Potty Training--Advice please!

Discussion in 'The Toddler Years(1-3)' started by amelowe9, Dec 28, 2009.

  1. amelowe9

    amelowe9 Well-Known Member

    I was going to wait until my twins turned two (next June) to start potty training, but my pediatrician recommended I start after the holidays...well, we're almost there! I was thinking of either getting them their own potties OR getting the cushy kiddy seat to attach to the toilet seat...the latter seems easier (less cleanup).

    So my question is...how do/did you all start introducing your little ones to the potty? Did you take to the toilet and put them on it, or model how to go to the bathroom for them? :laughing: Would love some advice on how to go about this.
  2. kingeomer

    kingeomer Well-Known Member TS Moderator

    We started introducing them to the potty. I bought them their own potties at 18 months, bought books about the potty and also modeled it for them. We are just at the point where they will sit on the potty, act all proud of themselves but they do not go in it. My son peed in the potty one time and I think that freaked him out, he has not done it since. I also noticed that my kids like to be read to while on the potty, it helps them stay there longer...I figure one of these days they will do something on it!
    I figured I gave myself the goal of having them potty trained by age 3, so I have a year.
    Good luck!
  3. AmynTony

    AmynTony Well-Known Member

    wait till they're closer to 3...at this age your being the one trained not them...both my kids trained in less than a week once they were 3...
  4. Babies4Susan

    Babies4Susan Well-Known Member

    I'd wait until they show signs of interest. Otherwise it is just a lesson in frustration. One of mine was ready at 2 1/2 and the other 3y4m.

    And, I liked the Baby Bjorn potty chairs the best. I eased mine into actually using the toilet once they were trained.
  5. smacneil

    smacneil Member

    Mine will be 2 in February and I'm just starting to think about it. I don't have a bathroom on my first floor (had I known what a problem that would be when I bought the house I would have kept looking!) so I'm faced with having to find room for 2 potty seats in my living space. I guess we do need 2 in case they have to go at the same time, or if they get the "me-too" syndrome. And then I suppose I'll have to get one for upstairs...one can use the toilet and one the potty seat? Ugh...it's a process I'm not looking forward to!
  6. AimeeThomp

    AimeeThomp Well-Known Member TS Moderator

    I bought the potties when they were 18 months and put them in the bathroom across from the big potty. The girls started coming in with me and would sit on their potties (with their diapers on) when I sat on the big one.
  7. maybell

    maybell Well-Known Member

    I, too, have been thinking of starting... over the course of a few months I've accumulated all the "stuff" I think I need. IKEA has great cheap potty chairs - $3 or $4 each! they are very similar to the $13 Baby Bjorn type. I also got one of the toilet seats from Home Depot that has a little insert that folds up into the lid when adults go to use the toilet, but can come down when little ones use it. it was $35 or so. I like the idea that it doesn't have to come on and off the toilet. but it doesn't have a "boy" guard.

    There are also portable potty seats that you can get from BRU that fold down and hold a bag under it... I got one of those, not sure if we'll use it, but with twins it freaks me out to have to be in a store and need to use the potty... I figure going in the back of the car/trunk might be easier? haha! this is another reason I haven't started... seems like life might actually get more complicated...

    there are several books out there... I read the Potty Training 1-2-3 book by the people who wrote the BabyWise series (Ezzo). it was pretty good and did explain a great way to reward them. (rewarding for staying Clean & Dry and for going on the potty)...

    I'm not sure if mine are ready or not, in fact I'm pretty sure they aren't, otherwise I'd have started already. but I do find the kids very smart in many areas, and I think I may just try it one week to see what happens...
  8. waitingpaitently20

    waitingpaitently20 Well-Known Member

    I was just coming on here to post about the same topic. Mine just turned a year and my goal is to have them potty trained by 18 months before the summer so I don't have to deal with it during the nice weather. I'd rather focus on it now while its gross outside then do it during the nice warm weather. At this age it is more catching them in the act and time training until they get it. In the US we are kind of lazy about potty training and the average age is 36-48months olds whereas in other countries of the world 85% of kids are potty trained by a year. I think most parents wait because diapers are easier and are working and busy. But at a year babies have the ability to understand when they have the urge to go and are able to hold it for a few minutes, but most people overlook it as it is alot of harder to potty train younger. THe only advice I have is keep putting them on the potty all day long once you catch them in the act and are constistanly giving them positive attention they will get it. THe longer you wait to potty train them the more that you are teaching them that it is okay to go to the bathroom in the diaper and potty training becomes teaching them that what they were once told was okay is not and now it is about breaking the habbit that you once instilled in them. I don't belive in waiting until a child shows an interest because you can potty train at any age it all about consistancy and how dedicated you are. I just started potty training today and so far one son went twice and the other once so I will keep you all updated as im interested in early potty training. my husband's mom started this young with him and by 15 months he never had an accident. of course we have double duty with 2 :)
  9. AmynTony

    AmynTony Well-Known Member

    sorry I have to disagree with you...my 12 month olds never showed "signs" that they had to pee or poop...they never had a "poop stance" or turned red or grunted...you didn't know until the smell hit you...at 18 months we got potties and got them to sit on them once or twice and then they had no interest...personally I don't think laziness has anything to do with my waiting...but quite frankly taking 6 entire months to potty train them just so they're trained prior to 18 months doesn't sound enticing versus waiting until THEY told me they wanted to wear underwear and trained in 2 days (DD) and 5 days (DS)...lots less frustration, stress and tears...
  10. meganguttman

    meganguttman Well-Known Member

    We started this way at 18 months too. Ryan was beginning to pull his pants down so I thought I'd get them. I got 4 IKEA potty chairs (super cheap and all one piece). I have two downstairs, 1 in their bathroom and 1 in our bathroom. Usually one of the chairs from downstairs is in the back of my SUV. I used a timer at the beginning of Nov. (they turned 2 in Sept) and had them sit on it until something happened. My plan was to reward them with M&M's but they didn't know what they were and spit them out. Turned out that just washing his hands was enough reward for Ryan. He was pretty much trained in a week. We've had some regression during the holidays due to traveling and me putting him in pull ups again, but we're getting back on track. Jake decided he wanted nothing to do with the potty. I ask him all the time and nothing. While at my mom's house he ate a mint M&M so today I've been bribing him with mint Kisses since I couldn't find the M&M's at the store today. He's peed 3x's on the potty and one time on himself. That's a good ratio right?? :laughing:

    My advice is to go with the flow of it. If they don't want to do it, don't push it. It may make it harder later on.
  11. maybell

    maybell Well-Known Member

    **Not that I'm an expert... b/c I haven't even started... but...

    another thing I've heard/read is to just tell them, "its time to go potty"... and not ask them if they want to go... not sure if that's only when you are starting to train and how long you keep that up.
  12. seamusnicholas

    seamusnicholas Well-Known Member

    When the boys turned two, I bought a potty ring. Every night before bath, I had them sit on it and go. One peed the first time I put him on and every time after that (before bath) but it took my other son many many months to figure out how to pee when on the toilet. When he finally did pee on the toilet, he would go every night before bath too. So we did that for close to a year and then really focused on training about 4 months before turning three. I did end up buying two potty chairs and they used those instead of the ring but the ring was good at the beginning.
  13. christie76

    christie76 Well-Known Member

    My pedi mentioned getting potty chairs and putting them in the bathroom and letting them come in and watch me go and have them sit if they want to, just to get use to the idea of them. She was very clear not to push them until they are ready or it can backfire. I'm planning on getting them soon. I'd love to have them trained this summer. I'm not going to stress about it, though. I know they will do it when they are ready. I'm very excited to be done buying diapers.
  14. waitingpaitently20

    waitingpaitently20 Well-Known Member

    I guess to each yours own, but I have years and years of experience working with kids and have potty trained over 50 kids including those with severe special needs so from my experience I feel that you can potty train at any age, but by starting with timed training you can get an idea of when they are going and once you start catching them and praising them they usually catch on and it goes pretty quickly. Just because they can tell you by words that they have to go potty doesn't mean that they can't tell you in other ways. My kids never turn red or make any noise while pooping and today was the first day of potty training and I got them each to go 4x so I am pretty happy with that. I just couldn't see having them in a diaper past two since I have had so much success potty training early with other kids and know it can be done, nor could I see wasting money on diapers. In other areas of the world where diapers aren't available or they can't afford them kids are potty trained early on especially back in the day when they had cloth diapering. I just think as a society due to the convience of diapers and that alot of families that have two parents working people have taken advantage of the convience of diapers. So far I have had no tears or fustration over here. I think once you wait past 2 kids get into playing more and are less likely to want to sit down and deal with pottying. I think between 2 and 3 is the hardest for potty training at least that has been in my experience. I think before 2 or after 3 is easiest. I guess i am a little passionate about this topic since I did a thesis on it college in a applied behavior class and had to collect data and what not from kids of different ages and varying disabilities. Anyway good luck to everyone so far I am excited about doing it with my own kids. THis website I found helpful

  15. miss_bossy18

    miss_bossy18 Well-Known Member TS Moderator

    this is what i'm planning on doing next month. the girls are already fascinated by when i go so i figured why not? it can't hurt.
  16. Utopia122

    Utopia122 Well-Known Member

    I put the pottys in the bathroom and let the girls sit on them while I was in there. I wish you luck!

    Interesting website, however, I must say I do have a problem with some doctor saying that it is our job as loving, caring parents to provide our children with opportunities to use the toilet by 18 months. I think we all know that there is a lot more that goes into being loving, caring parents besides teaching our child to sit on the toilet. Good thing we all have our own parenting techniques that have worked for us, and for the majority I would bet it isn't because diapers are convenient.
    4 people like this.
  17. kingeomer

    kingeomer Well-Known Member TS Moderator

    :thanks: for saying this Rachel! It is important to remember that all children are different, and as for parents, to each their own. I know that from a year to 18 months, my children had no interest at all, showed no signs, etc. I purchased pottys at 18 months to get them acquainted with the idea, my thought is this is a huge milestone for them and easing them into it might be the best bet (plus easing me into it since I have never potty trained a child before). At 2, they are interested in sitting on the potty and telling me to go potty, wipe and wash my hands..but except for my son, one time, they have not gone in the potty.
    My pediatrician asked me about this yesterday at our 2 year visit and said unless they show interest, wait until 3 because it will be easier. Again, you can talk to 10 pediatricians and get 10 different opinions...I think it really does depend on the child. To the OP, best of luck and let us know how it goes for you!
  18. maybell

    maybell Well-Known Member

    I love the idea of the reward being washing hands! mine LOVE to wash their hands (I have to make sure that the stool is not near the sink and the door is shut otherwise they are playing in the water all day)!! I hadn't thought of this, and it will be a perfect reward!
  19. AmynTony

    AmynTony Well-Known Member

    I gave you a point for this.
  20. waitingpaitently20

    waitingpaitently20 Well-Known Member

    I know this is off the topic, but just out of curiousity why else do you or anyone believe that the age for potty training for instance in the US has risen dramatically to about 3 or 4 years whereas it used to be around 12-18months. Other than the fact that both parents are working, single parent families..... and the feeling of being soiled is not the same as in a disposable as oposed to the cloth diapers that were more common. I would imagine that disposable diapers has made it much easier and convient to push off potty training because I would think if many of us were using cloth and had to handwash them like in the olden days we may be more inclined to potty train earlier. I couldn't imagine scrubbing diapers till my child was three. I don't think potty training has gotten harder especially with all the devices they have now a days and all the potty books. I know you can't compare a human to an animal, but I feel like I got to have hope out there that I was able to train my dogs at 3 months to use the bathroom by themselves, than my one year olds got to have a chance. I never waited for my dogs to tell me that they were ready I just didn't want them to go to the bathroom on the floor so through repitition and praise they got it. I think if you study the fundamentals of behavior its mostly about repitition and praise although I undertand every child is different and has a different personality and abilities, but for a typically developing child I don't feel that you need to wait unless you don't have the time, support or environment to train them at the given moment. To the OP you also may want to try and get training paints I think if they can feel the sensation it will go faster. I'm about to order mine at diapers.com, but they also have them at walmart. Keep us updated on your progress.
    3 people like this.
  21. Utopia122

    Utopia122 Well-Known Member

    I'm glad that you are so passionate about your opinion. If you want to debate this subject how about starting a new thread in Twinstuff Club and I will oblige you. There are people, such as myself, that do not share you opinion, and I'm sorry that doesn't sit well with you. But, to be fair to the OP, I think we should remain on topic.
    2 people like this.
  22. waitingpaitently20

    waitingpaitently20 Well-Known Member

    Its not that it doesn't sit well with me I just find the topic insteresting. more power to the people that have the paitence to wait to start potty training. how do you start a topic in the twinstuff club, didn't know that you could do it.
  23. MeredithMM

    MeredithMM Well-Known Member

    I'm from the First Year forum, but often look through the other forums to get an idea of what lies ahead for me and my boys. I hope it is okay if I post here as I am looking for more information.

    I totally agree with being respectful to the OP, but I was wondering if maybe we could start a thread about elimination communication (another term for early potty training, as I learned via the internet today) somewhere besides there because not everyone can read what is posted in Twinstuff Club, correct? I know it always says "locked forum" or something to that effect when I am logged in. You have to have a certain number of posts to be included, right? Or maybe I am misunderstanding how it works.

    Anyway, I think it's a fascinating topic and one I would really like to know more about. I did not pick up on the vibe that people who disagree with WaitingPatiently's opinions don't "sit well with her." I think she is just posing some very interesting questions that happen to go against the grain and prevailing popular opinion. They have made me very curious, and I want to learn more about elimination communication.

    Anyway, I am not trying to fan the debate flames here. I just want to know more about the topic. Would the first year forum be a good place to post? Or is there a way to get in Twinstuff Club that I don't know abotu?

  24. kingeomer

    kingeomer Well-Known Member TS Moderator

    Not to take this topic any more off topic, but to start a topic in the twinstuff club, just go into the twinstuff club forum and on the right hand side will be an option to start a new topic. Hope that helps.
  25. MeredithMM

    MeredithMM Well-Known Member

    I Take that back-- I just checked again, and it does not say locked forum. Don't know why I thought that..maybe you have to have 50 posts before you can get in (I just recently got there). Anyway, ignore my former post. So sorry for the confusion.

    Thanks for the information about how to start a new topic there.
  26. jenanne

    jenanne Well-Known Member

    I introduced my twins to potties around age 16 months or so and they were FASCINATED with them...wanted to sit on them, carry them everywhere around the house, strip down constantly. They are still interested and my daughter has peed twice on the potty, but I'm not personally in the state of mind of wanting to go for it just yet. I am a stay at home mom so it's not that I don't have the time but just have seen with friends who have tried early that it often doesn't go as well. I'm not easy-going about pee and poop on the floors so I'm going to wait til probably around 2 1/2 and see how they're looking with "readiness signs" and then give it a go. I think it is a totally personal decision and if you are up for it, give it a shot. I do believe that all kids are different and some will learn more quickly than others as with anything. I have heard it is easier for some to train one at a time...I'd be interested in hearing experienced mom's experiences with this :)
    1 person likes this.
  27. becky5

    becky5 Guest

    Justin: day/night trained at 3
    Hannah: day/night trained at 2
    Josh: day trained at 18 months/night trained at 4
    Emma: day trained at 22 months/fairly close to be night trained at 3.5
    Jake: day trained at 25ish months/still nowhere close to being night trained

    I trained Justin and Hannah at the same time, and the twins at different times. Justin and Hannah were different ages(3/2), and both completely ready at the same time, so it was fairly painless. I started off training the twins at the same time, but quickly found that Jake was just not ready, so I tried again in a few months with him, and he did great.

    Josh trained himself, basically, at 18 months. I put the potty out, and he just used it! There was no coaxing or anything. He was by far, the easiest to train, I guess because there was no training, he just did it!

    To the OP:
    When we first started training, I put the potties in the living room, and would have them sit on it every so often if they didn't go ahead and do it themselves. Once I decided to go for it, I only put diapers/pull-ups on them at night, and just dealt with the accidents if they happened. They need to feel that wetness a few times in order to understand it needs to go in the potty. I also planned to stay home as much as possible in those first few days, so that we had fewer distractions, which led to more success for them, I think. GL!
  28. snowmom

    snowmom Well-Known Member

    With Josh, we started potty training at about 2.5, and hw was done within a couple of weeks. The twins are cloth diapered during the day, so they are more aware of their wetness, and we have a potty in our playroom that they can sit on at anytime(diaper on), but since our playroom downstairs is carpeted, I only let them run naked upstairs on the tile and wood floors. My Dr asked if I had started training at their 18mth appt, and I just laughed at him. I feel that if I start to early, I'm setting myself up for a long struggle, and if I start to late, maybe a battle. I am going to start buying those waffle cotton pull-up training pants soon tho.
  29. HinSD

    HinSD Well-Known Member

    I bought them the Baby Bjorn potties when they were 19 months. I kept them in the play area and let them play with them. Now, Maya likes to undress and sit on the potty. She hasn't done anything in it yet though. I have a laid back approach. I don't think they will even be ready until 2.5 yrs. I will wait until then to really start "training."

    I also made sure to get the same color potty because I have hear stories of twins who had different color potties and would refuse to sit on the other one, or just wanted to sit on their twins potty only.
  30. maybell

    maybell Well-Known Member

    I wondered about this... I did get a pink and blue one and then 2 white ones, from IKEA... they aren't all that interested at the moment, but I'll be interested if they do want a certain color when we start really training!
  31. sharerc

    sharerc Well-Known Member

    Around 18 months my oldest was starting to wake up dry from naps and nighttime. I figured that was a good indicator that she was ready. She has daytime and nighttime potty trained a few weeks after her 2nd birthday. Her sitter was all for training and I just started putting her in panties around 20 months. She was so easy.

    The twins are 20 months now. I have gotten out DD's old potty and they've sat on it a few times. My intentions were to start over Christmas break since I work for the schools and was off. But I had my boobs done instead. :D So that got put aside. LOL! We bought 2 potties today at Ikea and I'll start putting them on them soon. I need to talk to the sitter and get a plan together though. I know she's ready to start with them but I want to be on the same page.
  32. rrodman

    rrodman Well-Known Member

    Just got a chance to read this thread and have to say that I'm surprised to see some of the mods being rude to someone advocating early potty training. You girls are usually so incredibly level and even keel. I understand we tend to "own" the choices we made, but the OP was asking about early PTing and she got advice about early PTing. How is that off-topic? I haven't even thought about starting and mine are almost two, but I found the information interesting. No offense ladies, but I think we need to retract the claws a little. Love ya, but you are coming off really defensive and kind of rude on this one.
    3 people like this.
  33. debid

    debid Well-Known Member

    I didn't read all of the responses but I wanted to toss this out there. I foolishly let people talk me out of trying to PT my 14-month old boys who were painting the house with poop. Instead, I played the "try to keep them dressed" game. WORST DECISION EVER.

    Once I realized the folly of following the advice of well-meaning friends, my boys figured it out before they could (would) verbalize the need to go. My role in their training was surprisingly small. I told them they could run naked as long as they used the small potty that I'd put where they could get to it easily. Seriously, that was it. And lo and behold, my floors stayed dry. They were 21 months and insta-trained. It took a few more months for them to remember when dressed but it was a whole lot less stressful washing the occasional pair of pants than using the shampooer several times per day.

    If you believe your kids are ready, then GO FOR IT. There is no magical age for potty training. Just because the current generation is all about age 3 doesn't mean that it's always been that way or that it's somehow better to wait than to start whenever they seem interested. Paying attention to their interest and ability is far more important in the pursuit of a frustration-free learning experience.

    Go low pressure and if it doesn't work, take a break and try later. No harm done.

    ETA: I do believe disposables contribute to later training but not because they're "convenient". I believe it's because the child is less aware of the wet sensation when they go. My boys were cloth-diapered.
    3 people like this.
  34. faustjena

    faustjena Well-Known Member


    Those with boys sitting on a potty seat snapped on top of the toilet!

    My son hates the front guard so I removed it, and he pees across the room! Is he supposed to hold his manhood down or something?? I read plenty of books but this was not addressed!

  35. debid

    debid Well-Known Member

    Yes, tell him to point down (or whatever your pet phrase will be) and you'll have to show him once or twice what you mean. I used to tell them to point down so they didn't pee on their noses. Worked great.
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