How We Potty Trained our Defiant 2 year old

The dreaded two words... Potty and Training! The stage in a Childs life that most parents dread!

I created a post a while ago, when we were beginning our already failing potty training journey (which you can find here)  with high hopes that we would have it cracked before our holiday.

Despite our best efforts this didn't happen and we ended up having to half fill a suitcase with nappies and swim nappies and Joe having to get through the holiday with only 2 pairs of shorts because of his limited suitcase space. Just for reference - Greece is not a third world country and you can in fact buy Pampers in all the supermarkets and even most of the hotels!

When we came home it was the middle of September, it was starting to get colder and she still showed no interest in the potty.
I had given up and had zero motivation!
But Everyone else's children just seemed to be getting it! They saved a fortune on the weekly shopping by cutting these out and I felt under pressure for my child to catch up as well as jealous of their extra pennies!

Fast forward to January. We were shopping in Sainsbury's and in the reduced section I saw a 'Reward Chart' for £1.50! It had magnets on the back so you could stick it to the fridge, a pen with a rubber so you can write on the sections and came with stickers. Now Delilah is a very strong willed little character so I thought the chances of this actually working were slim to none, but for £1.50 I thought it was worth a shot.

Armed with our new reward chart we tried again!
And to my amazement it worked! It really worked! Within a few days the chart was filling up and she had barely any accidents - Okay one day I felt a little too confident and went out to a friends with her in knickers and she might have done a wee all over her friends bedroom floor, but apart from that it was all pretty plain sailing.

We took her to the supermarket and let her choose her own 'Big Girl' knickers - which were bloody Peppa Pig, of course! And suddenly her favourite thing to do each morning was to pick which Peppa Pig knickers she wanted to wear.

One of our best purchases was the travel potty! You can find the one we used here but there are a few on the market. It is great! You can purchase potty liners and use it as a potty, tie up the contents and just throw it away. It's been a complete life saver on long car journeys. You can also use it as a little toilet seat on top of a public toilet so they don't fall in. The potty liners are a little pricey but definitely worth it and we still take it everywhere!

We are yet to attempt night time training and she's still waking up with a very full nappy, but I've realised there is no rush. She will do it when she's ready and I enjoy my sleep far too much to be changing bed sheets in the middle of the night.

MY top tips for potty training:

  • Buy/make some kind of reward chart or have an incentive! A little blackmail never hurt anyone. Everything they have ever known about toileting is about to change so you need to make it rewarding to encourage them. We used the reward chart which worked brilliantly! And then once she had filled up her chart we took her to the shops and let her choose a magazine. 

  • Let them choose their new knickers/pants themselves so that they want to wear them.

  • Invest in a travel potty! You will thank me later.

  • Don't dwell on the accidents! Accidents are bound to happen and when they do don't make a big deal out of it or they will lose their confidence.

  • If you try potty training and after a couple of days they really aren't getting it, don't stress! Just stop. Go back to nappies, wait, and try again in a couple of months. This was definitely the case for both of my children. We tried to potty train, they weren't getting it at all. We stopped and when we tried again it was soo much easier and completed within a few days. Because they were ready! 

  • It's not a race! I can say this now as a mother of a potty trained toddler but I know how pressurising it feels when every other child seems to be there and yours is very far from it. But one day it will click! One day your child will be potty trained too and your'll wonder what all the fuss was about. 

  • Don't be reliant on a potty, train them to use the toilet too. I've heard of children being potty trained with a potty and then fearing the toilet. Its not a process you want to drag out as cleaning a poo out of a potty really is a shitty job - literally!

I asked some other Mummy's what their top tips were for potty training and here's what they had to say:

'Always remember to pack spare socks! In my experience these are something that get wet from accidents too!' Emily

'We kept one in Freddie's bedroom over night and he took to using it over night straight away, it really made for a smooth transition.' Emma

'Don't forget to tell boys to push their bits down while they're on the potty unless you want an involuntary golden shower!' Lisa

'Be persistent, once they are ready don't keep going back to nappies it just confuses them' Vicki

'My biggest tip is to just wait until they're ready and don't feel under pressure just because your friends are doing it. I waited until my son was nearly 3 and it was so easy. I'll definitely do the same for my baby twins.' Helen

So here you have it, my guide to cracking potty training in under a week. I know it all feels very daunting to start with and the idea of constantly cleaning up bodily functions is somewhat not desirable. But have faith! Your child will get there! And if they are ready then it will be a really quick and easy transition.

Thanks for reading!

Amy x

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