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Oh...the diaper changing misery

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  • Oh...the diaper changing misery

    Not sure if this belongs here or in GD.

    My 20 month old has never been completely agreeable to diaper changes, but we used to be able to get through them relatively peacefully. Over the past week, they've become nearly impossible. I've tried giving him special things to play with, letting him hold the diaper cream, letting him choose the diaper, asking him to come to me when he's ready, giving warning that we'll count to 10 and then it will be diaper time, etc. Nothing works. He screams and runs and buries his face in the carpet and gets stiff. He does not want his clothes changed either. He's still wearing his pajama top today, b/c we just could not get it off of him to change him.

    I've told him that if he'd like to start using the potty, I'm happy to help him with that, but I think he's a little young for it. Should I be encouraging this more strongly to keep the peace?

    Any ideas?


  • #2
    Oh... how I remember that misery

    My son was similar in his reluctance to change clothing. I wish I could give you the sure fire solution I discovered but since I didn't discover one...

    Actually there were two things that helped a little. First I would do diaper changes with him standing up (leaning against our low coffee table). I think it was pretty hard for him at that age to be flat on his back, he probably felt pretty restrained, powerless and bored. It was a bit awkward changing standing up but no more difficult than when he was flipping around like crazy on the change mat.

    Secondly, I would get him dressed outside, weather permitting. I tried all the things you mentioned but he just didn't want to change clothes or put clothes on (It was not a naked thing it was a changing thing). So, when he wouldn't put any more clothes on that morning I'd take him outside (we went out every morning) and get him dressed in the front yard. Sometimes he'd be in nothing but his diaper. For some reason he would happily get dressed outside.Maybe he could better understood the point of getting dressed when he was outside?? Surprisingly, I don't even remember getting any strange looks and I live on a pretty busy street.

    Good luck, HTH


    • #3
      Little things, like playing a game helped us< but nothing is going to help all the time if he is against it. At times I would try to put the shirt on myself, or try to put it on his leg or just be silly about it and my son would be all confused and amused and let himself be dressed. Make the neckline be a mouth trying to eat pillows and toys and then--'gasp' his head!

      Playful playful!~


      • #4
        Hugs to is hard when they don't want to do something that is so necessary!

        I agree w/ the pp about trying to make it playful as possible. Is there any toy, bottle or gadget that he loves? If so, maybe that is only for diaper changing time? (i.e. your cell phone or nursing necklace or maybe a bottle of infant tyelnol)

        Let's hope it is just a phase. My DD went thru a few phases like this and one thing that helped us a lot during those few weeks was stickers. First, I'd just put stickers on her nose or hand and after that got boring, I just gave her the sheet of stickers to peel and put wherever. We still have a few on the changing table area

        Regarding the clothes DD rarely ever has clothes on when we are home. She can take them off by herself, so it is pointless for me to try. Usually the thought of going outside or in the car is enough to get her excited about both diaper changes and putting clothes on.

        Good luck and keep us posted!


        • #5
          We've had (still have) similar issues. We are also showing how we use the potty and letting her know it's there when she wants (soon, we hope!)

          One thing that has helped is switching to pull-ups. It's much easier if she doesn't have to lie down for the change. Also, sometimes I start to put on the pull-up before taking off the old diaper. I find that if I take off the old diaper and wait a few seconds before getting the new one on, she realizes how fun it is to be naked and wants to run around! Which we allow as much as we can, but we're renting an apartment with carpet!

          Hope one of these ideas is new for you and that you can try it! Sounds like you've gone through a lot of them already.


          • #6
            something else we've done is changing other thing's "diapies". the buzz lightyear doll has gotten his changed, the basketball, the remote control, even big brother. i let him put the diaper on these items if he wants. ds2 finds this hilarious and eventually sits down to get his changed, too.

            as far as clothing, can you offer him a choice? like do you want to wear the red shirt or the green one? we have a great getting dressed song that ds2 loves: "Neil is wearing his red shirt, red shirt, red shirt, neil is wearing his red shirt to play to-day." then for each piece of clothing, and changing for the activity we may have planned. "Neil is wearing his puppy pajamas, puppy pajamas, puppy pajamas, neil is wearing his puppy pajamas to bed to-night."


            • #7
              I have a DD about the same age. I've reverted to giving her a choice of where she would like to have her diaper changed "It's time for diaper change...go lay down where you want me to change your diaper." Lately it is in the middle of the kitchen floor. And the clothing thing...She is a "hot sleeper" so she is only in a diaper, maybe a t-shirt when she wakes up. If she is needing to be in charge of when the clothing is put on or taken off I usually wait until we are going somewhere and then say "but you've got to put your clothes on before we go" (in an upbeat excited voice) and I have the clothes by the door with her shoes....or we will go out with the clothes in tow and I point out to her all the people I can find who are wearing clothes (or shoes or whatever it may be...) Then it's like a light goes off in her head and she wants to be just like everyone else and is agreeable to getting dressed.
              Good luck. Just try to remember that this to shall pass and look for the humor....and hey, maybe you'll find some mutually humorous stories to share at his wedding through all this!


              • #8
                These are wonderful ideas...sometimes I just need a little help getting past the frustration and moving on to a new approach

                I'll try to do them with him standing and will use the song too. I also love the idea of the game - pajamas eating the pillow is great! I know he'd like that. And I can't believe I didn't think of stickers. He was recently introduced to stickers and loved them! Letting him choose where we'll do the diaper change is another one I'll definitely use. I can imagine him running upstairs excited to get a new diaper.

                Wish me luck today!

                Thanks everyone!


                • #9
                  Originally posted by havecompassion View Post
                  I've told him that if he'd like to start using the potty, I'm happy to help him with that, but I think he's a little young for it.
                  He's not too young to start using the potty, in my experience. If you are up to it, go for it.

                  So, how did it go today?


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Jeannette View Post
                    He's not too young to start using the potty, in my experience. If you are up to it, go for it.

                    So, how did it go today?
                    Mine was out of daytime nappies by then. I'd get a potty, no pressure, but you never know may work


                    • #11
                      Maybe we will start trying the potty. He's my first, so I have some learning to do myself first.

                      Yesterday was a little better. The "i'm wearing my green striped pjs to bed" song worked last night. It still wasn't easy, but it was a big improvement. I haven't tried changing him standing or outside yet, so will work on those today and see how it goes.

                      We just returned from a great vacation and I started thinking that might be part of the problem we're having. In general ds seems frustrated and to be having sort of mini-tantrums where he just kind of freezes up on the ground when things don't go his way. And "no" has become his very favorite word. This is all very different from the past month. And on vacation he was completely happy and sleeping really well. Maybe he's bored? Seems like all of this might be related.

                      Thanks again!


                      • #12
                        Around that same age my DD and I went to Texas to visit my father and were gone for 3 weeks. She was GREAT on vacation. No tantrums or anything. The first couple weeks when we got back were tough though. It is an adjustment for them.

                        I just tried staying close to home and giving her the time she needed to accomplish our daily activities. So...if brushing teeth took 25 min, then it took that long. I just tried not to rush her.

                        We've also used the "Where do you want your diaper changed" question and that helps. My only rule is poopy diapers have to be done at the changing table because we use cloth and I don't want to deal w/ a possible poo mess on the bed or floor. (made that mistake once and won't do that one again! )