At the beginning of June, I posted about our failed attempts at potty training the mackerdoodle. After posting it, we decided to follow the advice of several friends and acquaintances and take the naked or just panties approach to potty training. With all hardwood and tile floors, it’s the perfect house for it.
On days when we knew we were going to be home all day, we would put the mackerdoodle in panties and hope she would learn that peeing on the floor was nasty. She didn’t. She would stand in a puddle and say “Oh. All wet. Towel.” So we’d go back to diapers for several weeks, and then try again.
So last Monday afternoon we made an attempt. She sat on the potty, grinned at me, and said “All done.” We put her in her panties, and ten seconds after leaving the bathroom she was saying “All wet, All wet, All wet.” and standing on her tiptoes in a puddle. I cleaned her up, mopped and bleached the floor and put fresh panties on her. I chalked it up as another day that would end in frustration, and went on with my day, which included a phone call to my mother.
A few minutes into the phone call, the mackerdoodle was standing on her tip toes, clutching herself and pointing to the bathroom, screaming “White dere. White dere. Oh. Oh. White Dere. White Dere.” I got her “white dere” as soon as I could, and when I came back to the bathroom after mopping up the tiny drips where she had been standing and fetching more clean clothes, there was a – now how shall I phrase this? – a deposit of both kinds in the toilet, and a grinning little girl. Well, you can imagine that such an achievement was met with reward and celebration and dry panties instead of a diaper.
After experiencing reward, she was very willing to let me know when she had to go again. By Monday evening she would be saying “Icee?” as she tinkled, anticipating the reward, and I was happy to provide it. Wednesday afternoon when Kaitlin and Sarah Ann came for their weekly play date, they were delighted to receive three icees as they shared in the reward of my mackerdoodle’s achievements, and Thursday she wore the same pair of panties (except for a pull up at nap time) all day!
With Friday being her birthday, we had a little regression, which I was expecting, but Saturday was another dry panties day and on Sunday she told the nursery workers when she had to go, and during our fellowship lunch told us when she had to go. Monday I was so confident in her potty training that when we went to the allergist I left her in her panties. My confidence was not misplaced.
Our only problem remaining is her fear of (or refusal to) making a bowel movement. She is not doing a lot of the things I’ve been reading about, (she’s not hiding and pooping in corners. She’s not asking for a diaper and then pooping in that . . .) so I’m confident that if we make sure she has a healthy diet rich in fruits and vegetables we will have some progress in this area as well.