Toilet Training Refusal, Refusing To Poo
When it comes to potty training, they may have mastered number ones, but some children either just don’t like to poo. Some even point blank refuse to poo on the potty or loo.
So it makes sense that one question we are asked a lot is how to handle it when a child won’t poo on the toilet.
This is a very common problem with toddlers. We don’t really know why and think there could be a number of reasons. Fear of the toilet hole or potty basin. It taking too long and inconveniencing their play. Not wanting to say goodbye to being a baby yet. Even health concerns such as constipation.
We recommend checking with your health visitor that there are no problems. Nine times out of ten it is just that the child doesn’t want to poo on the toilet.
The cheeky little monkeys!
A tried and tested technique that we advocate trying if you are having trouble. To encourage your child to poo on the toilet or potty you should allow a ‘poo nappy’.
The idea behind this approach is that you offer ‘poo nappies’ which are left in the bathroom. This is the only place that the child can use them. Not reverting back to wearing a nappy to do it whenever and whatever they are doing.
The child is told that when he or she wants to do a poo they can have their ‘poo nappy’ on. Put the nappy on in the bathroom or toilet and ask the child to stay there until they have done their poo. Once they have finished, take the nappy off and put the poo in the toilet. With the help of the child flush it way so that they are fully involved in the process. Then do the usual hand washing.
Make sure that the nappy is put on and taken off with the child standing. That way they can help with pulling pants up and down and also start to learn about wiping bottoms, etc.
If the idea of a poo nappy isn’t appealing to your child, you can also make it a bit more exciting by telling them that the ‘poo fairy’ has left them to use.
Encourage them to buy into this idea. You could make it to the child’s advantage by saying things like the poo fairy has left some special stickers. Every time he or she does a poo in the nappy in the bathroom they are allowed one of the stickers.
Start Moving the Goal Posts
Once he or she is happily following this routine, start to move the goal posts. Say that the poo fairy said they can still have a nappy on but must also now sit on the toilet or potty . Once they are doing this you just need to work on removing the nappy completely.
Some parents progress by just putting the nappy on the potty or toilet and sitting the child on it. Then, one day they just ‘forget’ to put the nappy there and sit the child straight on the potty or toilet. Other parents cut a bigger and bigger hole in the nappy so that over time, the child doesn’t see the need for it anymore.
This technique is also recommended by child continence experts and Promocon. They have a leaflet you can read here for more information.