We designed this site in order to keep in touch with friends and family who are far away and in order to communicate with other adoptive families from around the world.

When we first started researching this wonderful way to become a family we read everything we could get our hands on. Even though there are a lot of great books out there, nothing was as informative or touching as the blogs we found by adoptees, biological parents, and adoptive families. So we are writing this blog now in hopes of returning the favor. We hope that if you are dear to us you will enjoy keeping up with our adventures. If you are someone out there involved in a part of the adoption triad we hope you will find information and comfort here and provide us with some of your own!

If you would like to get in touch with us we can be reached at:
Feel free to stop by anytime. We're happy to share our family story.

Take care,
Brian and Rosemary

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Potty Trained?

All about the potty training:
I wanted to do a post on this because a lot of people have had questions about the subject and I know that I myself was very curious/worried about where Button would be in the process before we traveled so I wanted to make sure I gave details for families coming behind.

Button was 18-months-old when we brought him home and he was NOT in any way potty trained. His foster family's form of waist management for Button was, when at home, for him to "go" wherever he went and then they just cleaned it up. Because they had a simple plank-floor home with very few possessions this may have posed less of a problem than we would imagine. When away from home he wore a cloth or disposable diaper. Due to this, Button rarely wore pants when at home, but usually a long shirt or a t-shirt and loose shorts. This method is a common, culturally accepted, part of childrearing in Thailand (and many other countries).

Some adoptive families don't want to talk about this because they don't want their children (and foster families) to be judged by small minded people (understandable) but I feel comfortable just saying this is one thing that is done differently in a different culture and it is perfectly acceptable. Americans don't do it that way, and I am happy about that, but it's ok that Thai society is more comfortable with body function. A superior attitude might be simple to feel but it's healthy to remember that we are one of the few countries with the money and resources to diaper our children 24-hours a day.

Button is much more conscious of his body functions that the average American diaper trained child of his age probably due to actually having been able to feel himself going to the bathroom for the last 18 months. When he does his business he tells us ASAP and then when I ask, "Do you want Mommy to change your diaper?" he will shake his head yes. So while he is not potty trained he is aware of his bowel function and I am trying to keep him from loosing that awareness with all of our plastic sterility. I have hopes (naive though they may be) that this will aid in our eventual potty training.

The other thing I will say is that when we first met Button we accomplished a diaper change under the watchful eye of his social worker, the amazing Mo, in our hotel room. He was placid as a summer lake. I thought, "Fantastic! No problem! The kid doesn't mind diaper changes!" The thing was that as long as diaper changes remained infrequent they were kind of a novelty. So that was cool. When Button realized that he would be wearing said diaper all the time and there would be no more peeing on the floor and these diaper changes would occur regularly every two hours he sort of went berzerk. For the next 3 weeks diaper changes were a fight to the finish. Now we pretty much have it under control but for a while there it was American Gladiator in the nursery.



Jessica said...

We HAVE been wanting to know, so thank you. This is another post that I made sure that Matt and I both read because it was just the info we needed. Good luck with potty training.

a Tonggu Momma said...

The Chinese actually have split pants for the winter months to deal with this. The Tongginator was younger at the time of adoption, though, so she had absolutely no awareness whatsoever.

Robin and Kyle said...

Tea acted as if his diapers were lined with hot chili oil for the first month. I was sure the neighbors were going to call social services whenever we changed a diaper!

Maci Miller said...

Sounds like you are doing a great job with the little guy! Ruby's in not potty trained and she just turned 3. I want to say that I think it's a GREAT thing that he is crying when either of you leave the room. A sure sign he is bonding!

Annie said...

I did not know this about Thailand's way of "going". :) This makes sense. like you said, due to the fact that they cannot afford to diaper/ clothe children all day long. I can see how this would be a frustrating and constricting challenge for Button to adjust to! You are doing a great job, Rosemary, understanding his transitions. You probably still have a ways to go with potty training since he is so young still, but his past experience may actually speed that up. Who knows? Here, girls and boys usually are going "potty" in a potty chair or toilet around early to mid two's. But poopy is several months later, and usually later than that for boys. keep up the good work!