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Victory Means No More Diapers - Potty Training Finally Worked For Me

Potty Training. Two of the most hated words in my parenting dictionary. I have four kids. You would think I would have this down pat but DO I STRUGGLE!! #thestruggleisreal With my youngest son I swore that things would be different. It wouldn't take me months, we wouldn't resort to pull-ups, there would be no pee on the supermarket floor, no one would fall asleep on the toilet, and most of all - I would maintain my sanity. Let me share the good news - for once I have acheieved my mom goals. Rare moment of feeling successful - so basically I expect to fall of my parenting high hard and fast.

Let me start out by saying the obvious - every child is different. What I did with each of my older three boys was far from a success and I tried a million methods. With my youngest I went off script and tried the one thing I hadn't before. I relaxed and put him in control. He was potty-trained in a day. No joke. I was completely flabbergasted. I highly doubt this has as much to do with my method as his personality but just in case I have un-covered the holy grail of potty training. Here ya go:

Step 1 - Take them shopping for cool underwear. Be sure they pick it out and are very excited about it. Finn went for Jurassic World and Star Wars.

Step 2 - Hit up your local dollar tree. Grab a cart and let your child fill it up with whatever their heart desires. Finn picked out 30 items. So I'm out a whole $30. I would have spent so much more than that to be diaper free. He picked out the most random crap. We came home with total junk, even a sparkly pink pony. The point is he was really excited and it was all in his control. Also - have him pick out a bag of candy or sweet treat (works best if they are small - we went with m&ms).

Step 3 - Once you get home take all his dollar treasures and put them into some type of container. Explain to them that if they use the potty - they get to pick out a toy from their treat box. Show them the bag of candy and tell them that even if they don't go #2 or #1 on the potty - you'll give them a piece of candy for everytime they sit down and try. I am not above bribery.

Step 4 - Take off the bottoms. Thats right. Nudity from the waist down. You are not alone in your terror. I was so scared. I kept waiting for the feces to drop. My son did not like not being half nude. He really put up a fight - strange because he usually loves to run around naked with me shouting "put your clothes back on!". I guess he just hated it being my call. This worked to my benefit though because I explained to him once he used the potty he could earn a pair of his new under-pants. Boy was he determined. Within 30 mins he was strutting around in a freshly earned pair of storm trooper briefs.

Step 5 - There will be accidents. Stay calm. Everytime Finn had an oops - I would make him go nude again and earn a fresh pair of underwear. This was a method that only had to be done twice. We were good to go after that. 

Step 6 - Be consistent. Make sure you ask them if they need to use the potty constantly. I feel like I must have said nothing but that question the entire day. I dreamed about it. Always give the treats for trying and the prizes for potty successes. I would suggest planning to stay home the first two days. Don't fall back on diapers or pull-ups. I know it's so hard. Stay strong moms - you got this!

After 11 years of diaper changing - I am finally free. I have not changed a diaper in 4 days. It really is all that I had fantasized about and my hands no longer have the faint scent of baby wipes. Thank goodness for parenting days like these! 

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