation problems (well, still does and he's 10). Honestly, he was 5 before he was completely trained and still would have "accidents" from time to time. Don't get discouraged, it will happen.

  5. Hello new follower! I love your blog. i am currently potty training my 2 year old and it is frustrating. Here are a few things that I do that have worked so far...
    1. I set a timer and take her every 30 minutes. Then I give her candy every time for trying... like one M&M for trying and three for peeing. I did this consistently for the first week. Somedays when we regress I go back to setting a time, rather than just making her go randomly, and waiting to see if she will go on her own.
    2. I created a Poo-Poo Treasure box (pooping is our biggest issues) I bought a bunch of little toys, most off the dollar rack at Target. I keep the box in the bathroom and when she goes in to pee I show her all the toys in the box and let her hold them. I tell her if she poops she gets one. Finally after three weeks of having this she actually got it last night. But she still pooped in her pull-up today, but it was during nap time. Still frustrating.
    3. Another mom told me to put on her panties and then a Pull-up over. I felt that wearing the pull up she new it was like a diaper and sometimes for go. I was also tired of the accidental poops in the panties. Other times she runs around complete naked. It's a huge risk, that I usually only do if she has pooped.

    Good luck! I am no expert as we are still potty training. Another idea is see if someone else would spend a day with him and try. Sometimes I think it is more difficult for mom's to do this stuff since we do everything. My daughter spent yesterday with her sitter and went potty with no problems all day and stayed dry. I know it's hard being a military iwfe (i grew up a brat).


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