Refusing To Use The Potty--My Tips To Success
10/9/2012 | by Heather Wittenberg
Do you hear “NO” a lot these days?
Your toddler can’t help himself – saying no is his first step on the road to independence. It sure makes potty training complicated, though. Keep these tips in mind while you’re dealing with a defiant toddler:
- Never use punishments or threats. I promise this will backfire, creating a much bigger problem than you have now. If you get frustrated, take a deep breath and try again later.
- Ignore accidents and negative behavior. Your disapproval will create more negativity. You don’t have to pretend you’re happy about it, but at least try to maintain a neutral reaction.
- Give him control. Refusals are about the natural need for control. Giving him choices – inside and outside of the bathroom -- will increase his cooperation over the long run.
- A power struggle means BACK OFF. You can’t force a child to use the potty. To help him learn to be in control of his own body, let him learn at his own pace. Take a break for a few weeks.
- Boost fruits and veggies. Constipation is the hidden enemy of potty training, and painful poops can trigger resistance. Plus, toddlers are notorious for avoiding healthy, fiber-rich food. Ask your pediatrician for help if you think your child might be constipated.
- Use a little reverse psychology. Try this: Tell him that YOU have to go potty, and that YOU get to go FIRST. Make it a game. He just may try to be the winner of the potty race!