Lessons in Potty Training

While many other (sane) people were enjoying their Labour Day Long Weekend, Brian and I decided that it was the perfect time to start potty training Jay. He has been asking about his underwear (“anywhere” as he calls them) and knows that his buddy Stella gets a whole jelly bean every time she goes on the potty so I have known for a while that it was all up to whenever I wanted to take the plunge. And we kind of dove in head first with promising results!

I have read a lot of blogger input about this topic and the consensus that I have been hearing is the 3 day no-pants method works the best for them to “get it”. So far he has only had 2 accidents. Both of which happened while he was eating and strapped to his booster seat. So I am thinking he didn’t know he was allowed to get out to pee? Or was too distracted by his mouth he stopped thinking about his other end. Anyway, here is what worked for us:

  • Wait until your child is interested in the potty/underwear/jelly bean rewards. Jay LOVES the idea of wearing underwear and at daycare would ask to go on the potty when Stella would, he just wouldn’t know what to do once he got there.
  • Get them excited! A couple days before we started I was talking up wearing underwear and going in the potty, etc.
  • Find what works for you. We quickly realized that Jay is all about convenience so a portable potty works best for us. We also find that the faster he can sit on it, the better as his warning signs don’t leave much time to take off layers (he is getting better at noticing the sensations beforehand though).
  • so. much. praise. One day he pooped the size of a chocolate chip but hey we celebrated like it was 1999 AND he got 2 jelly beans.
  • Check in every hour. This tip is what our dayhome does and it saved me a lot of stress constantly asking him “do you have to pee? are you sure? do you have to potty? what about now?” Keep asking but have that hour in your mind and whether he thinks he has to go or not he is sitting on it for a few minutes just in case.
  • How you say things can make all the difference. Not so much in the beginning of our potty adventure but more so now that he gets the routine and tries to manipulate the system. Most times I don’t get a reaction if I ask if he has to pee but if I ask him if he wants a jelly bean that usually gets the ball rolling and the underwear coming off. Also, every day he has a favourite colour of jellybean that he wants so if he isn’t responding to “do you want a jellybean?” then “Oh do you want a BLUE jelly bean??” I find just that small change makes a big difference some days.

Again, this is just our journey with one kid but hopefully this gives some insight for some parents who are getting ready to take the plunge!