true life: i got peed on

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Oh, the beast that is potty training. You think your toddler's got the hang of it and then he proves you wrong.
A few weeks ago, God practically dropped a piano on my head telling me that it was time to potty train Ty. To be completely honest, I've known for a while now that he's been ready to get rid of the diapers. I've frankly been lazy about it and just not wanting to bite the bullet.  Also, Justin and I made the conscious choice to wait to potty train based on some advice given to us by other parents with boys.  We figured we wanted to wait until he was really ready and it would be quick and painless, rather than start earlier and have an uphill battle on our hands for who knows how long.
Well, two of our play date friends had finished up potty training, my niece was in panties, and my nephew, who's a year younger than Ty, was using the potty.  Ty had already been showing us signs for months that he was ready... acknowledging every time he pooped, reading and retelling potty books, saying that pee-pee and poop go in the potty.  There really was no excuse for us to NOT potty train him.  Finally, one morning, feeling inspired by all my friends and family who'd done it, I gathered my supplies and covered my sofa with towels.  "Today is the day," I texted Justin.

Day one was so thrilling for Ty.  I'm not kidding when I say he peed in the potty more than 50 times.  I was using the M&M incentive and he was definitely working the system to get his treat.
Day two... Ty sits on the potty for a good 20 minutes and promises me he doesn't have to go.  No more than one minute later we are sitting on the sofa and he pees everywhere. #really

Since we started, he had no trouble pooping in the potty and we averaged zero to one accident a day for about a week, usually when he was so busy playing that he forgot or he was laughing so hard, well, he wet himself.
I'm so proud of him and feel like he's done an awesome job and I completely attribute it to all the awesome words of wisdom that seasoned parents have share with us.

Here are my favorite tips that I think really helped us:
  1. Use a reward system, whether it's M&M's, an extra book before bed, or a small treat from a treasure box.  The moment I gave Ty an M&M to taste and told him he could have one every time he peed in the potty, he was ALL OVER IT! Lots of peeing in the potty, especially the first day!
  2. When you take your toddler out, show them the bathroom right away, so that they know that everywhere (mostly) has a bathroom. Ty loves seeing all the different bathrooms and will typically go ahead and use it when he sees it.  This helps him last until returning home.
  3. Set a fun alarm on your phone for every 20 minutes.  Tell him when he hears the sound it's time to try to use the potty.  I started this when using just M&M's started to bore Ty.  It spiced things back up a little bit and made it into a game.  He also just loved being in charge of turning the alarm off... any excuse to get a hold of my phone, right? :)
  4. Read lots of books about the potty way before you ever start!  We used A Potty for Me!, Potty Time with Elmo, and No More Diapers!  Ty is at the point that he can recite A Potty for Me! He loves it.
  5. Put undies under a diaper if you're nervous about an accident.  The first time we went out for a long morning we did this so that Ty could feel when he had wet himself, but not need a change of pants.  It helped because believe me...he wet himself and he knew it. HA.
  6. Watch shows about using the potty. Daniel Tiger and Elmo are both ones that Ty watched.  We watched them on loop on YouTube the first day I decided to go hard or go home.  
  7. For us, we wanted to wait until we felt he was really ready.  I plan on doing this with my other kids. I think it makes for a happier, more positive experience for everyone.  Any honestly, at the point we started with Ty, he knew exactly what to do. We probably could've started earlier, but there were little headaches and more successes and I wouldn't trade that! 
  8. All kids are DIFFERENT! What worked for one may not work for the other!  My nephew is a year younger than Ty and my SIL just caught the wave when she saw his interest and it's seemed to work for them.  Different strokes for different folks! I think either way, you just have to commit and go for it.
Were there any things that made a big difference for you if you've potty trained?
Let me tell ya... I am glad that this beast is behind us... at least until Elena is ready! 

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