so long, diapers!
|my firstborn, getting comfortable with his potty|
1. Don't buy a book. You might get lucky and the method in the book works for your kid, but on the other hand, it's equally likely that it doesn't work for your kid. There is no magical one way to potty train. On the other hand, if you have loads of time to read, you could check out multiple books from the library. They will conflict with each other, but multiple perspectives will be helpful in problem solving.
2. Read several different summaries of potty training methods online. The tips you get from some experts in a few 5 minute blog posts are enough to get started. They will conflict with each other. Choose one that you like, but be flexible and keep in mind that you may need to combine several methods. Just a few:
3. Potty Training Readiness matters more than your method. If your kid isn't ready - physically, cognitively, or behaviorally - you are just going to frustrate everyone by trying to potty train. On the other hand, if your kid is ready, they just may potty train themselves. Don't focus so much on actual age, but rather the signs of readiness.
4. Willingness is also vital! I don't remember seeing much about this in my reading, but especially if you have a strong-willed child, if s/he doesn't want to potty train, it's not happening. And the more you push them, the more they will resist.
5. Be prepared for accidents. Accidents will happen, maybe for months after you're supposedly "done" potty training. Keep a waterproof cover on the mattress. Keep cloth prefold diapers close at hand for cleanup. Keep extra clean undies and pants in stock. Never punish accidents.
6. It's ok to put potty training on hold if it isn't working. Some "experts" tell you that this is counter-productive, just push through it. In the beginning, I would agree with them, but if you've been at it for over a month and haven't made any progress, you might want to back off. See #4.
7. Take heart! Your child will be potty trained one day. I can relate to desperately wanting to be done with diapers, but don't worry. You will get there. Everyone gets potty trained eventually.
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