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4 Bumps


I have literally had it! My son is turning 4 this weekend and still will NOT poop in the potty! I stopped using pull-ups because he would just be lazy and pee in them. It is SOOOOO freaken gross having to clean poop off his butt and out of his underwear every damn day! I have offered rewards, I have taken things away and told him that they were thrown away. I even asked him what was more important, pooping in his pants or going to see Grandpa(who he loves more than life itself). And he tells me he would rather poop in his pants. Short of watching every move he makes and not letting him out of my sight, I don't know what to do! Please HELP!!! Any and all advice appreciated.


Asked by JGRIMMER at 9:27 AM on Aug. 5, 2010 in Preschoolers (3-4)

Level 17 (3,904 Credits)
This question is closed.
Answers (21)
  • This is harder than it sounds, but you need to stop making such a big deal out of it. Kids seek attention, positive or negative, in many different ways. If you focus less on giving negative attention for the unfavorable behavior, pooping in the pants, and focus more on the positives, like when he goes in the potty, the favorable behaviors will win out in the end. I know it's frustrating, my youngest wasn't potty trained until her was a little over four, but if you stick with it and stay consistent, it will eventually happen for him....

    Answer by c.love49 at 1:55 PM on Aug. 5, 2010

  • Call him on it, then. Let him poop in his pants and NOT see Grandpa. And enlist Grandpa in this too.

    You're doing all the right things's just become a battle of wills here.

    Answer by gdiamante at 9:30 AM on Aug. 5, 2010

  • Maybe it is time to take him to the Doctor? He may not be able to control it. Some kids have this problem. They hold it for so long, and it gets almost impacted and they do not feel the urge to go before it is too late.

    Answer by RheaF at 9:31 AM on Aug. 5, 2010

  • What has his pediatrician recommended?

    Answer by Liz30355 at 9:31 AM on Aug. 5, 2010

  • I have no advise in the same boat with my three yr old and have tried every thing. Just wishing you luck and giving you a bumperoo.

    Answer by hot-mama86 at 9:34 AM on Aug. 5, 2010

  • This is a power struggle that you can't win. It's one of the issues common with late potty training.

    Stop the shaming, punishments, and fan fare. If he soils himself, he's old enough to clean himself (with a liittle help). Get him a basket for his dirties and when it is full help him put them in the wash and teach him to put them away. NO SHAME. NO SPANKING. NO PUNISHMENT. It's just a fact that if you soil yourself, you clean yourself. No egagement, no extra attention. He may also be constipated AND stressed from all the pressure to perform.

    If you have other chilfdren, especially a baby, he may enjoy all the attention. Negative attention is still attention. There is a lot of touch and one on one time to be had when your mother has to take time to clean you up. That is hard to let go. Make sure he gets plenty of attention from you in other areas of his life.

    Answer by amileegirl at 10:34 AM on Aug. 5, 2010

  • My daughter did this. I was at my wits end with her. We got her a potty watch from One step ahead and it has a timer on it to remind them to go to the potty and that worked for her.
    But the way it sounds is as if maybe he is TRYING to make you mad if he is telling you he would rather poop his pants?

    Answer by Memigen at 9:34 AM on Aug. 5, 2010

  • The potty watch sound great! Also one other idea..........Is he getting enough positive attention from you and DH? Praise when he does anything right? Plenty of hugs and kisses? Sometimes they will go for the negative attention if they don't get the positive. GL

    Answer by elizabr at 9:37 AM on Aug. 5, 2010

  • I swore that I would never spank when potty training, but I had to break my own rule. I had one very strong-willed child who refused to use the potty. One morning, we got up and I explained to her that if she didn't use the potty and instead used her pants, she would be spanked. She did it in her pants, and I wore her butt out. That was the last time she refused to use the potty. At 4, your child is older than she was, so I know that he will understand what you say to him. Since he is older, even if you spank, it may take more than once.

    Answer by NannyB. at 9:38 AM on Aug. 5, 2010

  • I know he's not holding it and becoming constipated. He poops regularly. I threaten things and he will promise he's going to start using the potty. But, of course, he has never kept his promise. I might try the watch thing, but does that work for poop? I've had him sit on the potty just to practice and give a push to try, but that doesn't seem to work either. Thanks for the advice and please keep it coming or give me a bump. Thanks!

    Comment by JGRIMMER (original poster) at 9:40 AM on Aug. 5, 2010