Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Potty Training a Toddler in Three Days... OR... How My 19 Month Old Potty Trained Himself! part 1

WARNING: If you are not the parent of a young child, you will probably not appreciate this post. There will be plenty of "potty talk!"

To anyone who may have to potty train in the future, this is for you. I will start out by saying that I am NOT an expert, this is only what we did. There are plenty of options out there for buying books about potty training in 3 days, but that isn't what we did (not to say I didn't consider it! I wanted to try it on our own first).

I will start at the beginning, because I think it has played a vital role in Will's potty training. We started out cloth diapering  at birth. It was mainly for monetary reasons (when I heard the savings were in the THOUSANDS, I was sold!), but I had also heard that cloth diapering can often produce young potty trainers- the cloth diapers do not wick away moisture like disposables do. As they get older, they can associate the sensation of needing to urinate with the result of a wet diaper.

Around 9 months, when Will started to really get some solid foods down, I started to recognize his #2 cues. Moms of toddlers, you know what I am talking about... red faced and grunting, it's pretty obvious. There are lots of cloth diaper options for dealing with poop, but I hated my sprayer and didn't want to deal with that. I bought a potty seat ( for our toilet (it is soft versus hard plastic, so he didn't mind sitting on it- sort of like a BUMBO in material. Target also sells them), and starting putting him on there regularly when he had to go #2. I would also put him on it before a bath sometimes, and many times he would urinate, too.

Fast forward to about 13 months, and he would run to our bathroom door (that we always kept closed) and start knocking. He started to recognize his clues on his own for #2 and would let me know when he needed to go.

Around this time, I bought a couple of "little" potty seats so that he could sit and go without me needing to hover over him, and make sure that he didn't fall off of the regular toilet. IKEA has some amazing seats (for cheap!) so I bought a couple of those.

THIS one is under $5 and

THIS is my favorite at just under $10.

At 15 months, he also started letting us know when he needed to "pee-pee." He would be fully diapered, and he would verbally let us know that he needed to use the toilet. I would remove his diaper, and he would often go. I started researching early potty training around this time, and all of the cues that they recommended were there. He was verbal, he was very interested and aware of what was going on with his body. I wanted to start the process around then, but around the same time decided to babysit an older child over the Summer. That sort of ended my potty training plans, because what 10 year old boy wants to see a naked toddler running around?!

Will also started getting increasingly irritated when we would be out and about, and he "couldn't" use the potty. J and I would remind him that he had a diaper on and tell him to just GO in the diaper. He was not happy. I realized that we were encouraging exactly what we didn't want to- we were telling him to ignore the feeling of needing to go to the bathroom, and his desire to stay dry. I was afraid this would backfire on me later on, and decided to do the three day method while we were on a babysitting break... which brings me to today!

We just completed day three, and I kept some records throughout those days to write about our experience... which will be my next post!

Potty Training a Toddler in Three Days... OR... How My 19 Month Old Potty Trained Himself! Part 2

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