Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Practically Perfect In Every Way

-describes Mary Poppins of course...for those who have not seen the movie in 20 years.

The phrase also describes my Rachel. She is just delicious, ya know. I always take 50% of the credit for that. Hubby gets the other 50%. We are good parents. No- we are great parents. Lots of love, a goodly amount of patience, two terrific senses of humor, an awesome big sister for little Ray Ray to emulate -whom we raised as well (see how that works?) We have the same goals for our kids. We, as parents, balance each other really well. We have been reading to our kids since they were mere specks of rice in utero. We always laugh, praise, encourage and nourish. We gently admonish (snarky grin) when necessary careful not to break those delicately maturing psyches. And are firm when called for. Basically, you get the gist. We are awesome. Jump back, kiss myself, kiss, kiss.

But the title of this post is a giveaway that all is not perfect - it's practically perfect. I am ashamed to admit this but as parents we SUCK at one thing. Potty Training. Yes- we have a 4 year old who just won't do her thing #1 without me standing at the bathroom door and #2 on the potty at all. She is a friggin' camel. Holds her water all the live long day! And the poop thing? No amount of bribery, cajoling, enticement will do it for her.

This is a rundown of suggestions from friends, parents, self-help guides, teachers, doctors...and what we have tried and what hasn't worked to date.

Treats: Tried the jellybeans, m&m's, hershey bars, cookies, gum, standing rib roast, new porche, house in Maui....nothing will make this kid 'sing'. I have given treats for just the mere mention of recognizing that 'tickle' in her tummy. I have left a trail of treats from the family room to the potty. She walked around them like they weren't there. I have gift wrapped the treats in pretty packages and left them on the bathroom sink. She asks "what's that?" and as soon as I tell her that if she goes on the potty, she can open it and find out. She stops asking and pretends they are not there anymore. I have even found the gift in the trashcan on several occasions.

Disney: We'll go there as soon as she goes there. "I don't want to go Disney" (her)
Sleepovers: You can't go there unless you go there. " I don't want a sleepover"(her)
Dinner and a Movie/ vacation/ anywhere that takes more than 2 hours I can't go there unless she goes there. " I wanna go to dinner and movie/vacation/anywhere that takes more than 2 hours " (me)
Summer Camp/Pool Party/the new Wall-e movie/playland at the mall/ the park /outside to play/in my room you get it?? You can't go anywhere until you GO there!!! "I don't want to do anything". (her)

I am basically held captive by my child's bowels. If I stop giving in (which I have once or twice), she holds it in until her eyes fill with tears (an pee) and she is doubled over in pain. What am I to do? When we do leave her with a sitter, she doesn't go at all. Except with 'illa' our one day a week nanny/housekeeper who has been with us since Rachel was 6 months old. And with her it is only in dire emergency.

I try not to get angry - but time's a tickin'! We have plans in October and I don't want to cancel them because my kid won't open the floodgates on a regular basis. I am usually against this kinda thing - but I'll take any suggestions. Chances are - we've tried it.

You see, the 50% she got from me includes stubborness and giving the silent treatment. She will not give. And when we try to discuss it, she clams up tight. Goes all "Tommy, can you hear me?" on us. I do that too. Even when I know I am wrong- I will not relent. I will go stone silent. The tension can be palpable. That's my contribution to the fold...well, about 10% of my half, anyway.

Other than this one little thing - well, this one BIG thing - the kid is perfect!! Seriously, she is easy going, happy, funny, sweet, smart, physically adept, warm, charming...I can go on and on and on. The kid's a freak of nature in more ways than one. In this one way, she is the wrath of nature.

I need help. Professional help maybe. And not just for the kid.

*author's note: this post is dedicated solely to Rachel. I am sure, in time, I will devote much blogging to Emily Rose as I am sure that I will have embarrassing parental admissions of failure regarding her upbringing as well.


George, Group Admin said...

I will not offer advice, as my little one at age whatever decided that she did not like wet undies and when given some very nice grownup silky undies got past this point of no return.

I do believe she has you over a barrel and knows it. At this age she is learned all the moments in time it takes to get you to do her bidding and you are so close to the forest it is difficult to see if the bear does do its thing in the woods. LOL.

I do understand the frustration. Maybe you need to go to Dr. Pill and look at his past discussions of his technique to overcome this. BTW, I do not normally like Dr. Pill.

Melissa said...

My sister-in-law did the 75$ potty training.... were you just let the kid with nothing and they will hate the feeling so much that they will train themselves... the $75 is for the carpet cleaning

Insane Mama said...

Quit feeding her!

I know it's a pain, but every kid does get potty trained... Just some at different times. I have 4 kids and they were all trained at different ages.
Or quit feeding her

Tiffany said...

Hey, saw you are in TO, I grew up in Agoura and live in WLV during the summers.

Anyway, it'll happen for her. Can you just stop discussing it completely? Maybe the nonchalant approach?

I know it's frustrating, but she will come around.

Melissa Lee said...

Hey, don't be the least bit embarrassed that she's four! Heck, that stubborness will come in handy someday...we both know that. Strong women. Gotta love 'em. In the mean time, I will pee on command for you if your offering a beach house in Maui. Or a Snickers. Whichever. More power to you momma. You're a good one. I'm enjoying you big time. Of course, it's your pain I enjoy. Is that a problem??


Tausha said...

know that you are not alone-there are many moms out there in blogland who are struggling with this. My kids are all potty trained, my youngest 4, she was a pain, she would do what your little one would do. So, I took off her panties, made her go naked-she hated that, she wanted her clothes back-i told her clothes are for those who go potty.
We also made up a potty song. She love to sing silly songs, so we threw a silly potty song into the mix, she like it. We would practice and practice the song until she knew it. then I would hum it, when I figured she would have to go to the potty. She would start to sing it, I wouldn't let her sing it cause it was the POTTY song-you can only sing when you are going potty. She thought this was dumb a couple of times until everyone in our family would sing the potty sing while they were on the potty, they she wanted to sing it really bad. So-basically it got to the point where she would hold it till she was going to burst, and she wanted to sing the song. So, i would take her hand and we wold start singing the potty song on the way to the potty, i would put her on the potty by then we were both singing, then she would go potty! I gave her a sticker on the party chart-made a big huge deal, called granmda and grandpas everyone who would be exctied for her. It was a big deal. She knew it! So-we would continue the routine minus calling everyone we knew, it seemed to work. this would only work with a girl who loves to be the center of attention and has to have her clothes on-
so make her naked
sing the potty song
Really, I hope this helps you,it helped us so much!!!

Merrie said...

Oh, my dear, I have been there. My son held out on #2 in the potty until some time around age 3/4. It was a nightmare. We spent an entire year attempting bribery. Our biggest effort was what we lovingly called "The Poop Basket." It was full of fun toys that he desperately wanted, but could not have unless he pooped ON the potty. Now and then he'd do it and get one, but 95% of the time, it was in his pants. Finally, we promised him a goldfish if he did it. Low and behold, one day, he just GOT IT. The heavens opened up, shined upon us, and we were free of the nightmare from that day forward. Plus, he got a fish, which made him pretty happy.
Good luck -- hopefully your little girl will just "get it" like our son.

Tracy P. said...

Well, I'm not quite sure how it happened, but I know it wasn't pretty. The best part is I've forgotten it. (After only a few years.) But SOMEHOW, my kids started taking care of these matters on their own. You WILL get out of this stage.

I was SO glad to see someone else old enough to have loved David Cassidy on the featured SITS post today! You and me both.