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Hi ladies! This is my first time posting here, and I hope someone has some ideas. My son Ronan (2yrs 9mths), who is/was fully potty trained during the day and working on night training, came down with a high fever (104-105) 11 days ago. He was sick for a few days, and then became constipated as a result. (He has never been constipated before, so this is a one-time incident due to illness and not a dietary problem.) He eventually had a painful bowel movement and since then will not go #2 on the potty. At first, he would try to get to the potty but after sitting there for awhile would get down without having gone. Then he started saying: "It not gonna get bigger?" So I know he's associating going #2 on the potty with pain now. He goes pee on the potty all the time still. But now he doesn't even bother trying to go #2 on the potty; he just goes in his undies. If I tell him we don't go in our undies, we go on the potty - he says "I'm sorry, mama." Which makes me feel so bad for him. I've tried reassuring him that it won't hurt, that it won't be big again, that it's OK to go on the potty, etc. Nothing I can think to say to him seems to be working. He's got it in his mind that poopy on the potty = pain now. Any ideas how to get him back on track after this?
Thank you, AlexKatieAiden Mommy, for my siggy!
Last edited by MomOfWar; April 18th, 2011 at 05:05 PM.
Hi! My youngest has had issues with constipation all of his life, and so #2 was frightening for him as well. What you have to do is make it so soft, that he can't hold it in any more, and after a few times, he'll realize it doesn't hurt anymore.
We were prescribed lactulose for our son (I think you can get it over the counter as well, though). In our case, I think we have to keep him on it for at least 6 months to a year, because it's a matter of his body balancing itself. For your son, since he had no problems before, it's very possible he would just need it long enough to give enough soft movements to get rid of the fear.
Being afraid and holding it of course just leads to a viscious cycle, because the longer he holds it in, the larger and harder it will get.
But after the lactulose kicked in (maybe 2 or 3 days tops), our son is no longer afraid of #2.
If what he's doing in his undies is soft, though, maybe it's just a matter of starting again at the beginning - rewards for pooping in the potty, going slow and just getting him to sit there after eating, etc. Depending on how he was trained, if he had the painful movement in the big potty, maybe move back down to a little potty if you had it, just in case he associates it with the big potty specifically.
I hope he can get past the fear soon! It will happen, but I know you're hoping for sooner rather than later .
Last edited by amberjolie; April 19th, 2011 at 05:28 PM.
Can you explain to him what made him constipated, let him know that is was part of his sickness: "Remember how your nose got runny, and your head was ouchie and you were too hot all over? Well, the ouchie poops were because your tummy was sick too. But now your nose and head are all better, and you're not too hot any more, and tummy is all better too. The sickness is all gone, and the ouchie poops are all gone too. You don't need to worry about that any more at all, now that sickness is over, we can get back to the great job you were doing using the potty like a big boy." If you can help him to see the ouchie poops as just one more yucky thing associated with being sick, he can disassociate them from the potty (he doesn't, for example, blame his bed for having a fever, even though he probably spent a lot of time sleeping in it while sick). He's trying to find a cause and effect here, you just need to help him find the right cause to put with his effect! You might even want to emphasize what a good idea it was for him to put those ouchie yucky bad sickness poops into the nice, good potty and flush them all away, good bye sickness poops, go away. Potty took them away so they won't bother him any more at all. Pretty much say anything you can think of here to have him see that potty is on his side in this and is a friend.
Gotta love the "logic" you have to use sometimes, LOL We didn't have the constipation problem but DD got scared by a trainer potty at my mom's house that had a frog's face on it and it set us back MONTHS. I still don't know what was so alarming about it but to her it was a horror.
Hope it works