My girl has just turned three and i am not sure whether to try and potty train her and advise is lacking for partial withholders.
We tried potty training her about 8 months ago and she was willing but we stopped as we found she just wasn't letting us know she needs a wee or poo - there were just too many accidents - she just didnt yet seem to recognise when she needed to go. She was good with wees (and sometimes poos) if we actively took her to the loo at the right time.
The trouble we have is that her poos are numerous 2-10 times per day as she actively tries to resist them by clunching her butt cheeks together, and poos come out bit by bit. We found this unmanagable as we were wasting so many knickers so we stopped with the view to try and fix the witholding first (trying to encourage drinking more in general and prune juice). She already eats lots of fruit and veg.
The witholding now seems worse so i have regrets, every day the poos are numerous with no predictable regularity. She will hide to poo, and she hates to have her nappy changed, avoiding it as long as possible and denies she's poo'd. She gets a sore bum and labia doing this and refuses cream to help. Poos are usually relatively soft, but sometimes she seems to struggle - im confused as to whether she is purely struggling to keep them in, of if they hurt. she has occasionally complained that her tummy hurts, although i dont know if this is constipation or whether its reflux (she has suffered reflux since birth and was on domperidone for 4 weeks and ranitidine until 9 months). i don't know how long she has been witholding but it is now daily issue whereas it used to be sporadic.
i took her to doctor about 6 months ago...doc couldn't feel any issue in bowels but thought she might withold as bumhole looked sore. she advised sudocream and prescribed cosmocol 1 sachet per day. we only used for couple days as her reflux flared up - i then read on the label that cosmocol can be an issue with reflux sufferers so we havent tried it since (we have also all been ill with virus after virus for months over winter, with birth of out second baby thrown in the mix so had little time to address the pooping issue).
All advise seems to say NOT to try and potty train unless witholding and/or constipation is fixed first. my question is; as we don't know route cause of her witholding, could potty training actually help? since she hates to have nappy changed and gets sore from this i wonder if vicious cycle could be broken if she at least is not weeing and sitting in a saturated poopy nappy. Or if the issue stems from her not liking the sensation of pooing in her nappy. i dont want to make things worse though, if potty training is the wrong course of action. any advise appreciated!!
sorry for waffly background - typing one handed with left hand as 4 month old sleeping in my arms!