Thanks to Pull-Ups® for sponsoring this post and helping me potty train with the Big Kid Academy.
We’ve been potty training our toddler for a couple months now and the journey has surely been an experience to remember. We knew the process wouldn’t be easy, so went in with the mentality that it would be a gradual process. And it sure has been. We started at about 26 months, letting our little one experiment with the potty every now and then from his first pee-pee moment to his first flush! So much pride and excitement it brought.
But then things weren’t so great. The diaper came off. Several times. And bye-bye went a few things, like some favorite pajamas…and the living room rug. Oh YES, it gets messy!
So if you’re just starting to entertain the idea of potty training or are in the midst of it like us, please keep these potty training tips in mind…for your own sanity!
Before you get started, you’ll also want to be sure to enroll in the Pull-Ups® Big Kid Academy — a must-have resource during the training!!
1. Wait until your toddler is ready.
When we first decided to take the plunge, we based it on our toddler’s readiness. We gauged interest by paying attention to his actions. He started giving us subtle signs (which became clearer with time) when he was going in his diaper: hiding in a corner during a poop or staring us dead in the eye shouting, “WAIT!” He seemed to be ashamed or at least aware of what he was doing.
That’s when we decided to break out the potty and show him where he could go for “privacy” if he really wanted it. Little by little, he took it upon himself to let us know each time he had to go, shouting, “Pee-pee potty!”
It’s definitely easier to help them through the process when they actually want to go, rather then forcing them into it.
2. Be consistent.
I think it’s really important to stick to some sort of schedule when you’re encouraging potty use. If you’re not consistently reminding and asking your little ones to go, the whole experience may take longer than expected. Whether it’s in the very morning and before bedtime or after every meal, a schedule is helpful. If you aren’t reinforcing potty time you can quickly find your little one having accidents…and eventually refusing to go!
3. Incentivize with rewards.
When your kids are older, they will go potty when it’s time to, because they don’t want to wet their pants and get dirty. But toddlers on the other hand, need some additional incentive to go. Whether it’s stickers, a toy box or lots of praise you’ll want to make sure you positively reinforce successful potty trips. I don’t consider it bribery, at all. If it works for your kid, do it!
4. Be patient, really patient!
I think this is one of the most important tips you need to keep in mind. Potty training is NOT easy. It’s important to be very patient during all the ups and downs.
Potty training has definitely tested our patience — and I’m not just talking about being able to sit and wait for your little one to go. I’m talking about keeping calm when your little one has his moments. What moments? Flushing repeatedly just for the sake of it. Wasting toilet paper…rolls of toilet paper. Throwing toys in the toilet. Ripping off diapers. ALL of these have happened in our experience and I’ve learned that you just have to LET IT GO and correct the behavior, not get exasperated. Again patience is key!!
5. Expect setbacks, but keep at it.
You may have moments and weeks where things go smoothly — and kudos when that happens — but regression is possible and expected. I was so proud and excited when our toddler was pooping in the potty every single morning for 2 weeks straight. We’re doing it, I thought!! But it didn’t last. He started having accidents when we didn’t catch him in time and refused to go in the big boy toilet. It was very frustrating. There were moments I reprimanded him in an attempt to prevent it from reoccurring. But then it would happen again. And through experience, I learned that these setbacks were natural and it didn’t mean we weren’t making progress. Some days our 2.5 year old is a potty rockstar…other days, not so much.
So we are continuing the process and looking at other resources, most notably, Pull-Ups® Big Kid Academy which offers an array of tips, from a getting started guide to ideas to keep you motivated when you have a set-back!
Every Kid is Unique. That’s why when you enroll at the Big Kid Academy, you’ll get a personalized “My Pull-Ups®” page with potty training activities and advice customized to your point in the potty training journey.
The Big Kid Academy has a world-class library of potty training tips and advice from parenting experts, medical professionals and our brightest alumni: parents who have been there. Subjects include:
• How to talk to day care providers about potty training
• Solutions for nighttime
• Potty training on the go
• The best clothing for potty training
Remember potty training isn’t easy; that’s why having a guide like the Big Kid Academy to keep you on track is essential. Enroll HERE to get the help you need! It’s absolutely FREE.
Ana, a mom to three rambunctious little boys, has supported hundreds of thousands of women throughout their pregnancy and motherhood journey since 2012 as a blogger and maternal health advocate at MommysBundle.com.