Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Potty Training 101, according to a toddler....

Just when I was pretty sure that Garrett and Landon wouldn't be interested in potty training until they were.....like 6 years old....2 weeks ago, Garrett suddenly announced that his diaper was yucky. Yes, just like that....he tore his diaper off, said "this is yucky" and that was it.

I said, "Well, if your diaper is yucky and you don't want to wear it anymore, you'll need to use the potty". My jaw hit the floor as he said, "Okay" and walked into the bathroom, sat down on the little potty seat and peed! It was THAT simple. He's 2.5 years old (31 months, to be exact) and he was ready.

As parents, we bang our heads against the wall, frustrated with our children over such milestones as potty training. It's definitely not for the weak at heart. When it comes to potty training, there's a lot to be said about waiting until your child is ready...not when you're ready.

If Garrett could give some pointers, I would imagine there would be some important things he'd want me to know.

Potty Training 101 - According To a Toddler

1) This is the most important rule....I'm just gonna come right out and lay it on the line. I am in control here. Not you. Not Daddy. Not the moon and stars in the sky. ME...I am in control. I will use the potty when I am good and ready...and not a minute before that. Yeah, yeah...I know you gave me life and all. Save your breath cuz I really don't care.

2) Let's go over the rewards system. If I'm gonna be honest here (which you know is RARE for me) the one reward that means the most to me is just seeing you incredibly happy. I mean, if seeing a little bit of pee in the potty from lil ole me makes you beam with pride, I'm all for it.

With that said, if you INSIST on giving rewards, here's a list I put together which might be helpful:

-- candy (preferably, lollipops....lots and lots of lollipops)

-- stickers (of all my favorite tv/movie characters, definitely not Big Bird...he kinda sucks)

-- temporary tattoos (the ones with skulls, not the ones that say "My mom rocks")

-- time-out for all my siblings (hey, it's MY reward...don't ask any questions)

-- toys (let's be clear...good things do not come in small packages! The bigger the better, just sayin')

3) Pull-ups vs diapers. Honestly, there's no difference. Pull-ups are really just glorified diapers. And they're more expensive. Save your money and just get me a big screen tv for my room.

4) Underwear - okay, here's the deal. It is of the utmost importance that you let me go to the store with you and choose whatever underwear I want to get. Running into the house all excited with a bag full of new underwear that YOU chose from Target isn't gonna go over well with me. Just so you know.

Remember, the control issue? It all goes back to that. If you come home from the store waving a package of new underwear in my face that I did NOT pick out myself, then you should fully expect a huge setback, more than likely, in the form of a big ole steaming pile of crap on your white bedroom carpet. Yep, that's how I roll. With your kind of luck, you actually won't discover it until you step in it.

6) Please, please, please try to make this whole potty training thing entertaining for me. Here's what's UNacceptable:

-- You sitting on a stepstool in front of me, staring me down as if your brain can telepathically send a message to my bladder and my colon, urging them both to take quick action so you can go update your Facebook page, bragging about how awesome you are at potty training your child (as if....)

-- Calling the entire family into the bathroom to watch me perform. I know it's hard to resist because I'm just so darn cute sitting on the pot. I mean, I'd want to stare at me too. But now that I've agreed to give up diapers, I have the right to privacy in the bathroom. I've earned it. Oh, and before you even think it....YOU, however, do not have any right to privacy....ever.

-- NO taking pictures of my poop and e-mailing them to Daddy at work with the subject line reading, "You HAVE to see this". My poop can only truly be appreciated in person.

--NO saying, "How can such a little body make such a big poop?" Let me just remind you that YOU do the cooking around here. I can't help that my body considers most of the food you make garbage.

-- Singing silly, stupid songs (say this 10 times fast successfully and maybe I'll consider holding my bladder for an entire night so you can get 8 consecutive hours of sleep - but, then again, don't hold your breath)

Here's what I think is super fun....see, I'm a huge Disney freak. So my mom let me pick out my own underwear at the store and of course I picked all Disney characters cuz I'm cool like that.

This is a picture of me, proudly holding all my underwear....



I know....so cute, right? Anyway, she tacks them to the wall in the bathroom
right next to my little potty, like this....



While I'm doing my business, I stare at them and imagine Dori saying, "Just keep peeing, just keep peeing" and Buzz Lightyear saying, "To infinity and beyond..." when I flush the potty.

It's FUN. I totally dig this.

7) There WILL be regression....when you least expect it, of course. Like, say, when we're at a playdate at someone else's house. Or when you finally decide to be brave enough to take the entire family out for dinner. It's not that I've forgotten how to use the potty....it's more that, for some reason, you got in your head that YOU are in control. This is simply not the case.

I am in control and this is how I put you back in your place (must we review #1 again?). You'll look disappointed and say, "Now, why did you do that? You know how to poop in the potty!"

Yeah, see, that isn't the point...of course I do. It's YOU who has forgotten how we play the game. And sometimes you just have to reminded of who the REAL boss is.

8) Lastly, don't be in such a hurry to rush me through the potty training process. Remember, I'm only this young for a little while. Cherish these times and appreciate them.

Trust me, you'll think potty training was a breeze compared to the hell I'll put you through when I'm a teenager.

So there you have it....potty training 101, in a nutshell, courtesy of yours truly...




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58 comments:

Alicia said...

I think this could be a top seller!!

Buckeroomama said...

LOL! Way to go, Garrett! I think J might have a few similar pairs of underwear as the ones you've had up on the wall. :)

Karen & Gerard Zemek said...

That's so cool he came to that conclusion on his own that diapers are yucky--I agree!

Makes sense to let them choose their own underwear too, can't see me hanging it up on the wall though--so funny!

Mimi and Tilly said...

I love that you hung his new undies on the wall! Made me smile out loud. :)

DysFUNctional Mom said...

Dude, you are brilliant. And so is your mom.

Corrie Howe said...

I love the very last picture as if you were teaching me all about Potty Training from your seat on the pumpkin. I also love the underwear on the wall. Brilliant! Why didn't I have think of it?

Lee the Hot Flash Queen said...

That was priceless and oh so true. I am so glad to be passed that stage!!

Missy (Two Little Monkeys) said...

Way to go! And yes, those are 100% correct. Emma really wanted to be left alone - she refused to call family, etc. She wanted to do her business in private.
UGH! and do not even get me started on Abby's potty training experience
Way to go!!! Diaper-free!

S Club Mama said...

I love this. My son is 28 months so there's still hope of getting my MIL off my back before he turns 3. Not that I really care what she thinks...

Nezzy said...

A boy and his new underwear....priceless! I bought little floaty paper creatures and my son just loved sinkin' the little suckers in the toilet. This game was all it took to train him. Of course were talkin' about the same kid who was oh so proud when he would wash his hair in the John and the time he flushed my good washcloths. Heeeheeehhee! Oh, the simple life we lead in the 70's.

Have a terrific day and congratulations Mr. Garrett!!!

Jenn said...

What a smart little boy! :)

LazyCrazyMama said...

Haha!! Awesome! We have the same undies, except we got 2 WallE's instead of a Woody, I may have to get another pack 'cause my boy loves Woody.

I love the emailing the photo! I did that too!! and the how can such a little body... my gosh!!

And yes, waiting until they are ready is the key. My boy just turned 4 and we messed around with potty training for about a year, but a couple of months ago was when he decided he was ready. It was like a switch turned on!

And yes, there will be regression ;) He was doing great with the big toilet and going in public restrooms, and now all of a sudden he thinks the big toilets are going to blow up and refuses to use them! I cannot figure out where he got the idea from!

Kathy B! said...

This one is an instant classic!!

And never, ever send poop pictures.

Menopausal New Mom said...

That was BANG ON! I've been trying to get my 3 1/2 year old trained for about a year now and seems the harder I push her, the harder she pushes back. She is doing much better and only has the occasional accident now but what a challenge it has been.

I laughed out loud, yes I sit in front of her willing her parts to obey me but lately, I just so darn tired of it, I just sit there now and play games with her. So much better and we have made huge progress.

I think that I've finally got a handle on it. And yes, just wait until those teen years hit, I'll be looking back at this toilet training thing remembering it as a piece of cake.

Thanks for the great post, now we are off to the store so she can pick out some new underwear!

The Mother said...

Where was Garrett when I was potty training my boys?

Or, rather, where was Garrett when I was NOT potty training my boys?

wife.mom.nurse said...

wooohooo!

Another Helene classic.

Perfect for the book you HAVE TO write some day.

LOVE it.

So much like when I (my boy) potty trained my boy (potty trained himself!)

Amy said...

Thanks for sharing this. This is the next step in our life.. I am so scared. She likes to sit there but nothing... OH well I will just wait with her.

The Lane Family said...

This was an awesome post and something I can really use!! Aidan is there most of the time but I think I should have followed the rules and let Aidan pick his own underwear.

Also with our pediatrican telling me "let's get Kaylee" potty trained I appreciate a toddler (and his mommy) reminding me wait until she is ready and that they are only little once!!

Twincerely,Olga said...

awesome post!!sounds like he really could have said all that!! Love it!!You Rock!

Kristina P. said...

I am so glad you said the underwear was up there with tacks! I thought they were stuck with something else!

Liz @ Sugarplum Creations said...

This is great! Such a smart guy you've got on your hands, there :)

Queenie Jeannie said...

Awesome, awesome post!! Thank you for the laughs and the reminders, and praise God....I'm over that part finally!!!

kys said...

I'm with Alicia - you need to make this into a book. You are so awesome!

Shelby at DoubleUpBooks.com - The Twins and Multiples Bookstore said...

I can't believe it, but I've actually said "How can such a little body make such a big poop?" too!! You hit the Cheerio target in the toilet perfectly with these post. Thanks for the laughs!!

Living It, Loving It said...

That last picture is so precious! We are getting close to potty training at our house too.

Momlissa said...

That was awesome! Your little guy is such a great writer! :)

Debbie said...

I am completely convinced that we do far too many things on our schedule and not our kids'. Potty training is the worst offender.

Twins Squared said...

Yeaaa! That is great news! I could only hope for such luck this go round. I am fully expecting the worst, as I have already experienced the worst, as many of us have. I am not going to attempt it until they are 3, unless of course they just decide on their own. Hope he never looks back!

M said...

My b/g twins just turned 3. She was almost trained just before 2-1/2 until she saw her brothers reaction. She put the brakes on. Then suddenly two nights ago, after her bath, she was watching Clifford in her after bath towel (no diaper), she got up, put the seat on the potty, used it, wiped, came back, sat down and continued to watch the show. She still won't wear underwear.

FYI, the average child uses 8.5 diapers per day ...
8.5 x 365 days = 3102.5

x 3 years = 9307.5

x twins = 18,615

Ever done that math before??? :)

Heather said...

LOL...what a smart boy! I love the pic of him holding his undies!

Mighty M said...

All of it very true! I love how you tacked his underwear on the wall!!

blueviolet said...

He turns your cooking into garbage. LOL

What a cute little guy! I'm glad he decided it was time. It truly is the first thing they have completely control about.

Mrsbear said...

Thanks for the reminder.

We're currently in the throes of potty training here as well. My almost three year old is constantly reminding me how IN control he is. Just when I think he's got it down, he regresses. Just when I put him in a pair of briefs, he completely empties his bladder with barely a flinch. He is SO messing with me. I'm not agonizing over it. When he's ready, he's ready. It's not like he's going to college in a pair of Pull-Ups, which coincidentally to a toddler are exactly the same as diapers except you get less in a pack.

Taking your toddler advice and backing off for now.

Foiled again.

Mommy said...

Loved it!! Plus I know you know from experience that when ya have twins its double the headache and with ours one was almost done potty training till the other wanted too. Oh and we did the stickers but not just get them there was a big poster on the wall with their names and we had little starts for each time they went and then big stickers for a full day of no accidents the girls loved it!!

Jenny said...

Too cute!

I so agree with letting them decide when they are ready. My daughter was day trained at age 3, but she couldn't stay dry in the night until a few days after her 5th birthday.

She decided that she was 5 and wasn't going to wear diapers to bed. She had 2 accidents in the first few weeks, but hasn't had any since.

Heather Kephart said...

Helene, you are so freaking awesome! How did you know I was feeling guilty that my almost three year old son is not yet potty trained? (He shows interest from time to time in passing but now it's NONONO, same with food.)

This is the best post on potty training I've ever seen. So no point in pull-ups you think? Good to know! Also, I like what you said about them being babies for a short time. I tend to want to enjoy these moments. They'll get where they need to be eventually in all things, what's the big rush?

yonca said...

Those little underwears on the wall made me smile. What a cute idea it is. Love the first pic ;)

yonca said...

Those little underwears on the wall made me smile. What a cute idea it is. Love the first pic ;)

Emily said...

awwww! how cute and how easy for you =)

Cascia said...

Great potty training tips! Glad to hear he was cooperative.

feefifoto said...

How lucky you are to have a child who just announces that he's ready. For a while my daughter would announce that she had to go potty but if it was inconvenient to find a bathroom I'd just tell her to go in the diaper. Before too long I realized that if I didn't take advantage of her readiness she was going to discover how important potty training to me, and refuse to comply. When my son decided he was ready I canceled all our plans for a week so we could stay home and practice. It was worth it.

Our reward system was M&Ms dispensed from a gumball machine.

Frugal Vicki said...

I love this. We are currently trying a relaxed approach, and it seems to be kind of working. only kind of. Well, not really. Maybe my son will just get it simply because I read this post. I loved it though, so cute!

Elle said...

I think this should be required reading for every new mother! LOL! Funny but all true. One of my daughters refused to use the potty and I was frantic that she be potty trained before she started nursery school. She said "I will when I go to nursery school" and she did. On her terms when she was ready. She's almost 21 and it's still that way with everything. On her terms when she is ready!

Lori said...

Helene...you deserve to have something be that easy. I hope it will be easier for my youngest son. My oldest is still a "work in progress" at four and a half. Ho hum...

newlyweds said...

Great advice and I need it. Mine are about to be 2. Should I wait till they are more interested? I need help!

Andrea said...

haha...love his potty training advice! And the underwear on the wall is priceless. :) Great idea!!! ;) Great blog you've got...I'm glad I stopped by! :)

Rook No. 17 said...

Love it! This totally takes me back. I had forgotten about a lot of this stuff, and it's funny how one can look back so fondly on those potty training days after a few years have passed. Wonderful writing, as usual!

Shelle said...

I used the potty training in less than a day book, and it work...I never really had to do anything else, except follow up.

kanishk said...

That's so cool he came to that conclusion on his own that diapers are yucky--I agree! Work from home India

Erin M. said...

Truer words were never spoken. You've done an incredible job of describing one of the toughest things ever---especially with twins!!

MommyAmy said...

So funny! Just yesterday Ziva held up a poopy diaper to me and said, "Yuck! Yuck!" So I'm sure she's ready, I was hoping to keep them in diapers until after the holidays... but I'm not sure she'll put up with them for that long.

Nishant said...

love that you hung his new undies on the wall! Made me smile out loud. :) Work from home India

Sharlene said...

Please come down here and potty train Ben. Please. Please. Please. Or at least send Garrett to talk some sense into him!

Mamatoosi said...

LOL. Good job, Garrett!

Child Development Techniques said...

Read children's story books about potty training to your child. There are lots of books available for you get online on potty training. Reading and imagination helps the child to relate to the interesting characters and behaviors within the story and helps them follow accordingly. Offer lots of praise when your child does make some progress. It is not an easy practice but this will help you see results amazingly when you really put in the effort to make your child proud of their achievement. Avoid physical punishment for not using the potty. Stop all reminders about using the toilet. Replace the reminders with the potty training stories you’ve read to your child. This helps as their mind recalls the story and how will keep it in mind when its time.

source: http://www.childdevelopmenttechniques.com

Child Development Techniques said...

Read children's story books about potty training to your child. There are lots of books available for you get online on potty training. Reading and imagination helps the child to relate to the interesting characters and behaviors within the story and helps them follow accordingly. Offer lots of praise when your child does make some progress. It is not an easy practice but this will help you see results amazingly when you really put in the effort to make your child proud of their achievement. Avoid physical punishment for not using the potty. Stop all reminders about using the toilet. Replace the reminders with the potty training stories you’ve read to your child. This helps as their mind recalls the story and how will keep it in mind when its time.

source: http://www.childdevelopmenttechniques.com

jennifer elaine said...

Read children's story books about potty training to your child. There are lots of books available for you get online on potty training. Reading and imagination helps the child to relate to the interesting characters and behaviors within the story and helps them follow accordingly. Offer lots of praise when your child does make some progress. It is not an easy practice but this will help you see results amazingly when you really put in the effort to make your child proud of their achievement. Avoid physical punishment for not using the potty. Stop all reminders about using the toilet. Replace the reminders with the potty training stories you’ve read to your child. This helps as their mind recalls the story and how will keep it in mind when its time.

source: http://www.childdevelopmenttechniques.com

hangeng said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

I figure that if the children are alive when my husband gets home at the end of the day, I've done my job.

----Roseanne Barr



 
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