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  1. #1
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    Default Rewards for 7 year old...

    Hello!

    So I would like to try again a reward system, to help my 7yo daughter to get potty-trained. The problem is that she is getting used to whatever we try super quickly and then she gets back to her usual one or two wet pants a day. For instance, she currently has a wobbl watch, which I found great really! except that now she pretends she doesn't feel it, so she won't stop her activity to go to the toilet. We have tried many things, but I haven't done too much rewards, because I just don't believe in rewards. The fact is I am quite a bad mother and instead of positive reinforcement I mostly do negative reinforcement I just can't help it, I try not to, but the way I have been raised, it's a constant fight for me to not do the same things as what I had as a child. So I am trying, but I am not incredibly successful. As a result, I usually make her feel like she won't succeed. I know what I should do, and I really want to try again. And for that I need some tools or any formal thing which will help me focus on positive parenting. I am willing to really give rewards a go. I am thinking maybe I should print that one chart http://www.bubhub.com.au/rewardcharts/reward2.pdf and tell her "at the end of each page there will be one big reward" (and tell her what exactly). So far I have: 1/ going to see a movie at the cinema, 2/ a pony lesson. Do you have other ideas? There are things I won't offer, and we basically don't allow much TV / screen. I was also thinking of adding little rewards for each cross on that chart, for instance one cross is one minute with video games (they are allowed video games sometimes once a week, so that would work). But I am not sure, the little brother is nearly the same age and I wouldn't prevent him from playing video games, so it may not sound so exciting for my daughter to earn a reward which her brother would have without any efforts (except that he's been potty trained for nearly three years now). Also, I am wondering if a child with that kind of reward chart wouldn't try and go to the toilet every five minutes (for micro-weewee) in order to reach the rewards faster? My daughter being so good at dodging every trick we set up for her, I can totally imagine her going every five minutes. So maybe I should tell her that there is a maximum of for instance seven ticks a day? (but then what, will she wet her pants after seven?) And what if she wets her pants 10 times a day and go to the toilet 10 times a day? it would be technically correct for the reward chart, but I certainly don't want that. So should it be instead one little reward for every day she didn't wet her pants, and after ten of these little rewards for instance then she earns one of these big rewards like pony riding...? Wouldn't it be too hard for her? wouldn't it also make her stop going to the toilet at all after her first wet pants (since I won't have a reward for today I won't go any more...)? I am not sure, I am a bit confused. I think I would prefer a reward for each day she hasn't wet her pants (as she can do it, really), but I am not sure. Maybe combine for instance:
    - one time to the toilet = one minute video game (not in the same time! it would happen once a week anyway),
    - every dry day, one big star or something, and then 10 stars = pony riding.
    What do you think?
    Also, does it sound fair (and is it such a good idea) that later we space out the big rewards? because I certainly can't affort pony rides every 10 days until she is 20. So if I space out, it could be for instance: 10 dry days = going to the movies, and after that another 15 dry days = pony ride, and after that another 20 dry days = a new scooter (or whatever), and so on and so forth until we reach her wildest dream for instance after another 60 dry days = a pet (yes that would be the best reward ever for her, even though I never wanted to use pet as a reward, if that could make her potty trained I would buy it right now...).

    Thanks for your help!

  2. #2
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    I just bought a big stock of some kind of girly trading cards, which I think will please my daughter. Plus, they all have some kind of codes to play online too, so it will be another little something. I think I will give her one for every dry day, and the opportunity to play them online for a few minutes once a week or something like that. And in addition one big reward every 15 - 20 - 30 dry days. So far I have got as "big rewards":
    - 5 dry days : one jewellry box (already bought) to build and paint
    - another 10 dry days : outing at the cinema
    - another 15 dry days : one toy of her choice at ToysRus (in my budget)
    - another 20 dry days : pony riding
    - another 25 dry days : one toy of her choice at ToysRus (bigger budget)
    If you have any comment / ideas, thanks...!

  3. #3
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    If you feel like she will only try up to the point when she gets the reward and then stops could you try doing a minus. Eg say she gets 5 days dry then gets a reward. Next time she is wet so she gets a minus meaning next time she has to get to 11 to make 10 dry days etc.
    Good luck it sounds really tough. Also I am guilty too of negative reinforcement and sometimes out of pure frustration it's a reaction that is very difficult to control.

  4. #4
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    Thanks for your help, Jontu! I am not sure about minus rewards. I was reading the other day general stuff about rewards, and I think I read that you shouldn't set up negative rewards or make it so it can be felt as a punishment (which would somehow reinforce negative behavior again). I think it is something like: by setting up that kind of negative thing, I'd say "look, you have failed". I think I am supposed to only focus on what's good and for instance say "it's OK, next time you will make it on time". Or maybe I misunderstood.

    I keep on reading things and getting ready to start rewards from Monday. I think I am nearly all set-up. I just need to buy little stars to show on her reward chart all the times she made it to the toilets.

  5. #5
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    Ok yes that makes sense. Kids respond more to positive than negative so you are right making a negative could just make her feel worse.
    I think you have a good plan in place and would be interested to see how things go. All the best

  6. #6
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    Since I am updating all my threads here...

    So about the rewards program I set up for my daughter... First of all, it didn't work. At all. I put it aside two weeks later, it was just no use. She really wanted to reach the rewards, but she couldn't. A month ago, we saw a pediatrician who asked me to give her laxatives. The first few days were a bit challenging (too much laxatives and you know...). But once we found the right amount of laxatives, she hadn't wet her pants at all. A few days after I noticed that this time we were making huge progress, I told her "oh wait, you have had dry days for three days now, I forgot about your reward chart, let's see where you were up to". And now we have dry days every day, helped with laxative and reward chart. In itself, the reward chart was useless, my daughter just couldn't and gave up trying. But with the laxatives to set her up on the right path, it's working greatly. There are little rewards (one for each dry day) (which she doesn't care for too much actually), and also big rewards such as the ones I mentioned earlier, and these ones she really focus on. We went last weekend to the movies, and that was her big reward. In about a week, if all goes well, she will reach the next big reward: we will go to a toy store where she will buy whatever she wants in our budget. I think this time it actually could work.


 

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