The highs and lows of potty training a toddler
NOM is coming up to 2.5 now but its only in the last few months that she’s ever shown an interest in the potty (or the toilet for that matter!). We knew with little man on the way that ideally we would want her trained at least in the day so that we wouldn’t have two in nappies at the same time, but on the other hand we didn’t want to rush her neither.
We began just after Christmas putting the potty out and talking to her about going to the toilet. She was interested in coming with me to the toilet and observing and what I did. I would talk to her about how being a big girl meant using the potty/toilet to do wee wees and she soon understood why mummy and daddy went to the toilet.
But it wasn’t until around February time that NOM had her first wee on the potty. It was actually her fab key worker at nursery who began NOM’s potty training journey as at home she just wasn’t ready. They took the lead and we followed by sending her with many a change of clothes and knickers. We have not used pull ups or nappies (during the day unless for long journeys/outings with not toilets close by) as I find that these tend to confuse children during potty training as they cannot feel when they have had an accident, and it can give mixed cues to the child as to whether they should be using the toilet or not (I advise this to parents of my Nursery children if they are struggling with potty training when starting with us – we’ve successfully help to train 10 children this year!).
I must admit that NOM’s potty training has not been plain sailing and is still far from perfect. Although she is a girl (and it is said that girls are easier to train than boys), she has not taken to it over a short period. It has taken her a good month or so to develop her ability to hold her bladder and realise when she needs a wee. I don’t know whether this is because she goes to nursery full time and then home so she’s had to learn to think about things in different scenarios (as in the perfect world, it would be case of staying in over a longer period and tackling it over a few days rather than weeks), but she has worked hard and now has relatively good control of her bladder but still has the odd accident each day. I’m happy with that!
Poos on the other hand are a different ball game. She knows when she’s done one, but refuses to do it on the toilet or potty – its straight to her knickers. This I’m hoping will come in time and we are not even considering overnight training until she is fully grasping it during the day. We are however, considering using pull ups at night to help her with morning wee wees so she can just pull them down as we are finding that night time nappies are hindering her using the toilet in the morning as she struggles to get it off, hence she’s already done her wee in the nappy before getting to the toilet.
I wanted to write about NOM’s experiences to highlight that it it totally normal if a child does not take to potty training straight away. Every child is different and will be ready at different ages – no matter whether they are a boy or a girl! I must admit to feeling like a fish out of water with this potty training lark as very naively, I thought it would be quite easy with her being a girl but I’ve found the very opposite. I have had to block out what other people have been thinking (or more often than not what I think they are thinking), expecting that she should be trained by now especially with number 2 on the way, but we’ve had to follow NOM’s lead, not our lead – not when we expected her to be ready, but when SHE was ready.
She’s done so well and still is doing well! NOM has now even started to use the toilet rather than the potty now both in Nursery and at home. So my little girl is not so little anymore!
Mummy and daddy are very proud of you!!