Okay, the title ended up with a bad pun, but I'm keeping it anyway.
We've been working hard with Alex to get him toilet-trained. Yesterday we met with our behavioural specialist to go over what we've been doing. There are some unfortunate alarming signs. We're getting more BMs on the ceiling of his room at night, which suggests he is withholding until he has the privacy to get rid of them in his preferred method. There's also some doubt and confusion about whether or not he understands what we're asking him to do.
However, there is not much we can do about either of those issues except press on. The only possible solution to all of the issues (which sadly, include him licking his fingers clean rather than washing them) is to get him reliably toilet trained.
So we have to push on. We have to try and continue to maintain a positive atmosphere (something I flunked yesterday when I yelled at him for trying to use his fingers to put BM in the toilet for the fifth time in less than a minute) and give him opportunities for success. We have seen occasional signs of on-toilet production (very small and not enough to drop in the toilet) so we're going to start rewarding those with something extra (have to think of what). And she suggested we see if we can find a video or animation of someone going in the toilet, so that he can visually see what we are asking him to do.
On the plus side, all the other programs have gone beautifully. He does better at listening to us without whining and complaining. He doesn't bolt when we're out (although he does still drift) and comes back when we call him verbally. He's learned to tie his shoes and they're working on brushing his own hair. Since toileting is really falling into our laps at this point, we may be able to wrap up therapy come September. He and the therapists have worked incredibly hard and it's great to see the progress.