Monday, February 21, 2011

Adventures in Potty Training

So in January I decided I'd had enough dilly-dallying from Tristan about going potty on the toilet. In an act of desperation, I asked my Facebook friends for help and suggestions. My MK girl, Louisa, told her story of how last year she set aside a week and just threw every potty training trick or suggestion she'd ever heard at her son, and it sounded so good. I decided to give it a go. (Haha, I kill me.)

So I went to the store, bought a potty chair, candy, stickers and some new undies for him (Toy Story 3!). I picked the week my parents would be gone because, let's be honest, you should only have to potty train your own children. That Monday morning, I laid down a tarp on the floor in front of the TV, put the potty chair on it, stripped him naked, and sat him down. I explained the rules: If you go #1, you get candy (as do we all, to encourage encouragement). Go #2, and you get to play the DS (which he loves!). It wasn't long before he was milking the system, going #1 just enough to get a candy, then going again 5-10 minutes later. I felt manipulated and exhausted by the end of that day, but this had to be done! So I persevered.

Day 2 was much like the first, except we gave him the cloth training pants. I was quickly running out of candy, and decided to switch to stickers for Day 3. There were a lot of wet pants.

Day 3 I let him have a T-shirt too. The stickers seemed to have the effect I wanted, of making him only go when he really needed to. Still a lot of accidents, but he went long periods of time between accidents.

Days 4-7 were more of the same. The only change was he started to go in his pants, and then would say to me, "Mommy, go pee!" which translates to, "Mommy, I'm going pee!" to which I would say, "Well, go to the potty then!" And he would finish on the potty. That gave me hope.

Sunday I was ready to give up, and prove that he would indeed be wearing diapers in kindergarten, when he showed me! It wasn't an accident-free day, but he stayed dry through at least 2 trips to the potty, even at church, even in pull-ups! I thought to myself, Maybe this will work.

The next week, I was unable to continue my part of the training because I was in the hospital with Lorelai (which is a whole other post), but Mom and Rhydon and several of the people who took care of the kids that week kept up with it, and he continued to progress. By the time I got back, Tristan had earned his first pair of underwear (10 stickers which meant 10 trips to the potty staying dry), and was going in the bathroom, alternating between the chair and the regular toilet.

Now here we are, 6 weeks later, and he stays dry at night, and hasn't had an accident in weeks. Today, we are had a Potty Party for Tristan, and gave him his final prizes - the rest of his big boy underwear, and a super soft kitty from Granmama. I look back and remember feeling like he would never be potty-trained, and now he's the big boy I knew he could be. I'm so proud of my little guy!

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