Now that you’re ready with all the supplies and have mentally prepared yourself for what could be an uphill battle, I will share with you the step-by-step process I used to potty train my two-year-old in less than a week.
Set aside a day
Some things I read suggested setting aside a weekend or upwards of a week alone at home with the child, for me I decided to set aside a single day where there was zero distractions, just her and I to get acquainted with the new potty. I picked a day I had off and knew we wouldn’t have visitors or anything to interrupt our day. Leading up to the day I started talking about the potty and how she was soon going to learn how to use it.
When the day arrived I informed her that after mommy showered and she ate her breakfast we would be hanging out and spending time learning how to use the potty (ideally you can do this before kiddo wakes up so you’re ready as soon as they wake).
When the time came, I removed her diaper and sat her on the potty to pee. Once she did we put on a new pair of underwear which we both got really excited about. I told her when the panties were on we couldn’t pee in them like she did with a diaper and we would now be using the potty only for all pee and poo. Though she agreed with me I expected there to still be accidents, and there was, initially.
For this first day I chose to keep her in a shirt and underwear only. We stayed very close to the bathroom all day and only did simple activities like read books, color and play with toys. No TV, movies or interactive games that have the potential to ‘’suck them in’’ as we need them to be aware of their bodily functions and don’t want a fit when we tear them away from the activity.
Set a time
I used my loud kitchen timer and set it for every 10 minutes. When the timer went off we both got really excited and yelled ‘’it’s potty time!!!’’. We ran to the bathroom as she sat on the toilet. The time will need to be adjusted. I started with 10 minutes but she was peeing a little every six or so minutes so I decreased the time from 10 to 5 for about an hour then started increasing it by 5 minutes once we had an hour with no accidents going every 10 minutes. Because I was making her drink a lot more than normal (to encourage the pee) she was able to pee even a tiny bit every time I put her on the toilet. For this we both got really excited and if I thought she needed it, I’d give her a treat, 90% of the time be clapping was enough reward for her.
By the end of the first day we were going 30 minutes between potty times and she was starting to tell me she had to go potty without the timer.
By the second day we had one accident only at daycare, dry nap. Treats stopped today for us but you may need to continue them.
Day three, still potty every 15-25 minutes per our reminder and zero accidents, dry nap. Accident free two-hour outing.
Day four she was telling us when she needed, if she hadn’t gone in 40 minutes, we remind her. She started waking in the morning telling us she needed to wake up and pee.
Day five, still no accidents on her vocalizing when she needs to go only. By this point she is also climbing onto the toilet and mastered taking her pants and underwear off 100% solo.
Day six onwards- zero accidents, all naps dry, dry overnight, no issue when travelling and running errands.
Keep everyone in the loop!
If you child has alternative childcare make sure they are aware of your potty training plan and will be able to stick to the plan. I let the daycare know everything I was doing so the next day she could pick up where I left off. For us, I requested she stay in underwear all day and go to potty at least every 15 minutes to start. Everyday I would let her sitter know how the day would go and we stayed in constant contact throughout the day.
Potty training is very individual, these are the steps I used to get started with potty training. Next week I will discuss the steps I used for outings and naptime as well extra tips to remember!