Disclaimer: Please this post is not intended for parents who want to potty train their new born child or parents who want a potty trained child under 12 months old. hahahaha
I am your typical “always late to potty train my kids ” kind of mother. She starts, stops and her friend pushes her not to give up then she resumes with a renewed strength to keep going. This is me and if you are just like me then enjoy this read!
I am always looking forward to ending the diaper wearing era of my kids but at the same time I guess I am also not ready to be working on soiled pants, mopping the floor and basically any work associated with a non-diaper wearing child or one strutting about the house with their naked bum. Sounds confusing huh?
………..Before I found a solution for my son, I had read a number of articles online and checked in with fellow mothers to share tips to help hasten the potty training for my son. I basically tried all these familiar suggestions:
1. Naughty corner
If he pees on the floor then for his punishment I march him to the naughty corner to spend some few minutes there. I think my son saw this as a game of peekaboo with myself and the TV (trying to sneak a peek at the TV from his corner).
2. Enrol elder sister’s help
I recruited the help of his elder sister to check on him and talk to him about potty training. Kids would hopefully listen to each other I had hoped. But this beloved son of mine would listen, understand and not practice.
3. Watch youtube videos
I searched for potty training videos with colourful animated graphics and music that was guaranteed to get any child’s attention. He watched and understood but……………….
4. Talk to them as adults
I had a talk with him as an adult about potty training including illustrating and going through potty training drills with him. I told him he is growing and no longer a baby and very soon he wouldn’t have to wear diapers any more.
5. Get colourful potties and undies
Trust me, I was sure this would work for him but it rather became a playtoy for him. His potty was a yellow ducky with wheels and it became an indoor mode of transportation for him. He loved his undies and chose the colours himself but……..the consistency was like ECG flipping my power switch on and off. One day he is wearing dry pants and the next time it’s an accident.
Although some of these worked for other mothers (it worked for my daughter though) but for my son no! It was like he was sent to test my patience.
Like I said, none of these made consistent progress for me and I gave up along the way. The cleanups and impromptu bathing was getting to me. My success came only when I discovered Potty Whiz (available for download on android and ios devices), it is a potty training app that is effective when you involve your kid.
Initially I utilised it wrongly by inputting and tracking his potty schedules on my own. I didn’t involve him on the journey so my frustrations grew when I wasn’t getting the results I wanted. I started getting results when I involved him and allowed (guided) him to do the clicking. He always gets excited when the “good job Jesse pops up! after every successful bathroom visit. He looked forward to the fireworks sound on the app and this motivated him to make progress.
I recall having a conversation with him during one of my frustrated days.
Me: “Are you happy to be wearing diapers?
My son: “When I wear diapers, it doesn’t make a mess but panties make a mess!” (I just shook my head so this guy is not taking blame. He is blaming his undies.)
Then I asked, “Are you a baby?” He would say no and equally ask me, what we will be doing with the rest of the diapers if he stopped wearing them.
What I loved about the app is the ability to schedule potty reminders. I set an hour to an hour and a half duration for potty training reminders. I will just say potty time and he will go, come back to me to get his “Well done Jesse!” on the app.
Recently (this post has been in draft for over a year), I don’t have to set the alarm I just prompt him periodically and I was excited to find him sitting on the WC all alone one day doing his thing. I thought his dad took him but apparently he did not. Hip! Hip! Hurray!! Well done Jesse!!!!!!
And my day was made when I attempted putting him in diapers for bedtime but he said, “no no I am not a baby!” I went through prepping because I wasn’t ready for wet mattress wahala. I used a plastic bag to line his mattress and told him to sleep at that part in case any damage happened.
I was excited, the battle had finally been won and I asked him, what to do with the rest of the diapers and his response, “give it to a baby!” Ladies and gentlemen my work is done (Tears of joy). My diaper money is saved. Hallelujah!!!
The not so secret to successfully potty training your child is that each child has their own timing. They will only be ready when they are ready. Don’t stress yourself and your kid when no progress is made. Potty training is not a race! and it’s not a determinant of the kind of parent you are.
Oh! With all the babbling I forgot to mention, he was 3 years old. 😅
I just shared my potty training journey, how did you successfully potty train your kids?
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