Occasionally during media appearances, I am introduced as being a “parenting expert.” Whenever I hear those words, I am reminded of my many parenting failures. There is one area though that I do believe I am an “expert”. That is potty training. I (along with my wife) have potty trained 3 kids and are potty training our fourth.
Many parents have shared with me their frustrations over potty training. I can honestly say the only time I have ever been frustrated with potty training were those moments of eating at restaurants or on long car rides. Other than that, I enjoy potty training.
Here are my tips on potty training:
- Relax: For some reason, we (parents) get so worked up about potty training. We have all these regiments and if things don’t go the way we want, we get all bent out of shape. Don’t worry, almost everyone has learned how to use the bathroom. So, relax and know things will be okay.
- Don’t force it: If your child isn’t ready yet, don’t force the issue. It will only make things hard on the both of you. The toddler will let you know when they are ready. Try things out and if the toddler seems interested, then go for it.
- Do a little dance: That’s right, the pee-pee dance can also be a celebration. When my daughter goes to the bathroom on the potty, I jump up and dance around. No pee = no dance. For some reason, she loves watching her dad make a fool of himself. And if it helps her go to the bathroom, I will keep on doing it.
- Books: Stock the bathroom with books. The longer you get the toddler to sit, the more likely they are to leave something behind. The bathroom has become a wonderful place for story-time.
- Stickers: Toddlers love stickers and a great incentive for pooping like a big kid is to put a sticker on the wall.
- Sing the praise of pooping: Tell everyone about the success of your potty training experience in front of your kid.
- Naked time: This is the most effective way to potty train a child. The kid goes bottomless and whenever you see it about to happen or post happen, then rush the kids to the bathroom. Yes, this causes nasty cleaning moments, but it is a brief time in your life. You might want to warn company though that naked toddler bits will be seen.
- Be kind to your babysitters: If you are afraid that changing the toddler’s bathroom achievements will decline, then put those date nights on hold. It is great if you find someone willing to help you with potty training while you are out, but it isn’t their problem. So, either let things go for the night and let the kid wear normal diapers, or stay home.
What are your Tips?
I received three Baby Bjorn products to assist me in potty training my toddler. One potty that sits in the bathroom upstairs and we have a portable top that is downstairs. During our vacations this summer, we will bring the portable potty with us. The portable potty is seat that fits into the toilet seat. I’m sure I’ll look just fine walking the streets in Croatia this summer with a toddler toilet seat attached to my backpack.
To order your potty chair like the one in the photo, click here.
For step stool, click here.
And for the “travel” toilet trainer, click here.
Disclosure: I received products from Baby Bjorn for review, but the words are my own.