Potty Training Update- How We Finally Did It!

Time was flying and all of a sudden, before we knew it, DS1’s 3rd birthday came and went… and he was still wearing diapers! I tried listening to everyone’s advice and didn’t push him, but the clock was ticking. He starts school in September and he must be trained, so as you can imagine, we were quite anxious to get a move on it.

I bought DS1 a potty a while ago and he used to sit on it from time to time- mostly before/after bath time. I made him a really cute potty chart and bought Sesame Street stickers. We also promised to reward him with two chocolate chips (his favorite treat). Then, a few months ago I decided to send him to Potty Camp. Since you may not be familiar with Potty Camp, allow me to explain. One of the benefits I have at work is free use of the back-up daycare. It was on the ground floor of my building (before the move- L) and we used it every now and then. The back-up daycare would have themed programs for kids and one of them was Potty Camp. So, I decided to take advantage of it and signed DS1 up for a week.

For Potty Camp, I had to buy DS1 underwear. I decided on the ones with Thomas the Tank Engine designs. Of course this excited DS1 and he wanted to wear them, just didn’t want to make in the potty. So, in the end, potty camp was a little bit of a waste, but at least he learned the routine of going to the bathroom.

DS1 always liked to wear his Thomas underwear, but only over his diaper- not really how they were intended. I allowed this, because I wanted him to be excited about wearing underwear and realized he wasn’t ready for the full-on training. Then, suddenly, one Shabbos morning he told me that he wanted to wear underwear- without a diaper! I was so excited and told him that that means he has to only make in the potty, because Thomas cannot get wet or dirty. Of course I was nervous about this- I didn’t want to spend the whole day cleaning up his accidents, but I decided it was either now or never. So, we spent the rest of the morning with DS1 in underwear playing in rooms without carpet- just in case.

To our surprise, DS1 was so good about going to the potty- he didn’t have any accidents. When it was time to go outside, we put on a diaper and we continued spending our weekends like this. The only problem was that when DS1 wore a diaper, he did not go to the potty. I had no idea how to transition DS1 to constant potty use… I’m not home with him all day and there’s no bathroom in his classroom… so I asked a neighbor how she did it. She told me that when it came time, she would just send her son to school in underwear. The first day was hard, but eventually he just got the hang of it. Well, if her son could do it, then so could mine!

The next day, I simply asked DS1’s teacher if I could send him in underwear. Of course I explained how he was so good at home, but just never went to the potty with a diaper. The teacher agreed to let us try it. That night I packed up a bag with 4 shirts, 4 shorts, 4 pairs of underwear and a towel- cuz, ya never know (a little overboard, but I really wanted this to work out). DS1 wore his underwear to school and the whole first day I kept wondering how he was doing. When I went to pick him up that afternoon, I noticed that he was still wearing the same outfit he wore that morning. I couldn’t help but think that was not a good sign. I really hoped he wasn’t wearing a diaper again… but to my surprise, he was still in underwear!

At night, I was really nervous about letting him sleep in underwear. I know accidents happen, but I just couldn’t spend every morning changing the sheets, so I’d change him into a diaper once he was sleeping. Then one night, as I was trying to change him, he said, “I don’t want to wear a diaper! I’m a big boy!” and he was totally right. It was time to take the chance (with a towel underneath him). He b”h did so well, that the towel didn’t last long and he slept in underwear from that night on.

It’s truly amazing how one kid can literally grow up overnight. We are so proud of him and I’m secretly proud of myself for getting through this phase successfully. I really had no idea how I’d get through it!

Until next time,