Monday, 30 April 2012

Potty Training

Okay, so a lot of the advice I have read or heard suggests that you just wait, and your toddler will suddenly let you know that they are ready to come out of nappies.  Then there isn't much need to potty train, because they are ready and they will use it.

I didn't wait.  I was trying.  We were doing some gentle encouragement.  A bit of nappy off time every now and then.  "I'll use the potty when I'm a bit bigger"... I began to worry that perhaps with this boy I might be waiting a long time.  Then I asked some advice from my friends at Toddler Group.  Two of them had just waited really, and their girls let them know that they were ready, but they were ready quite a bit younger than C is now.  One of them is writing a book about potty training.  Her twins are a few months younger than C and have been using the potty for a few months now.  She suggested that I should just go for it.

I just went for it.  Last Wednesday afternoon.  "Right.  Big boy now.  No more nappies except at sleep time.  Wees and poos in the potty now."  

Wednesday and Thursday - fine, no probs.
Friday - an accident in the aisle at Tesco.  An accident at home.
Saturday - an accident by the sea lions at the safari park and an accident at home.
Sunday - pretty good.
Monday - only two successful uses of the potty, everything else has been on the floor, though for the most part on the way to the potty!

It seems as though he's getting the messages that he needs a wee, but he wants to wait until he's finished what he's doing before heading to the potty, and he's leaving it too late.  Quite often I've literally just asked him if he needs to use the potty, and he's replied "I'm alright".  Minutes later there's an accident.

I decided that he needs a bit more incentive.  I had been planning on getting him a balance bike anyway.  The little trike that we bought for his birthday has been a waste of space - because of the lack of walking around here that isn't off-road mud etc. it's not been used on walks, and even though the age recommendation on the bike is 18mths-3yrs, at nearly 3years old, he still can't reach the pedals properly to use the bike on his own.  So I found a Balance Bike on Gumtree, and bought it.  The nice lady also threw in a Thomas the Tank Engine scooter for free.  I showed them to him and let him have a quick go and then locked them into the bike shed.  There we go.  I cut out ten large gold stars from card, and numbered them.  At the top of the fridge is a picture of the bike.  The bike is for big boys.  Big boys go to the toilet in the potty.  Every time you go to the toilet in the potty you get a star on the fridge.  When you have all ten stars, then you can have the bike.  After that we'll work for the scooter.  A bit of incentive to make it to the potty in time!

I worry so much that I'm getting it all wrong.  Who knows.  Am I pushing him too early?  Is he ready?  I guess we'll wait and see.  In the meantime, there isn't much change in my laundry - while I am now only washing terry nappies for one, I do have a constant wash-load of small pants, socks and shorts, and the cloths which I'm using to clean my floors...

I just have to have faith that he'll get there in the end, and hope that it doesn't take too long!


  1. Well I think that all sounds very reasonable, Mel! Sometimes they DO need incentive (boys especially) and a bike is a clear, defined goal for him. He's about the right age to be to be using the potty and I know how matter-of-fact and fair you are (ie: no Mummy scowls when he tries and doesn't make it!) so feel confident in saying you are not scarring him for life. *grins* Good luck, this is the worst bit!!

    1. Thanks Lynz, he's so gorgeous. I really don't know if he's 'getting it'. Having said that, he's in pull-ups just now for nap-time and I heard a call of
      "I need a wee", I replied
      "Well done C. Hop out of bed, pull down your pull-ups and sit on the potty then. Do you need any help?"
      "No, I'm alright". A couple of minutes later the door opens and a smiling face peeks round, "I've done one".
      "Hooray! In the potty? What a big boy! Well done! That's another star! Just two more to go and you'll have your bike!"...
      ...So perhaps he is getting it after all?!