How We’re Potty Training Our 19mo Old

We’re doing it. We’re just over a week in and we. are. doing. it. I’m going to put this energy out there: Emma is potty trained. Yes, we are still having an accident here and there, but for the most part she uses the toilet all day. Our initial goal was to have her trained by 18 months, however I was reluctant to pull the trigger because the task just felt so daunting. I won’t pretend like it wasn’t a lot to take on. It requires a lot of my energy daily. However, had *I* been ready we probably could have done this sooner. Note, I did not say had my daughter been ready. It was all me. Here’s what we’re using:

Oh Crap! Potty Training

I cannot recommend this book enough. My only regret was that I did not read it sooner (in my defense I was waiting for it to become available at the library and once I got it I realized I needed to own it.) One of the best takeaways was that the author explains how potty training is really the first true insight to how our child learns, so why do we dread this task? It’s actually a very cool time. Sure, cleaning up pee (and poop) is not very cool, but watching your child learn a big life skill is huge. She also highlights that we don’t try to delay other milestones, so what is the hold up with potty training. WE [the parents] are truly the key to success here. I also loved that everything is broken up into nice little digestible blocks. It makes taking on the task so much more manageable. One block at a time.

We followed Oh Crap pretty closely. We stayed home and had Emma naked for 3 days while we waited and watched for her cues of when she was going to use the restroom. By day 3 we were both pretty confident in her cues, however the biggest success I found was setting a timer on my phone for 30 minutes and checking in with her when it went off. Sometimes she would be happy to sit on the potty and other times she adamantly did not (which I listened to.) They say even the most verbal kids will take time to let you know when they have to go, but by the 5 night she looked at me and said “pee pee in potty.” Sure enough, she wasn’t lying!

Toddler toilet seat

We bought this months ago and had it hanging on the wall next to the toilet. Emma loves to climb up on the seat before baths and this got her pretty familiar with the concept of peeing on the potty. Though, Oh Crap suggests if you’re going to introduce the potty, to fully commit to training, something we did not do right away. Maybe this helped get her comfortable so when we committed, maybe it sent the wrong message. Hard to say.

Tiny Potty

I’ve heard mixed things about using the tiny potty vs. the real toilet. I see both sides. We’re doing both, but I find it is much easier for my tiny human to go #2 on the tiny potty. It makes sense, her feet are closer to the ground, giving her the effect of a squatty potty if you will. It’s nice to have this in the playroom or living room so when she does tell us we can get her on the potty ASAP. She has even taken the initiative to sit down on her own. We’ve also found this helpful to bring this us on the go for moments where a [clean] toilet might not be super accessible.

Travel Seat

I mean this speaks for itself, it folds up nice and Emma loves the little unicorn image on it. (Whatever works right?) It comes in its own little bag so you feel better putting it back in your bag.

Potty Go Bag
I’ve been keeping a “potty go bag” with us at all times. This bag includes:
-Travel seat
-2 changes of pants
Wet bag for accident pants/outfits
-Toilet paper
-Disinfecting wipes (to wipe down the tiny potty or travel seat)
-Extra baggies for any other toilet trash
-Hand towels/old burp cloths for the car seat (I keep these in the trunk)

That’s all the insight I have at the moment, this all, and a lot of patience. And coffee. The first 3 days were truly the hardest but then we got into our groove and we were out and about on day 4. Day 5 we ventured to the zoo. And by day 6 we took on an entire day of birthday parties and outings. Day 7 we had some regressions but by day 8 we were back on track. I know we’re still going to experience some up’s and down, however, here in this moment I am really proud of the progress we’ve made. I know every kid is different but I hope this helps you find success as well.

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