It’s highly recommended that you choose the potty training method that best suits your and your family’s lifestyle. This includes your time schedule and your child’s disposition.
Some methods’ success depends on your child’s age and readiness to take up the new skills. Other methods would require most of your free time. It is advisable to pick one which combines both considerations – how ready your child is to undertake potty training, and how much of your time will be absorbed by the specific method.
Ideally you want a potty training method that is not all-consuming and makes the process fun and engaging/bonding for you and your kid. In that way you’ll be happy, and your child will be comfortable and will express the least resistance.
Here is a simple, but foolproof way that you can adopt at your convenience.
Before the Actual Potty Training Process
Familiarize yourself with your child’s bowel movements. Once you are accustomed to her bowel movement routine, let her sit on the potty with her diapers on. Do this one week before the actual toilet training begins. This is an example of classical conditioning – your child will be able to learn the cues for going to the potty.
Word of caution though, never force her if she becomes agitated or restless. This is a clear indication that she is not ready to be potty trained yet.
Day One and Day Two of this Potty Training Method
This is one of the crucial stages in potty training. You have to let your child sit on the potty until she is able to relieve herself. But you first have to explain to her the importance of going on the potty – as opposed to going in her nappy. Teach your child why she needs to go to the potty – tell her that it makes her more grown up – mommy and daddy do it, and so must she if she wants to grow up.
You must understand however, that not all children are responsive. If you’re faced with this minor setback, do not fret. One way to overcome this problem is to let your child watch you relieve yourself on the toilet. Your child will surely get curious and possibly want to copy you.
Another technique that you can apply is by emptying out the contents of your child’s soiled diaper onto the potty chair while your child is watching. Your child will be able to easily grasp the importance of using the potty.
If all else fails, be patient. Take the time to explain in a way she can understand – you need to associate going to the toilet with positive things. The moment you start stressing out about it or you start shouting at her for doing it wrong, you will kick-start her natural resistance and you may even set yourself back a few steps…
Day Three and Four
This is where other potty training items come in handy. By now, your child should be getting used to the idea of using a potty. To speed up the process, let him / her use training pants. This would make transition much easier.
Additional tools like books, dolls or DVDs would encourage your child to go to the potty with minimal supervision. When she does this, never forget to praise your child. Furthermore, these tools will be of big help to you because aside from learning, your child is also entertained.
Tips to Ponder
1. You should be prepared for potty accidents. When this happens, never reprimand your child because this will dishearten her and consequently, would lead to her being resistant to learning. Instead, try to teach her patiently what is supposed to be done. Motivate instead of chastising.
2. Routine is the key. In order to be successful at any potty training method you choose, you should stick to the set routine for as long as it takes. Don’t deviate from it as it will confuse and frustrate your child.
All-in-all, remember to be persistent, consistent and very patient, and you will be rewarded with a child that quickly learns to go to the toilet herself without too many intermediate accidents. Most parents take on potty training very haphazardly, when they should make sure they prepare well and research the PROs and CONs of all available potty training techniques. Getting it wrong in this case may be very damaging for morale – your child’s and yours.