BEGIN Potty Training Reagan | Corina's Corner

Potty Training Reagan

5.09.2016
Reagan is [mostly] potty trained! I have to say mostly because she did have an accident this morning and has one every few days or so... She's only human though, and I know she's progressing and getting better and better every day. Potty training has been a wild ride. Oh man. Wild ride is probably an understatement. Every time we encounter a new aspect of parenthood I think it's the hardest part. But really, potty training was pretty awful. Just like with birth stories, I really liked reading other people's experiences before trying it ourselves, so I thought I would send our potty training story out into the internet world too.

We thought she was ready in December because she would ask to get a new diaper after going, she could take off her pants by herself and mostly put them back on alone and she knew the difference between pee and poo. Over Christmas when Jordan had a good chunk of time off work we thought we would give it a try so we could try to do it together. For whatever reason we decided to try the 3 day method. I had seen a lot of things floating around pinterest about that method, so I read a bit about it and we gave it a try. We did no pants or underwear (bare bum) and tried to follow her around and help her get to the potty before an accident. It sucked!! It made both Jordan and I super mad and frustrated because it seemed like we were cleaning up and disinfecting our house all day long for about 5 days (because Reagan definitely didn't catch on after the 3 days). For Reagan the 3 day method ended up being a ridiculous idea and was the main source of frustration in potty training for Jordan and I. When she wasn't totally potty trained after the 3 days I felt let down. For Reagan 3 days was not a magic amount of time to learn this new skill. (We later learned that having her wear panties was much better because if she did have an accident she hated how it felt to be wearing wet panties).

I had bought a little gum ball machine and filled it with jelly beans and whenever she would go on the potty she would get a penny for some beans. We bought her Tangled and put it on top of the mirror in her bathroom and told her that if she learned how to go potty (or had a certain amount of successes) she could open it and watch 'Punzel (as Reagan calls her). Neither of these seemed to motivate her at all. We went to the library and checked out a bunch of different books on potty training both for us and for Reagan. They even had some DVDs with little movies on the topic for Reagan. (And of course we watched the potty episode of Daniel Tiger. Many times.) We tried a little potty chair (this one) and then borrowed a singing one (this one) from some neighbors and neither seemed to be interesting to her. She would occasionally have a few successes but overall it was kind of disastrous. After about a week we decided to quit and try again a little later. She didn't seem to be catching on and I thought maybe it was because she wasn't ready. She is a smart and independent girl so we knew that this was going to have to be on her timetable and that once it clicked in her brain we'd be golden.

We waited a few months (I think we started working on it again in March) and decided to give it another try. This time we started using a potty seat (this one) instead of a potty chair. I think she liked sitting on the actual toilet, but after a few days we stopped using any kind of potty seat/chair and just had her sitting on the toilet and that seemed to work the best for her. I think the introduction in December really helped her to progress faster this time around. She was pretty familiar with what we were trying to do and it seemed to click this time.

We ended up ditching the gum ball machine because we could tell it wasn't motivating her (and she didn't really need the extra candy all day long). The only thing that motivated her was whatever the next thing she wanted to play with. So she would ask if she could play with the legos and we would say, "Yes, but you have to go potty first." This worked like a charm. She would ask if she could put on her princess dress and we would say, "Yes, but you have to go potty first," and she would go. We did this pretty religiously for a few weeks and still do it occasionally if we know she probably has to go.

For some lucky reason she caught on to both poop and pee. I was worried that she wouldn't want to poop on the toilet because I had heard of this issue with lots of kids. Another lucky thing is that she is surprisingly good at holding it for long periods of time, and she also wakes up dry just about every night (she currently still sleeps in a diaper though just in case).

She still needs help going to the bathroom because she can't quite get up on the toilet very well (she can but it's comical to watch her climb up). Hopefully in the next few months she'll get more self-reliant. I'm so happy to be done changing her diapers. We're working together on this potty adventure... I'm working on not getting so frustrated with her as she has accidents and she's working on not having those accidents. One funny thing about the accidents though, is that about 60% of the time it's mine or Jordan's fault simply for not being aware of her or paying close attention to her body language.

We couldn't help but laugh at Reagan the other day when she was reading her lego pamphlet while sitting on the loo. I love this little girl and I'm so surprised at all of the milestones we seem to be hitting and how fast they seem to be coming.



Was potty training the worst for you? Or was it a breeze? I love hearing all of the stories since every kid is so different.

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