Potty training: Nakedness and bribery.
Ladies and gentlemen, we are officially daytime potty trained, hallelujah! #byebyediapers. Our sweet little Ever has figured it out, just shy of two and a half years old.
Unfortunately, his addiction to apple juice makes nighttime a whole different ballgame that we are no where near winning. But we’ll get there eventually.
I’d like to think we are just great parents… but in all honesty, I think they decide when they’re ready;)
Now remember, every kid is incredibly different, and I am by no means an expert on potty training, or parenting in general, let’s be real here. What worked for us might be totally and completely useless to you. But after lots of questions, I figured I’d share what we’ve learned so far.
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First, get yourself one of those little potty chairs. We use a super basic one and like it just fine:) Easy to clean and it has a substantial peepee gaurd, which is important if you’ve got a boy, believe me!
Second, be prepared for them to refuse to use said potty chair because they want to “peepee like daddy”.
Third, if they do indeed want to go on the big potty, grab yourself one of those handy seats that fits on the toilet instead. I did a little research and went with this one from Fisher-Price. And I LOVE it! It locks into different shaped toilets so there’s no sliding or pinching, which was the big issue in a lot of reviews I read on other seats. It comes with a handy dandy hanger, is super reasonably priced, and it’s gender neutral. We also use a foldable stool to help our little dude reach the seat. … what can I say, I like things to match.
Now that you know probably too much about the contents of our bathroom, on to my main pieces of advice….
- Be prepared for pee (and a little poo too). Even if they catch on pretty quick, like ours did, there will still be accidents. So. Many. Accidents. Just roll with it. Someone thought carpet in the bathroom of our rental house was a great idea… just for future reference, it’s not. If you also have a bathroom designed by someone who’s never met a child (or a man), I highly suggest putting a towel under your little potty chair.
- Let them feel like they’re the leader. Because if there is one thing we can all agree on about toddlers, it’s that things need to be their idea. Show them how to unfold the stool, let them pick out their reward, their undies, etc etc…. Ever was big into choosing his own treats at the store and what color his underwear would be… all 3 pairs we would go through that day.
- Let them be naked. In the beginning Everest had no clue how to “hold it”. Being able to sprint into the bathroom and just do the deed was key! If it was just us at home, he seriously was naked for the better part of a month.
And finally… my secret weapon… the thing that really got us through… also the thing I’m sure will get me a bunch of hate from all the perfect parents out there…
No shame in my potty training game.
Bribery works. I’m sure there are kids out there who are stubborn about it. But I honestly think you just need to find that one thing they love enough to be bribed.
For us, that was “punky treats”.
Ever since Halloween I’ve been storing any sort of candy we get, from birthday party goodie bags to Christmas stocking chocolate, all of it, in the bright orange pumpkin he used for trick-or-treating. Back in October he was just finally finding his voice and lovingly referred to pumpkins as “punkys”, and yes, it was freakin adorable:) When we decided to really go for it with potty training over the holidays, we found out that our kids one bribe worthy thing, is most definitely candy. But not just any candy, it was especially special to him if it came from the “punky”. So each time he went on the potty he would get a treat from the big orange pumpkin. And all on his own, he coined the term “punky treats” and it just sort of stuck.
**little tip: we now use punky treats for all sorts of things… bribery is not limited to potty training;)
Now obviously there are other basic things that can help you on your journey… put them on the potty every 30 minutes or so, make a sticker reward chart, get some cute little books about it, Everest got a kick out of this one:
And I’m sure a million other things parents far more wise and experienced than myself can tell you… but if you ask me, find your kids “punky treat” and run with it.
The Beautifully Mediocre Mama