The other day a neighbor came over to say hi. She was here for about an hour and during the entire time my son was sitting on his car potty. As my neighbor left she said, “Good job on waiting to potty train. I think most parents push it on their children too early.”
I smiled at her and glance over at my husband who was trying really hard not to laugh. I didn’t say anything to my neighbor in response to the comment, just finished showing her to the door.
Why was my husband laughing? Because my toddler is almost three and has been over-trained to use the potty. “What does that mean?” I hear you ask. Well, I will tell you.
My son was born 6 weeks early and because of the pregnancy complications he was even smaller than most babies born that early, 3 lbs 14 oz. I was worried. I had only every taken care of big, healthy babies.
So, I took to the internet. I read so many articles and blogs about parenting that I couldn’t even begin to list the subjects. It became my crutch. If anything happened, I looked it up and feared the worst.
To be honest, I don’t even know why I started researching how to potty train your child when mine was only six months old, but I did. I found several articles, with supportive evidence, that potty training you infant was the best possible thing you could do. Parents in third world countries do it, why shouldn’t I? I even mentioned it to my husband’s step-mother, and while she looked at me like I had lost my mind, she just nodded politely and said, “how interesting.”
My husband thought I was crazy as well, but as with most things, he supported me the entire way. Do you know what? It worked! It was fabulous and so much work! Every 90 minutes I was taking my son to the potty just to prevent dirty diapers. (I was using cloth diapers at the time and was tired of all of the laundry.)
After a week of him being fully trained I was done. I gave up on both the potty and the cloth diapers. Once every week or two we would have him use the potty on his own, but over time that even died.
Then, when my son was about 18 months old he started showing the “signs” that he was ready to be potty trained. He would take his diaper off right after it was used, he didn’t want to wear a diaper, he would let me know when he needed to poo, etc. So we started potty training again.
This time I researched different ways to potty train. We tried rewards, stickers, going every 20 minutes, going every hour, constantly asking if he needed to go, watched all of the potty training TV shows, etc. This went on for about 4 months before he finally started doing it on his own. Yea! Success!
That last for about two weeks and then little sister was born. All those months of work went right out the window. He was back in diapers.
We moved and then two months later moved again. Now little sister is 10 months old, my son is almost 3 and, once again, we are potty training. This time it has been going on for about three months. Let’s just say that we no longer have a rug in the living room, I have to wash 3-4 loads of laundry each day, and poo-tastophies are a normal occurrence.
I think it’s going well… Now all he wants to do is sit on his potty. He knows when to empty it (he prefers his little portable potty to the potty seat), how to flush the toilet, and how to wash his hands. He removes his diaper immediately after we put it on him. And when he is not on the potty he loves to “roam free.”
After all of that I can safely say that I know how to “Over-train in Potty Training” and I don’t mind if little sister wears diapers for another year or two.
Bonus: I just learned a new skill! I can now diaper a toddler without waking him up. Yea!