I am so excited for today’s guest post from Megan! She’s an incredible mama of 3, and has an amazing insight into all things parenting! She’s here to share with us her awesome potty training tips! You can find Megan on Instagram @Megansmomology
My name is Megan, and I am Momma to three awesome little kiddos, two boys and a girl. One of my biggest passions in life is helping other mommas feel confident and comfortable in their journey of motherhood.
With that being said, I am happy Erica asked me to write this article because potty training my first child left me feeling helpless and defeated. It took me 3 years to potty train my first son! My second son decided around a year old that he was so over diapers. He saw me working hard with his big brother, and I think he just picked it up on his own. He took off his diaper, went to the potty one day, and never looked back. I am currently in the process of training my daughter, so I am right in the thick of this with you! It is too early to know how her story will go, but she did poop on my rug today, so there’s that. I hope this Ultimate Guide To Potty Training helps you on your track to successfully potty training your little one!
Here are a few things to keep in mind when starting this process. I don’t have the exact answers you need since every child is different. The really cool thing is that you know your child better than anyone, and you get to decide what will work best in your home. It is ok if the method you choose to start with fails. There are plenty of options out there, so just go with the flow and move on to the next best thing. And the most important thing to keep in mind is that your child will figure this out! Someone once said to me, “Do you know an adult that isn’t potty trained?” I needed to hear that.
Think about this from your child’s perspective. This is a big change, it is a completely new concept, and it takes a lot of effort on their part. It is just as frustrating for your little one as it is for you. They are relying on you as their teacher and their parent to get them through. I know that is a lot of pressure, but I also know you are up for the challenge.
Ultimate Guide To Potty Training
Decide if your child is ready
- There is no specific age because every child develops at a different pace, but there are plenty of signs you can watch for. Is your child curious when you are using the restroom? Is your child annoyed when his diaper is wet or dirty? Is she able to tell you when she needs something? Can your child follow directions if you ask him to sit on the potty? Can your little one pull off her own pants? Is your child going less frequently and needing fewer diaper changes throughout the day? Any of these can be signs to help you know it is time to start. It is important that you are ready as well. This is a big commitment and if you are in the middle of a big project at work, or you are in the process of moving, or you have a vacation planned soon, think about a time that might be a little easier for you to focus.
Choose a method or technique
- This is a good time for you to read a book or hop on Pinterest There are many methods out there, some of which promise results in less than a week, and you might find one that you feel is perfect for your family. Don’t forget that part where I mentioned not to feel defeated if the first method doesn’t work, just move on. This is also a good time to establish your attitude towards potty training. We decided to keep it positive handing out praise and rewards rather than punishments. Children function better when we focus on what they are doing right rather than what they are doing wrong.
Decide What Kind of Momma You Are
- Are you a free bird that is cool with your child running around naked? If so, this is perfect for letting your toddler start to feel her accidents. When she is naked the pee has nowhere to go except down her legs and into a puddle around her feet. This method requires the most clean up, but is a quick way to get your babe feeling the full effects of not making it to the potty in time.
- Are you maybe a modest momma wondering why a little bottom is free and running around your home? Wearing underwear has basically the same effect. The liquids will all still fall through, and the solids are contained a bit. Your little one will still be standing in a puddle, but you won’t be looking at tiny parts all day.
- Is there a chance you are reading this and thinking it is crazy to clean pee all day when Pull-Ups can easily be purchased at any store close by? This option won’t allow your child to feel accidents as much, but you can work around that if you are terrified at the thought of cleaning up accidents nonstop. There are also some really cool cloth training pant options that will hold the mess, but allow your little to feel the wetness. I found Super Undies when I went to MommyCon this year in NYC. https://www.superundies.com/ They have some really great stuff on their website!
Get what you need to started
- Potty Seat (I like to have one in each bathroom to make it easier no matter where we are in the house.)
- A Potty Hook for the back of the toilet if you choose a seat topper rather than a standalone potty.
- Whatever your child will wear: disposable training pants, underwear, cloth training pants (Have plenty so you aren’t doing constant laundry.)
- A wet bag or small disposable bags for travel (I promise you never want to be out in public wondering where the heck to put your child’s favorite skirt that is now covered in poop.)
- Sanitizing Wipes (This makes it easy to wipe down anything weird in the bathroom.)
- Flushable Wipes or the Fridet Buttwasher by Fridababy (Cleaning bottoms takes some getting used to when your child isn’t lying flat for a diaper change. I prefer to save my toilet and my wallet from a million wipes by using the Buttwasher.)
- Something to entertain your child (potty books, potty snacks, fun drinks, little toys, a playlist of your child’s favorite songs)
- A Sticker Chart (This is a great way to keep track of when your child makes it to the potty. After so many successful potty trips your kiddo gets a reward such as a small toy, a trip to the park, an extra story before bed, or whatever your child enjoys most!)
Make sure everyone involved in your child’s life is prepared and ready
- It is important that you communicate with anyone that will be helping you potty train your little one what your goals and expectations are. Your child will learn much quicker if everyone is on the same page. If your child is in daycare, reach out and make sure they are good to go with everything you need.
- You can do this! Your child can do this! It may be easy, it may be the biggest parenting challenge you have faced so far. It may take two weeks, it may take two years. Be prepared to pivot if things aren’t working. Most importantly remember you and your child will figure this out together. Also remember that when you are sitting on the bathroom floor waiting, are cleaning up a mess, or you are crying into your pillow wondering when this will pass, I’ve been there, and I’m thinking of you! My heart is with you!