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How do you change a dirty diaper on a kicking and screaming toddler?

My son is 20 months old and he hates to have his diaper changed. If I ask or tell him to lay down so that I can change it, he runs away. So, I pick him up and lay him down. He starts kicking and throwing a fit, which makes it nearly impossible to clean up the poopy mess without getting it all over. Plus, he kicks me in the process. I have tried to put him in timeout prior to the change to calm him down first, holding his legs still when he starts kicking, giving him the "look," telling him to stay still and be nice to mommy, etc., but nothing works. Eventually, I lose my patience and resort to popping him on the leg. I know that there are a lot of moms on here who bash moms who spank, so please don't do that here. I want to know what you do (those of you who don't spank) when your toddler does this.


Asked by Anonymous at 2:38 PM on Mar. 24, 2009 in Toddlers (1-2)

This question is closed.
Answers (6)
  • My son is 27 months and hates his diaper being changed too. It's just that age I guess. Distraction works great or we sing an interactive song like Old MacDonald and he can name the animals and do the sounds. Sometimes I let him bring a small toy to hold. However, if all of these things aren't working and he still doesn't coaperate, I put him into his crib and tell him to cool off. I give it a minute or two and we try again. If he still won't lie still then I put him in his crib again. Sometimes it takes a few times, but he realizes that he doesn't get to play until his diaper is changed. I refuse to let him keep kicking and screaming and throwing a fit. It just makes the experiences frustrating and aggravating for both of us. Good Luck! I just love the toddler years lol!!

    Answer by mazonmom at 3:04 PM on Mar. 24, 2009


    Answer by Anonymous at 2:39 PM on Mar. 24, 2009

  • I usually give my DD a small toy or book to hold on to while i change her....Maybe sing a song....and then change the diaper very quick LOL.

    Answer by tomsjennabean at 2:40 PM on Mar. 24, 2009

  • I usually give him something like the t.v remote or something he can have in his hands to occupy him... other times nothing works and he's also in a phase where he hates having his diaper changed,,I just the say the word diaper and he runs off screaming.. I just try to do it as fast as I can.. Don't really know what to tell ya!

    Answer by prettymama0607 at 2:45 PM on Mar. 24, 2009

  • Definitely distract him with whatever is safe and works. Sometimes I even hand my son his baby nail clippers and ask him "can you cut your fingernails for mommy" or if he's sick give him the bulb syringe and tell him to clean his nose. (he ends up blowing air in his nose LOL) Also ask him questions like where is your nose etc if he likes to point those out. Oh and my son likes to throw his own diapers away, he thinks its like playing basketball. He even claps for himself LOL

    Answer by aidengrant07 at 2:47 PM on Mar. 24, 2009

  • That's the #2 reason we potty trained at that age (lol)! (#1 was the cost of diapering 2 kids). She did great, by the way. Not that you have to go this route, but just a thought...

    Answer by EmilySusan at 3:06 PM on Mar. 24, 2009