Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Training Up Tuesday: I Did the Impossible!

I did the impossible task!

I never thought it possible until I decided that I no longer wanted the added expense of diapers. Not to mention, my middle child will be three in a month, so I figured, “why not give it a whirl?”

My Charley, after 3 grueling days, is now potty trained.

Charley is my son that was diagnosed with Autism about a year ago. He is the one I told everyone (at the YMCA, Sunday school, etc.) that he just has NO interest in the potty. Well, after a few small changes, the boy is rearing to go!

We were told to make this event like a party. Yes, that did include a portable DVD in the bathroom, as well as Mommy’s famous healthy cookies and “all natural” lollipops (you may notice I have a fetish for health…I’ll get onto it more some other day)!

We followed a procedure given to us by one of Charley’s therapists. This procedure was developed by Foxx and Azrin and is often used by parents with children with learning disabilities, but by no means hinders a child who is typical.

The main jist of it is to schedule potty time (every 30 minutes for example) and correct accidents by “positive practice.”
  • If the child has an accident between the scheduled potty time, you take the child to the toilet and have them sit on it.

  • Put on the wet pants and underwear (it does sound cruel, but after several times, my little guy expected it).

  • Take them back to the spot they had the accident.

  • At that point, tell them not to tinkle in the “kitchen” for example, but that we “tinkle” in the potty.

  • Repeat this between 3 – 5 times, and change your child into dry clothing.

With Charley, we just did this 3 times. He was actually getting into this process, and would count down the trials. Don't get me wrong. The first day was horrendous. We washed, no joke, 20 pairs of McQueen and Thomas the Train underpants, as well as the soiled pants. My husband and I were exhausted. The next day was a little smoother. I’m talking maybe 10 pairs of underpants. Finally, today after 2 mistakes, he got it AND is excited and so very very proud of himself. I am so proud of him!

I know he is going to have some mistakes, but at least we are on the right track and it was well worth the time and energy. There are some more details to this process, so if you are having a difficult time with your little one in terms of potty training, email Ellen at I would love to hear from you and give you more details.

Also, we want to hear from you! Please send us other child rearing topics that you want addressed or related questions you may have. Our resident expert(s) are here to encourage you! Email them to


glenda said...

Thank you for sharing this great accomplishment Why to go Charley! Lord bless you.

HPS said...

YEAH Charley! I appreciate you sharing this, Ellen. I know it will be helpful and an encouragement to moms.

Dolly said...

Thanks for your tips Ellen. I'm going to store them away for when this time comes. Congrats on potty training your Charley! He's a cutie!

Zerbert Baby said...

Way to go Charley! I knew he could do it. Persistance pays off.

Momofgirls said...

Great Job!

My daughter just last year got it down (she does have special needs but I was SHOCKED that it took so long!) she is 11. This is one of the many things we have to learn as we go with challenged kids! But it also seems like so much more has been accomplished when Lindsay learns to do the things that came so easily for my other 2.

This is one big accomplishment, hope he gets a great prize! Yeah Charley!

We still have to remind Lindsay about going, but more pull ups!

Angela said...

Congrats Ellen! And Charley! It's great when they can go potty on the "big potty"! I taught my little guy to hop up there backwards. I think it's easier that way for boys. Just an idea!

Ellen said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Ellen said...

Isn't it amazing how different all of our kids are? This process never would have worked with my first child. He would have looked at me after the first positive trail like I had ten heads, and ran the other direction. As mothers, the Lord calls us to look at each one of our children with love and compassion. As we do, we can see which "styles" of teaching will work and which won't. We have an amazing and very rewarding job, don't we??!!

HPS said...

Good point, Ellen. My mom told me the other day that every child has a "combination". You just have to figure out what that combination is. :)