My son is 4 1/2, and he was completely potty trained. A couple of months ago, he started pooping in his pants, and now that’s the only place he will poop. I’ve tried everything, and I’m feeling super overwhelmed. Even to the point, I’ve cried at work because I feel like I’m not doing enough. I’ve tried rewarding him; I’ve let him pick out his own underwear, I’ve let him go around the house naked, I’ve tried sticker charts, potty breaks every 30 minutes, and more. It seems nothing is working. I have an appointment with his pediatrician, but the earliest they could schedule me was the 19th. If any of you mommas have any advice or tips, I would GREATLY appreciate it.
Have him take care of the clean up. Nothing wrong with gentle consequences.
has something traumatic happened to him recently? If he was completely potty trained before it seems something is going on.
My little brother did this until my mom mage him wash his underwear in the toilet to get the poop out took twice and he was pooping in the toilet again. With him he admitted to not wanting to stop playing or watching tv to go to the bathroom.
Yes unfortunately make him clean it up he will stop
Send him too his auntie. Right Autumn Frappier !!
I agree make him clean his self up even washing his under ware out and what ever he was doing when he done it make him stop and sit in time out to think about it
Are you sure its not encopresis? The accidents could be leakage bc he could be so backed up. Also when the child with holds they stretch their colon and loose sensation. Id talk to his pedi and see what they recommend. Gl!
My son is going through this right now and he is 7 had him completely potty trained…I feel like a failure because I have tried everything! Idk what else to try. So following!
Tell him you’re going to throw his clothes away if it keeps happening… i did with my kid it took a few times but worked… especially the favorites…
Let him choose what color food coloring to put a few drops in the toilet… no sugar reward lol worked for my boys
I wouldn’t jump to consequences immediately. Toddlers will regress in potty training when anything new, any changes in routine or scarey happens. It’s the one thing they have control over. My son had the same issues. Just stay strong and know you’re doing everything. Be patient with him it helps a ton. Maybe have him get new clothes and have him help clean up. Continued frequent potty breaks and he will work through it.
I had my son clean up his underwater and that took care of the problem.
Children don’t generally regress unless there’s a reason…be it psychological or medical. If his pediatrician says he’s healthy, take him to a child therapist.
My son had accidents, at night, until he was 13. It was all psychological bc of his father.
He gets a lot of attention for it.
This happened with my son as well. I started making him clean himself up and cleaning his underwear and pants. He was absolutely disgusted by it but is finally clicked for him after a couple weeks
He should be checked by a Dr. to make sure there is nothing physical going on first. Also consider if something could have made him really upset recently and if you suspect that there could have been a traumatic event, he may need a counselor. Before doing anything to make him accountable you need to make sure there are no underlying problems.
When I was that age I would hold my poop in because it hurt to poop. Maybe fiber and prebiotic gummies
I had the same problem with my son his doctor suggested miralax in his water and told me even after he starts pooping on the potty to keep doing it for like 3 months he’s no where near perfect but he’s getting more constant he just turned 4 in March
My daughter is 56 now but I had the same problem. It turned out she had fissures in her anus and it hurt to poop so she would hold it in until she was about to explode. I was given a cream to apply at the time and it solved the problem. Today they would give you cream to apply plus fiber.
No one poops in their pants going to the prom. Just be patient.
Let him sit in the naughty spot with his poop pants on. Do not relent. Do not change him. Do not pick him up, it doesn’t matter that he’s crying. It will not hurt him. 5 minutes in the naughty spot, explain after why. Help him change and clean up. I potty trained my daughter in 2 days after she had proven she can use the potty. Never an accident.
Wait and talk to your doctor. It can be constipation, or another medical issue. It’s more common than you think.
Some kids will revert back if there ha been a major change or emotional change in their life. My friends son was potty trained and she had to switch her shift at work to nights and her son started using the bathroom in his pants again so she asked his doctor why and he said any type of major change will cause them to do that sometimes!
Use a stool when he is pooping. It’s hurting him when he is sitting on the toilet. If you can get it to where his feet are flat on something.
My daughter is 6 1/2. Was potty trained at 2 1/2. She started pooping in her pants when she turned 6. She tells me it hurts to poop in the toilet. So we started miralax in her drinks. Sometimes they act out and sometimes it hurts. Just keep trying. There’s no right or wrong way.
Make him clean himself up when he does it. I find that they usually do it out of laziness. Get him a pack of baby wipes and a special trash can just for the wipes so they don’t get flushed. Tell him if he doesn’t go in the toilet then he will have to clean himself up. Hopefully he’ll get the picture quick.
My daughter had a potty by toilet she would go in every tine dad did( didn’t see anything ) but she would read a magazine while he did. But of course he was really faking just so she would go in and go. It worked
My youngest son had some trouble with potty training until we let him go naked around the house. He wouldnt pee or poop on my floor so the only other option was the toilet.
What worked with my kid is I made him clean himself up. Yes we had to go back and make sure it was done right and sometimes do hand over hand but he had to clean up his pants making sure poop went in the potty walk them to the washing machine and put them inside. We used stool we used reward nothing worked until he cleaned himself up and learned it’s less gross to go in the potty.
Maybe , just maybe he felt secure wearing. A nappy, some changes make a young one feel now he has no control over the changes , who cares for him, that might change. All linked to the change of being potty trained. Maybe no talk about using the potty, but lots of encouragement, and saying , you have done so well. And I’ll still be here for you. Say it in lots of different ways, the real worry may come out. But no pressure.
We made a big deal of my son when we were training him. We on sat on the toilet and made all the sounds and we did the ripe thing, then we waved it goodby
And said see mommy and daddy have to go potty to. He was surprised that we did the same thing as him. No problem after that. He liked waving I good bye. I think some times they are scared.
My youngest did this. He was/is a strong willed person. It got to the point he held it and developed a blockage. You really can’t force a child once they get adamant like that. Work with your pediatrician. Use Miralax if recommended. And don’t take it as a personal failure. Eventually they all go in the potty!
I went through this with my eldest son, took him to a specialist for pee n poop and found out the muscle inside his butt wasn’t working properly so he couldn’t feel the poo coming out. We started on a schedule of sitting for 10mins 3xday with a stool to put his feet on to get him in the correct sitting position. It helped immensely, he still had the occasional accident but not very often.
Ok if trauma and outside factors like autism aren’t a factor and this is a normal otherwise well adjusted child acting out… let him sit in it. You wanna poop on yourself then enjoy that. Chances are he’s already ruining clothes and whatnot so there it is. Clean himself up but only after letting him stew in that nastiness. It will stop quickly.
We had the same problem, but she was a little younger.
She was completly pee potty trained
Even the nights!
She only pooped in her pants.
Turned out she was scared that her poop was going away from her (like it belonged to her). She didnt want to leave it behind in the toilet or potty or what ever.
When I now think about it, its really weird haha but yeah it was a big thing.
I tried many things like you said above but nothing worked untill i came up with the stupid idea to tell her her poop had to go to the poop friends because the poop was also very alone and scared.
Ofcourse i told her the poopy friends where in the sewer so she had to poop on the toilet.
And she finaly did it.
Everytime she did it we waved it proudly goodbye.
They feel so much, what we dont feel.
She was Just scared.
Try to talk to your child. Cause clearly he knows pretty well how to do it. He only doesnt do it because some reason that you didnt figure out yet.
I hope it will help!
PS. I had a big laugh cause never before i wright a post with so many times the word poop in it.
Every time he poops his pants make him clean himself up. Tell him he needs a bath and make him get his own bath water. Make him do everything himself. And tell him he has to do this all himself every time he goes in his pants. I did that with my daughter, she hated getting baths. It only took like 2 days.
I’m sure this is frustrating and heartbreaking at the same time
I hope the pediatrician gives you some good insight and guidance.
The only thing I can think of is to try not to shame him or show anger when it happens. I think guiding him through how to properly clean himself up could help.
Hugs to you
Does He Walk On His Tip Toes ? Because My Son Had That Issue & His Pediatrician Sent Us To A Urologist& He Has Tethered Cord & Had Surgery In February To Fix It
I had to get a step stool for my son and had a pile of book for him to “read” and he would sit there for 30 minutes and sometimes longer until he went. I just left the door cracked open son I could help him wipe his butt when he was done
Before you start punishing him by making him clean himself up. I guess I would make sure he isn’t being hurt when going or that maybe he had a hard stool and it hurt him and that he thinks it’s the toilets fault. I would make sure even though you’re frustrated don’t let him know that because he may find that hard he is disappointing you and he’s doing it out of fear as well. Try the stool for comfort I seen someone suggest here. Try adding probiotic into his diet. It WONT hurt him and will only help in many ways. Try a Chiropractor too. I feel like this may be because he had a hard time going and related it to the toilet.
I hardly comment on these posts I just read them because I have a toddler. However allow me to deposit my OPINION please. To the Mom asking, my opinion is do what you feel you need to do to help your son understand that soiling his pants is not cool, but please find out why he is doing it. To the Mom/Mom’s saying make him clean up his mess I agree . Kids need to learn conseqences early. Be sure to reward him too for cleaning up his mess, leave out the negativity. What gets me is not one Mom commented on the post about “popping his bottom” see that’s the one comment that really doesn’t sit right with me. I’m all for discipline when it’s warrented I just firmly do not agree that potty training at any age deserves that kind of redirection. These are just my OPINIONS though…
Make him help clean it and himself up! He’s old enough.
4 is old enough for most kids to clean up the mess. Most, not all. That can be a deterrent if its just laziness or a phase.
See if he is struggling though, constipation can cause pain/discomfort issues which makes kids not want to go, and then they avoid it until it’s just too late. Make sure he’s hydrated, has a balanced healthy diet, and follow up with the pediatrician.
My Boy’s incentive was that it was fast clean-up to use the toilet. Then we had time to play outside, a game or something they liked. But, pooping in pants meant our clean-up time of messy bottom and clothes meant we had to cancel some of the fun as we didn’t have any more time.
He might be having issues with constipation, try giving him Miralax and see if that helps.
I agree the major change thing but at 4 1/2 years it’s time to get tough. Take away privileges such as grandma’s house. It’s would not be okay to poop his pants at grandma’s so he can’t fo until he figures out how to use the toilet. Get a pack of his favorites cartoon undies let him see them and then put them on top of the fridge and let him know they are for little boys who go potty in the toilet not his pants. Also go get the cloth training pants and make him wear them unlike pullups the make sure he feels everything he does in them. Finely make him clean then himself Ann’s clean up his mess. He’s a boy they don’t like to do that. Resolved all potty issues I had with my son in less than 2 weeks. My sister in desperation did the same with all 4 of her kids worked like a charm. Good luck
Talk to his doctor. Something may have happened
A stool softener like colase and a potty stool are probably your best bets.
I’m having the same issue he was doing so good aside from the pooping (he’d still poop his pants occasionally) then all of a sudden he refused to go in the toilet at all. He’d pee in his room, his bed, toy box, stairs everywhere I’ve tried taking privileges away (tv out of his room, won’t let him play video games ect) that’s not helping. Tried bribery (if you can’t go potty in the toilet you can’t go in the pool (no swim diaper will fit him)).He got mad and threw a tantrum but still won’t go potty. The only thing I know of that changed was my older son was coming home more. So I finally had to make an appointment with his PCP to rule out any other underlying conditions but I doubt they’ll find anything other than possible ADHD because it was also around the time my older son stared coming round that my 4yo started to refuse to sleep at night.
A lot of people seem to be under the impression that a child of almost 5 cannot comprehend how to wipe their own butts… it’s very weird considering that is the age that most neurotypical kids would be in kindergarten & be EXPECTED to know how to wipe their own behinds. If there is no cognitive issue & they’re doing this as some type of protest to a change in life then they need to wipe their own butts. I can see that some of the parents think that butt wiping isn’t in the childs wheelhouse but I promise if that kid can work an iPad they can wipe their own butte.
Pop his bottom. He is way to old to be popping on himself. And he knows better.
Potty training for dummies trained both my boys in only 2 wks, everyone needs to be following it if you do it. It was so great that my daycare bought copies to loan out to parents. Also theres a couple childrens books that help them with their anxiety and they are “Everybody poops” and “my potty”
Is he afraid of the hole in the toilet? It took me months to figure that one out. Have you asked him?
When did you go back to work…like recently?
Or was there a change in his life that would be big to him but small to you?
My 3 year old son was fully potty trained then reverted back to pooping in his pants (attention I think because of a new baby in the house) he got a shower once after pooping his pants because it was so much to clean him and he HATED the shower like was terrified of it. Boom. Hasn’t done it since
When my son ( less than 2 1/2) pooped his pants we went to the back yard for a wash down with the garden hose. That was the last time it happened.
Every child in their own time…some it just takes a little bit longer to get the hang of it.
My son will be four in a few days and wants nothing to do with peeing in the potty. He’s been pooping on the potty for close to 2 years. I wish I knew what the secret or trick was. I wanted to allow him to do it on his own or be “ready” before I pushed the issue. Only because I felt like I forced my older daughter and then it took her longer. But I’m kind of at my wits end with it…sick of diapers and wondering will he ever be “ready.” Every kid is different I guess.
Is there any changes going on at home? Any changes to the house, or to his schedule? Any changes going on with his friends? Any fighting? Even in private? Children typically regress like this whenever they sense subtle emotional turmoil. I know of a 5 year old who started to poop his pants every day. Turns out his parents were arguing a lot, and even though they do it in their bedroom, he can tell that something Is wrong. And he was not getting the focused attention that he needed.
If there is something happening at home, please don’t feel I’m judging or criticizing. I’m just asking to provide a different perspective.
Perhaps teaching him how to clean himself, or as others have said, perhaps he is constipated or just upset over pandemic life. I wish you luck! Potty training is exhausting
Seems mean but we got our son to potty that way! My husband would tell him are u a baby or a big boy?? Told him babies wear diapers! We kept at it & finally he bucked up & said Me Ain’t No Baby:poop: been using the potty every sense! &Every kids different that’s for sure:heavy_heart_exclamation:
Give him alittle spanking. If praising isn’t working then punish. Tell him he did bad and that he needs to use the potty. All i had to do was get on to my son and take away something he likes to get him to stop. I told him if he wanted it back he had to earn it and go potty on the toliet for 3 days and continue to potty on toliet or ill take it away again.
Is it because he’s constipated? My daughter (2.5 years old) will do that because it hurts more to sit on potty with harder poop. So she runs around and “accidently on purpose” goes in her pants from time to time. My older son was harder I was told to give him a cold shower when he had an accident which was just quick rinse in shower to give a Lil shock, only had to happen once… seems terrible but desperate times.
I would be concerned “something” happened…
Tell him he’ll hsve to wear diapers again like when he,was a baby. Then he’ll have to stay home like babies,do.
With my 2 younger boys I told them mama wasn’t gonna clean them up anymore if they pooped in their pants, and after a few times of me just grabbing wipes for them and starting the shower and letting them do it themselves, they learned and now they are all using the washroom on their own.
That seems to be behavioral. Maybe try doing nothing at all till u see the DR
Sometimes pooping in their pants at an older age. Is maybe anxiety or behavioral. I peed the bed embarrassing til I was 10 yrs old. Talk to your doc or it could be internal probs.for u:kissing_heart:.
You put him in his underwear let him make that decision poop his pants and he stays that way till he takes a bath and goes to bed! He old enough to know to go to the bathroom
I dont have any advice or tips I just wanna tell you about my experience my now 12 year old boy was having the same issue until he was 7 and at 1st I thought it was plain laziness so after he hit a certain age I would give him time outs or send him to his room and then I finally took him to the doctor (I should have done this along time ago) and find out when he was born his butthole was bigger then it should have been and he never felt it coming out. They gave him some medicine and after about 6 months to a year he was using the toilet… now at the age of 12 he doesn’t poop his pants… every kid is different but I would talk to your doctor
My little boy 4 in July and has only just started pooing on the toilet some time now he even asks for a nappy on…I spoke to nursery/school and they have helped massively I spoken to my gp and she even said its common in children to sometime go backwards if they makes sense just be patient and they going into the toilet with him or get his teacher to go with him I kno it can be hard but just keep reminding him to go …other then that dont be to hard on your self your smashing it as a mummy xxx
Have you tried going to the toilet yourself with him there? Or his dad, my son hated the potty, bought him one that looked like a toilet and flushed etc. He liked that more but what got him doing it was seeing an adult doing it, good luck!
So a counselor once told us a story that a lil boy kept having the same issue so the mom took like 30 minutes out of the day to do something he liked which he chose cooking he would help her make dinner almost every day and in about a month he stopped popping in his pants I don’t know if this will help good luck momma ur doing great
All kids progress and regress differently, just know your doing an amazing job xxxx
I second what Gemma kenwright had said above I downloaded this App which my Son found hilarious he goes for a poo on the toilet no problem now he was 6, all kids progress at different times don’t be too hard on yourself you’ve got this Good luck x
My daughter is 3 and a half, fully dry through the day but will not poop on the toilet or potty for anything! She will only poop in the night and in a nappy, and if she doesn’t have a nappy on she will hold it until she’s in pain so I’d rather just put one on her so she’s not in pain. Any tips would be much appreciated x
Your doing a great job he will go to the toilet as soon as he sees kids of his own age going keep up the good work
My nephew went through the same issue. It turned out that he had a UTI. The symptoms are different in children that adults. I did not know this.
Y’all are starting way to late. Just put a little potty chair on the floor by 2yrs & put them in underwear. Then don’t stress about it. If they feel uncomfortable, then say “uh oh, go in the potty” next time.
Put a target in the toilet and give him a reward if he can hit it
My son was the same! He’s 4 on the 27th and kept pooing in pants at preschool and home… went on for a few months and both me and preschool was concerned… contacted the doctor and my son heard me on the phone talking about what was happening etc and when I got off the phone he was like “me not go to the doctor” and since then we’ve had no accidents he did have a check up and all seems well, xx
Its normal don’t worry, he will grow out of it x
Has he had bad constipation at all?
Check his environment. Could be a sign of abuse. Sorry to say that but it is.
Download this. It’s free and share it with him.
It’s weird that he was completely potty trained and now he’s pooping in his pants. He’s 4 1/2, you can talk to him. Something must’ve happened that scared him or made him go backwards. Ask him why he’s pooping in his pants. What happened? Ask him if the he has trouble wiping himself or it could be many reasons but ask him and you can get yo the bottom of this. Tell him you’ll assist him while he uses the rest room. There’s a reason and you should find out. Good luck!
Maybe if you got a doctor for kids would help a lot, and they can find out why he is doing this! It could be so many things he’s lazy, he wants Attention! do have another child? that could be it? so seeing a doctor really help him! I wish you best!!!
Instead of rewarding him for not pooping in his pants try discipline for pooping in his pants.Take things away he likes and tell him when he stops pooping in his pants like a big boy he gets it back.You said he knew how to do it then stopped and started again.Kids need to learn discipline not just rewards.41/2 is certainly old enough to know better.
Perhaps a ‘goodie’ for success - a prize or treat for not pooping in the pants.
If you poop your pants No Goodie.
It’s gotta be something they really really want…
Not the time for punishment for sure. Praise when he poops in potty.
So everytime he poops his pants what do you do? You clean him up right away right? Next time sit him in the bathtub and tell him you will be back as soon as you get time, cause you are really busy. Set him in there cloths and all (no water). Stand around the to make sure he is ok. Tell him mommy is real busy right now and I’ll be back to clean you up when I get time. Just be really busy for awhile. If he whines, or cries. Tell him I’ll be back to get you when I have time. Mommies really busy.
My friend told me her friend suggested that, and it worked. Sometimes kids are just scared of big toilets or whatever. And don’t leave him in there very long, but let him know that you aren’t always available to clean it up right away. Good luck.
The cartoon underwear usually works because they don’t want to mess it up however you might be focusing on his bowel program too much . If you let him wear it longer even though that’s distasteful it might help.
I had the same issue with my daughter. She’d pee fine on the toilet but just would keep pooping herself. She was, in her own words, “scared to poop” in the potty. It got to the point where I sat her down and made her sit on the toilet until she pooped. Then when she FINALLY pooped I made a huge exaggerated deal out of it about how awesome she was, how proud I was of her and how there was nothing to be scared of. It seemed to work for her.
Good luck momma! You got this!
I would rule out any medical issues first and even worry about some type of abuse.
Once those are all clear then some of the above suggestions should work!
The pediatrician will have some good advice so I’d have check the kid over…My son did this just because he was too lazy to stop playing…but I had my son help me rinse the diapers and that made him do it less…He pooped in diaper all the time but as soon as I had him watch me rinse he did it less often then not at all…it was a bad time money wise so I had to use cloth diapers.
Try putting him back in nappies , he is old enough to know about toilet , tell him he can’t be a big boy and go to school untill he can go to toilet.
My daughter is 3.5 and she started the same thing a couple months ago. Figured out that it was hurting and she was just scared so I started holding her hand when she pooped and telling her how to relax instead of straining. We do a couple deep breaths and on the third she’ll push, and since we started doing that she hasn’t pooped in her panties again.
Has their been any kind of change or trauma? Things like that can set a child back. If they go to day care, has there been a change in staff, is one of the staff members not as nice? Just some things to think about.