Monday, January 28, 2008

To potty or not to potty...

That is the big question around here lately. And frankly, after the two years that it took to potty train Hannah (yes, seriously!), I'm in no real hurry to attempt it again. There are a couple of very good reasons why it would be a good thing to be diaper-free though - saving money on diapers themselves, and also that our daycare costs for Becca go down once she's potty trained.

Then there's the not-so-little fact that Becca desperately wants to be potty trained. She wants to be just like the big girls and she sees them sitting and going on the potty all the time. She is aware of what the potty's for - she's sat and gone on it fairly often. In fact, over Christmas vacation she was sitting on it at almost every diaper change and going - because she insisted on it. Like I said, I'm in no particular hurry, but then again I don't want to discourage her either if she's ready.

I know that by the 3rd child I should be able to know when they're ready for things like this, but honestly I'm still pretty clueless. Abby showed no interest in the potty at all until right before her third birthday and then she potty trained in a matter of weeks. I had almost nothing to do with it either - Ron was home at the time and a friend of ours watched her sometimes as well, and she worked on it with Abby quite a bit. And her daughter is a month older than Abby and was already potty trained, so I think that helped. Abby was completely in underwear, even at night, within a month or so of first starting, with only a few accidents.

The frustrating thing with Hannah is that she was about 18 months or so when Abby was potty training and she was very into it at the time. She would sit on the little potty and go - and we were sure that she would be potty trained well before her second birthday. So we didn't push it with her and after a while she lost interest. Then when we did start potty training when she was 2-1/2, she did awesomely at first - we thought we were home-free after the first few weeks, but then she completely backslid and was back in pull-ups (I refused to go all the way back to diapers) that fall. Right before her 3rd birthday, we tried again - thinking that we wanted to get her potty trained before Becca was born. And I'm still not sure exactly what the problem was. She was excited about potty training and about going to preschool. But she just couldn't stay dry on a consistent basis. For two years.

It's only been in the past few months that Hannah's been what I would call 'completely' potty trained - for daytime anyway. She's still in pull-ups at night but she's kept them dry off and on. I'm not as worried about night-time - she'll get there. But I wonder what would've happened if we'd pushed things more with her when she first showed interest in it before she turned two.

Thus my dilemma with Becca. She is very interested. And she knows what's supposed to happen in the potty. But she doesn't know how to not go when she's not on the potty yet - how to 'hold it' in order to stay dry.

And then there's the little matter of daycare. Oh our provider has no problem working on it with Becca. But, we can't get past the issue that Becca absolutely refuses to go into her bathroom. Period. She won't even walk into the room, much less sit on the potty there. And she cries when carried in. We've had no problems at other people's houses when visiting - she's insisted on going, just like at home. But not at daycare. I don't know if it's because Ron and I aren't there, or what.

So what do you think? Do we push it and try to get her going at daycare and really focus on it right now? Or do we hold off and take the chance that she'll be our second non-potty-trained 4-year-old?

Have I mentioned that I hate potty training? I really despise it - I do. Sigh.


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6 wonderful people said...:

Karen (Pediascribe) said...

I wouldn't push it. It can turn into a battle of the wills. And like eating, the kid will always have the control. I'd just keep praising when she does go on the potty, but put her back in diapers when she's done.

Anna said...

I think you should always let her use the potty whenever she wants to, and give her the opportunity, but don't force it. My daughter hated to be told what to do, or even have it suggested to her, even way back when. I'd try to get her to go. She'd insist that she did not have to go, and she would refuse to go, even when I made her sit on the potty chair. I'd let her up, and 5 minutes later, I'd find her in the bathroom, trying to do it herself and usually having made a big puddle on the floor because she could not get her pants down fast enough. Then, no matter how old she got, she was the one who hated to be reminded to go to the bathroom before we got in the car for a long drive.

My son decided a couple months before he turned 2 that he didn't want to wear diapers anymore. We tried it. He just did not understand how to know when he had to go, so I told his little disappointed self that he would have to keep wearing diapers for now. A couple months later something just clicked for him and that was pretty much it. He still had a few accidents, and he was so heartbroken over them. He even started staying dry at night fairly soon - even before his sister, who is almost two years older than he is.

I wonder if Becca might want to use the potty everywhere besides daycare for a while. Once she's using the potty practically all the time, she just might hate diapers enough to go into that bathroom at daycare?

Expat Mom said...

I would avoid forcing it, as the other commenters said, especially since Becca has such a strong will!

Dorian seems to be ready to use the bathroom (he even brought me toilet paper the other day and told me to go to the bathroom and pee!), but since we don´t have our own, I´ve been holding off. I hope we don´t have the same issue as you did with Hannah by waiting!

~Amber~ said...

I, for one, think Becca is ready. She went here...and was completely dry aside from that. They have to learn to hold it and I don't think they learn until they are in underwear and can feel the wetness maybe. Maybe let her go in underwear for the weekends maybe? I am so jealous...Victoria wants nothing to do with it! :(

Kristi said...

You know I just put them in underwear . I agree with Amber that as long as they have the safety of a pull-up, they might as well go because the pull-up keeps them dry. In underwear, they feel the discomfort and realize the yucky feeling a whole lot easier.

BTW, Aaron did flowers in the potty twice yesterday. Yay!

we are reilly said...

I HATE potty training too! We are really lazy around here about that topic -- our daughter will be 3 in April and she only shows little interest, if none at all on most days.

If you have any lazy mom tips -- pass them along to me! :)