Adventures in Potty Training
Making the switch from diapers to underwear is not as easy as it seems for some toddlers.
We have entered unchartered territory here at the McManus household. We are in the midst of testing the proverbial potty training waters with my daughter and I have to say I’m finding it a little bit daunting.
I know I can take comfort in the fact that she probably won’t be heading off to college wearing diapers, but sometimes I do wish each kid came with an instruction manual.
I like to consider myself a pretty laid back parent, so I approached potty training without any real time-frame, expectations or agenda.
Quite some time ago, I got a couple potty chairs, put them in the bathrooms and explained the specifics. My husband and I read books, answered questions and talked about “using the potty” readily as well as suggesting she could try it.
The suggestions and invitations to “try out” the potty were met with lots of resistance and frustration on everyone’s part, so we backed off and decided to wait for her to show us signs that she was ready.
Lo and behold, several months ago she started actually asking of her own accord to use the potty. She did really well for a while. And then… she didn’t.
We tried a sticker chart, M&M’s for a reward, along with lots of praise. But some days are simply better than others.
One day, she will be accident free and the next she will refuse to use the potty altogether. Some days she even wakes up begging to wear a diaper. I’m pretty sure this is not what she is supposed to be saying.
It is somewhat baffling.
Where is my Little Miss Independent, “I want to do it all by MY-self” big girl?
And this is where I wonder if I am messing her up? I let her wear Pull-Ups every day and I’m pretty sure that makes it a little too convenient and comfortable to have accidents.
Sometimes, when I ask her if she needs to go, I am met with a very blasé, “No thanks Mommy, I did it in my diaper already.” You know, no big deal. Carry on.
But then, on a seemingly good day when she was doing so well, I made the grave mistake of letting her wear underwear to bed for her nap.
Not 15 minutes later, she was screaming and hollering for me. Let’s just say that it was not fun to clean up at all, if you know what I mean.
On the one hand, it was my fault to let her go to bed without a diaper or Pull-Up on when she is not ready for that yet. But on the other hand, if she doesn’t have some accidents, how else will she learn?
I’m teetering on the cusp of doing the dreaded, week-long, bare-bottomed, quarantined to your home, potty-training boot-camp, but not sure I have it in me to be tied to the house that many days in a row with paper towels, a scrub brush and Nature’s Miracle stain remover at the ready.
Yes, potty training is not for the faint of heart. But we will get through it. I’m sure in time, more success will come and one day she will proudly wear her Cinderella underwear that she chose herself, all day, accident free.
Here’s to hoping that day comes long before her eighteenth birthday.