Right after both of my girls turned two we picked a couple days to stay home and hosted potty boot camp. With my older daughter it took about 4 days for her to be fully potty trained. With my younger daughter it took a bit longer, about a month into potty training we were still having accidents here and there and their were MANY times I wanted to give up and put a diaper on her. But I am SO glad I persevered and stuck with it. As with any other training time in their lives, we must persevere and be consistent!
♥Choosing the right time♥
It’s important that we choose at least 3 days that we will be able to just hang around the house and not go anywhere. Potty training in a season where it is warm enough to play outside is a great time. Less accidents on our couches, more on our grass!
Before we start training there are a few things we need to buy and conversations to be had. We need to buy special big kid undies maybe with their favorite Disney character on them. We need to get a travel potty (one you can take outside in the yard or in the car), a training seat to go on the toilet and a stool for them to be able to get up to the potty by themselves.
This is an important piece of successful training. Days leading up to our potty boot camp we need to have multiple conversations about this exciting thing that we are going to be learning how to do! Bring them to the store with you to let them pick out their special new undies. We want our kids to be excited for potty training, that they will be using a potty just like mommy/daddy or big sister! The day/night before we begin we want to make sure they know that tomorrow is the day we will say goodbye to our baby diapers and learn how to use the potty.
♥Here we go!♥
Day one – We take our night time diaper off, and get to wear our new special undies now! No more diapers aloud. For the first day we want to give them lots of water. We will be setting the timer for every 15-20 minutes and every time the timer goes off we will get excited and announce that “It’s potty time!”. Having a full bladder and going potty this often will help them start to feel and understand the feeling of having to go potty. Bring them to the potty and encourage them to try to go potty. If we are giving them lots of water they should be going almost every time the timer goes off, however if they don’t go that’s perfectly fine! When they do go potty we should making a fool of ourselves with the excitement and praise that we give them.
Continue this throughout the day, I always tried to be outside as much as I could with our travel potty right there with us. It was warm enough when I potty trained my girls to be naked outside so we just played in undies (just the girls not me). That way if we had an accident it was no big deal and we just put a new pair on!
Be prepared for accidents. This is brand new to them and we want to make sure to never make them feel bad for having an accident. We must keep it light and positive and reassure them that we can try again next time!
♥The next day♥
We still utilize the potty timer and give them water but not as much. After the first day they should be getting the hang of it and maybe even telling us when they need to potty! Staying home again today is important and less stressful for both parties.
♥The third day♥
Depending how day one and two went we should use our judgement to decide if we can go without our potty timer. We can return back to our normal water/drink intake. When we do choose to nix the timer, we must remember that toddlers need LOTS of reminders, and we still bring them to potty very often, about every 45 minutes or so. Again, spending the day at home is ideal.
♥The days following♥
Will consist of lots of reminders, some accidents and lots of perseverance on our part! Being super attentive and learning their cues for when they have to go, you will quickly learn how your child acts when they have to use the bathroom! Continuing to ask and bring them potty often, and being patient with them if they have a hard time doing #2. My girls both were nervous to go #2 after the first couple times they did it on the potty. This can be frustrating for us as parents to see them hold it in or be scared to do it but we must be patient and affirming and help them to overcome it. This could include reading books or singing songs (we have a #2 song that I still sing to Skylar sometimes) or other things to help calm them down and trust that its going to be ok.
I do not believe that giving a reward every time our children go potty is necessary especially when we praise the heck out of them when they do it successfully. I don’t use rewards within the first few days, when my girls developed their fear of doing #2 I did introduce an M&M if they did #2 on the potty successfully. They knew it was only for #2 and just gave them an extra incentive to try their best and overcome their fear.
♥Night time training♥
Another post for another day. It takes much longer for toddlers brains to be developmentally ready to be diaper less during sleep. To think that their developing brains are ready to hold it until they wake up, after just learning to go on the potty when they are awake is just an expectation that is unrealistic. As I said before both my daughters were potty trained within a month after their second birthdays and Hayden wore a diaper to sleep until she was 3 years old and my daughter Skylar having just turned three in August, still sleeps with a diaper. We are working on going diaper less during nap time right now and will work on during the night after we have mastered nap times.
I hope this has been helpful and of course would love to help you during and throughout your potty training journey, so please don’t hesitate to contact me! ♥xoxo♥