Potty Training in 168 days! When Potty Training in 3 days doesn’t work. + Giveaway!!

18 Aug

What? 168 days doesn’t sound short to you? This is my detailed story of what happens when the 3 day method doesn’t work.

I am writing this {long} post in hopes that someone may read this that is having hard time potty training their child and find some useful information out of it. As you will read below, it did not come easy for my daughter and when I went to the internet for help, I did not find a lot of helpful information.

We started this journey of potty training back in February. February 14th, Valentine’s Day to be exact. I know, what a wonderful way to spend the day of love than being 8 months pregnant and chasing your crazy off the wall toddler around the house and cleaning up her pee. Doesn’t it just sound heavenly? Oh how I was so innocently naive and blissfully unaware of how difficult this process would be. This is my story about potty training my 2.5 year old daughter. The most. stubborn, kid. ever!

Just a quick background about my sweet Kyler. She is a fun, energetic, sweet girl that also happens to be stubborn, fiercely independent, a bit of high maintenance, and too smart for her own good. Leading up to her second birthday, we started talking about the potty. We read books, watched potty songs online, let her sit on the potty if she wanted to, etc.  She was super interested and seemed ready and even peed on the potty a few times. Our son was going to be arriving in late March and we were so hoping to have only one kid in diapers. My husband and I decided to give the old potty training a go when she was almost 25 months old. We did some research and decided to try the 3 day potty method or what I called potty training bootcamp. I know there are some different variations of this out there but we decided to do the one where you teach your child to tell you if they have to go potty and act like you won the lottery every time they do.  You don’t leave the house, give them lots of fluids, lots of love and praise and of course rewards for being a big girl. I was partial to this method because I knew multiple people, like at least 5, that did this method with their kid and it worked within a week. Sounds great doesn’t it?! Potty trained in one week?? Sign me up!

The Week of Hell

We did everything the article told us to do. We took her out before the big day and let her pick out undies, had a big celebration when we threw the diapers away, made a big deal when we put on her first pair of big girl undies, and repeated every 3 seconds (okay maybe 10) “Tell Mommy if you have to Potty. Remember to tell us if you need to Potty. Kyler, POTTY, POTTY, POTTY.  Literally I think I said the word potty that week maybe 3.2 million times. We did it all! Day 1 went exactly how I thought it would and what the article said to expect. She had tons of accidents but we always ran to the potty and tried to finish and praised her like crazy for trying or going. By the way, I say it went exactly how I thought it would go, not we on purpose. When my husband got home from work, he had his first meltdown within 4 hours. Apparently he didn’t expect as many accidents and it completely stressed him out. He read the article before and we talked about it but I guess he thought it was going to be different.  Word of advice: make sure both parents are on board and know what to expect before starting! The 2nd day was better but still quite a bit of accidents. Oh, by the way, we also decided to go for it and try night time too. Ambitious, right? She quickly realized that at night time she could stall going to bed by saying she had to potty. Funnnn.

Day 1: Stuck in the house

Sunday, Day 3, was a little bit better than Day 2, but again, I didn’t think we were where she needed to be. Hubby and I were beyond stressed out and exhausted from watching Kyler like a hawk and remember, I was 8 months pregnant! I remember at one point, she started peeing and I picked her up quickly and tried to run to the bathroom only to slip on her pee. I managed to catch myself, however, shooting pain shot up through my pelvis and yeah… that didn’t feel so great. She started to ignore us when she said “Kyler, tell us when you have to potty”. I think it started to annoy her (can’t blame her, I was annoying myself). That being said, we decided to keep pushing forward because we didn’t want to give up on all the progress we made.

Monday, Day 4 came and she went to my mom’s house. I had never been so happy to be at work. She actually had a good day! Only 2 accidents. Yay!!! Is the end near??? Night time was still a disaster. She was totally milking the “I have to go potty”. Let’s just say we started the bed time routine at 7pm and wouldn’t get to sleep until 9:30pm if we were lucky.  After her 4th trip to the potty, we decided that was enough. I mean she hadn’t had anything to drink since 4pm, she had peed 3 times before bed, there is no way she had anything left! Well…. she did. After we said no to another potty trip, she stood at her door and peed on the floor. Awesome. After she fell asleep, I searched the ends of Google and message boards for help/advice on potty training. Nothing.

Day 5 was her first day back at school. We dropped her off at school at 8am and spoke to her teachers. We went over everything with them and took the diapers away. We left and went to work and thought “Hell yeah, we got this.” Um…. no we didn’t. By 10am, school had called and said Kyler had 2 diarrhea accidents and they had to put a diaper on her. What?!?!? NOOOOOO!!!!! Not the diaper! All of that hard work! When we picked her up from school, the teachers said she seemed fine so we put her back in undies when we got home. Night time came and we started the vicious game of “I have to potty again.” Again, we let her go a number of times. While putting her back in bed, she asked to go again. I told her no and she already went. I’ll be damned if she didn’t start pushing with all her might to get some pee out. Really Kyler?!?! I guess she was going to show me!

Day 6-7 were a blur. I tried some things I read on the internet and nothing worked. I put in a call to her doctor because she always had good advice on how to handle some of her behavioral quirks.  We knew she understood what she needed to do but it was like she was fighting us with all her mite. It got so bad that she was scream and cry if we even said the word potty. We weren’t going to physically make her sit on the potty. If I made a slight adjustment, she adjusted. For instance, I was desperate so decided to put her potty in her room at bed time (I know, I know it tells you not to do that but I told you I was desperate). The look on her face was priceless. She said “I have to go potty” and I pulled her potty chair in her room and said okay, here it is. If you need it, it’s right here. She looked so confused and annoyed that I outsmarted her. Well, the next night she decided to just pee in her bed instead.

By the next weekend, hubby and I were arguing like crazy. He wanted to throw in the towel and I didn’t want to give up because of everything we had been through.  After some discussion and thought, we finally gave it and we bought a box of pull-ups. We were taking a break.

The Break

I felt so defeated. How was it that I knew so many kids that were able to get this down in less than a  week and yet  Kyler couldn’t? I realized she was on the younger side and knew I had plenty of time to get her trained but it was still defeating. Kyler couldn’t care less if she was wet, rewards got old quick, too much praise annoyed her and stressed her out and that is basically what I kept reading online.

Looking back, I wish I hadn’t pushed her as far as we did. I should have realized mid-week it wasn’t working but just when I would think about giving up, she would have a good day. Kyler’s doctor called back and we had a nice talk. I explained everything that we tried and went through and she agreed, it was definitely behavioral. She basically said that because it was something we wanted her to do, she was going to fight it because it’s a power struggle thing and she wants to be in control. She agreed that we needed to take a break and try again after the baby came.

Potty Training was put on the back burner. For a while, we wouldn’t do anything with it unless she wanted to. We started ramping up the potty talk about a month after her brother was born and she started having some accident free (or one wet pull-up) days. She has definitely made it difficult for us because she does some weird quirky things. For a while, she wouldn’t potty at home but would ask to go potty when we were out and about. Our first day back to Disney she went accident free yet as soon as we got home she started peeing in her pull ups again. Sometimes, she would strip down naked and pee in her bed then tell me on the monitor “uh-oh, I peed in my bad, that’s bad” just for attention.

Round 2

So that brings us to current day. We decided to do the bootcamp method again, however, this time, we were going to put her on the potty every 30 minutes-hour instead of reminding her to tell us if she has to potty. The week before I was planning on doing this, I was at Buy Buy Baby and came across the Potty Watch. What is the Potty Watch you ask? It’s a watch timer that kids can wear that you set to go off every 30, 60 or 90 minutes. It resets itself and plays a song and lights up when it’s time to go. It was only $10 so I figured why not. The big morning came and she put on her undies with excitement and we set the watch for every 30 minutes. WOW. What a difference. It took a few times of the watch going off and us heading to the potty for her to get it but SHE WASN’T FIGHTING ME!!!!!!! By the end of the day, she was getting excited and going potty. By Sunday, we upped our time to a hour and even went to Target, brave, I know. She did great. Also, we started out trying to train for nighttime too, however, after 3 nights in a row of waking up with a wet bed, we decided to go into pull-ups and tackle that down the road. She does, however, wear her undies at nap time. She was no longer stressed out to use the potty! After a few weeks of wearing the Potty Watch, we were able to stop using it! She is getting better about telling us she has to go but we still keep track of time and take her there every 2 hours or so. She probably has about 1 accident a week but she is getting better and better. We are so proud of her!

My Advice

First and foremost, try and avoid expectations. I thought and almost expected her to get it 3 days. She didn’t and is stressed me out. Which stressed her out. Which leads me to my second piece of advice, don’t stress out. Potty Training has been hard for us and so it is very easy to get frustrated and stressed but it doesn’t help anything. And honestly, when she is 5 and I look back I will laugh at how this was just a faint memory. Your child will get it. Maybe in 3 days. Maybe a week. Maybe 4 months. Let the child go at their own pace and remember, they want to be independent and a big girl/boy just as much as you want them too. Stop comparing your child to other children and you will feel much more at ease. Once I accepted that Kyler is just not the kid that will learn in a couple of weeks I have felt much better about it. Is is frustrating when she has an accident and doesn’t seem to care? Sure! But I know that she won’t have accidents forever and it’s just all apart of the process.

Potty Watch + Potty Time Giveaway!!!!

That leads me into my next and exciting opportunity! I loves these 2 products so much that I want to share them with you. It is true, you have to make potty training fun. She loves her Rapunzel and Frozen undies so that gets her excited to wear them. However, 2 things that were HUGE for us were the Potty Watch and Potty Time. The Potty Watch was the key and I can’t stress enough how much this helped. It took the fight out of potty training. Before, she resisted us because it was our idea. The watch made her feel like she was in control and that was it for her. I felt like this worked great for daycare as well. This helped remind the teachers to take her more frequently. I joke around and say I am going to buy stock in this company because of how much it helped.

Another great product we discovered are Potty Time videos/songs on YouTube. It’s a company that has multiple songs associated with potty training. As a child that LOVES music and singing and dancing, she loved them. They were great when we started talking about the potty and getting her comfortable about using it. They also produce and sell a DVD/CD with more songs all about the potty. It’s such a fun way to get your child talking about it and excited about it, I highly recommend it!!

Subscribe to the blog by using the follow button on the right and comment below to enter to win both of these AMAZING items!! The giveaway starts now and ends Friday, August 22nd at 11:59pm!

*This giveaway is made possible by Potty Time and Potty Watch. All thoughts and opinions are my own and I was not paid for this post.

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16 Responses to “Potty Training in 168 days! When Potty Training in 3 days doesn’t work. + Giveaway!!”

  1. Valerie August 18, 2014 at 9:54 am #

    Perfect post and perfect timing for me (I’ve yet to potty train my almost-three year old). I’d love to win!! 😀 I’m already following and liked your page on FB. ❤

  2. Andrea Kruse Rideout August 18, 2014 at 11:17 am #

    Jackson just turned 2 in July so we are gearing up for potty mode soon!

    • ThisGreyHouse August 18, 2014 at 9:15 pm #

      I can’t believe he is 2 already! Time flies! Good luck 🙂

  3. Jenn August 18, 2014 at 11:42 am #

    Ethan has been starting to tell us when he needs to go potty. We’ve tried putting him on the potty, but think it was a little overwhelming right now. I do think we will be trying in the near future!

  4. Jen Malta August 18, 2014 at 1:08 pm #

    We just bought a ” big boy” potty and pull ups…YAY. Let the journey begin…

  5. Patricia August 18, 2014 at 7:43 pm #

    Love the post. I am going to start trying to potty train my son soon.

  6. Sarah K August 20, 2014 at 2:28 pm #

    We are going to start potty training over Labor Day weekend! This is perfect timing!

  7. tammy thomson August 21, 2014 at 8:57 pm #

    These are neat!

  8. Angela Vasquez August 22, 2014 at 5:46 am #

    Would love to try this with my special needs 5 year old, he loves baby signing time so I’m curious if he would respond to this.

  9. Abby Miner August 22, 2014 at 2:08 pm #

    This would be amazing. I am potty training my 2 1/2 and 17 mo olds. They absolutely LOVE signing time.

  10. ThisGreyHouse August 24, 2014 at 9:12 pm #

    Thank you all for commenting!!! Good luck with potty training your little ones. Based on a random number generator, Ann Rideout won!! Ann, I will e-mail you this week for your address 🙂

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