Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Oh Mader Truck!

Definition of Bribery - the practice of offering something (Mader, Sally, and Lightning McQueen) in order to gain an illicit advantage.

Yes I will admit that I do hope to gain an advantage, although I would hope in the world of parenting it wouldn't be considered "illicit"! You see, I have resorted to the act of bribery to encourage our youngest to complete the potty training stage. He mastered the first stage with speed and enthusiasm (especially when given the opportunity to water the grass in 10 states during our summer vacation). It was the second and oh-so-nasty stage where he has put up considerable resistance. We have tried everything.

Stickers on the potty, stickers on the wall, M & M's (they gave him the runs), a foot-tall Batman, a box of BC Builder Dinosaur toys, avoidance of a nap, making him clean up the mess, wearing a diaper, not wearing a diaper (bad idea), fiber-filled foods.....you name it but apart from Spider-Man coming over for dinner I really felt like we had covered all the *creative* ways to encourage this boy.

That was until the Cars movie came out and he was given the "Mader truck". When I saw the love and adoration that he poured into this little die-cast truck I knew immediately - "I'll keep that toy hostage in return for some potty pooping!!!!" It's mean, I know but hey I'm getting desperate here!

Well it has worked like a charm yet also failed miserably. There have been days where he has earned that Mader truck, then a Sally car, and even Lightning McQueen. But in the act of a typical three year old, he regressed and with the saddest face kissed each of those little metal treasures and told them goodbye as I placed them on top of the fridge..... again & again (we keep the tokens on the fridge as a visual reminder of "what could be").

We all know these trials pass and as our pediatricians and mothers are always quick to tell us: "he won't go to college like that". O.K. while this may be true it doesn't serve as very practical advice for how to cope at this moment!

Seriously, that advice is under the assumption that he MAKES it to college!!! Let's see how this day goes and at the end of it all if our boy goes to sleep with his Mader truck then we know there has been a victory :)


Jenn said...

I know what you mean. When we take something away, we put it on top of the fridge too - although sometimes I need more room! Hang in there - when we were potty training Coleman, I wondered 'could I just graduate him to depends or something?'

Jenn said...

I took my last name off my blog and the Chester part and just left Virginia.

Me said...

Hang in there! Aidan just picked it up early this year (he was 5!) and I thought we'd never get it. We tried it all- yelling at him, not yelling, diapers, no diapers, rewards, consequences, you name it. I have sticker charts that did no good, and toys that were bought as bribes and were given out only to be taken back in a day or so. The only thing I can say is that he truly did have to do it on his own time- and it also helped when his teachers at pre-school were incorporated into the process, too. They would tell him on Friday that if he pooped in the potty all weekend and didn't have any accidents, they would get him a special treat (usually a sucker or something). I guess he wanted to impress them more than me, cause he did it every weekend for them. Go fig.

Anyway, good to see you here! I started one a long time ago and wrote a few things and then forgot about it- I should really update that thing!

Tiffany said...

You know the trouble I had with not my little stinky boys, but my precious, pretty in pink little girl! I'm liftin' you up right now my friend. Hang in there....y'all are making some great stories to embarass Sam when he starts to date the girls!

Amy said...

I had a *terrible* time training my middle child. He knew how to use the potty and had shown me he was able, but decided he didn't want to. He was almost four years old. I tried bribery, stickers, etc. and finally had to get out the big guns. Every time he went in his pants on purpose I took something away. First his train set, then his stuffed bunny, then his pants....finally when the underwear was gone for few hours he caved and told me he would use the potty. And he did! After that I never had a problem again.

My daughter refuses to do "number two" on the potty so I'll be picking up some bribery treats in the next couple days :)