Every parent cringes when it’s that time in their child’s life to potty train. It doesn’t come at the same time for every child or even every parent. Often times the child is ready but the parent is not or the parent is ready and the child is not. My first attempt to Potty Train Buba was the latter, he just wasn’t ready.
It was hard the first time, Missy Moo was tiny, breastfeeding and running around cleaning pee and poo off the floor every five seconds wasn’t easy. So I put it off for a few months, hoping he would be wiser and tell me when he was ready. That was November, and here we are at the end of March. Has four months made a difference?
This time, I prepared myself a little better with all the necessary tools:
– Stickers and reward chart.
– Fun books about going in the potty.
– I let him pick out his big potty, and bought two one for upstairs and downstairs.
– I let him pick out his big boy underpants at the store.
– Lose sweats and shorts so he can easily pull up and down.
– Lots of cleaner, paper towels, and air freshener.
– I know a lot of my friends used bribery of chocolate and biscuits. I actually am all for bribery but Buba has severe allergies that prevent this. So I had to get creative. I bought him a Disney Car die cast, and told him it was a special ‘Big Boy Car” and only boys that pee and poo on the potty get this special car.
– I even got lucky because on the first day, Special Agent Oso had an episode on potty training where he helped a little boy, funny enough the same name as Buba with blonde curly hair learn how to use the potty. I quickly recorded it and each morning and evening we watch the half hour clip of it. It’s like having a personalized episode of Oso to help us in our potty training process.
With all the above, I really think we are prepared and on the right track this time.
I think my first mistake in attempt number one was using pull-ups. Pull-ups unlike normal diapers aren’t as absorbent which means Buba got used to feeling wet when he peed in his pull-ups. So when I put big boy pants on him, he kept peeing in them and didn’t tell us he was wet because he was used to the feeling of being wet. So I got rid of pull-ups back in November.
On the first day, I left him naked with a t-shirt on so that it was easy for him to run over and go on the potty. I turned the tv off so he wouldn’t get too distracted. I gave him his big boy Disney Car, I bought him and explained that he was now a big boy and this was a big boy toy for boys that pee and poo on the potty. He was so excited that he pulled his diaper off right then and there to get this toy. I explained, this car is special it plays with you if you pee and poo on the potty but if you pee or poo on the floor it goes away. I know some might not agree with this tactic but if you knew my son he will do anything for his cars even learn to use the potty. It’s the same as giving him a piece of chocolate as a reward which I can’t do so I am using his obsession with Disney Cars to do the same.
We pulled out coloring books and legos, things we could do right next to his potty so he could quickly jump on it if needed.
We had a few accidents which is to be expected on the first day but nothing compared to the first attempt so I was left feeling optimistic.
I made sure to not have anything planned all week, to give him plenty of time and less distractions to get the concept. I reminded him every 5 minutes literally, “don’t pee on the floor, we pee in the potty!” I know a weird tactic but it seems to remind him while he played not to just let it flow. I couldn’t just ask him if he needed to go, Buba is a complicated kid when it comes to asking he usually freaks out, screams and hides when I asks him, “do you need to go potty or pee or poo?” Finding a way to tell him to not pee on the floor and ask him where he should pee really worked better for him, just worded differently.
I gave him lots to drink so we had plenty of practice running from his toys and activities to the potty. We only had one accident all day and even then he screamed, “pee” so we were getting somewhere.
Buba goes to nursery on Thursdays, but I didn’t think he was quite ready for big boy pants and sending a hundred outfits for the day. I told them we had been potty training this week, in hopes they would work with him while he was there. Hoping by the following Thursday he will be ready to come in big boy pants.
One more day of naked Buba running around, to make sure he was getting used to the feeling of dry. By day four I didn’t have to remind him quite so much to not pee on the floor and if I asked where does Buba pee or poo he would reply, “in the potty” and point to it.
We had friends come visit for a playdate. My test to see if he would have accidents when he was playing with other kids while completely distracted. After apologizing for the naked toddler running around, we enjoyed a playful morning with our friends. Buba had no accidents all day and we had a huge step forward at dinner.
While he was eating his dinner, he shouted, “poo, Mommy”. He has never ever said he needed to pee or poo or that he even had peed or pooed in his diaper so this was huge. I ran him over to his potty and he peed. Even though he didn’t poo, he was still recognizing that he had to do something which was great.
I thought Buba was doing so good, so we pulled out the big boy pants. I was relieved that he didn’t pee every five minutes like he did the first time we tried big boy pants. He really has been responding well to using his new Disney Car as a bribe and reminding him not to pee on the floor.
I also started asking him, “where does Buba pee?” and “where does Buba poo?” Instead of the, do you need to go questions. We now play a game of pointing at various places and asking, “do we potty here? He will reply excitedly, “no, in the potty” and points to it. He loves it. I am attempting to make it fun for both of us.
I think this time we might just make it, thanks to Lighting McQueen and Special Agent Oso, who would have thought? Buba even found out that there are Lighting McQueen big boy pants. I have told him if he poos on the potty, we can go buy him some. I suppose it’s blackmail and bribery together. Judge away, but it worked.
He hadn’t pooed in two full days since potty training and I was getting worried he was holding it in. When I told him if he pooed on his potty we would get Lighting McQueen big boy pants within an hour he was playing with of course his cars, and all the sudden ran over to his potty and pooed! Without being asked, or put on it by me. This kid doesn’t miss a trick, as soon as he finished he said, “Mommy go to store and buy McQueen pants now!” Damn, I thought I would at least have a day or two as I ordered them online. The two Asdas near us are out of his size so I can’t just go pick some up, eeek.
Tomorrow will be the ultimate test as we are going to see our friends’ new baby and visit Granny afterwards. It will be a whole afternoon out, I am going to bring the potty and big boy pants and pray like hell he has picked up a few things the last five days. Wish us all luck! Our friends have four boys and a new little girl so she knows the score.
I found the books, the stickers, shopping for a potty and big boy pants didn’t work for us. Buba could care less. Questioning him if he needs to go pee or poo, or even just sitting him on the potty every hour didn’t work for us either. Every kid is different and sometimes you have to think outside the box and find what way your child thinks and what will work for them even if others judge you for it. It was the first time I threw out the Gina Ford books and didn’t follow a potty book routine.
For us, reminding Buba not to pee on the floor and rewarding him with a big boy Disney Car toy really is working. My tactic of telling him he loses his big boy car if he pees or poos on the floor only took one or two times telling him and the accidents stopped. It taught him how to hold it. Some might find this mean but this was our way to get Buba to figure out how to hold it. Nothing else seemed to work. Watching his personalized episode of Special Agent Oso helps him know other boys are doing the same as him. It really has helped. He now talks about it more.
It is an ongoing process but I am optimistic that we just might make it this time but it’s still early days. Let’s hope Week 2, goes even better when we get back to our routines out of the house.
Californian Mum in London says
Hope that the visits to your friends’ and granny’s goes well and that there are no accidents! x
Eeek I am nervous for the car ride. I will keep everyone posted on twitter. lol Fingers crossed. We already had one accident this morning at home! Not a good start.
Life at the Little Wood says
Well done Buba! And mummy too! I remember the whole potty training thing much too clearly – I think it was my least enjoyable experience as a mum (mr M avoided it – all three times!!) really hope that today, and next week, goes just as well for you all. Ps. You can buy a wee portable potty in Boots – handy for car/park/days out emergencies! Xx
Oh thanks for the advice hun, definitely need to get one of those. Todays are first day out. We shall see. Eeeek agreed least fav of parenting thus far. Mr p avoiding it too. Unfair! How long did it take two weeks? three weeks? months?
chantelle hazelden says
Sounds like it is going well. As you said every child is different so what method works for one may not necessarily work for another, hope your trip out goes well x
About to leave already one accident down. Eeek so nervous. I will tweet updates. Praying he doesn’t pee all over my friends house. ahhh There should be a potty training camp we can send our kids to for two weeks all learn together and come back fully trained.
Bex @ The Mummy Adventure says
Sounds like Buba is doing so well! We definitely did things differently to other parents too as I knew what would work for my little man. good luck with week two! x
Thank you Bex, we did ok on our first outing yesterday only one accident but it is so constant. I can just let him play independently yet or he pees on everything lol Poor MIssy Moo is just left to get on with it at the moment
Complicated Gorgeousness says
I remember potty training so well. I think I dreaded it so much with my eldest boy that by the time I did start he was brilliant and mastered it quite quickly. MY daughter was another matter and it was a sheer battle of wills. Good luck- sounds like he is getting there xxx
p.s. Congrats on the MADS xx
Thank you so much for the congrats. Potty training seems to be going well some days and the next day I feel like we are starting all over again. Hard to concentrate on him and give him the attention he needs and still pay attention to the baby and the house etc. Need potty training boot camp. lol
Caroline (BecomingaSAHM) says
Really interesting to read, Monkey is nowhere near ready yet but I am stocking up on tips and ideas for when the time comes, anything to try and make the transition as smooth as possible! Sounds like you are doing really well, hope the great progress continues! xx #whatsthestory
Oh I knew I shouldn’t write my post yet. I cursed used. Our day out was fine but today was like we haven’t done anything at all. Nightmare. I think I may have cried once too. Not fun.
Charly Dove says
Oh my word Jenny you’ve been so busy! It will be good to look back on these potty training diaries too – wish I’d done it. POD wore her potty as a hat for some time before actually doing anything in it! Great idea with the design, looks far more enticing and best of luck tomorrow, that will be a challenge. We have a potty in the car that has a lid on it – inspired idea!
Thank you for your lovely comment on the blog btw, much appreciated. Well done yourself Mrs, you should be super proud!
Thanks charly. Potty training was fine actually yesterday but today wEnt downhill so fast and left me feeling exhausted and guilty for shouting and a bad mommy. It’s been a tough time. Back to square one. Thank you on the congrats. I am still on awe of it all. Can’t believe it. What an honor. Glad we both get to be there. And so excited one of my closest friends in real life is there too butwhymummywhy. Lol it will be a great crowd. Lol best of luck my lovely.
Sounds like you have got things under control. Stick with it and I’m sure you will win the potty training.
Right after I wrote that post it all went downhill. Today was like we haven’t been working on anything for 8 days. Ahhhhh my head was spinning. I may have cried at one point. Lol eeek
I hope it goes well for you. My daughter was absolutely fine but my 3 and a bit year old son is refusing to use the toilet. He’ll sit on the toilet but he won’t do anything in it at all. And now he seems to be holding on to his poo, so we end up with an almost constant dirty bottom as he can’t keep it in forever, so it leaks out frequently throughout the day. He’s not constipated, I think he doesn’t want to let it out of his body for some reason. And he won’t be bought by reward charts or incentives of any kind-I’ve tried everything! I’m at the point where I’m struggling to know where to go next, so I really hope you have a more successful attempt this time around x
Same here. Buba will hold it until he gets a diaper on at naptime or bedtime then go sometimes. It’s hard the whole process is frustrating. I know a lot of my friends boys do this exact thing. It’s not constipation it’s them holding it in and refusing. Sorry it’s a struggle for u too. At least we are all in this together.
Sara (@mumturnedmom) says
Well done on getting this far! I remember it all too well, definitely not a fun part of parenting! But they do get there in the end. Both my boys were two and a half when they stopped wearing nappies. I remember crying the first time round too… The second time was easier, but then the 4yo told us one Sunday afternoon that he wasn’t wearing nappies anymore. And he didn’t! Keeping everything crossed for you xx #WhatstheStory
Oh I wish I had the latter for sure. Buba had a huge set back and I can’t keep staying in the house and not going to do things just because he won’t wear pants. He is good at home running around naked and then just runs over to his potty and goes. But if he has clothes on he just pees there is no holding it at all. Public is a nightmare especially with a baby in my arms trying to run to the potty and throwing him on it and leaving her on the yucky bathroom floors to fend for herself isn’t ideal. Day 8! eeek I was broken from it all last night.
The Reading Residence says
It sounds like it’s going really well! Great prep list there, too. Fingers crossed for week 2 x
Eeek I hope so, we had a really really bad day on day 7 but today we have hit a great flow of no accidents and actually telling me and running to the potty. May it long continue.
It was nice reading this. You’re chronicled it so well. Brought back memories of potty training my girl. 🙂
Good luck with visiting friend’s new babe and granny.
Sounds like its going well. They all get there in the end
Each day is different we are in full swing of week two and it’s still tough to leave the house. I am hoping there will be a magical turning point soon. I am sick of the sight of my four walls.
Sounds like you are on your way. Good luck. #pocolo
Thank you. Still a long way to go, we now are on week two and we still can’t leave the house for now. May next week please have a big turn around I am sick of the same four walls.
Emma T says
Wow, he’s doing really well. I need a few days of being at home with N so we can try again, but I go spare being stuck at home…feels like such a waste as that’s my free time away from work so I want to be doing things with him not stuck cooped up in the house.
We tried stickers, button jars with a dvd for filling it (he’s got one dvd – from purely evening and morning wees, and knows what he needs to do to get another). Maybe I need to try removing toys for every accident there is, although that wouldn’t be able to work at nursery. And he’s 3 so he’d probably just say ‘don’t care’. I’m despairing now, even though he knows what he’s meant to do. He’s now also been saying ‘I’m a baby’ and ‘I want to be a baby’. Arrrggh.
Verily Victoria Vocalises says
He is doing very well – and with regards to tactics – you’ve got to do what’s right for you! I started on Grace early and would explain to her every time she was doing a poo in her nappy! Thankfully the last time I had to change a dirty nappy was around 18 months. We dealt with the wee after she had mastered the poo! Thank you for linking to PoCoLo x
That’s kinda of how it’s going here. Poo then wee later. He is getting so much better though. Slowly but surely.
Loving life with little ones says
We have not long passed the potty training stage too, my daughter had conquered wees buy the end of the third day but pooed in her pants quietly in the corner for 3 weeks until i had a frank discussion with her saying it was not good enough (I was fed up, tired and cross) she said okay and has gone on the toilet since! well Done Buba- doing just fine and telling you he needs to go is half the battle. fab