Hello, parents! I am coming to you FOR advice today. Usually, I am the one trying to be helpful to other parents by passing along the tips and tricks I’ve learned. However, as any parent, I am still learning as I go, too. So I am coming to beg your help and support. You are the experts (I hope) and I am the student. Are you up for this challenge? I certainly hope so. Here’s the question: How the *eff* do I get my toddler to stop pooping on the floor and hiding it?!?! Its “Poop-Gate” 2018 at my house and I can’t even deal.
Okay, so I suspect many of you are laughing at this point. I only wish I was kidding. Some of you with babies might think this is absolutely hilarious. Some of you with grown children might also find this humorous, because potty training is just a distant vague memory. Many of you who are also on a potty training journey are probably standing and saluting like in the Hunger Games. Or maybe weeping, because you, too, are in my shoes. Hopefully, one of you expert moms (or dads, grandparents, etc.) can help with this dire problem.
The Journey So Far
I started really potty training my son about a month and a half ago. He is 3.5. Things were rocky at first. Lots of messes. Pretty much par for the course, right? Well, now things have been pretty wonderful. My son not only will pee on the potty, but he goes in there on his own when he needs to. No more setting alarms and reminding him to go, and fighting with him because he wants to keep playing. He just goes. No accidents in quite a while.
However, the poop part is still eluding us. I know from talking to many other moms that going #2 on the potty tends to take longer, and be more of a process. Totally get it. I fully expect there to be some accidents. Some “Oops” moments are understandable. BUT…
One thing I wasn’t prepared for is the HIDING of the poop. What the actual *eff*?! Here are some examples.
Poop-Gate Scenario #1
Darling son pooped on the floor of his room. Right on the new carpet. Instead of telling me or my husband what had happened, he decided he would place a small chair over the pile of crap. Well, I guess he doesn’t understand the correlation with the smell, because I knew immediately what had happened. And since he’d done such a shoddy job of hiding it, he was caught immediately.
Poop-Gate Scenario #2
Lord help me, because he’s getting smarter. Again, my son pooped on the floor of his room. This time, however, he got a little sneakier. This occasion he decided to kick all the little poops under his bed. He would’ve gotten away with it for at least a little while, except he proceeded to immediately run up to me and say “NOTHING!” with a guilty look on his face. Clearly he doesn’t have a successful future with a life of crime. I knew he’d been in his room, so I immediately went in there to search. Except I didn’t see anything. A toddler acting suspicious, and then the scene of the crime being “too normal” is highly suspect. I decided to search a little more in depth.
Picture this. I am now on my belly, phone flashlight in one hand, torso completely wedged under the bed. In my other hand, I am now picking up a bunch of little toddler poops. And gagging. Because the smell is horrible in the best of times, but when you are stuffed under a full sized bed that is enclosed on 3 sides by walls or furniture? Let’s just say YUCK!
Poop-Gate Scenario #3
Yesterday, my husband mentions to me that he keeps getting whiffs of poop. But he can’t figure out from where. So I do a quick sweep, including under the bed, and can’t find anything. I send the toddler to the bathroom and take off his pants. Poop stains. Just freakin’ fabulous. So I search, and I search, and I search some more. Still no luck. I know he pooped. Just don’t know where. I ask him about 350 times and he either denies he pooped or says he doesn’t know where he pooped.
I search the house again. Still no poop. I remember that we were playing in the backyard not long before. I decide to go search my giant backyard. At this point, “poop-gate” has already being going on for 30 minutes. I search the entire backyard. No poop found. I come back in the house, and am ready to give up. I walk back into my toddler’s room, and after being outside in the fresh air, I can now smell poop in spades. Its in the room, but where?
He has a bookcase in his room with shelving. At the bottom is a small cabinet. I don’t know what possessed me to look, but I opened up that cabinet door. BINGO! My child has thrown a large quantity of fresh crap into the cabinet.
Now, I am fuming. But I don’t want to go ballistic, because I feel like it won’t be helpful to my problem. Also, I don’t want my husband to know, because I don’t want him to go ballistic, because again, just not helpful. Now, I have to smuggle the poop from the cabinet, out of the room, down the hall, and into the toilet. In my head, the Mission Impossible theme is playing. I gather all my mom-strength, scoop up the poop, and make a mad dash for the bathroom. I manage to get it into the toilet and flushed, without vomiting.
This is Where I Need Your Help!
How do I go about dealing with this? I really don’t want to lose it on my child, because if he’s even more scared to poop or have accidents, I feel like the hiding and sneaking will only get worse. I have tried talking rationally with him, but he’s three and rationality doesn’t always go hand-in-hand with a threenager. How would you deal with this? Would you punish? What kind of punishment? Would you keep trying to talk to him? Have you dealt with this before? What worked for you?
Please help a momma out because I honestly don’t know how much more I can take. Any and all advice welcomed in the comments!
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