Potty Training 101

Potty training wasn’t terribly hard for Landon, but it also wasn’t terribly easy.  If I were to pass any advice along to other moms, this is what I learned in my experience:

Biggest failure for us: PUSHING IT.  WHEN HE”S READY, HE’S READY!! 🙂

When trying to figure out how and when to start potty training, the hardest part for us was figuring out when he was ready.  At around 2 1/2, we started pushing for him to go potty.  This was an epic fail because he would scream and wiggle and do anything to stay “off the pot”.  After a week or two of trying, I checked potty training advice from online and noticed that 1. many parents mentioned how they would test the waters every couple months starting around 2-2.5 yrs old and then let their kids guide them. This was great advice that we definitely learned from.  We stopped pushing it and let him do his own thing for a while.  2. so many posts kept saying how little girls would often potty train earlier than boys so to give boys some extra time to get used to the idea.  Since I have so many friends with little girls, I had to remember that while they were in full-blown potty mode, Landon just wasnt ready yet and that was ok, too.

Sure enough, a few months later, we did another trial balloon and Landon loved going pee on the potty.  He would do a potty dance, we’d read the potty book sitting on the potty, we’d get “LMNs” (M&Ms) when we’d go.

Poop on the potty was another story.  As much as we’d try to sit together and hype it up, Landon was having none of it.  We’d have him try and he’d sit on the potty for 15 mins, “Mom, I dont have to go poop.”  Sure enough, we’d let him off and 5 minutes later he’d be off standing in one of his favorite “pooping spots” going in his pants.  We finally gave up on it for a few weeks, it was too much of a struggle and I resigned myself to the fact that he just wasn’t ready yet.  I don’t know if it was the sitting or the going into the bowl or what, but he just didn’t want to do it.

Finally after his cousin Harleigh had been going regularly for a month or two, we decided to try again.  There were a couple days of sitting and trying, and then still pooping his pants later.  Then finally, I tried a little reverse psychology.  It had been working in other things lately, so I said. Landon, let’s try to do a poop on the potty.  You can get a chocolate, you can have a special treat, whatever you want bud. But the thing that finally worked was me saying “Harleigh does such great poop on the potty. I don’t know if you can do it like she can.  No, I don’t think you should even try it.”  Sure enough, a couple grunts later and we had a floater!

That was right around Christmas time and he’s been doing pretty well since then.  He still often will do a small poop in the potty and then once he’s asleep at naptime or bedtime, he’ll do the big one.  But we’re making progress.  And he gets excited about getting a special treat or a happy dance when he does a great job on the potty.

Other moms, what potty training advice would you give to other “rookie potty trainers”?

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