Thursday, August 02, 2007

Potty Training: There’s A Party In The Bathroom. Bring Margaritas.


There was a party in my bathroom this morning along with singing, cheering, clapping, candy, even The Wiggles showed up (well, not really only their songs playing in the background.) all because my daughter FINALLY went poop in the toilet – and it only took 2 years and 21 days.
The look on her face will be ingrained in my memory forever – staring at us, and then in the toilet - she looked as if she won the lottery, or maybe had pooped out a Doodlebop (that sang while tooting a horn and eating a Taco.) Once she got her candy prize she danced all along the house showing every stuffed animal and the dog her candy and repeated her poop story (over and over...)
The wife and I are pleased since we’ve been trying this potty training business off and on for about 3 months, and got more stringent after her 2nd birthday. Our first attempt was at 18-months which was pretty much a failed week long attempt (yeah-yeah, I know there are some of you that claim to have potty-trained your 4-month year old – good for you. Your kid will probably perform surgeries in 1st grade – mine won’t – I fully accept your magical powers...send me your poster, I'll put in on the wall)

Now the big question is – is she going to continue the toilet use or is this some kind of “1-time deal” until she’s 8? I honestly don’t know. I guess I’ll have to see as the week goes on.

I’m asking all fellow parents who have successfully potty-trained their kids - any helpful hints, secrets, ideas, stories? I’m open to any and all suggestions, except any that require sacrificing animals to Dora. Or listening to Kenny G.
And for those of you who are in the process of unsuccessful potty training - please don’t rain on my parade telling me that kids can’t use the bathroom until they’re 12. This isn’t a jab at your efforts or parenting – I know all toddlers are different (just like A Doodlebop’s or a Wiggle’s talent.)

32 comments:

Lisa said...

Potty training girls is supposedly so much easier than boys. I had a hell of a time with the little man, but I do have one piece of advice. Keep reminding, encouraging, and above all - change out the reward every couple weeks. Once he realized he was only getting the same thing he'd gotten every time for however many weeks we started at ground zero again.

Rattling The Kettle said...

I don't know if this will work for you, but the biggest thing for us was lots and lots of naked time. If we were home, the boy was naked. Or at least pantsless. It made it easier for him to sit and do what he needed to do.

Of course, we started when he was 14 months. Nyah! ;-)

Whit said...

I think that she'll continue to poop every time she hears the Wiggles, just like the rest of us.

Absolutely Bananas said...

Hurray for you! That's parenting for ya... where bowel movements are a thrill. What worked for us was that we gave CJ a BIG HUGE Transformer when he finally did the old' BM, and then I was sure to tell him that he could only KEEP the toy as long as he continued to use the potty. Worked like a charm. Good luck!

Redneck Mommy said...

I have no advice. Just keep feeding her fiber....don't want her to get backed up!!

And happy Blogoversary! In case I haven't stroked your ego lately...you rock big boy!

Phil said...

I don't remember much about potty training my kids... Something about M&M's, them sitting on the little potty in front of the TV, and lots of cheering when they did the deed.

If you ask me about getting a 6-year-old girl to properly wipe her bottom, then I have no answers for you.

Jenifer said...

Pooped a Doodlebop!!! LMAO!

Anyhow, funny we must have been thinking the same today. My post (well one of them) today is about potty training also.

I thought we had a success story.... now...not so much.

dennis said...

Our boy spent the last 6-weeks on a hot tropical island where the humidity was just short of flood level and weighty diapers are very uncomfortable...

however unless you can fly the little one 8000 miles away I would suggest taping a hair dryer to her lower back and turning it on...

or just keep hoping that her potty visit was not a one off...

anyway, good luck!!

Jonathon Morgan said...

i still find it hard not to cheer like crazy every time edan poops in the toilet, and she was about the same age when she started (she's three now).

Jackie said...

Just encouragement is my best advice. Party time every time she goes.
I'm potty training my second now, my son. Proving to be more difficult than my daughter was. Thinking of trying the running around pantless thing. Just so scared of my couch or carpets smelling of piss...sigh...
Anyway, Good Luck!!!

Whirlwind said...

We always did like a sticker chart. We put small prizes at different increments (a piece of candy, bouncy balls, little pet shops, hair ties, necklaces) and them slightly larger things (My little ponies, trips to the parks, ice cream). Then came bigger things - trip to the aquarium or zoo. Last was the ultimate prize (when they were diaper free for a month - no accidents - a new bike (what they really wanted). Since yours already has a bike, try something she really wants.

creative-type dad said...

Whirlwind -- I like the idea's-
What age did this work at? I'm wondering if my daughter would understand the incremental rewards...

Jenster said...

Where's the margarita??

Good for her!! My son knew exactly what he was supposed to do when he was about 2. Unfortunately, he didn't do it until he was at least 3! My daughter did much better - about like your daughter, if I recall.

I'm glad to say that at 12 and 15 they remain potty trained.

Funny story - When he WAS potty trained and would poop, he'd then yell, "I'm done!" so I or the Dad could go clean him up. One day the boy and I were playing around on my bed and the Dad was in our bathroom. All of a sudden we heard, "Taylor! I'm done!" And the look on the boy's face was hysterical!

Okay. So maybe it's one of those had to be there funny stories.

Rock the Cradle said...

Cheers, mate!

We are on the slow end here...peeing and pooping are just...so...inconvenient!

We have a 100% success rate for the potty...when the Impling's not wearing anything.

Think the next step is to just get underwear and let the chips fall where they may (so to speak).

Good luck!

Above Average Joe said...

Peanut is 2yrs 2 month and isnt yet. She sits there for 30 seconds and gets up. Nothing. At least with The Champ we could throw Cheerios into the bowl and let him have target practice.

DJ Kirkby said...

Hurrah for all of you! I think that if your girly was that thrilled with her sucess then I should imagine that she will continue to desire the same reactions from you two and therefore other than the occasional accident, will make every effect to imopress you again (and get some candy).

Whirlwind said...

With our first, she was about 2.5 to 3. It helped that the reward chart had pictures drawn of said reward and she could see the sticlers getting closer. We also let her put the stickers up.

I know other people who keep packs of stickers (or temp. tattoos or stamps) in their bathroom and the kids ge tone each time they go. And only if they go on the potty. It's special for them and helps if it is something they like. This worked with our middle as she loved the temp. tattoos.

JayMonster said...

We used a similar method to whirlwind. (the sticker method) This kept the prizes cheap, fresh (stickers are cheap so we could get "NEW" ones often).

She didn't necessarily GET that there was an incremental pattern, at least initially, but she understood it as time went along, and where she might have "lost interest" the new "levels" just managed to keep her focused.

Also, as soon as we got "some" measure of success (at least 50%), We changed over rather quickly from diapers to pull ups. Yes it is a bit more of a pain to clean up when she "forgot" or "had an accident" but since the pull up has less room, she was immediately "aware" and unsatisfied with the feeling which helped her WANT to be "accident free"

junebee said...

The Blossom is as potty-trained as she can be (since she STILL doesn't talk. Now THAT'S one I need help on!). We just kept putting her on the potty every hour or so and cheered when she was productive. I think she likes to be clean, because she rarely poops in a diaper. Now the Branch is another story. No interest in the potty. What. So. Ever.

Stay at home dad said...

I don't have much to add (lots of encouragement, expect some 'mistakes', buy a step so your daughter can get up there herself) but I had to say how much I love Whit's comment!

kittenpie said...

Ours tried it first about 18 months, but then stopped for a while, maybe 4-6 months. We didn't make a thing out of it, and when she was ready, she informed her teacher at daycare that she wanted to go pee in the potty so she could wear Dora underwear. SEriously. Okay, I replied, I hate Dora, but where do I buy her underwear? Because really, selling out to the licensed characters on underclothes seemed like a msall price to pay for instantaneous toilet training. We took a bit longer with the pooping, so she got a sticker reward for those, just to help things along. think about the undies as an impetus. Also, be prepared to have and wash lots of extra pants and undies for a while. I think I had 18 pairs of undies, and we do laundry once a week. Just sayin'. Anyhow, that's what worked for us.

Ruth Dynamite said...

I suspect it'll be touch and go for awhile; two steps forward, three steps back. (She's only two! I mean, I'M not even fully potty trained yet. Sheesh!)

Yeah. Try the calendar thing. And candy. And be vigilant in your observation of "clues" that she might need to go.

Ryan said...

Someone may have said it already, but make a big deal out of buying underwear together. Have a fun trip out to Target and let her pick out 5 pairs or however many you decide and then keep talking about how big she is and how exciting it is to have underwear on. Then just keep her in the underwear around the house. It doesn't feel very good to poop and pee in 'em, so she'll get the point after a while. And if she continually does not get the point, maybe she is not entirely ready, you know. And that's fine.

Ryan said...

Oh yeah, one other thing we did was have M&Ms for # 2 and gummy bears for # 1. That worked for our kid. And after a while we did not emphasize them and he didn't even want them. The novelty wore off and he is now an upstanding untainted (by the rewards- some people get so agro over this) young boy.

creative-type dad said...

Ryan -- I didn't realize how controversial the bribing thing would be. Oh well, if it gets my daughter motivated I see nothing wrong with it.

kittenpie -- We did that with some princess underwear, she didn't have any qualms about going to the potty in them... :(

Haley-O said...

I'm with you, CTD. The monkey pees or poops in the toilet now and then. And, there's a full party when she does. I dance and everything. Potty training would be SO EASY, though, if the Wiggles actually came to the potty party, wouldn't it.... Sigh.... I bet they'd come to Julia Roberts' house....

Darren said...

Most of our early success was actually due ti daycare. I think peer pressure there helped her want to avoid accidents.

There was a lot of off and on for a while too...once she used the potty that definitely wasn't the end of diapers.

Maureen said...

My daughter first pooped in the potty not too long after she turned 2. Then there was the occasional "hit" but there were also "misses". Mostly our fault because we don't devote as much time to potty training as we did with our first (he was out of diapers less than a week after we started). We're now almost 6 months into the pt thing with daughter and she is 2.5.

My one piece of advice... if you ever leave your daughter on the potty for a second to answer the phone and you come back and she is off the toilet and has put her hands in things she shouldn't (I'm talking poop), don't, I repeat, don't make a horrible face and scream for her not to touch anything. They take that as a sign that they did something wrong and they become afraid to poop on the toilet. I'm hoping the fear doesn't last until she is 12.

dadinprogress said...

like the lawn mowing and fertilizing and the house cleaning, we outsourced this ripe chore. both girls were potty trained by the nanny!

creative-type dad said...

Maureen -- that's funny! I'll have to keep that in mind.

dadinprogress -- can we borrow your nanny?

Denver Dad said...

Good luck! We've had some trouble in the Denver household, as Chunk just doesn't seem interested in stopping the continuing adventures of Superman to drop some Kryptonite off at the pool.

Sigh.

AdventureDad said...

This is a bit late but I would advice to have lots of patience. Our approach was to let it take whatever time needed. It took many months but it was very relaxed and no pressure. Just before 3rd birthday our son was trained but still slept with diapers. We did stop that a few months later when he just told us one day he preferred to sleep in underwear. So far no accidents which is very surprising to us.

Our son alternated between the potty, the real toilet, and some kind of adapter seat. WE also used no bribes or awards, just encouragement.

BEst of luck

AD