After months of tiptoeing around the potty and getting a stubborn toddler wall of resistance I decided yesterday that enough was enough. The books all say you should wait until toddler is totally happy to use the potty but this had become a little battle for Ben, similar to his nightly request for a chocolate biscuit when he is falling asleep in bed (we haven’t had choccie biccies in this house since Ciaran was born!), so I decided that enough was enough. He was developmentally ready, able to tell us he had poo’d or wanted to to poo, able to pull his trousers down and able to follow instructions.
I paved the way earlier in the week by talking about Santa bring presents and so on..
Ben, would you like to go and see Santa?
You could sit on his lap, have a cuddle and tell him what presents you and Ciaran would like for Christmas.
Ooooh yes please.
Okay, Santa doesn’t like boys and girls to wear nappies. You need to wear pants to see him so we’d better start practising on the potty.
That’ll be fun, learning to put poo’s and wee wee’s in the potty and then you can wear pants to see Santa.
(silence and a strict frown).
Never mind the less than enthusiastic response, I persevered and made him spend yesterday morning sans nappy. Nothing happened excpet tears and demands for trousers. I gave him trousers for lunch but then he was sick part way through lunch (he really hated my dinner yesterday) so I took pity on him, popped a nappy on my poorly baby and decided to see how he was after his nap.
As he recovered very quickly from throwing up (he had one fishfinger when his Dad came home for lunch, demanded more and when I offered him two more shook his head and told me he wanted three more!) and had no fever after his nap we went downstairs without a nappy and I sat him on the potty and here is the magic bit – switched CBeebies on.
Half an hour later as I fed Ciaran, Ben got upset, he did a wee but some of it sprayed out onto the carpet. I gave him a massive hug and showed him the wee in the potty before cleaning the floor. We flushed the wee down the toilet, washed his hands, washed his potty and went back to the lounge. He wore trousers for a bit (I decided he could go commando as pants would be an extra layer to manage) and then I noticed him holding his crotch so I took his trousers off before going to warm up more milk for Ciaran.
I came back in to see him on the potty, tiny wee in the potty and trail of wee from where he had stood when he started weeing before running to his potty. Well done Ben! At least he had the idea that wee should go in the potty.
Hubby was working late, I had a killer ear ache and a cold starting so to celebrate we lazily ordered a pizza dinner. I tried to order a half and half pizza (hubby can always manage a pizza when he gets home) but managed to balls up the online ordering and my half was plain. Still never mind (not the greatest way to get to goal weight, but potty training has to take priority naturally). Ben wasn’t keen on his pizza but ate loads of the chicken strippers coated in barbeque dip.
We had a very unsettled night where I spent my time between 11 and midnight, settling Ben back down and then leading him back to bed several times (spending less time with him each time) until he took the hint and stayed in his own bed.
This morning I woke up feeling groggy and deaf in one ear. Ben got into bed for a cuddle and then we de-nappied him and went downstairs. This is where I realised I was a prisoner.
A toddler learning to use to the potty needs a parent in the room for re-assurance and to remind them to go to the potty. Everything takes a back seat to potty training it seems. Feeling like rubbish I would love to put it on hold (we’re also spending a whole day out in Oxford on Saturday so this isn’t great timing really) but I think that starting and stopping is going to confuse Ben and muck things up so we’ll persevere.
After 1 1/2 hours of sitting on his big potty (a musical one) downstairs and downing a beaker of juice there was no wee. We went upstairs to get washed and dressed and the chaos started. Daddy hadn’t emptied the nappy bin this morning and I don’t like leaving the kids in the house with the front door open while I walk round the side of the house to the bins so I wasn’t going to empty it. I left Ben and Ciaran while I popped downstairs to get a few rubbish bags as a temporary measure, Ben’s cheapy blue potty was in the nursery so I pointed it out to him in case and left.
I came back to find his PJ trousers drenched and little line of wee on the carpet. Back downstairs to get the cleaner and cloth. Big reassuring smile for Ben as I scrubbed the carpet and then got Ciaran dressed (just in time for his nap). I took the potty to the bathroom with me as Ben was still grabbing his willy and what do you know? He sat on it and did a wee getting every drop in the potty! Big kisses and cuddles for Ben and back downstairs to sit on the posh potty watching CBeebies waiting for a poo to come out.
Oh the joys of potty training. Hopefully this will be it, I’ve been told that once you get properly started children soon get the idea and start knowing when to go so I am hoping that we’ll be largely potty trained before Christmas but in the meantime I am a prisoner in my lounge, having to watch CBeebies as a bribe to get Ben to sit on the potty.