Potty training…two words that bring fear and anxiety to every parent. Everyone has their own opinions and thoughts on how to potty train a child. The two-day method, three-day method, self train; there are so many methods and theories out there, it can drive any parent crazy. The most important thing to remember is do whatever is Best For Your Child.
For my family, we read and followed the book “Oh Crap! Potty Training” by Jamie Glowacki. This book worked for us because there were clear steps and goals and it didn’t follow potty training by days, but more by blocks or stages.
My Tips on Potty Training
Mentally prepare yourself for potty training. This is half the battle when it comes to potty training. If you think they will fail, then they will. Be positive, be patient, and be supportive during the entire process. They will have accidents, but just remember they are still learning and it will take time to break a habit they have been used to for so long.
Get everyone involved. It will take a village to potty train, so get your spouse, family, daycare, and anyone who is involved in your child’s life in on the potty-training process. Make sure everyone is on the same page and understands how important it is. I made my husband read the book with me and we discussed it and our potty training plan.This really helped us get on the same page at every point in the potty-training process.
Prepare everything. Before we even told my son that we were going to start potty training, I prepared for it. I bought underwear, treats, Lysol wipes, a little potty, inserts. I made sure we were set for every part of the house and car. I didn’t want to have to search for any necessary items in the middle of potty training.
Dedicate plenty of time. According to the book I read, we needed a few days of not leaving the house at all to have a successful start when it came to potty training. This meant at home ALL day with no distractions (phones, TV). This will take dedication from both parents and all of the family for potty training to succeed. We started over a holiday weekend, which helped because my husband could help watch my youngest while I concentrated solely on potty training. I basically watched my son like a hawk for the first few days and made sure he had plenty of activities and treats to make potty training a success. I know taking a few consecutive days to potty train may be hard for some families because of schedules or conflicts but try to set aside at least some dedicated time to watch and ask, because your child needs it. Fully committing to potty training and showing your child that you are serious about them not using diapers will in turn make them more successful.
Have fun. Don’t make the potty training process a scary or serious event. Make it lighthearted and fun, and they will actually not fear the potty.
So far, potty training has gone well for our family. We are all still learning and adapting to going to the potty at home and while we are out and about. My son says, “Potty’s are for big kids,” and he’s right; potty training is just another step toward becoming a big kid.