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Old 11-19-2012, 04:55 PM   #1
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Question re: time-outs

When you send your LO (young, say under 4yrs) to time out & then LO says they have to go potty, how do you handle it?

It's pretty consistent w/ DD...I know that part of it is a power & control thing, but I also want to reinforce DD's PTing. We've been "freezing" the timer while DD goes potty & then send her back to her room for the remainder of the time. The sitter has been forcing her to stay in TO, & then getting mad when DD has an accident, "B/c I asked her ten minutes before that if she had to go, & she said 'No'" The last couple of times, it was just a little leaking in her panties, not even enough to dampen her pants. Today it was a full on flood, & the sitter made DD clean the rug & everything. Part of me thinks the sitter engaged in a power struggle w/ DD, didn't "win", then punished DD for it...but then, there's also part of me that thinks DD was given ample opportunity to go potty, was sent to TO (probably for good reason), & cleaning up after oneself is a natural consequence for not going to the bathroom when you have to. DD is 2.75 yrs (will be 3 in March) & has been PTed for about 3.5 mos.

Part of me is furious w/ the sitter...I told her Friday we're starting DD in FT day care/pre-k in December, which she seemed to be fine with Friday, but then this happened today. The kicker being that I picked DD up & was talking to her in the car. I asked her if she was excited about going to "school." She said yes, but that said "I don't want to get kicked out." When I asked why she would think she was going to get kicked out, she told me the sitter's DH told her she was going to get kicked out of school for wetting her pants & on the floor.

Please tell me I'm overreacting & that this isn't nearly as bad as my rage-y anger thinks it is (not that I'll do anything...we've got tomorrow plus next week, then DD will be in the DC center FT. I also want to make sure I'm not screwing up this TO/bathroom thing...it seems like a "thing" that will continue to happen, at least for the next little while.

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Old 11-19-2012, 05:07 PM   #2
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Re: Question re: time-outs

We go potty, then go straight back to time out when first start potty training. For my 3.5 year old and my 5 year old, I make them wait a little bit after they scream they have to go potty. DS I'll make wait 2 or 3 minutes, and DD, who is almost 6, I make hold it.
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Old 11-19-2012, 06:54 PM   #3
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Re: Question re: time-outs

Nope, not over reacting. DD who is 5 can't tell 10 mins before time that she needs to go potty. Its ridiculous to expect that from child under 3. I would be getting quite angry if a babysitter was getting mad over a less then 3 year old having an accident. And the husband's comment was out of line. I have said to dd when she was 4 and having accidents that she would not be allowed to stay in pre-school if she kept having accidents- which was true, they required all students to be potty trained- but that is me saying it to my child not my babysitter's husband saying it.

We also went potty and returned straight to time out to finish. And when dd didn't get to the potty because of something I did I clean it up, but I would make her clean up if it was because of something she did- like refusing to go or just straight out going on the floor on purpose- think she did that twice. If she has an accident now (does still happen from time to time) its usually not enough to make a mess anywhere but her clothes. She has to clean herself up.
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Old 11-19-2012, 07:48 PM   #4
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Re: Question re: time-outs

Oh sure, if DD peed on purpose, I'd totally make her clean it up. As a matter of fact, i wouldn't put it past her in general, but I run into this every night at bedtime. I get DD changed, give her a snack. Said snack generally involves a little milk or juice. I tell her it's bedtime. we go brush her teeth. I ask her if she needs to go potty. About 50% of the time she says yes & subsequently goes. The other 50% of the time, she says no, I ask if she's sure, she says she is, & I put her to bed. 5 minutes later, she yells that she has to go potty. I get her up & get her on the toilet. The vast, vast majority of the time, she does something. I'm sure that the quiet time lets her realize that her bladder is full. The other times, when she doesn't go, she gets something taken away...usually some sort of treat for the following day. This is also the case w/ time outs...if she fibs about having to go, she loses fruit snacks or something else that she loves.

I dunno...it just seems kind of...mean, I guess, to engage in that kind of a power struggle w/ a toddler & essentially force them to have an accident. I mean, DD didn't really learn anything from that whole chain of events, except that the sitter is mean. I mean, she also learned that she won't be sad to stop going there anymore, so that's something I was afraid that I was way overblowing this (I've been known to do that), but I'm super glad there are only a few more days w/ this DCP.
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Old 11-19-2012, 09:47 PM   #5
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I would be fuming!!!!! And I wouldn't let that person ever watch my child again that's unacceptable.
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Old 11-19-2012, 09:58 PM   #6
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Re: Question re: time-outs

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Originally Posted by carriek38 View Post
Oh sure, if DD peed on purpose, I'd totally make her clean it up. As a matter of fact, i wouldn't put it past her in general, but I run into this every night at bedtime. I get DD changed, give her a snack. Said snack generally involves a little milk or juice. I tell her it's bedtime. we go brush her teeth. I ask her if she needs to go potty. About 50% of the time she says yes & subsequently goes. The other 50% of the time, she says no, I ask if she's sure, she says she is, & I put her to bed. 5 minutes later, she yells that she has to go potty. I get her up & get her on the toilet. The vast, vast majority of the time, she does something. I'm sure that the quiet time lets her realize that her bladder is full. The other times, when she doesn't go, she gets something taken away...usually some sort of treat for the following day. This is also the case w/ time outs...if she fibs about having to go, she loses fruit snacks or something else that she loves.

I dunno...it just seems kind of...mean, I guess, to engage in that kind of a power struggle w/ a toddler & essentially force them to have an accident. I mean, DD didn't really learn anything from that whole chain of events, except that the sitter is mean. I mean, she also learned that she won't be sad to stop going there anymore, so that's something I was afraid that I was way overblowing this (I've been known to do that), but I'm super glad there are only a few more days w/ this DCP.
I only have a 2yo and she's not yet potty trained... but, she does frequently request to sit on the potty when she's asked if she get down from the dinner table, but we've told her that she's not done. I have a hard time believing she's trying to manipulate me, but also a hard time believing it's not on purpose.

anyways... at night? I would tell her - it's time to go potty before bed. No asking, just tell her it's time. No power struggle 5 minutes later with possibly losing snacks the next day - just, it's time to go potty before bed. Period.

Honestly, I know I'm pregnant and all, but even when I wasn't, sometimes I'd think I didn't need to go pee, get in bed and then change my mind. And sometimes I'd get some pee and sometimes I'd get a couple drops. But, I can't make myself go to sleep if I'm sitting there wondering.. so, I just can't see punishing for that.

Potty makes everything harder. My friend's 3yo uses it ALL THE TIME to get out of bed. And she allows it cause what do you do? risk an accident? But if you can circumvent it by telling them to use the potty before getting in bed, then it's worth a try. Atleast it seems so to me.

ETA: about the timeout thing - I have no clue because it never occurred to me. I guess letting them out and then resetting the clock sounds like the wisest thing to do. But currently we just use timeouts to 'calm down'.
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Old 11-20-2012, 08:47 AM   #7
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Re: Question re: time-outs

ugh my 3 yr old does this all.the.time. he totally knows that pulling the "i have to go potty" card is going to get him out of timeout. he does have to go back and finish afterwards though. but it's soooo annoying and makes the whole punishment last like 15 minutes with all his dithering in the bathroom. but, i dunno, i just can't see making him wait. he's been pt'd probably since the begining of the summer, but i feel like he's still pretty young and it's still relatively new so i feel mean making him wait. and actually, the first few times he did it, i did make him wait. and he had an accident and then i felt really bad. i felt like it was really cruel. there's a line between standing firm and playing power games.

i would be pretty pissed if my dcp did that. that's just mean. and when my ds was the age your dd is, he was only JUST pt'd, and i would have been REALLY angry. little kids who have only just pt'd don't have as good a handle on when they feel they "have to go" and aren't as good at knowing how to hold it when they do have to. so when he says he has to go, he has to GO. NOW. also, pt'ing was a huge power/control thing for my ds. any direct efforts we made to get him to sit on the potty were met with complete resistance. even now, telling him "it's time to go potty. sit down and try to go" starts a huge struggle that, imo, is not worth fighting. and, if he doesn't have to go, he doesn't have to go you know? it's perfectly believable though, that 10 minutes later he will have to go, and it will be an emergency. if we simply ask him if he has to, and show that we trust what he tells us and he controls what he does with pottying, then if he has to go, he'll go.

i would be double mad at your babysitter's dh. what a jerk. i would possibly say something like that to ds if he peed on purpose (he's done this a couple times. i was NOT pleased). otherwise, i don't think it's a good idea to punish children when they have accidents. they can't control it, it's something they will gain as they get older.
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Old 11-20-2012, 09:20 AM   #8
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Re: Question re: time-outs

I would find another sitter. How long is she keeping your LO in time out?

My 5 year old struggles to hold it. He gets a 5 minute time out (1 minute per year of age) If he has to go while in TO them he can go potty but the timer starts over when he gets back.
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Old 11-20-2012, 09:20 AM   #9
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Re: Question re: time-outs

UGGG my work computer is always double posting
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Old 11-20-2012, 09:34 AM   #10
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Re: Question re: time-outs

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Originally Posted by Kimmyann View Post
I would find another sitter. How long is she keeping your LO in time out?

My 5 year old struggles to hold it. He gets a 5 minute time out (1 minute per year of age) If he has to go while in TO them he can go potty but the timer starts over when he gets back.
This is how we do it. I know more than one kid who would pee on timeout for power, and that's not a battle I want.

Eta: I say trust your gut. Under 3 is kind of young to expect full bladder control, especially when she was already upset about time out. I also think its young to be cleaning up body fluids in general. The whole scenario seems more developmentally appropriate for a 4 year old. Or a mature 3 year old. But not 2. And I'm all for natural consequences.

Last edited by misskira; 11-20-2012 at 09:38 AM.
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