For me, toilet training my son has been one of the hardest things EVER!! Honestly, I have been working towards toilet training since before my son could understand anything we said. I have tried so many different things, all with NO results, but now, slowly, we are moving in the right direction.
Who else has had so much ‘advice’ regarding training your little one? Everyone has an opinion. I had advice ranging from ‘don’t do anything, your child will learn it themselves’ to ‘your son will be toilet trained once YOU decide he will be trained’!! Gee the pressure!!
In the end I went middle of the road.
For me to feel like I was being a good mum, I did end up deciding NO MORE NAPPIES. However there was no way I could successfully make that decision unless my son was ready, and in reality my son does still wear his pull ups now, sometimes.
I had actually been slowly working on toilet training for the previous 12 months, in my mind I wanted him toilet trained before our new baby came. He had other ideas though.
First, a potty. He sat on it but no interest in doing anything. Next, a ‘CARS’ toddler seat on the toilet that even played sounds. Well that scared him true and proper! Next was the step and seat combo and that worked! He never actually did anything in the toilet but he would at least sit on it. During this time we had moved from nappies to pull ups and had purchased ‘jocks’ in readiness.
We then went regularly through the routine of sitting on toilet, flushing the toilet and then his favourite part, washing hands!! This went on for months, but he would never actually do anything on the toilet. I must say though that learning these steps while I was pregnant, did teach him how to get himself on and off the toilet by himself which has been a godsend with our newborn now on the scene!
So then came that silly day, with a nine week old baby on my hips, that I said ‘no more nappies!’
And it worked! For the first day! With lots of bribing, he actually went! Ahh the miracle, so excited was I! The next day, not so great, so we upped the bribe and said if he went at least once a day for 7 days he would get a special treat (a wiggles microphone, we have a little muso on our hands). So right on cue he went once a day, no more! The next week, a new bribe (a ukulele) and he sometimes went 2 or 3 times a day and the following week he voluntarily did his no. 2s on the toilet! So we are on the right track. He still gets a tick on his chart every time he goes, and some days are definitely better than others but he is getting there! I do have to say I didn’t expect it to take so long and I think we are still several months off even attempting nights let alone long day trips without a safety net but at least we are on the right track!
I think there is something to be said from each spectrum when it comes to toilet training, but at the end of the day, the child is your guide to when they are ready. That’s when they need your guidance and love and patience to instruct them what to do.
I have certainly found it very hard and stressful and challenging, but as with all challenges, very rewarding.
Fingers crossed my daughter will be a little easier.