In part one of my potty training blog, I shared the different experiences of the children and I wanted to share some more tips and tricks that we hope will come in useful to someone:
- Firstly – What we have found handy is to have is a potty and a padded toilet seat for the house. Both my two had no preference to either one and we had the potty downstairs, or out in the garden or out in the car with us and then the padded toilet seat which sat by the side of the toilet for easy morning and bedtime use. (or when he decided he MUST sit on the toilet seat instead of the potty)
- Did you know there are boys and girls style of potty and toilet seats?
I didn’t know this at first and when starting our boy on a potty, I sat him on one and his wee shot straight out all over me!!! – turns out they make boys ones with a little hump at the front of it to avoided these accidents. Same goes for the toilet seats too – there also have ones designed for boys and girls – again the boys one have little humps at the front. If you are training a little boy – I defiantly recommend you shop around for ones made for a boy! – saves the fountain of wee everywhere!
Is my child ready?
If you read my previous blog – you will have read that it took us two attempts to potty train our son, I think this was down to me trying to rush him, I was comparing him to the age my daughter was when she started and I just seemed so keen on starting him, but he wasn’t ready – so don’t rush them – you will know when they are ready.
If they are telling you when they are having a wee or a poo in their nappy then they are obviously aware that something is happening down there. If they are communicating this all to you and understanding their urges to wee and poo – this is all positive. They may start taking an interest in your toilet habits – watching you go to the toilet asking questions about it. They may start pulling down at their nappies – like you would do your knickers to copy. – All these are great positive signs your little ones are ready to start.
It doesn’t just happen overnight for some children. They will need encouragement and praise – this alone will make them realise that even the smallest of wees are a great achievement.
Don’t get angry when they have had the 10th accident of the day and you feel like you have been on your hands and knees scrubbing the carpet all day long. – they will be upset too! They are not use to it going all over the floor either. Get down to their level and say next time come get mummy before you wee. Or put the potty in the same room as them and encourage them to go to the potty themselves. They will soon understand! Make sure you reward them. We made sticker charts for my two.(That was a fun craft activity in itself) They were so proud of these charts that they got pride of place in the living room and would often get proudly shown to guests!
Plenty of knickers or pants
A handful of pants or knickers is not enough! In the first stages of training you can easily get through 5,6,7 pairs of pants a day!! And I don’t know about you, but I don’t wash that many times a day, I do 1 or 2 wash loads a day and I still would have lots to wash or a lot to dry!!
Some people do try and potty train in the summer months so it was warm enough for their little ones to not wear any clothes, but I preferred mine wearing knickers & pants, even if they did have accidents, least they felt when they were wet and knew what that feeling felt like. (possibly a personal preference, but maybe one for you to consider)
- How long does it take?
Well I think that just varies from child to child! My daughter did it over a period of days and my son is still ongoing after a period of 2 months. They say boys are slower than girls – but who knows really?! They will go at their own pace.
- Don’t be housebound
Yes, it may be ideal to stay around the house – yes it is easier. But its not good for any of you. Be brave, take the plunge and go out. Start with a quick trip to the local shop. Take your little one for a wee before you leave. Praise them for no accidents when you get home and take them for a wee again.
Get braver and venture further afield – take the potty with you – stop in a car park if need be. I make space in the boot of my car and reverse to an area of privacy and sit the potty in the boot of the car and sit him in there for a wee. I take wipes and toilet roll with me too to clean the potty out with.
I did go on a walk 2 weeks ago in the woods – of which I didn’t have the potty with me. My little boy announced he needed a wee, we were over an hour away from a toilet – and for the first time – I had to have my first experience of him having to wee outside. He was nervous at first and kept saying he didn’t want to wee on my hand. I explained that we were trying to ‘water’ the grass just in front of us. It was neither a triumph nor a disaster. Yes it was certainly easier with my boy than it would have been my girl, but due to his uncertainty – his wee was a lot of starting and stopping and my hands and arms were covered in his wee. He was however relieved – so that was the main thing!
Hope these little tips help some of you out. Please comment on your own tips and tricks too. :)