Posts Tagged ‘potty’

Pottytraining without Pull ups

Thursday, April 14th, 2016

potty trainingPotty training is not for the faint of heart! No matter what you do or which method you chose it’s going to take a while and probably some bribing to get it figured out. So take some deep breaths to mentally prepare yourself and know that you’ll be picking up a lot of messes! And then remember that this too, shall pass.

For many people pull ups are a natural transition from diapers to regular underwear but I’m here to tell you they might be an extra expense you can avoid. At least you can avoid using them during the day. In my opinion, letting kids wear pull ups is confusing. You’re telling them not to go potty in their diapers anymore but you’re giving them something to wear that feels like a diaper and absorbs moisture like a diaper.

The whole point of potty training is to get them to get in touch with their bodily functions and recognize what it feels like to have to go potty. If they’re still wearing something that keeps them relatively dry like their diapers did then it makes it more difficult to learn. You want them to know as soon as they wet themselves and that means realizing that they’re wet!

Going straight to regular underwear might seem like a bit of a leap but it’s not. First you’ll want to buy the thicker underwear–that way they’ll know that they’re wet immediately but it won’t be quite as much of a mess to clean up. It’s a win win. The sooner they can recognize the feeling that happens right before they pee the better and the quicker they’ll learn.

Get the kids to have some fun with it! Take them to the store and let them pick out their own potty. Decide on what kind of reward you want to use, if any, and let them pick their own too. We used stickers as a reward so I let my daughter pick what kind of stickers she wanted. It’s pretty unbelievable how excited they can get about stickers!

Make sure you’re getting your child to the potty pretty often to practice sitting on the potty and recognizing what it feels like to pee on the potty, too. Most important don’t make the potty training a transition–you have to rip the diapers out of your life like a band aid. If they’re still around you might be tempted to use them. Just stock up on the thick underwear, and use the pull-ups only for overnight or long car rides and nothing else. May the potty training force be with you!

Jacqueline Banks is a certified Holistic Health Counselor and online fitness coach. She works with women in all stages of motherhood, from mothers struggling with conception to those trying to get their grove back after pregnancy to ensure the best health and nutrition for both mom and baby.

Pottytraining Readiness

Wednesday, April 13th, 2016

pottytrainingIs your kid ready to potty train (or potty learn)? Are you?

Potty training readiness comes at different times for each kid and parent; this is definitely not a one-size-fits-all type deal. I was really hoping to have my oldest son potty trained by the time my youngest son was born (don’t laugh, but I was terrified at the thought of two in diapers), but while I was motivated to put in the work, he just didn’t seem quite ready yet. Likewise, if you know you don’t have the energy or time at the moment to potty train your child but she seems ready, it’s probably also not a great time to start. Sometimes, the thought of your child growing up (or maybe growing out of their adorable cloth diaper and/or wool stash) is hard to come to terms with.

So how do you know your child is ready to ditch their diapers? Is your daughter showing an interest in other family members using the toilet? If you don’t have an open bathroom door policy in your home, this may be a good time to temporarily change that so your child sees their family members using the toilet.

Additionally, does she recognize when she is peeing or pooping? Does she go sometimes for two hour or longer stretches with a dry diaper? Also, can your child pull her own pants up and down?

If you’re finding you’re ticking off mostly ‘yes’ to the above questions, your child is probably ready to learn to use the potty.

“What if my child is never ready?” For some children, this is a legitimate concern. For instance, both my oldest son and my nephew are very stubborn little boys and both are a little gunshy over new things. I always joked that my son would go to college in diapers if we let him.

In this case, you can evaluate the other checklist items (for instance, if your child is not interested in the toilet and also has fine motor skill delays that make pulling their own pants up and down difficult, it may be better to work on dressing themselves first before tackling the potty) and see where you’re at.

If you think your child could learn to use the potty but has just mentally blocked it (ahem, eldest child of mine), you may want to research different potty training methods to find one that will be the best case. In my experience, the full-on potty party bootcamp is what did the ticket (fairly painlessly, too)  with my stubborn boy.

Keep in mind that no child is the same on this, and even siblings may show readiness at very different ages. Try not to let the potty become a stressor in your house. Keep in mind that children that train earlier often have more relapses or accidents and that it can sometimes lead to issues later on like chronic constipation. Waiting until the time is right for your family can make a big difference in your successfulness.

Meaghan Howard is currently a stay-at-home mom and enjoying living overseas with her husband and two young children. She enjoys traveling, running, and the most excellent sport of all time, dragon boat.

Potty Training Dos and Don’ts

Friday, November 21st, 2014

Potty Training Dos and Don’tsPotty training- intimidating, exciting, and a whole new ballgame. For me, it has been a definite adventure. From buying “Frozen” panties to sinking to new levels of bribery, potty training has been successful but definitely something I have learned a lot through. As your child approaches this adventure, here are some dos and don’ts I’ve learned along the way.

Do encourage potty training. Don’t push it.

Many moms see the signs that their little one is ready to start potty training from 18-24 months of age. For my daughter, this was the case. She began to tell me when she was wet and the first time I sat her down on the potty, she went. It’s great to encourage your child towards potty training at this age, but don’t push it.  Many 2 and 3 year olds are still wearing diapers. Pushing your child to potty train usually backfires. Stress, the need to please mommy, and anxiety can creep into your little one’s head and all of a sudden it’s not a fun adventure anymore for anyone.

Here are some signs your little one may be ready to start potty training:

  • They tell you when they are wet or dirty and seem bothered by wetness.
  • They can follow basic instructions and understand them, as well.
  • They seem interested in the potty.
  • They start to know how to pull their own pants up and down.


Do praise for good success in potty training. Don’t lose your cool when accidents occur.

Potty training opens up many opportunities for positive reinforcement with little ones. Stickers, treats like m&ms, and the opportunity to wash their hands like big girls and boys, are all great rewards. We’ve used them all. You can find fun, printable charts online to use to track your little one’s progress and get the whole family involved. As your little one starts to potty train, accidents will occur. My daughter had several accidents in the beginning of wearing panties. She knew she had to go, but she didn’t tell us she had to in time. Getting upset or frustrated is easy. Maintaining your cool and being calm with your child is not, but it is important. Make sure they know it’s okay and you still love them. We all make mistakes and move on. Don’t make too much of it. They make all kinds of carpet and sanitizing cleaners for a reason.

Do get your little one interested in their own success. Don’t worry or stress.

You can find fun, entertaining books about potty training online and at your local library. Some of my daughter’s favorites are My Big Girl Potty and Big Girl Panties.  Use potty training as a bonding experience. We read books, sing songs, and laugh a lot during potty time. Johanna looks forward to having our attention while she’s on the potty. Don’t worry if your little one doesn’t catch on right away. Several things can influence the timeline for potty training. For us, introducing a new baby in the middle of potty training was a roadblock. Johanna started losing interest and having accidents. Thankfully, that has passed and she is doing great now.

Remember, you are supermom. You are there to teach and build-up your child. Potty training is a new way to do this. So go get some fun panties and let the journey begin!

Karyn Meyerhoff is a mom of two in Northeast Indiana. Her daughter requests a pretzel after going potty these days.


Five Reasons to Put off Potty Training

Thursday, July 3rd, 2014

Five reasons to put off potty trainingThe diaper-free utopia I was promised when my children potty trained has not come to pass. Instead, I have traded expected, contained messes for ambush, freestyle messes. I am no longer friends with the Earth, as all my natural cleaning products have been traded for stuff that will cover the smell of children’s urine. So it’s probably no surprise that I advocate putting off potty training as long as possible to any mom who asks.

Often by 18 months, just about every toddler has given their parents a false glimmer of potty-training hope by crawling up on the potty and pretending to go. But there is so much more to the potty training puzzle than a potty photo op.

  1. There’s only so much you can do. There are many factors that contribute to successful potty training, and the parent has little to do with most of them. To make it to the potty successfully, a child has to be able to recognize the sensation, remove themselves from an activity they enjoy, reach the bathroom light, remove their clothes, and do all of that in time to make it to the potty. Those weekend potty training boot camps won’t do anything for your child if they can’t do every single one of those things first. You know how kids are when they don’t want something. When they are ready to be done with diapers, you’ll know.
  2. Waiting means your kid has time to grow. A bigger child means larger bladder, stronger muscles, more nimble fingers and better judgement. That means fewer accidents and faster success. If you don’t have any arbitrary deadlines like a preschool or daycare that is saying your child must be potty trained by a certain time, give them time to grow. In addition, there is actually evidence that potty training before age two can lead to more potty-related problems later.
  3. There is such a thing as regression. Are you moving soon? Going back to work? Having a baby? Any stress could spark a regression in potty training. It doesn’t happen all at once, either. Slowly, all the skills go away, and it’s incredibly frustrating because they were just there. It really feels like your child can go potty but just won’t, and that is not the case. Regression is not a choice for them, even though it feels like one to you.
  4. Potty training mess is worse than cloth diaper mess. Just trust me. I don’t want to scare you by going into details. It’s just so much worse. SO. MUCH.
  5. No one cares but you. No one except your mom and your mother-in-law is going to ask about potty training. If you want to take it to the next level and avoid the conversation altogether, trade those noisy, crinkly pull ups for some cloth potty learning pants. Your child will feel the wetness when they go, but won’t leave you a mess to deal with, and if they peek out of the back of their pants, they look just like big girl/boy undies.

It’s so easy to get stressed out by milestone charts, Facebragging, nosey peers and potty training prodigy stories, but don’t. This is never going to be on an application for anything. No one gives out awards for potty training a 2 year old. There is absolutely no reason to rush potty training.

When you are tempted to stress, just remind yourself that absolutely no one will care when your child potty trained five years from now. Then go reward yourself for your laid-back approach to parenting with a glass of wine.

Erin Hayes Burt is a freelance writer and cloth diaper-loving mother of three girls who lives and writes in Queensbury, New York.