Friday, January 17, 2014

Potty Training...or, How I Would Like to Send My Kid Away...or, Ignore This Post Because I'm Going to be "That Mom" and Talk About Potty Training

Part of being a parent means you do a lot of stuff that you'd rather not. Clean up puke & poo, watch Disney movies on loop, lose a lot of sleep, etc. It would be so much easier if kids popped out self-sufficient and with the knowledge of say, an 8 year old. Still plenty of time to teach things and enjoy "kid stage", but old enough to be independent and have a basic grasp of most life skills.

However, that's not how it works unless you adopt, and this is what I signed up for. Right? I know, I know, it is. For the most part, all of these things are well worth it. 99% of it. However...the time I spend hanging out in the bathroom are minutes of my life that I'm not getting back, friends. 

Ok, I know. All time spent with my kid is precious. Sure. Let's go with that. But, to be honest, I don't think potty training is fun nor do I love all the bathroom time we spend together. Especially when it's a battle of wills and there are tears involved. 

There are a lot of opinions on how to potty train your child. Let them tell you when they're ready methods. 3 day training methods. Cold-turkey-we're-not-wearing-diapers-anymore methods. I really, really, really, wish there was a method that involved sending my kid away and she would come back magically potty trained. Sort of like summer camp and doggy training camp rolled into one. But, I'm not so lucky.

We decided to try a variation of the 3-day method over Thanksgiving weekend. Friday morning, we all work up, told Emily that she was a big girl and got to wear underwear now, and hoped for the best. A big part of this method includes sitting them on the toilet or training potty every 1/2 hour or hour, not going anywhere all weekend, and rewarding them (bribing to some) with candy or stickers or whatever. We used candy and stickers. 

My daughter is pretty stubborn. I'm not sure where she gets that from (stop smirking), but we work with it. Soon into the first day though, she was over potty training and told us she did not want candy or stickers. But we held out and continued training. By the third day, every potty trip included major tears, lots of bribing, and little results. We had some wins, a few accidents, but overall the hubby and I felt that she most likely was just not ready. So be it. 

You know what, though? I am so ready to be done with diapers. That is a $36 investment that goes straight into the garbage every month. I am so ready to have my $36 back!!!

At this point though, we're kind of in no-man's land with potty training. We went back to diapers, and stopped pressuring her. She does have some successes now and then for #2 (cover your eyes if that's TMI), but #1 is completely off her radar. But there's hope! This morning, I put her on her training potty before I got her dressed and, despite some weak protest from Em, she went! I read a couple of books to distract her for a few minutes, and shabang! She was quite proud of herself and said "I did it! I get candy!".

So maybe there's something to this bribing thing after all...

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