And we had given up pretty damned quickly, after what can only be described as "spiteful pooing".
But, with the toddler now quite a lot older, and mostly able to communicate what she needs, and with us both off work for a couple of weeks over Christmas, we thought now would be an ideal time to try potty training. SPOILER ALERT: we were totally wrong.
Day one, midday
Toddler is wearing her big girl pants. She is excited about this. We ask her to sit on the potty every so often. She does. Nothing comes out, but it's going really well. We should have this cracked in about an hour. Maybe two.
Day one, 1 p.m.
Toddler does a little wee in her pants. Reassure her that this is OK. Be relieved that we have "the accident" out of the way. Remind her the potty is for wee-wees. Change her, clean up. On with the day.
Day one, 2 p.m.
Toddler no longer wants to sit on her potty. Wees incessantly in her pants and then cries as she's upset. We tell her that's OK, and remind her that she can put her wee-wees in the potty. Start to do this through very slightly gritted teeth. Consider buying shares in Dettol.
Day one 6 p.m.
Toddler now refuses to go anywhere near potty, or toilet. Clutches herself screaming, "I don't want to wet my pants." She has no such qualms about weeing once she's sitting on my lap and wets my pants as well as hers. Right through my jeans. Neither of us have any clean clothes left.
TheBloke (TM) giggles as both the toddler and I with our bare bottoms hanging out, load our clothes into the washing machine.
We will try again tomorrow.
Day two, 7 a.m.
Toddler is still wearing nappy from overnight. But she won't eat breakfast, and is instead clutching herself and saying, "I wet my pants. Change me!" I try to explain to her that that's OK because she's wearing a nappy, but she doesn't get it.
We put her in her big girl pants.
Day two, 9 a.m.
Toddler has been crying for two hours and fidgeting like a cat on a hot tin roof. She is clearly desperate for the toilet (and great she's recognising the signs) but will not go anywhere near the potty or the toilet. In terms of bribery we have tried so far:
- Calling Grandma and Grandad
- Father Christmas (brings extra presents for girls who do wee-wee in their potties)
- More chocolate
- Star charts
- The fucking Elf on the Shelf
Eventually she wets her pants and is absolutely miserable. We put her back in nappies. This totally doesn't work.
Day two, 11 a.m.
Toddler now refuses to wee in her nappy either. To recap, now she refuses to wee in:
- Her nappy
- Her potty
- The toilet
- Her pants
She is incredibly uncomfortable and is crying a lot. We try and reassure her that it's OK just to let go. She won't. We try to reassure her that she can go to the potty. "Look! Mummy is on the toilet! Look, Daddy can sit on the potty!"
"I don't want to wee-wee," she said.
I explained to her that everybody wees and that your wee-wee has to come out sometime.
"NOOOOOO!" she screamed, inconsolable at the thought of ever urinating again.
And that, Ploggers, in an attempt to show her how weeing in a potty is fine, is how I ended up in the middle of our kitchen, pissing into a potty at 1 p.m. this afternoon.
If you ever decide to go down this route (which I heartily do not recommend), once you have exiled TheBloke (TM) and the video camera from the room, do try and remember that you might need toilet roll. I forgot this.
So at 1.03 p.m. this afternoon, I was calling up the stairs to the recently-exiled TheBloke (TM), who found me sitting in the middle of the kitchen over a pot of my own piss, shouting for toilet roll.
The toddler found the whole thing quite funny.
But sadly, still won't wee.