Sunday, January 18, 2009

Potty Training

I came home one day to my wife, Yvette. She did not look happy. She said, "I can't get him potty trained. You try. I saw autistic kids who were 4 and 5 years old who had still not been potty trained. I had no idea how David would do. He was three years old and a bit long in the tooth for diapers. I had no idea how to handle it and since we were considering taking David out of Developmental Pathways and into the Day Treatment Center, I went to see the woman who ran the center at the time. It was a rather lengthy consultation during which David messed his pants. That allowed me to bring up the issue of potty training with her. In her treatment center, I remember very few autistic kids who were potty trained. She was skeptical about David being able to train. Nevertheless, I pressed her on it. I do not remember many of the details of it. But she instructed me on the method.

That weekend I took David to potty train. We worked on it for quite a while. It was not working and I needed to go. So I picked David up and let him stand there while I went. After that, David was not so hard to get to go like the rest of us. I am not sure whether it was the method I was taught or the modeling. I suspect it was the modeling. When I brought David to the Day Treatment Center he became the model for other kids to learn to use the toilet.

Clearly, my son is a visual learner. I suspect that my modeling it for him was at least part of the reason he learned how to go by himself. I figure he just did not want me to show him any more. Fortunately, he does not remember any of that. David was autistic before this, so any trauma suffered was not the reason for his autism.

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