How I Did NOT Potty Train My Kids in 3 Days: Potty Training Tips for the Real World

“I participated in an Influencer Activation on behalf of Mom Central Consulting for Pull-Ups. I received samples for this review and a promotional item to thank me for participating.”

If you search for potty training tips on Pinterest you will find a plethora of information on how to potty train your little one. You can learn how to potty train in 3 days flat, how to make a winning potty chart, create an effective reward system, and how to stick with a system and never, ever, go back on it (under penalty of law)! Let me tell you, I think I have read, pinned, and agonized over them ALL.

It wasn’t until recently, when I was talking to a friend about potty training, that I realized how much I actually have been affected by all of this “helpful” advice. She asked a simple question…”how are you guys doing with potty training?”

Panic and defensiveness took over as I wondered how to truthfully say that it is a skill that we are in the process of working on, but have not yet mastered. Would she think I was a failure as a mom? Would she try to tell me about the newest, latest and greatest reward system or scold me for my inconsistency? I decided to just be truthful and say “it’s a work in progress!” Her response both surprised and relived me. With a look of relief herself she simply said, “Us too.”

It was then that I realized that as parents we are putting too much pressure on ourselves and our little ones to have a Pinterest-worthy potty training experience. It’s ok if your child isn’t a potty training prodigy. So, in the spirit of recognizing the 99% of us that are all in the same potty training boat, here are a few real world tips to make the process a lot less stress for parents and their little ones.

How I Did NOT Potty Train My Kids in 3 Days: Potty Training Tips for the Real World
• Patience– If your kids are anything like mine, potty training is more like a drawn out process then a 3-day event. For that reason, if anyone ask for potty training advice my number one response is “Patience and LOTS of it.” It’s ok, if it takes a while. Little by little they will get it. In 15 years from now, your child will not remember how quickly they potty trained, but they will remember that you where always patient with them in all of their endeavours!

Don’t Compare– Sometimes in “mommy-land” it’s easy to look at other kids and compare how your kid is doing in comparison. STOP it! Just STOP it! Every child is unique and different with different strengths and attributes. Comparing to others simply opens the door for you to agonize over while your child is “behind” the others, without noticing all the cool things that he is talented at.

Feel free to be inconsistent- I have read many tips that say you need to choose a system and stick with it. For my kids, variety is the spice of life. A sticker chart may work for a week or two and then loose it’s appeal. When that happens, instead of trying to revive it, I move onto something new that will reignite their excitement for the process.

Pull Ups are a lifesaver- I have read several tips that strictly say “no pull-ups after starting potty training”. Ok, if I could barricade myself in our house for the entire process of potty training, maybe that would work. However, here in the real world we have dance class, grocery shopping, church, school pick-up, activities (aka “a life”). So here in the real world, I LOVE Huggies Pull-Ups Training Pants. I love that we can continue potty training even when we are out and about, without causing embarrassment to my little one if an accident happens. I also love that they feature all of her favorite Disney characters, making wear a Pull-Up a fun and positive experience for her. They also feature cool learning designs that fade when wet, giving little one a sense of pride when she keeps her pull-ups dry.
Make it Fun – when it comes to potty training I will do just about anything to get my little one to actually sit on the potty. Whether it’s bubbles, songs, stories… Really anything that will get her to sit for more then a second. Right now my latest tactic is to bring out the IPad for a few minutes while she sits. I like to let her use the new Pull-Ups Time to potty app. This app is a smart potty timer that lets you know when it’s time to go and. It also gets your child excited to take potty breaks with over 40 unlockable celebration games.

Enjoy the Journey– believe it or not, potty training CAN be an enjoyable experience. Throw your potty training “time-line” out the window and just make it a time for learning and discovery for you and your little one. By your daily, positive efforts, one day she will just have it (and you might even miss your days of blowing bubbles or reading stories around the toilet)!

For more information and resources on building a positive potty training experience, be sure to check out the Pull-Ups website and follow them on Facebook and Twitter and check them out on Pinterest.

About the author

Emily Buys

Leave a Comment