This post isn’t for the faint of heart. Two words – two little words – that can strike fear into the hearts of every special needs parent. It rocks our worlds, forces our children to confront challenges, and causes enough headaches that buying ibuprofen in bulk seems like a good plan.
I’m talking of course about potty training.
My boy is 3.5 years old. He has a multitude of special needs, but the ones that seem most applicable to the potty training dilemma are his autism, his hypotonia, and – of course – his SPD. So, what do you get when you put a kid with communication challenges, sensory issues, and low-tone together with a potty? A whole lot of nothing happening, that’s what. Or, at least that’s what’s happening (or not happening) in our house.
There was a point long before we had any diagnoses for Jack – he was about 18 months old – when he suddenly started peeing every evening in the bathtub. We made a big deal about it, pointing it out, trying to give words to what was happening. He was non-verbal (we were still in our “denial period, so we didn’t want to admit that anything was wrong), but we thought that if we just made going potty part of the bath-time routine, maybe we could start down the potty training road. So, we tried to sit him on the potty, supported of course.
He hated it. We’re talking full-on, screaming, flailing, crazy man hated it. We didn’t know anything about sensory issues at the time. We just figured he wasn’t ready. …continue reading