Today is the three week mark for our potty training adventure. It’s a funny thing to blog about because this is really the first time that I have a sense of encroaching on my child’s privacy – one’s excretory system does seem a bit personal. But as I’ve been going through this I’ve been so obsessed with hearing the dirty details of other people’s experiences that I am going to share mine. Reading about the official “methods” does nothing for me, what I want to know is what was/is it like for you??
We’re still in the process so this is definitely NOT the “wrap-up” post that I thought I would be writing today, but that’s okay. He’s doing great with pee, not so great with pooping, which is very typical I know. He was doing well with the latter at first, but had one bad (messy) experience that really turned him off – in a moment I’ll explain how I’m handling that now.
Potty training hasn’t really been stressful – in fact for the first two weeks I’d say it was downright fun. Only in the last week have I started to have a little anxiety over whether I am doing it “right,” pushing too hard, not enough, etc. It’s perfectly fine if it takes him a few more weeks to get it down, I just want to do the right thing. The last thing I want to do is give him some sort of weird complex about going to the bathroom.
There are some things I would/will do differently next time around. For one, start smaller with the potty rewards. I was so excited when he first decided to use the potty that I jumped straight to lollipops, not really thinking ahead to what it might mean to be giving my kid a few lollipops every single day for weeks on end. Woops. I should have started with the potty chart + stickers, which I didn’t start until two weeks in. I didn’t think he would be interested in that AT ALL, since it seemed kind of abstract and he doesn’t even like stickers that much. But he’s into it! He loves to sit on my lap and review the potty chart each time he earns a new sticker. Yesterday I put up a new potty chart for the coming week and he was psyched.
I have to admit I haven’t been consistent with naked/diapers/underwear. I never set out to meet any kind of deadline, so I just keep adjusting the method and feeling out what seems to be working or not. That might be making this take longer, but I am okay with that. My main concern is to allow him to have most of the control and just be there to assist, remind, and encourage, which I’ll tell ya isn’t always easy for me because I am a little control freaky. Asking him 10,000 times a day if he needs to peepee is NOT effective, particularly since he only needs to go a few times a day and is perfectly capable of holding it for hours.
Moms of boys often have the Sit or Stand question to consider, but Miles solved this one for me: without any direction from me, he started climbing onto the toilet seat to sit backwards. He does not like potty chairs and is pretty good with just a regular old toilet, so there you go.
So the conundrum that I’ve been grappling with is whether to put him in diapers or underwear. I feel really bad for the little guy that he is afraid to poop in the toilet anymore and I don’t want to make him soil his pants, but I’m concerned that wearing diapers all the time will send a mixed message – although he does seem to hold his bladder and use the toilet to pee even with a diaper on, which is good. So my in-between solution right now is to have him in underwear at home but put a diaper on for going out, or if I can tell that he’s going to have to poop soon. And just explaining to him every day that he will poop in the toilet when he’s ready, but he can do it in a diaper if he wants to, etc. That was the best solution I could come up with but if anyone has done something different feel free to chime in!