Monday, August 03, 2009

Mom Advice

Hey there Moms. I need some advice. I am thinking that it is time to actively start potty-training my little munchkin and wondered what your best resources, tips and tricks were/are. 

She seems to always tell me when she has just gone in her diaper and asks for a clean one and she's often dry after a nap or long stretches of time. She has a little pink potty and likes sitting on it, but doesn't seem to understand how to go. I don't expect to be able to do it in a day and am fully ready to spend some time and effort on it. I am also fully ready to be done with diapers! 

Ok. Hit me with your best shot. 


Kris said...

sigh. I was just about to post about this. I thought we were doing so well, now all of the sudden she has it totally backwards. she won't go on the potty and waits till i put a diaper back on :P
looking forward to your comments for any hints!

Becky D. said...

Okay...this is only from potty training one child and I don't know if it works for everyone. We got the book "Potty Training in 3 Days" I think it's called. I put Hannah in big girl undies and put those plastic training pants over them because I wanted her to actually feel the gross and wet of peeing in her pants...and we were renting both an apartment and the furniture in the apartment and I didn't want her to leak. I didn't use the pull-ups at first because even the Cool Alert ones didn't seem to bother her much and she didn't mind them being wet. I took her to the bathroom or at least asked her if she needed to go every 15 minutes for 3 days! (except at night, obviously). Now, mind you, Hannah had just turned 2...and she understood the concept of "needing" to go to the bathroom. Layna likes to "go" potty, but she doesn't really understand yet the feeling BEFORE she has to go, she just knows that she's gone and asks us for a new diaper. You may want to wait a little while until they're better able to tell you before they have to go, otherwise it just seems like you'll get frustrated. But...we went cold turkey! Had a party and loaded up all the diapers in a trash bag and took them to our dumpster (now I can't believe I actually threw them away and didn't give them to somebody). We went out and she picked out her big girl undies. I will tell you something the Dr. told me...put them in "bed time undies" as we called them (or pull ups) at nap time and at night time. If they're still in a crib or pack-n-play as Hannah was you can give them a yeast infection because they can't get up at night to go and can't be expected to stay dry for 10+ hours. Hannah got an infection and it was NOT fun! We did not call the pull-ups diapers though...we emphasized that it was just as important to try to not pee in those as it was to not pee in panties, but we understood if she couldn't make it that long. We also carried a potty in the trunk of our car for about 3 months and for long trips for about 6 months because when she said she needed to go, she needed to go NOW...she just didn't understand how to hold it and wait and I didn't want her getting frustrated because I couldn't get to a bathroom quickly enough. She was daytime potty trained in those 3 days, but was not night time potty trained until she was about 3 1/2. And that just came to her on her own...the waking up in the middle of the night part. Well, that's just what worked for us...I know a lot of people have had success other ways...can't wait to hear how she does! And I'll pass on any tricks I learn when training #2.

me said...

I have no words of wisdom concerning potty training - in fact, I'll probably be looking for some in another year or so! Just wanted to send some encouragement your way :-)

Luanne said...

I started all my girls sitting them on the potty seat first thing in the morning and after naps. If she is dry in the morning, that would be a good time to try because she likely has to go! Have her sit until she does. You may be sitting in the bathroom reading books for 45 minutes but it only takes a couple of times of doing that for her to get it. I started everyone between 18mos. and 2yrs. When they are that little though, you almost have to just pick a potty time every hour to two hours though and tell them it's time to go. All mine were fully trained by 2 1/2!

There you go! Take it or leave it! Hope she does well! Good luck!

johnny's place said...

oh .... we just told Shelby that the store was out of diapers and she had to use "big girl" underwear and the potty. Yes ... it was lying, but for some reason it worked!

Heidi said...

I am totally in agreement with not using pull ups and just going straight to big girl underwear. That worked well with Sasha. It also helps when you are at home and working on it to give her lots of water so she has lots of opportunties to "practice!" Good luck!

Ryan and Sandra said...

Hi Anne!

So, I'm not a Mom, but I have helped to potty train more than 10 children... my advice: "Bare Butt" and lots of juice, kool-aid, and M&Ms. :) And the book about Prudence & her potty. I can't think of the name of it, but it's red and should be easy to find at the library.

"Bare Butt" or whatever less crude name you'd like to call it--maybe "nakey bottom"? is a rather successful (if a bit messy) method used by my last employer. Just take off her diaper and give her a lot to drink. Then continue with the every-15-minute-or-so trips to the potty. The key is that if she doesn't go when she's sitting on her potty, and she goes later, she'll definitely notice! :) It will make her aware not only that she's wet, but will make her aware of the feeling of urinating which has made her wet. Does that make sense?

When she has success, give her an M&M. 2 for a b.m. (or some other little treat that she loves--M&Ms are just cheap, small, and I think pretty much all kids love them!) It's not a lot as a reward, but it is really fun for a little one to have a special treat for success.

When she has an accident, explain that the potty has to go into her potty chair and now we have to clean up the mess. (Blotting with vinegar and water using an old rag should do the trick!) The large amounts of liquid to drink will really help her have to go more, and the more success she has in feeling the sensation of urinating, the more successful she'll be.

Also, I would be sure that you have a potty that she can sit on without your help, i.e., a Baby Bjorn or something that sits directly on the floor, so that if she wants, she can go sit on it without asking for help.

As for the book, it's really quite useful for little ones I think, and while talking bluntly about "bathroom things", it's not overly medical or overly cutesy from what I recall.

And I'm totally in agreement with your friend Luanne about sitting her on the potty at key moments. One of our friends puts her babies on the potty when they're about 7 months old (holding them so they don't fall, of course!) right after every meal and after a little bit, they begin to go and also have their b.m.s on the toilet since it's their "normal" time to go. Later, it's just natural for them to leave diapers behind. And try to enjoy the book reading times while she waits for success. :) Some days I think I've spent 2 or 3 hours reading books in bathrooms! :)

Use meal times and nap times to your advantage and you can do it!

Hope it helps!

Cheeky said...


Nezzy said...

My DIL, mother of four, has a system that potty trains in about a day. Guess it depends how bright the child...LOL. You can find her at under classless and lovin'it. I think it is a lot like Becky D.s. Good luck and God bless. Have a wonderfully DRY day!!!

heather said...

I have no advice, but loved reading this post's comments. My guess is that you probably have some intuitive sense about your own daughter and what will work for her. And when all else fails, the library is full of ideas...oh, and having M&Ms on hand sounds like a superb idea - YOU deserve treats for all your work in this process. :) Good luck!

Joy said...

I'm getting ready to start my little one, too. i used a lot of the strategies from "Diaper Free Before Age 3" and "Early potty Training" (again prior to 3) for my son with success. I will second the non-use of pull-ups/use only during sleep as they are too much like a diaper.