We actually had 3 failed attempts prior to this success: ages 1.6, 2, and 2.6. We tried every time our kid showed some signs of readiness and stopped every time we felt she wasn’t really into it yet. On our 4th attempt, at 2.9 years old, we finally did it! If you are a first time mom like me and you want potty training to be a fun learning experience for your toddler, here are the things I’ve learned while we’re on it that might be helpful to you.
Like any other task, it is very important that you do a few simple preps before diving in. If you have not read my previous post, here it is: Potty Training: 9 Tips Before You Start.
2. LET YOUR KID GET TO KNOW HER POTTY.
When you have finally bought a potty chair, you might be too excited to jump right in. Slow down and don’t put any pressure on your kid yet. I’ve learned that it is best to let her play with her potty first until she gets comfortable with it. Let her feel it’s hers. We allowed Mia to explore the parts, press the button that plays music as many times as she likes, carry it to different corners of the house, sit on it while she watched some videos, and everything else she wanted to do with it for 2 days.
3. WATCH OUT FOR SIGNS THAT SHE’S ABOUT TO GO!
You got to be on the look out for this! Grunting, squatting, making that “face”, don’t you dare miss it! LOL! Like what every parenting website says, “Timing is everything.”
On Day3, some poop ended up on the floor because I was somehow busy facebooking and I was late in bringing her to the potty!
Who’s gonna clean that? Doodidoodidoo..
4. BE CONSISTENT AND MAKE IT PART OF YOUR DAILY ROUTINE.
Consistency is key. If you do this today and not tomorrow, your kid won’t ever get it! As soon as she wakes up, before and after she naps, before she goes out of the house, and before she goes to bed at night, make it habit to go to the potty. CONSISTENTLY. But wait there’s more haha! After every meal and in between play times, ask again if she needs to pee or poop. You actually really need to remind them. It’s tedious… But it’s the only way… And when you succeed, it’s all worth it! 🙂
I know some would say you can potty train in just 3 days, but honestly, I think 5-7 days is a better time frame to show consistency.
Oh, and endure the foul smell. hehehe You probably have gotten used to it by now anyway. Let her know she’s not alone in this.
Remember if you don’t succeed with pooping today, you’re next chance is tomorrow. So try to make the most out of every opportunity.
6. USE UNDIES WHILE TRAINING.
We bought training diapers but we immediately switched to undies after Day2 because the pull-ups weren’t working. It didn’t give her the urge to run when she felt the need to pee. I’ve learned that they learn faster when they feel they’re wet. There was a “realization look” on Mia’s face when she first wet her undies. It was as if there was a thought bubble above her head saying “Oh, so that’s what happens when I don’t make it to the potty on time.”
Undies are easier to remove too. We didn’t let Mia wear shorts the entire week of training. Just panties.
7. ENCOURAGE and MAKE IT FUN!
Try to make it as fun as possible 🙂
Like I mentioned earlier, we tried these 3 different times and whenever we felt it wasn’t working, we stopped and tried again after a few months.
If at first you only succeed in peeing and not on pooping, don’t fret. It is quite hard for kids this age to sit for a long time until they produce. We gave Mia some books to read to keep her there until she was done. The music button also helped to entertain her while she was waiting to finish.
8. STAY CALM and DO NOT REPRIMAND.
One time, she said, “Mommy, look…wet floor!” She peed right next to her potty.
“Oh that’s alright. We’ll just clean it up and try again later.” (SMILE!)
Remember not to scold or reprimand your child when accidents happen. This is not bad behavior. Don’t ever make a big deal out if it or she might be scared to make the same mistake and refuse to give it another try.
9. BRING HER WITH YOU WHEN YOU GO.
Well, not necessarily all the time, twice or thrice might already be enough. I know, this sounds awkward… And it actually felt awkward for me too! Never thought there will come a point in my life that I had to demo how this is done. But by now you might have already noticed how kids like to copy what they see, in fact, everything they see. Almost all parenting articles will also tell you that MODELING is the best way to teach. Your trip to the bathroom will never be the same from now on. LOL.
The first time I brought Mia with me, I was surprised how she watched my every move. Her eyes followed how I did every step until I washed my hands. Take note… That’s the last step – the often forgotten step – washing of hands. If we want them to make it a habit, we need to start early.
10. MAKE EVERY SUCCESS A BIGGGGG DEAL!
Hoooooray! You did it! I’m so proud of you. You really did it! You tried your best and you did it! Sticker sticker!
Oh, did I say you did it? Hooooray! You did it!
Okay that was probably too much. But you don’t actually have to fake this. It actually feels that way! It’s really a HOORAY moment. haha
A little prep + time & patience + tiny rewards, you’ll surely pull it off as well.
To inspire you further, here’s how we are doing now: Our Potty Training Success
How about you, what’s your potty training style? Share in the comments. 🙂