Potty Training

Back when I was a teenager I worked in a day care center with toddlers.  I was a potty training expert.  I had parent after parent tell me that I was the one who potty trained their child.  Parents would report to me that their child didn’t have any interest in using the potty at home and it just wasn’t working.  I gave parents all sorts of tips that I used with their kids that worked in our efforts to work on potty training.  There are several 14 and 15 year old kids walking around today who should be thankful that I worked so hard on their potty training.

Now I have a toddler at home and she doesn’t have much interest in using the potty.  We’ve bribed with M&M’s, she has a special sticker chart in the bathroom, pretty princess pull-ups, etc.  But things just don’t seem to be progressing.  Or maybe I just thought it would happen faster than it is.

First off, it takes forever to get Hailey into the bathroom.  Every time we tell her it’s time to go use the potty she responds, “I already go potty.”  Which is likely since her pull-up is usually wet.  But it’s such a struggle to get her into the bathroom.  Once she is finally in the bathroom it takes forever to get her back out.  The whole process- using the potty, emptying her potty chair bowl into the big potty (even though her bowl is usually empty), washing her hands, etc.  It takes forever.  Especially the washing her hands part.  Oh my goodness, it could not possibly take her any longer.

And I would prefer not to mention this, but last night Hailey was emptying the bowl from her potty into the big potty.  She didn’t want to put the bowl back into her potty after she was done so I was trying to “help” her do it.  After a slight struggle– I don’t know exactly how it happened– but I got hit in the mouth with the bowl from the potty chair.  And this was one of the rare occasions when she had actually gone in the potty and even though she had already emptied it into the big potty- it was still very gross and also painful.  She knew I was upset with her and immediately said, “Don’t be mad Mommy.  Be pappy.”  (pappy = happy.)  And I responded by saying, “Well it’s kind of hard to be happy when someone hits you in the mouth with their potty chair.”  And I’m quite sure I heard Rich snickering in the other room.  I have no idea why because clearly it was not funny at all.

Fun times this potty training is turning out to be.

Anyways- for those moms who are done with stage of toddlerhood, what kinds of tricks worked for you when you were potty training your kids?  HELP!  And also, so that I feel a little better about the whole potty chair in the mouth incident- please tell me your potty training horror stories.


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14 comments on “Potty Training

  1. YUCK! I’m so sorry about the potty training chair bowl in the mouth. BLECK! That sounds nasty! This isn’t a potty training story, but a potty story of sorts. I was changing my daughters diaper when she was a baby and she had just had major poops. Well, as I was wiping, she let out a little gas and somehow projected some poo that was still on her bum right into my open mouth. TALK ABOUT DISGUSTING! Does that make you feel better? LOL!

    As for potty training, I found that the book Toilet Training in Less Than a Day by Nathan Azrin worked EXCEPTIONALLY well! I’ve had lots of other friends have the same success. I don’t, it’s worth a shot eh? Every kid is different though. We all know that :)

  2. architect on said:

    Hi Melanie,

    Im not having such a good day today, becuase somebody left a nasty message on my comments… but looking at your daughters pictures made me smile. You looked like you had a lt of fun.

    Memory Filled
    Sweety tots

  3. Oh yuck! I am so sorry! I would have been really grossed out. I am no potty training expert seeing my kids peed the bed until well into her 4th year- but to this day, I don’t know how I day trained her. I put her on the potty and she just did it. Actually- that isn’t true. When I took away the pull ups and put her in underwear- that was when it happened. Sure we had a day of pee everywhere that needed to be cleaned up. But by the next day, she had figured out that she didn’t want to be wet with pee either. Then she started to go on the potty more. The underwear method isn’t for everyone though so I understand if you don’t want to try it. Good luck!!

  4. Oh man, hit in the face with a potty chair, that’s rough. I have one potty trained, and will shortly be starting it with my second one. I am thinking of just waiting.. seriously, till he’s like 16. *I remember how hard it was with my daughter and don’t wish to go through that again.

  5. Hang in there she won’t be in diapers forever :)
    All kids train differently.. make sure she is showing signs of being ready to potty train or you will just be beating your head on a wall. Then if the signs are there.. take cues from her.. I have trained 4 kids and all 4 of them were different and all 4 of them trained at a different age and all 4 of them responded and didn’t respond to different things… with my oldest it seems super easy, she didn’t like the feel of wet pants.. didn’t mind a wet diaper or a wet pull up.. but when i gave up the pull ups and put her in underpants though the day, she peed on my carpet and down her leg just one time she hated it so much she never peed her pants again. But with her she would only pee in her potty chair not big potties so I had to carry the potty chair every where I went.. It made it easy though if we were driving down the road with no bathroom in sight and she yelled she had to go.. simple just pull over and let her use her potty chair.. LOL(oh and She was trained both day and night by 2 years 4 months without accident)

    The next one wouldn’t use a potty chair only wanted the big potty.. Didn’t care one bit if he was soaken wet or walked around with a handful of crap hanging in the back of his diapers.. at about 2 1/2 years he got the pee thing down but it took him till a month before turning 3 to get #2 in the potty.. and then till he was 3 1/2 to get the night time thing down.

    Sweet Pea was a whole different matter, she would never tell me when she had to go.. I found training her to be best if I dressed her in a dress and let her go comando.. when she didn’t have a diapr or underpants on she would run to her little potty(which I carried from room to room) and she would just go potty in the potty chair every time she had to go, she never peeded on the floor if she knew where in the room her potty chair was.. BUT she would never tell me when she had to go I would just here her yelling after the fact “I done mommy” I figured hey whatever works right.. though when we were out and about I had to watch her all the time to make sure she wasn’t holding herself or looking around for a potty.. if I saw her doing that I had to get her to a bathroom fast.. after she was 100% potty trained though the day time she got the hang of telling me but it took a while for her to ask where the bathroom was when she had to go.. She was day time trained by 2 yrs 4 months but she didn’t get out of pull ups at night until the month she turned 5 years old, I was starting to wonder if she had issues but since turning 5 there has been no bed time accidents.

    Then Little Man.. at 2 years old he was showing NO interest at all I mean NONE with the potty or potty training.. so I waited till 2 1/2 with him to even start.. and then he wasn’t ready either.. But after he turned 3 years old I started potty training him and he was trained in less then a week both pee and poop and now he is 3 years 5 months and he seems to be night time trained also.. this is the 1st week that I have let him sleep in underpants and so far so good..

    Good luck.

    and stop by my blog there is something there for you.

  6. common mom on said:

    Ohhhhh ouch – and YUCK with the potty chair! Bluck! So sorry about that – seriously.

    Training . . . my one and only tip (which I got from my daycare provider – she was awesome) was to get rid of all pull-ups, diapers, etc. . . . put underwear on them and have at it. No diapers except for at night. They’ll HATE feeling wet when their undies get wet. It worked like a charm with both of mine. For times when we had to leave the house, I brought a ton of clothing changes, double-undied them, AND got some of those plastic covers for cloth diapers to catch anything that may get out if we missed a potty stop. Worked well.

    Oh – and think of what YOU’RE definition of potty trained is. Mine was that they went on the potty when I asked. And that was every 30 minutes in the beginning – and every time before we left the house – and immediately after got somewhere – and always before eating, whether it’s a snack or a meal – and always before going out to play, or when we came back in. Get her in the habit of going before and after you do everything and it becomes second nature – not much chance for an accident if they’re in there that much :-) And, you don’t have to get up in the middle of the meal to go potty ;-)

    I hope you have good luck! And just think – do YOU remember potty training? Were you traumatized? Me neither. I think that traumatizing your kid with the whole potty training thing is a bunch of hooey :-)

  7. Jennifer on said:

    I feel your pain! I am going through the exact same thing right now. My daughter started taking an interest in the potty when she was about 18 months. She would sit on it and imitate us. I thought that it was going to be a breeze to potty train her. Now over a year later, she still doesn’t go to the potty all of the time. She only goes when she wants to go. Drives me crazy! I am not quite sure what to do. I have tried giving her things for going. Rewarding her for not going in her diaper. Taking her to the potty every half hour. But she hardly ever decides to go on her own.

  8. potty training can be tough for some little ones… I see it at school with our 2′s class.. Some parents just push their kids to early and they aren’t ready.. When the child us ready to use the potty they will have an easier time with it but if they aren’t they will just keeping wetting and regressing!!!

  9. Potty training was my absolute least favorite experience of parenthood. For always ;) Anyway, my biggest suggestion would be to wait till she is interested, because if she’s not, it will take you just as long if you start early, as it would if you just wait till she’s ready. It’ll be a much shorter process if you put it off till she wants to cooperate.

  10. rachel on said:

    Oh I am not looking forward to this at all. I am just waiting to get some signals from max that he is ready. But oh boy I am not looking forward to sitting there forever. Good luck momma and keep us posted on hailey and the potty.

  11. Pinay Rich Mom on said:

    Hi there! :) I don’t know when is the proper time to start potty training my daughter. I notice now that she’s 1 1/2 year old, she points to her nappy before she pees or do her thing (you know what I mean ;) ). Do you think I can start training her now? Thanks! :)

  12. I’m currently reading this book “Pressured Parent, Stressed out Kids” which has given me a new way of looking at the whole “helping kids” thing.

    It talks about intrinsic motivation and the way we can help our kids find their motivation to do the things we want them to do. And how often our “help” kills their desire to do something. There’s even quite a few mentions of potty training.

    I tried some of the suggestions in the book, and my son who had been using the potty… Who went on a one month potty strike where he would scream if he came anywhere near the potty.. Is now using the potty again on occasion. I hadn’t even realized that I was pressuring him.

    It’s really simple, too. I told him “I know it’s uncomfortable when you go pee in your diaper, so when you’re ready to start trying to use the potty again just let me know.” and he said “POTTY!” and ran in to sit on the potty. :p

    Sneaky little booger.

    The book talks about star charts, etc. and why they can sometimes undermine success rather than create success. It’s definitely an interesting read.

  13. Andrea (Lifesong) on said:

    Is it wrong that I laughed at that potty chair story? :)

    I don’t have any tips that you haven’t already tried — sticker charts, candy, etc. Hang in there…and good luck!

  14. Goodness girl…how horrible!
    It has been so long since I went through that stage….I don’t remember much. But have faith….I made it through two…it will happen for you.
    Maybe let Rich empty the potty next time. ;)

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