Stick and Carrot

The Feminist Breeder wrote recently about how a fish potty trained her child.  Her post really got me thinking.  I’m sure you all remember reading about the issues we’ve been having with Jack only using the potty at daycare.  Potty learning has been going on for about a year now!  And while I don’t really want to get Jack a fish in order to get him potty trained (I have a fish and two cats to take care of already!), I really couldn’t come up with any better solutions…it’s been A YEAR, after all.

Stickers, candy, games – none of it was working to entice Jack to use the potty at home.  I tried laying off completely and that didn’t make a difference either.  I bought him awesome underwear with Buzz Lightyear on them and “special” SpongeBob foam soap…no go.  But yesterday, I put a little more thought into it.  I attempted to make it more personal.  I know Jack is a lot like me, you see.  So I asked myself what I would be motivated by…what bribe will get me almost every time?  The answer is money.  Money is like magic.  Money can get things!  Money can get almost anything your heart desires!  Money is power and clearly that is what Jack wants.

I proceeded to tell Jack that I would give him money for using the potty.  I explained that he could save up the money he gets (LOTS of money for using the potty LOTS) and when he had enough, he could buy a Transformer.  He has been rather stuck on Transformers and loves robots in general, so the bribe had an immediate impact.  He started asking questions – what color Transformer?  What would the Transformer’s name be?  And that kid couldn’t get his pants down fast enough!

He’s used the potty twice, so I’m not going to go and call this success just yet…but it’s progress for sure.  Right now Jack gets to put his money in a piggy bank.  After he woke up this morning asking if it was time to get a Transformer, I decided we needed a way for him to see how much money he has.  I plan to get a clear container and pick a decent spot to mark with marker…when he fills it to the marker line, I’ll take him to buy a Transformer.

I just hope I can find somewhere that sells them…any suggestions?