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Potty Training; Not for the faint of heart

There are so many fun “raises” you get as a parent. The extra money when you no longer have to buy formula or pay for daycare – but one of the best ones – when you no longer have to buy diapers.

Oh the joy of potty training

Makes me cringe now and want to go running for the hills! My oldest was an absolute piece of cake. As a first time mom, I excitedly bought a pack of pull ups and the cute little potty chair that sings and makes going potty fun. There was a sticker chart and a toy for a reward. I dropped him off with a pull up on at his in-home daycare and his provider took one look at the pull up and said no way, it was a glorified diaper. Go get him real underwear and I could thank her later. I admit – my feelings were hurt at first and the wind was knocked out of my sails – but she had 4 kids of her own and had been doing daycare for 20 years, so I figured she might know something. It took ONE day to potty train my oldest – two times of being in wet underwear and he hated it. No fancy potty needed, no sticker chart or bribe toy – it was as easy as pie.

Fast forward to my 2.5 year old son, Liam. I hilariously assumed he would be just as easy. Boy was I ever wrong. He has been going #2 on the potty for a good 6 months – but peeing? Yep, never gonna happen. I tried the cute little potty. He hated it. So, we opted for the Elmo potty seat. We tried M&M’s, a sticker chart, tons of praise, the iPad while he sat, a toy as a reward, – and guess what – he still didn’t care. I read other mom blogs and Facebook groups that told me “oh let him run around naked for 3 days, and it’ll be over”…. You know what happened when I did that? Liam would go hide somewhere and pee – no matter how many times I stalked him, put him on the potty or timed it so we would go every 20 minutes – he made sure to pee when I wasn’t looking. He even took the liberty of peeing on grandpa and then saying “this is ridiculous”.

Yes, he knows exactly what he is doing. I have even tried “don’t you wanna be like your brother?” to which he breaks out in a fit of giggles and says “no”.  

I admit, there have been days when I became extremely frustrated and want to punish him for peeing his pants – but then I remembered, he’s 2.5 and quite frankly probably doesn’t understand what he’s doing 100%. There were days I felt like a failure as a mom because a relative or someone on social media was able to do it so easily. Then I decided to start asking other parents– instead of just assuming from what I read on social media and I found out, what Liam is doing is pretty gosh darn normal. I heard behind that perfect “they are potty trained” picture, that their daughter peed in the corner then hid it with her flash cards, that their son would only poop outside by a tree or my personal favorite – that their son decided to poop on the floor vent when Mom wasn’t looking.

It made me realize that every single child is different. You absolutely cannot push your child to potty train if they are not ready, no matter what social media or that lady at the grocery store told you. Your child will let you know when they are ready and willing to fully commit to potty training. Until then, you just have to be patient and go with the flow (like my pun there?). Mamas, we are all in this together.

Someday, I will laugh it up when Liam calls me obsessing over why his children aren’t getting potty training fast enough – because Liam – KARMA.

2 Responses to Potty Training; Not for the faint of heart

  1. Tessa August 4, 2017 at 6:35 am #

    This process is my least favorite for sure. With my boys, as soon as we thought they had learned, the would backtrack for a month or two. It seemed never ending. The Liam hiding story was probably not fun during the time, but was hilarious to read. I feel your pain for sure!

  2. Jacqueline
    Jacqueline September 12, 2017 at 10:01 pm #

    Oh my… this brought back memories of my son. We tried the bare butt and he just stood in the living room peeing on the carpet while continuing to play with his blocks. Nothing was going to stop him from playing. It was as if he didn’t even know he was peeing! It was definitely frustrating. But yes, in their own time, it does finally happen. =)