What the hell is elimination communication (EC)? It is parents learning their babies’ cues when they need to do a poo or wee and acting upon them so that the baby doesn’t have to go in a nappy. Because, to be honest, who would be happy to soil themselves if they don’t have to? Babies feel the same way.
I heard about EC when I was pregnant and thought that it sounded like an excellent idea. You can start from birth, but what with our baby being in hospital for a few weeks and then having so many problems with breastfeeding and weight gain, it slipped of the radar a bit. Until a few weeks ago.
I was a bit sceptical, to be honest. However, a month down the line I am seriously impressed. We started off looking for poo cues, as this is a lot easier than wee cues (although actually they’re quite similar in our girl). Our little cheeky chops tends to go red between the eyebrows and pauses for a few moments, looking (and sounding!) as though she is visibly straining. When I saw her doing this, I would very quickly pop her on to our special small potty and as she did her poo I would make a straining noise. Sometimes she would do a wee at the same time as a poo and I would make a ‘pssssssst’ sound too.
Fast forward a few weeks and because of her horrid teething and stealth poo nappy rash, the small one has been mainly nappy-free this week except for sleeps. We have had two small wee accidents, but that’s it. She will do all her poos on the potty and most of her wees. She even cried yesterday when I put a nappy on her before bed. I got the feeling she was trying to tell me something and so I popped her on the potty and she did a massive wee. I just make sure to put her on the potty frequently and ask her if she has a ‘straining noise’ or a ‘psssst’. She then strains a little and if there’s something there……out it comes. Result!
Some people think that EC is about early potty training. It isn’t really. It’s more about understanding your babies’ cues and then training them to associate the sounds you make with doing a wee or poo. Follow this up with giving them plenty of opportunities to do their business on a potty and there’s a good chance they will oblige. I think Rosa really appreciates not being in a dirty nappy so often. You can do EC on a full or part-time basis. I think for us in the day when we’re at home is right for now. Maybe we’ll do more when she’s older. Having a 9 month old baby who regularly uses a potty is astounding, and so much better for her and us!