When potty training in 3 days doesn't work
The time came! AB turned 2 and I decided it was time to potty train her! I took three days off of work, because I had done my research. I had pinned countless blog posts about "How to Potty Train a Toddler in 3 Days." After finding so many how to's that explained the same method ,I knew my plan of attack. I prepared for this with the goal of having her completely potty trained by the end of day 3. Now leading up to this day, AB was showing signs that she was ready to use the potty for a while such as: tugging at her diaper right around when she would go number 1. When it came time for number 2 she would leave the area completely for some privacy. She was communicating wants and needs and caught on to most things pretty quickly.
For her birthday, we got her the potty and some books (I have the potty and books linked below). We figured her unwrapping them would add a level of excitement. When she unwrapped them, we made it a huge deal. She was thrilled!
Day 1: Here were go! One of the books came with a little tiara that would get jewel stickers applied when she went potty. Our treat of choice were jelly beans. The second she woke up, she was put on the potty. She sat there reading her book and about 10 minutes later, she peed. The people downstairs probably thought we had won the lottery, lol. We danced, we sang and AB got a jelly bean and a sticker on her crown. Day 1 went exactly like this: all day- bare bottom, on and off the toilet, lots of smiles, hugs, dancing and a slight sugar rush from the jelly beans, since she eats pretty healthy, normally. It was going perfectly. No number 2, but we remained optimistic.
Day 2: Went exactly the same as Day 1, except on day 2 there still wasn't any number 2.
Day 3: She escaped our eye for a second and then - Number 2 happened - on our heating unit that lines our bedroom. I mean, she could have picked anywhere in the whole house, but she chose the thing that has the most crevices, NICE! We didn't scold her, we actually consoled her because she looked quite embarrassed. We simply reminded her that when she has to go potty, she goes on her potty.
Day 4: Clearly having her potty trained in 3 days was out of the question. Everything changed on day 4, she started crying when being put on the potty and would say, "No, please mommy! No potty more!" She would hold onto us and be afraid to sit down. She would cry and couldn't relax unless we were holding her hand or sometimes even hugging her. This continued and we kept encouraging her to use the potty.
She still received her jelly beans and sticker jewels for her crown and was happy. She would dance along with us and we would mention ... what a big girl she was, but leading up to it, there was a lot of fear. My husband and I decided, maybe she is just not ready for this.
We took a BIG step back. We would ask her if she needed to go potty, if she said yes, we would sit right by her side. If she said no thank you, we didn't push it, we just said "ok" and moved on.
Then, one day after doing this for a couple of weeks Ava ran in the living room yelling, "Mommy, I potty! I potty!" She ran in taking off her diaper (we keep the potty in the living room since she is also afraid to go into the bathroom to potty). She took off her diaper and went potty, all on her own. She was in her room playing prior to this. My husband and I just looked at each other. It was happening!
Now, AB consistently uses the potty number 1 and 2 on her own! She did it, WE did it!
So here are my tips for when potty training isn't as easy as a 3-day process:
1. Don't push them - When you have a child who is scared and wants to do things on their own at their own pace, let them practice their autonomy, but keep the environment comfortable. Teach them the basics and maybe take a step back if they seem overwhelmed as pushing them too much can be counterproductive.
2. Trust your little one - Our kiddos are way smarter than we sometimes give them credit for. When they are ready, they will succeed. Each child has their own time for this, let it happen as organically as possible and don't be disappointed if they don't get it right away. It WILL happen.
3. Trust yourself - You are giving your little one all of the tools possible to succeed and you are doing amazing. Try not to let their slow progress get you down and certainly don't let yourself get frustrated.
4. Keep on encouraging and supporting them - They will pick up on your energy, as they always do!
5. Count your blessings and embrace the journey! - They might pee on the couch or in the middle of the store, but it comes with the territory. You can either be frustrated that it is happening or be grateful in your heart that you get to experience something, as a parent, that others might not be able to due to varying circumstances. Just keep a lot of paper towels, spare clothes and a great sense of humor handy!
Thanks for taking the time to visit the blog today and until next time -
Love, peace and Sippy Cups,