I do not know about you, but I feel like a mom failure about 99.8% of the time. I let my daughter have too much screen time, her favourite food is processed and she is never the first child to hit any milestone. Potty training was no exception. Two of my cousins had children within 6 weeks of mine (my daughter was born right in the middle of the other two.) With this built-in competition, I really felt the pressure. While their girls were potty training mine was nowhere near ready.
Potty Training Advice From Real Parents
Of course, I turned to some of the amazing mamas who write for Thinking Outside The Sandbox: Family. Here are some of their nuggets of parenting wisdom.
Ashley – Skip pull-ups and go straight to big girl/boy underwear. Messes can be cleaned up no problem.
Alisha – Don’t force it. I did this and it backfired so bad. If they are ready it should come easy. Give lots of praise, and encouragement.
Selena – Take your child to the potty every 15 minutes for the first few days. As you notice how often your child needs to go, gradually lengthen the time to 30 minutes, then an hour.
Haley – We waited till they were ready. Start watching for them to wake up dry. That will show they have some control and are mature enough to begin. Once you take disposables away do not go back!
It was like a light went off. It did not matter that we had not started potty training yet. Although it felt like we were late to game, we weren’t. My daughter was fully trained by age three. In fact from start to finished she was trained in under 2 weeks. Now that I am a potty training expert (ha!) I wanted to pass on a few more pieces of advice.
Your child knows best.
Instead of giving in to outside pressures let your child let you know when they are ready. This can be very hard to do but trust me it will be easier to train if your kid is ready. Remember when I told you about my cousins children and how they started potty training a lot earlier than us? Well, their kids took months to train. They just were not ready.
Accidents happen. Be prepared.
Accidents will happen and they can be frustrating for both you and your child. Your best course of action is to be prepared. Pack an extra set of clothes before you go anywhere. We had a few accidents in the car so we bought puppy pads and put them under the car seat. While my daughter hasn’t had an accident since (isn’t that the way these things go) the puppy pads saved the upholstery from spills. The puppy pads also are great on the mattress. They are really thin and do not rustle. Your child will never know they are there.
Make sure you have the right tools.
You would not start a DIY project without the right tools and the same goes for potty training. Toilets are just not made for little bums. We have two washrooms in our house and use two different methods. In the upstairs washroom, we have a removable kiddie toilet seat and downstairs we have a 2-in-1 seat. The 2-in-1 is much nicer. I wish we would have installed one upstairs as well.
The toilet is not the only tool your child will use. They will also need a step stool if they are unable to get to the seat on their own. Perhaps the most important tool is the toilet paper. We had 4-5 rolls on the go in each washroom. This may seem like a lot, but we did this for a reason. First, we always wanted to have toilet paper that was in easy reach of my daughter. Teaching her proper wiping was very important. I would also be able to show how many paper square to use while she followed along with her roll.
To save yourself from having to run to the store to grab more toilet paper, pick up Charmin Ultra Soft. There are 1,000 more sheets per package than before combined, which means less trips to town! With Charmin Ultra Strong being back at Sam’s Club for a limited time, you’ll get way more for way less.
To be entered to win one of 53 $50 Sam’s Club Giftcards, you must share your potty training tips/tricks and use #CharminatSamsClub on Twitter or Instagram.
Acorn Influence, Sam’s Club and Charmin sponsored this conversation about potty training. I was given compensation for my opinions and tips on toilet training. All opinions are those of TOTS Network and do not necessarily reflect those of our partners. #CharminAtSamsClub