I purchased a potty at 18 months, thinking I would be smart, getting ahead of the game. I mean how hard could this potty training thing be {really hard}. My kid is smart and seems to be ahead of the curve on a lot things {said every parent ever}. This would be easy {hardest lesson so far}. He would be trained by two-an-a-half at the latest. I just KNEW it. {HA!}

First rule of the potty training wars: go in with low expectations, when you start early. I did not follow that first rule. If and when I do this again it will be my number one rule.

Potty training in our house was probably the hardest lesson so far to go through with Mason. It was all out war. The more I persisted, the more he wanted nothing to do with it. And if anyone was “trained” through the whole ordeal, it was me, not him.

So, fast-forward to two. Mason was slightly interested in the potty. He liked going pee-pee in this crazy contraption. And his sweet cousin was rocking it. She was pretty much completely done with diapers. Mason had been about one-and-a-half to two months behind her on all his skills. Crawling, walking, talking, everything. This would be no different. His cousin would help me get this potty training done. Yes! This would be a piece of cake!

Two peas in a pod. More like peas and carrots when it came to potty training.

Rule number two: Do not compare your child’s progress with potty training to any other kiddo. They will be different. Totally ignored this rule as well. I was 0 for 2 if y’all are keeping count.

So two-and-a-half came and went. One milestone we had in those six months was Mason’s acceptance that it was ok to poop in the potty, but only when he wanted to. From two to three we tried everything. The three-day method, stickers, the potty watch, candy, cake every bribe you could think of. The only thing that worked was the naked method {given to me unsolicited in the checkout line at Costco, go figure}. If I let him run around naked he would go in the potty EVERY time. Mostly because I think he was terrified of the consequences of peeing on mommies’ new carpet, but lets be real, you can’t let your kid run around naked all the time. The second we put underwear or a diaper on him he went in either one. There was no difference to him. I’d have people tell me to put him in big boy underwear, and “it would just happen.” Sadly, it did not. I felt like a failure. Like I was doing something, everything  incredibly wrong.

Every potty training bribe I could think of. None of them worked for us.

Third rule of the potty training wars: don’t let other people’s opinions regarding potty training get you down. 0 for 3 here, you guys.

So we hit three and I was still changing occasional dirty diapers. I wasn’t just thinking I was a failure at this point; I was acting like one too. I would let it really bother me and affect my moods, which in turn rubbed off on my son. That was the one rule I had pre-going into this whole thing. Do not overreact and have it negatively impact Mason’s experience. I had promised myself I wouldn’t do that. 0 for 4.

So here we are at three years two months and 2 weeks. I am incredibly happy and proud to report that my son has gone in the potty for the past two weeks with no {okay a couple of} accidents. {I am currently knocking on wood.} And this all happened with a mommy who had pretty much completely given up. What I mean is, I had nothing to do with it. Mason just decided one day that he was ready, and there you have it. I am sure there will be a setback or 20, but thank the lord, we {HE} did it!

My fifth rule of this whole experience is to let your child take the wheel on potty training, if the typical methods aren’t working for you. As long as you plant the seed it will eventually happen, and you most certainly aren’t the only parent on this earth at the end of their rope. {I nailed this rule…because I had no choice.}



Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here