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Potty training regression new sibling

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  • Potty training regression new sibling

    I am at my wits end.
    My DS was potty trained (except nights) at 2.4yrs, before my DS2 was born. Since the arrival of DS2, he has regressed to pooing in pants (and often weeing). Sometimes I have managed to persuade him to go to potty/toilet. Occasionally he has chosen to go himself. We have a loving and respectful relationship up til now but I feel this is suffering as a result of the toilet situation.
    We ECd up to a year then he had a potty pause and then he gradually moved out of nappies. Now we have had 8 weeks of poos in pant and I have started to take it personally. I got angry at him about it the other day which I KNOW is totally the wrong thing to do but I am so exhausted from the night feeding/sling wearing and just have zero patience at the moment.The sling DS2 certainly doesn't help with trying to clear up a poo eruption which I think frustrates me more.
    What I am worried about is that my anger is going to damage him, since every time he poos in pants I feel the red dragon flare up, so now I am sadly thinking of putting him back in nappies again - at least I'll know where I am then. I have even in my desperation thought about offering treats for poos in potty/toilet but this feels very unintuitive to me but i am DESPERATE!
    I feel so disappointed, as we respectfully EC-d, and later potty trained and I am taking this personally - I can't seem to stop these feelings. I put so much time and effort into all this and I sometimes wish I had never started.
    I am feeling very guilty at getting angry at DS1 but I am so fed up of the poo situation, and no amount of communication seems to be working.
    Otherwise, DS1 is definitely struggling with new arrival. He has really loving good moments, but then screams to make baby cry or pokes his eye. I know these are normal behaviours but it upsets me nonetheless. I feel sad that our relationship has altered so much with new arrival and I miss the boy I once had.
    Feeling exhausted, sad and helpless.

  • #2
    I would go back to nappies

    Disclosure: both of my kids potty-trained very late, because this issue wasn't a priority for my husband and me. I decided early on that I would rather wash cloth diapers for a longer time than deal with the hassle of early potty training. So what worked for me might not work for your family.

    But what I hear you saying is that the poo accidents are an anger trigger for you, and your child is clearly communicating that he is not ready now to use the toilet regularly. Maybe that isn't logical, because you know he is physically capable of using the toilet. But I think about how I have quit biting my nails several times in my life, only to go back to biting them months or years later when I'm under stress. It's not that I am physically incapable of not biting my nails--I just seem to regress when I'm under stress. I think that going back to nappies for a few months would reduce your anger level. It is easier to change a diaper (even with a baby in a sling) than to clean up soiled clothing.

    I wouldn't offer treats/bribes for using the toilet. I think your DS needs to feel accepted for what he can manage right now. I am sorry to suggest a solution that may seem like extra work to implement, but I honestly feel it would help you smooth things over with your older son.
    Last edited by laura; 04-03-2012, 09:57 PM.


    • #3
      Here are some responses from our Facebook community:
      • my son "regressed" right before the birth of his sister (he was 2) and we went with what he was capable of handling. Potty training was too much to add to the other huge changes. We backed off and tried again when he was ready
      • Just wanted to send some support & love to this mama! It's so hard already with a newborn, & the constant sling-wearing can get exhausting. We didn't have a potty regression, but we were in the middle of potty training when my 2nd arrived. I'm thinking that if your #1 is feeling disconnected from you & just not "filled up" with enough interaction time, maybe you could help out both issues by scheduling "special time" with him that happens to take place on the potty. Maybe after each nursing with #2, just 10 minutes with #1, reading a book on the potty, singing songs, just some (mostly) undivided attention might help? And it doesn't have to be potty-oriented, more "fun time" oriented with stuff you two can do while he happens to be on the potty. I know it probably feels like another thing to handle, but maybe those few minutes every couple of hours can be enough to get things to a more handle-able scenario...I'm sending strength & deep breaths your way!! xo

      • My daughter regressed when her brother was born. We stopped potty training, put diapers back on her, and 2 months later she said "I don't want to wear diapers anymore." And she has used the potty ever since. I agree that sometimes potty training can be too much with all the changes of a new sibling, and it's best to wait until both parents and child are ready and willing. This is so normal and nothing to worry about. Our daughter was almost PT'd before her brother arrived and then it all went out the window until her brother was about a year old. Her behavior in general showed some regression until she got used to her brother.

        We backed off on the potty and let her go at her own pace, turning it into a power struggle would have backfired on us since our daughter was and is a little firecracker. . Her brother was on the slower side with potty readiness as well.... He was probably 4 y 11 mo before I could truly say he was done.

        It will be ok. A baby is a big upheaval in a toddler's life and in the parents' too. Sending the original poster a hug, I know how easy it is to take it personally.


      • #4
        Thank you laura and paxmamma.
        I have gone back to nappies and already I feel a sense of (albeit sad) relief. I have to admit, I tried a day of bribery and it felt fake and TOTALLY against my instincts and parenting way. I dont think DS would ever have gone for it anyway!
        Not having to constanly nag and worry about 'has he gone yet?' is a weight of my shoulders - and less urgent washing. I guess now my worry is replaced with, 'he must be finding it so much easier just weeing/pooing in nappy, he might never want to come out of them'! I know this is illogical! I am also worried that because I got ancry at him about it, this will be etched in his memory of potty related experiences. However, again my logical mind tells me that it was a one of and he should be able to get over that with love and support.
        Thanks again for your support, means a lot to me