We have made it to the other side of diapers, for Oakley at least. She turned 27 months a few days ago and has been fully potty trained for well over a month. I promised myself I would write this blog in hopes of bringing some peace to stressed out moms and dads. Again, I am not an expert, simply a mom sharing her experience. Take it for what it’s worth.
I had no expectations. No “set date” I needed to potty train Oakley by, I know some parents have to have it done by daycare or preschool or whatever. I also despise the term “potty train” but we will roll with it. I didn’t care, honestly, if she was in diapers until she was five years old. I personally prefer to deal with diapers than clean a mess off the floor or out of a carseat.
Oakley started becoming very interested in the toilet and when Josh or I would go to the bathroom. Every time we did, we explained what we were doing. Pulling pants down, sitting down, peeing, pooping, wiping, washing hands, etc. EVERY. SINGLE. TIME. For weeks.
Around the time she turned two I decided I would start to see if she would pee on her little potty. To my surprise, she would if I timed it right. However, it was sporadic, random, and I really shouldn’t have attempted it unless I was ready to go all in. She never left diapers at that time and truthfully, she wasn’t ready. So we started again later.
As a side note, the little potty is very beneficial for them- especially to poop. It’s a disaster on one’s pelvic floor if you can’t push against something while pooping- even for adults. So please, get a squatty potty if you don’t already have one. A stool for a regular sized toilet accomplishes the same goal as a little potty- independence and foot pressure. I left her little potty out where she could see it daily (it sat in our dining room).
During that time, I would ask her if she was peeing or pooping in her diaper when she would run to her little corner. Sometimes she would announce it, other times she wouldn’t. When she woke up in the morning and I took her nighttime diaper off, I would always ask her if she just peed or pooped too, sometimes she would know and sometimes she wouldn’t. Every time I would change her diaper, I would tell her what she did. She then started becoming very interested when I would change Dean’s diaper which also helped with repetition.
One day she finally took her diaper off and peed in her little potty on her own. I figured that was as good of clue as any that she was ready to be completely diaper free during the day (she is still diapered at night as she is in a crib). For weeks I would set an alarm on my phone to ask her every 90 minutes if she needed to pee or poop. She loves washing her hands so I would tell her she couldn’t wash her hands unless she went to the bathroom and most the time, she had to go. During the last few warm weeks of summer, we also used an outdoor potty that SHE LOVED going on. Kids are weird man.
Now she can hold it, lets me know when she has to go, and hasn’t had an accident in weeks. She loves telling people she’s wearing big girl undies and no diaper. The only tough part has been timing the bathroom trips around going to the gym, car rides to the farm, etc but I am so proud of her!
I’m sorry that there isn’t anything revolutionary or ground breaking in this blog. Just lots of patience, not scolding her when she had an accident, and lots of repetition.