Friday, March 22, 2013

Potty Training

I feel comfortable enough putting this out here, because pretty much everyone has potty trained someone or something in their lives. If you have dogs or rabbits or kids or husbands (ha!) I hope you'll forgive me for the content of this post :)

I also have to preface this post with this: I'm not promoting any particular training plan and I don't expect this to work for everyone the way it worked for us. Every child and family is different, so I'm just sharing how this process worked for us in case it might help someone else.

For a few weeks now, Simon has been going up to the toilet, and "pulling" the front of his diaper down, like Daddy. A few times I've taken his diaper off and let him stand there, and a few times he was able to go in the toilet. But mostly, it's just been mimicry. This last week though, he seemed particularly interested, and I joked with L before he left for work that maybe we'd be potty training that day. And then I realized I should go all in if I wanted to help Simon (and myself), so I did some quick research, and fortunately had already bought stickers and candy for the occasion.
Day 1:
We spent all day in the bathroom. Yes, you read that right. We have no area in our house that is not carpeted (ugh), so I figured hanging out in the bathroom would be a good limited area to stage this first day. I took off all his clothes but a t-shirt so there was nothing to mimic a diaper in his mind. We had n.etflix on the ipad, some toys, snacks and lots of water/juice. I asked him every 10-15 minutes if he needed to pee, and he always said no. So I learned to start saying, "It's time to pee." And he'd go stand on the stool in front of the toilet, and try. That first day he went 19 times in the toilet. One sticker was awarded per pee, and two would be awarded for poops (none this day). Getting three stickers in a row meant a piece of candy.
We did go outside after L got home, and I focused on dinner. His only accident of the day was then. And those are fine, because it's a reminder for him of why pee (or poop) goes in the potty.
Nap and Nighttime are still diapered. I dont' know that I'm going to mess with that right now...I can handle two diapers at the moment.

Day 2:
We spent another morning in the bathroom. Going poop in the potty is going to be a harder task, because it's not a timed occasion or Simon. It's sporadic and not always daily. So this morning I missed it happening, and we just worked on putting it in the potty after it happened. I still had him half naked, and that helped with ease when he went potty, so he didn't have to pull anything down. We still operated on a 15 minute schedule. 21 successful times today. 2 accidents.
We ventured to the rest of the house in the afternoon. And we did go outside in 20 minute increments. I put him commando in loose pants. No complaints about coming in to pee, as long as I reiterated that we'd be going back outside. Same with pauses in playing with toys, etc.

Day 3:
Simon started telling me when he needed to pee, and we knocked off our first sticker chart because it was already full! While at home, I still have him half naked. We went out in the morning to get the mail, and still had him commando in loose pants. No accidents. And another trip out in the afternoon with no accident. We moved to 15-20 minute increments between pee checks, when I had to remind him.
And this ended the "intense" potty training, because he seemed to grasp the concept really well.

Day 4:
We went to a friend's house for 3 hours this day, still commando in loose pants. Simon did great going in the toilet there, and there were no accidents. I checked on him every 30 minutes, or when I knew he was drinking more. We also went out to eat at a restaurant in town later in the day, and he managed fine there too. I'm pretty stinkin' proud of him at this point. My kid's a rockstar when it comes to peeing.

Day 5:
Today we went to my Grandma's house, and he was comfortable going there, with no accidents. Another day commando in loose pants. I might follow through with that for a while yet, just so he doesn't have additional underwear to try and pull down too, and maybe until we have a better handle on pooping. I don't want to throw underwear on him and it feel enough like a diaper that he doesn't bother trying to poop on the toilet.
All in all, I feel pretty lucky that he has handled it so well so far. I'm kinda waiting for him to regress or something, and if he does, we'll just adjust and do what we need to do. But that's where we are at right now. The three day intense training was rather exhausting...I literally spent every waking moment at his side, on the floor or bent over him. But it seemed like a good move for us to do, and Simon responded to it well. If he hadn't, we would have tried something else.

So there's that. Look forward to some future posts about artsy related things. A good friend planted an idea in my head, and I hope to expound on it here. Happy Weekend to you all, and sending lots of love.


  1. I was very interested to read this, thanks for sharing your experience! Another friend of mine had shared her manual from a 3 day potty training boot camp that sounds very similar to and I'm thinking when we're ready this may be the method we try, we'll see. Glad to hear it went so smoothly for you guys and hope Simon continues to rock the potty training!

  2. Despite having a large family, potty training is something I'm so lazy at.
    I know I've missed several windows of opportunity with Ernest because *I* wasn't ready to potty train, but I'm thinking this Easter holidays might be the right time. I'm not normally a stickers/rewards kind of Mummy, but I might fish out my star stickers for this occassion. Thanks for the butt kicking with this post! :)

    1. It's hard to know when, and then for us to try and be ready at the same time?? Ugh! I hope that whenever it is the right time for you and Ernest, that it goes really well!

  3. That is awesome!!! I admit, potty training is something I dread, but E is starting to show some interest; key word, some.