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The Potty Training Nightmare!




The Potty Training Nightmare!

I am sure the title is already threatening enough but this is how it will feel the first few days you will start potty training. But don’t worry it passes and it turns into a blessing when they take off the diapers. After this phase passes smoothly, you will be amazed by how much effort will be rubbed off your shoulder.

First advice: please don’t be harsh on yourself as to when you will start the potty training. Some people say you can start as early as 1.5; others say 2.5. I read on many websites that 3 is a good enough age to start but because I had twins I started even later than that. I potty trained them at the age of 3.5 and it took 1 full month to do it. Not one day earlier, it was exactly 4 weeks.

Don’t get discouraged by people trying to push you to do it earlier. Don’t be intimidated when people say you are late or so. I tried before my kids turned 3 and they didn’t respond at all so I decided I will do it my way. This is the first lesson I learned: do it your way!

For the training itself you need to understand that during the first 3 weeks it is not advisable to go out with the kids. Once you decide you will potty train, you and the nursery will share this burden for the coming 3 to 4 weeks. In order not to mess with your kids’ brains they need to take off the diapers completely as long as they are home or in the nursery. Avoid going out to public places or even houses because you will not be able to put them on the potty for long.

The more they sit, the better because we want to increase the chances of them doing it in the right place. The trick is when they do it on themselves and see your frustration; they feel bad about it so their brain starts to understand the concept. For me the first 2 weeks was just a series of endless accidents on the floor. So I removed all the carpets and I took off the diapers and let them stay home with their clothes and panties. Each time they do it on the floor, you will have to clean them and wipe it off. Tell them that this is wrong and show them the right place. Yes, EACH TIME. But this is going to end before you even know it.

Another lesson I learned is WHEN to put them the potty. The frequency is what counts, so you can put them every half an hour for 5 minutes only. Don’t put them on the potty for hours, they will sit and then do it on the floor, trust me! They might be resistant to sitting on the potty for a long time. I tried to train them in the bathroom but they refused so I bought 2 potties and put them in the living room so they can watch TV and accept to sit with a higher frequency. The important thing here is to try to understand their urination pattern so you put them on the potty when it is about time to “do it” so when they do it in the potty you celebrate and sing and so on.

In the third week, my twins started to accept the fact that they need to sit when I say so and started to feel really bad about themselves when they accidentally did it on the floor. I also started to recognize their pattern and put them mostly at the right times. The progress that happened during the 3rd week was that the moment I put them on the potty, they would take a few minutes and get the reflex to do it in the potty.

In the fourth week we were both on the right track; they were getting better by the end of the week and they started to go and sit on the potty themselves. Two months later, some accidents still happen here and there but mostly everything is working well. Also I still make them wear their panty diaper when in the car just in case of traffic or something, but they barely go in it. I put it for my own safety and for protecting their clothes in case of emergencies but thankfully they don’t really consider it to be there. For the night potty training I am about to start it. I was so sucked in the day training that I decided to take a break and then start phase 2 which is by far easier, as people say.

Hope you found that useful…

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Diana Farid

Diana is a wife and a mother of twin babies who is inspired by music, nature and daily life interactions. She uses her passion for writing to capture special moments, replace pain with laughter, and inspire others. She is a feature writer for several publications in Egypt and the Gulf; through her Twin Mummy’s Diary she shares her thoughts, experiences and helpful tips as she goes us through the roller coaster ride called motherhood, with its challenges and joys.

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