The thing with potty training is, as soon as your baby is born, you know at some point you will need to do it so its well worth being prepared for it.
To prepare Dexter, we just bought a plain white potty some time last year and have always had it in the living room so he has been used to having it around. He has sat on it a few times but mostly just to watch tv. He’s been allowed to follow us to the loo when he’s wanted to so that he’s aware of how we do it, he likes to flush for us too. He chose his own new pants and he helped us to pay for them and carried them home. We picked up a book that I spotted one day in a pound shop that tells the story of a little boy using his potty for the first time. It soon became one of Dexters favourites. He really enjoys the story despite there not being a lot to it. We have also watched the potty episode of bear in the big blue house. I loved this program when my sister was little so I searched it out specifically. I highly recommend this episode!
He’s been showing signs that he is ready to use the potty for a while now. He can tell us when he’s having a wee and is normally dry when he naps too so we decided to get it done between the house move and the arrival of the new baby. There didn’t seem much point in putting it off any later than that.
Liam and I both booked a week off work so we could do it together and we chose a week in August so as to save our carpets any accidents and hopefully contain it in the garden. As it happens, the weather hasn’t been that great. We prepared him a goody bag of small sweets and gifts to reward him when he had done well and we started on Sunday when we had nothing to do and nowhere to go.
Dexter had woken up on the wrong side of the bed today. I’d explained to him the previous evening that when he woke up, he wouldn’t wear nappies anymore and he seemed ok with it but when it came to him sitting on the potty, he wasn’t really interested.
We read his potty book and I showed him his bag of treats and explained it all again. We took all his clothes off so that he didn’t get them wet or have to struggle to pull them down but he seemed to be refusing and holding it in. He didn’t want to go on the potty at all. At this point I thought we might have a struggle on our hands but we persevered.
After a few hours he accidentally peed a tiny bit on the carpet. I called him to the potty that was close by and sat him on it so he could finish the rest of the wee in there. While sat down, he pointed to the wet patch on the floor but I refocussed his attention to what he managed to get in to the potty. We made sure he got lots of fuss and praise and he was really happy with himself. I handed him some tissue so that he could wipe. We emptied his potty into the toilet so he could flush it and he washed his hands. then Daddy came along with the bag of treats and let him pick one out. He did very well for his first wee but his second was even better.
We’d sat down together on the sofa watching Harry Potter for the millionth time and I’d put a towell under him just in case. Dexter got up to wander about like he normally does so I kept an eye on what he was doing but left him to it. He walked over to his potty and without any prompting or encouragement he just sat on it. He then called me and I turned around to see the biggest, proudest smile on his face as he stood up to show me what he’d done. Lots more cuddles this time and another treat from the bag to keep the enthusiasm up.
All day long he continued to ‘go’ with out us needing to even ask him to. He seemed to be enjoying this new found independence. Later that evening, he even sat down to have a poo! He just got on with it, same as he had been doing all day. I had been expecting this to be messy but I don’t think I have ever been so proud of him! He wiped and we emptied it exactly the same as we had all day and then as a treat, I took him to the park. The park is just behind out house so we didn’t bother putting a nappy on him, just some pants and shorts and we took a potty with us. We came home and he had one more wee and then it was time for bed. I was a bit unsure a bout what to do for bedtime so I ended up putting him in a nappy overnight.
We messed him about a bit on the second day as we had to go in to town so we took him out with a nappy on. I didn’t really want to do that as I didn’t want to take a step backwards but we weren’t out for very long. While we were out and a bout we did pick up a mattress protector sheet for his bed. I figured, if he wet his bed, we could put a nappy on him and he could come in with us for the rest of that night until I could wash and dry his bedding.
Anyway, when we got home, as predicted, he didn’t want to take his nappy off, however when he did, it was completely dry. Today we tried putting pants on him. We knew he could manage the potty with nothing in his way but obviously he cant be naked forever so he had to learn to do his pants in time. We had a couple of accidents but nothing major until he needed to poo. He looked like he needed to go but then kept telling us he didn’t… Until he did, and it was too late. In fact he had 2 poo accidents today so Liam and I took turns to clean up. That night, as he’d had no wee accidents we put his new sheet on his bed and put him to bed with no nappy on. He stayed dry the entire night.
This was Dexters best day so far. He wore pants all day, no nappies whatsoever and even when we popped out for something to eat, he still had no nappy on. Granted, we weren’t out for long but he stayed dry all day, didn’t ask us for any help on the potty and we even had his potty chair on the toilet too so he can go on the big toilet all by himself. His last wee before bed was done on the big toilet upstairs so not even with his seat and he held on very well, even with one hand when he needed to wipe. We put him to bed again with no nappy on and we had yet another dry night. I honestly could not be more proud of my little man.
No more potty training needed. No accidents, he comes and goes in the big toilet as he pleases. the only help he needs is pulling his trousers up and down – he’s wearing full clothes now rather than just pants! We even went to Tesco and were out for about an hour without him needing to go or having any accidents. So thats it. After 3 days and just a handful of accidents, our boy is completely dry, day and night!
I appreciate with most cases it isn’t this easy but I do believe if we hadn’t prepared him as we did for what was going to happen he wouldn’t have done half as well. My little boy is growing up so fast! Now when he goes back to pre-school in September, he will be in big boy pants. Where has the time gone??
Edited to add: Since he’s been dry, I have realised that one thing they don’t tell you about potty training is that overnight, a great chunk of your toddlers clothes become automatically redundant. Anything that they can’t undo themselves, anything like vests and onesies with poppers, anything like dungarees… all completely useless. Add new clothes and pjs to your shopping lists as well as new underwear!!
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