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  • Need help from parents and CP adults/teens - Potty training?!?!

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    Old 02-06-2006, 10:52 AM   #1
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    Need help from parents and CP adults/teens - Potty training?!?!

    OKay.. I'm going NUTS. Seth is 2.5 and has spastic dipeligia in his legs (and low tone in trunk, etc).. He's a pretty high functioning kid (is typical socially and verbally, etc). - Forgive me if I always restate his 'stats' but I never know if people have read my other posts!

    Anyway, we (at home and daycare) have been potty training for about a couple of months. And I SWEAR, if he could get HIMSELF TO the potty and ON the potty, we would be done training. But He jsut can't.. He has some independent walking,etc. But let's face it, when you're 2, and you can't RUN and hurry to the potty and get your own pants up and down.. its kind of a struggle. Anyway.. he does pretty well and has these days where he'll go 2-3 days of keepign mostly dry.. But most of the time.. I think (this is my speculation).. he 'says' he needs to go but has already gone and knows he cannot get there himself. He does not try to crawl or walk in walker to the potty. :-(.

    I am not trying ot pressure him at all.. he loves the character underware and his daycare class has everyone training, etc. I just don't want to give up if he can do it. I try to do as much as possible on the 'typical' kid timeline if it seems doable. I feel I owe it to him to do the work if he can do it.

    Anyway, I wondered what other parents have done or for Adults and teens with CP, what did your parents do??"

    I appreciate any advice!

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    Old 02-07-2006, 10:16 AM   #2
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    Re: Need help from parents and CP adults/teens - Potty training?!?!

    My nephew is 5 1/2 (will be 6 in June) and is STILL not completely potty trained. Like your son he is intelligent - integrated into his kindergarten class with an aide - spastic quad with mixed tone and speech impairment. He can tell us when he needs to go but he can't get himself on/off the potty himself and likely won't be able to for years to come.

    Even though he has been dry at night since about 2 years old (recently began wetting the bed again as a side effect of depakote - he's sleeping in pull-ups now) he has frequent "accidents" at home and school. When you ask him why he didn't tell you he needed to go he says he was "busy" or has no answer. Basically he either is too shy to speak up (although that excuse has no basis with family and his aide anymore) or he simply doesn't want to interrupt what he's doing to go to the bathroom. Sometimes you can see he needs to go and you ask him and he says No, then proceeds to have an accident.

    EDIT: Like with your son, there's not enough time between him realizing/verbalizing he needs to go and getting there. Like your son, if he could, Nick would run to the bathroom and barely make it each time, like many many other boys his age.

    The only time he's accident free is if we take away the control and simply take him to the bathroom every 2-3 hours. He sometimes protests, but not strongly. We've tried everything - rewards, talking to him, discussing it with a psychologist who said when he was "ready" he'd just start telling us and that it was a "control issue" and even removing some of his favorite things from his room (his music CDs) and then replacing them bit by bit when he has a successful day. NOTHING HAS WORKED.

    Just this past week I told him that in first grade if he had an accident the other kids would probably laugh at him and he'd be very embarrassed. He listened quietly and when asked if he wanted to be embarrassed said No, so I told him it was up to him to tell his aide or teacher when he needed to go or that's what would happen. I don't want to shame him, but frankly, what I told him is the truth - and he's in for a much greater shaming if he soils himself in first grade next year.

    I know other mothers with boys this age who also report terrible potty training issues, so I firmly believe the CP is simply complicating an innate tendency in these boys. I do think boys are much worse about this issue - it's simply more uncomfortable for a girl to sit in soiled underwear. I know a non CP kid who gave himself constipation that almost required surgery (edit: distended colon), and another AB 5 year old who cries if you insist he goes to the bathroom, even when it's obvious he really needs to pee.

    Bottom line: we never should have expected Nick to TELL us when he has to go. His mother insisted on that being the goal of his potty training and I think that was/is a mistake. If I had to do it all over again I would simply stop the diapers when he first became interested in potty issues - around age 2 - and take him to the bathroom at regular intervals. Eventually he will simply start telling us beforehand when he needs to go, but I would assume he won't and just deal with it.

    Last edited by firehorse; 02-07-2006 at 11:14 AM.

    Old 02-07-2006, 02:05 PM   #3
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    Re: Need help from parents and CP adults/teens - Potty training?!?!

    Okay! That does make me feel better. What you said you would do is what we are doing.. and I do think for now its either a control issue or a 'doesn't feel like stopping playing' issue usually (like any other AB kid). Daycare already has them go every 2 hrs. We still use pullups for naps and diapers for night (not tackling nights anytime soon). Its like you don't want to pressure or punish but you dont' want to go back either. I think it will just take longer for Seth to put the Cognitive and physiological urge together in time. I really hope it does not take him til age 6.. He can actually get on and off the daycare potty (they have fully functioning miniature potties) by himself but still can't do the clothes thing completely unassisted. So I think we just keep on plugging away. I am glad that he (I and my older son) neither one had the fear of pooping thing.. or holding it thing.. that is way worse I agree.

    Thanks for your input.. that really helps!

    Old 04-14-2006, 04:25 AM   #4
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    Re: Need help from parents and CP adults/teens - Potty training?!?!

    I have a teenager who went through middle school with frequent accidents. CP kids are developementally delayed, but they eventually gain control over their bladder control. We still have an occassional accident when he belly laughs! Don't pressure your child. It could make him socially self conscious and keep him from the better things in life. Depends are great if he needs them!

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