Saturday, April 23, 2011

for all the moms who've ever tried to potty train a Special Needs child

Bleh.  BlehBleh.

In case you were wondering how I feel about the topic. 

I am not a potty mommy.  Never have been.  Not even with the other two neuro typical rugrats.  Which is to say, I was not all dancing a jig about potty training my not-so-neuro-typical Trevy.  It's just that I was convinced he was ready.   

And things started off so well too.  No accidents at school the very first "try it out" day.  Which was a Friday and also why I don't count the accident brimming weekend that followed.  Because the week next chased with only an accident or two a day.  Pretty soon I was bragging that he was going to be a piece of cake.  Easy. Breezy. Peasy. Mommy knows best, after all.  He's totally ready.  

Um.  Yeah.  Right.  Maybe not so much? 

And it's driving me bonkers!  The constant inner questioning of my Trevy mommy skills is on overdrive.  The constant wondering if I'm pushing too soon.  Or using the wrong technique.  Reading the wrong books.  Buying the wrong undies.  And for the love of all that is holy just how did I manage training the other two?  Maybe I should take another Building Patience Workshop before going all in on the potty thing.   Or maybe I should just cut my losses.  Maybe Trevy's (mommy is) just not ready! 

The past two months have been a (tinkle soaked Super Why undies) bag of mixed emotions and second guessing.  And it does not bring out the best of my Trevy's mommy colors, either.     

 I so want to be the kinda potty mommy that inspires this scene...

Instead...I find myself fighting off the urge to give this technique a go...

That said, Trevy is probably at a 75% pee pee on the potty success rate between home & school.   And he's mastered the art of the forced...ahem...toot.  For the Trevy record, the bathtub boofs are the best.  Boys. So, it's not all a wash.  Unless you're the keeper of the laundry.  Which I am.  Then it feels like it actually is all nothing but a load of accident (and disappointment) drenched character sporting smelly big boy pants.       

Furthermore.  Because, yes...I'm allowed to use my one free grump-fest a month card if I want to!  As I was saying, furthermore...he still isn't telling us when he has to tinkle.   And by telling I mean...signing, approximating, grunting, groaning, pointing, leg crossing, hiding, guilty faced.  Nuthin.  Not a peep.  Despite my reminding him a thousand times a day to "tell mommy if you have to go potty" and "don't pee pee on Mickey Mouse's face, Trevy, that wouldn't be nice".  Despite the over the top happy dancing when he's successful.  Despite the m&ms.  Despite the stickers.   Despite the hawk-eyes I have on him all day long. Does he care that I'm hoarse with all the potty mommy coaching?  Nope.  He doesn't even bother to tell us when he has an accident.  He just waddles around in wet pants until somebody either slips in a puddle or sits in one.  Where he left it to marinate.  On the couch.  My new couch.  Which coincidentally...will not fit in the wash. 

I've been second guessing myself on his potty readiness.   I've been second guessing myself on my readiness!  I've been second guessing everything

A few weeks ago I was just so sure. 

You know...

that he was...


Because I'm mommy.  His mommy.  And I'm fluent in Trevy reading.  Aren't I? 

I'm not so sure anymore. 

But then most everything when it comes to Trevy is a guessing game.  A constant tug of war with trial and error. Sometimes I get overly confident and think what a master at reading his body language (because his verbal language  likes playing hide-n-seek sometimes) I've become.  Only to go and get it all wrong.  When I get it all wrong I go to my back-up plan.  Ask the other mommies about how they did such n' such.   How their child accomplished such n' such. Which can be depressing if it took longer than anticipated.  Or worse if it took less than where we're at.  But as much as I value their input.  Crave it.  Lean on it.  Believe it's a valuable tool on this journey.  The idea that I keep coming back to is...

Trevy is writing his own story.  Which if I were choosing the name would absolutely be Happy Being Trevy

It suits him so well.

And yet I keep trying to write it for him.  I keep trying to erase this.  Add that.  Grasping for the ending of my dreams.  Not his.  Not His.  

So, you ask, is Trevy potty ready?

I really couldn't say.  I have not a clue!   

But I do know this.  I'm not giving up.  We'll keep working at this until he gets it.  Until he moves from partly totally ready.  On his timeline.  The one he's using to write his story.  The one that was Written for him.  The one where I'm just his mommy.  And he's just happy being Trevy.  And while he saturates my couch (Among other things.  Which, at this rate, is likely to be everything.) I'm going to  work on saturating him with unconditional love and encouragement.  I'm going to try to plug up the oozing potty mommy stress!  And mostly banish the foul moods over accidents.  Or temptations to try barbaric methods.  I hope.  Just unconditional love.  Gobs of patience.  And stock in...   

Cause I am not above using a Toy Story crutch if I have to.  While we pass through Or Not on our way to  Destination totally Potty Ready.   Waiting for us somewhere on Trevy's timeline.


  1. Allie - No Time For Flash CardsApril 24, 2011 at 12:36 PM

    Girls just potty train themselves right? I am telling myself that until the time comes for my daughter. I will live happily ignoring what is ahead.

    Great post - so so glad you linked it up, and really was so touching which for a post about potty training is extra awesome!

  2. Well, the daughter was a smidge easier. But seriously. When your time comes...don't come to me for advice! :P


  3. I potty trained my first four. Then came Danny. He has undiagnosed developmental delays (not for lack of trying to get answers) and PTing has been the same nightmare for us! I just might try out the pictures. His class uses them for everything, so I thought I might too. Then I saw that you are! =) Good luck! Crossing my fingers for you (and Trevy!)

    P.s. Thanks for the kind comments on my blog <3