When I started this blog I never contemplated the possibility of writing a post about toilet habits, but the Cub is 2 years and 4 months now and well on his way to being a man. With that comes great responsibility, and that starts with not doing your business in your pants. Yes, we’re potty training, and he’s doing very well in fairness. Don’t get me wrong, we’ve had our ups and downs; there’s been number twos falling out in full view of picnickers at beauty spots and puddles in Ikea, but hasn’t everyone!
I think both he and us have handled the whole thing exceptionally well and to celebrate here are my top 5 tips for potty training.
1: Run with it. As soon as your little one shows an interest in using their potty, run with it. Ditch the permanent nappies and switch to pants or fresh air as often as you can. This is obviously when at home. Pants are good because they get to see what it feels like when they let things go in these new, none porous pants.
2: Be available. They’re not going to get it straight away so be available to lend a hand. Help your little boys get used to pointing it in and avoiding soggy carpets. Also, when the Cub needs a number two he seemse more relaxed and comfy about it if I’m there to hold his hand. Quite literally.
3: Incentivise. Especially in the early days, this worked well for us. Each time he used his potty he was allowed a sticker to go on the side of his potty. The novelty soon wore off, but at the same time, he got more comfortable and proficient at using it.
4: Rebrand. When we stopped the Cub wearing nappies all day, we still used a pull-up nappy on a night. The Cub didn’t like the thought of wearing a nappy now he was a big boy, so we rebranded them as simply pull-ups. Now he doesn’t mind them at all on a night as they’re just his night time pants.
5: Be prepared. There will very likely be that one morning that you go in to wake them and you find yourself in the middle of a poo crisis at some level. Whether it’s on the sheets or wall, or whether they’ve hidden it. We went in one night, on our way to bed, and could smell the aroma of a number two but found no physical evidence anywhere. In the morning he took me by the hand and wilfully pointed out a small, insignificant looking nugget in his waste bin. Thanks son! Again, don’t freak out. Just remain calm and deal with the fallout (pardon the pun).
If there’s such a thing as a bonus tip for this post then it’s just to make the whole process seem as normal as possible. The concept is a little bit weird for them at first, but your encouragement and sense of normality will really help them feel comfortable with letting it go rather than carrying it around with them in their nappy.
What tips have you got from potty training your little ones?