Over the last month we have slowly introduced the idea of potty training with our reluctant two year old. Previous to this he was very clearly hating on the very idea, put him near a potty (which we’ve actually had for a good year) and he screamed bloody murder.
I was very much in the mindset of we’ll wait till he’s completely ready and then master it in one week but as some of his friends were starting to potty train and he showed some interest I decided to go for it, bloody peer pressure!
So we whipped out the potty, went and chose some boxers, started reading an array of potty training books and embarked on our journey.
We have not yet successfully completed our potty training mission but here are some things I’ve learned so far . . .
1) Other mums: You will inevitably have those mummy friends who have already trained their mini ones and will make it sound so easy, they lie. I know this as I used to have a friend who had indeed toilet trained her daughter who at the age of four would insist on pooing on the floor, like their dog, yep. So when a mum tells you how their 18 month old is dry through the night and gets up to take himself to the toilet first thing in the morning don’t feel bad, smile, nod and then mentally add them to your bullshit list.
2) Being naked: Potty training involves your little one being naked a lot of the time, we have timed it well with the warm weather so it has worked out but it’s definitely something to consider in the Winter months. Also people who come round to visit who aren’t parents will find this amusing.
3) Keep it positive: I’ve been very conscious not to put too much pressure on Ollie as I don’t want him to associate potty training with negative feelings. Every time he does a wee on the potty we do a celebratory dance, cheer and high five. He also gets a sticker on his chart which seems to make him happy and feel like he’s achieving something. We’re all about the positivity.
4) Mess: It’s actually not as messy as you might think, I was very concerned that having carpet would be a nightmare but Ollie’s only ever had one accident at the beginning of potty training. He quite quickly got the idea that if he needs a wee he should sit on the potty. He also used the potty as a little chair for the first few weeks thinking it was a total game changer to sit closer to the TV.
5) The penis obsession starts: Boys, well my boy definitely became a lot more aware of his penis, I guess compared to having it concealed in a nappy all the time it’s great fun to be wild and free. He also felt it very important to point it out to me multiple times a day, I ended up running out of replies and have settled on ‘that’s lovely darling.’
6) Not interested: I’ve found that with Ollie he knows to go in the potty if he needs a wee but sometimes he doesn’t want to and he’s asked to wear a nappy. It’s very much a one step forward two steps back kind of process. It didn’t help that as he seemed to be really excelling and doing all of his business in the potty he also got chicken pox. We’re sticking with it and letting him lead the way. He needs to be comfortable and not feel forced into anything.
7) It’s repetitive: You will feel like you’re saying ‘do you need a wee’ a million times a day.
8) Have faith: Believe that your little one will get there eventually. Accept that they might not be ready yet but it will happen. Besides, how many adults do you know who still wear a nappy?
We are currently at the stage that Ollie will use a potty at home if he is naked or bottomless (you know what I mean). He’s not keen on wearing boxers so we’re waiting for that to feel right for him so at the moment when we venture out he still wears a nappy.
It’s not the perfect potty training process I had planned on but life and toddlers aren’t perfect and never follow your plans. Compared to two months ago when he screamed at the sight of a potty it feels like we’ve come a long way and for that I’m one proud mumma!
How have you found potty training?