**This is what has personally worked for us. There are many ways to go about potty training a toddler, so please don’t think this is the only way or the right way. Every child is different and every parent is different. Do what fits you both and makes the process as smooth as possible!**
I don’t think very many parents are jumping up and down excited to be potty training their toddler. It’s the task that you’re not looking forward to doing but are relieved when it’s over and stoked to not having to change another diaper. This is our second time potty training a toddler and while we definitely aren’t experts, we feel like we have a few tips to share from doing it with two very different personalities.
Honey is a very stubborn child so I was a little nervous to start potty training her. I waited till she could fully communicate, which for her is about 2.5. My other big thing was to know that she was ready, not just myself. Here is how I knew she was ready
*She was telling me when she was going pee/poo in her diaper
*She would ask to sit on the potty, even if she didn’t need to go
*She would get excited about picking out and wearing panties
*When I asked her if she went pee/poo in her diaper, she would tell me
With those things coming up quite frequently I knew it was time to bite the bullet and just do it! I had already bought panties for her a couple months prior, that way she knew what was coming and we had them on hand to jump right in.
2. Personally, we used a little toilet for both Honey and Lemmon. I caught Honey using it multiple times by herself. I had no clue she was even trying to go! But it was nice because she didn’t need to ask for my help to get up on it or to get off. The first day I put her little potty out in our kitchen (she wasn’t allowed in carpeted areas the first 28 hrs 😂) This way she was constantly seeing it and was reminded of what we were doing that day. Again, everything out so they can see it and be reminded! I also know the regular toilet can be intimidating for toddlers. It’s big and they are afraid they might fall in. I know they sell toilet attachments to make the seat smaller, as well as step stools to get onto it. After Honey got comfortable on her little potty, we gave her the option to go on the big potty and now she goes back and forth and feels fully confident with going on both.
3. We had her in only panties for the first day. No shorts, no pants, no dress. Just her panties. This way she could easily pull down one layer and not have to worry. That first day, everything is such a rush because they are recognizing the feeling of having to use the potty, that you don’t want anything to get in the way.
4. We had our alexa remind us every 10 minutes to have honey sit on her little potty. Even if she didn’t go, she had to sit down to remind her that’s where we go potty and hopefully recognizing the feeling of having to use it. After the first day, I would then extend the time to every 20 minutes, and then every 30 minutes. You do start recognizing the time your child starts using the potty. Honey would go every 30-60 minutes so I knew even though I was having her sit every 10 minutes, she would go on the hour and to be on watch during that time.
5. Once the time got longer between sitting on the potty, I would be bringing up going to the potty 2-3 times in between. “Honey, do you need to go potty?” “Honey, where do we go potty?” “Honey, remember, what do you get if you go pee or poo in the potty?” I still do this and she’s bee potty trained for almost 3 weeks. It helps them remember what you are doing and the reward that comes with it!
6. You’ll start to recognizing when they are holding it or having to go. Whether it’s a little dance they do or holding themselves 😆 And we all know what a toddler is going to say when you ask “it looks like you have to go potty. Do you need to go?” Nope 🙅🏽♀️ We don’t ask, we recognize that they have to go potty and then suggest and remind them of the reward. “Honey, it looks like you have to go potty. Let’s go sit down and try to go in the potty! Remember, we get a chocolate chip if we go pee in the potty!” Asking them gives them the option to say no (which is usually the case) and then throw a fit or get upset when you make them go, even when you just asked and they said no. But showing them that this is what we do if we have to go and then the positive side of going helps take away a tantrum. Sometimes I’ll tell her “Mommy has go to potty as well! Why don’t you come with me?” She sees me going and in return will try and go as well.
7. Last but not least. Praise! Every child is different on what makes them get excited. For my girls, it’s over the top, excited, clapping and cheering, praise! Whether it’s the first day of them listening to you and sitting on the potty every 10 minutes, or from them actually peeing in the potty rather then on your carpet. We go all out, dancing, jumping up and down, high fives and then top it off with her treat (that has been sitting out, reminding her what we are doing) It’s gotten to the point where she now cheers for us every time we go to the bathroom 😂 Toddlers want to know that you are proud of them and they are doing the right thing. It’s now to the point that if Honey has zero accidents that day, then we celebrate with a big treat that day and lots of praising!