Wednesday, October 17, 2012

potty training tips and tricks!

Well...Harly is potty trained!  She did it in two days!  It was easier than I expected, so here are some tips and tricks.  Hopefully they help you, and potty training was not as bad as I had first thought!

1.  Stay calm-  I know how stressful and frustrating it can be when children pee on the floor.  It stinks, but you can't show them your frustration.  They will not want to do it if they see you getting frustrated.  I learned that telling them, "its OK  pee goes in the potty."  They would walk around and say, "no pee in underwear, pee in potty."  Just remember it takes time, stay calm, and they will get it.

2.  Don't expect them to get it the first time they pee in potty.  They will get very excited, but that doesn't mean they will do it again.  That is a huge step though.

3.  Don't have too many distractions.  I tried to stick to one thing during potty training.  We colored a lot, played with playdoh, and made castles with mega blocks.

4.  Twins may not be ready at the same time.  Remember, even though they are twins, they are individuals and still may not be on the same track as the other.  I never compared them to each other, I know they are their own person. My girls potty trained a week apart.  We do a lot of things together, but when it comes to leaning and experiences, we try our best to keep it separate in case one is not quite ready.

5.  YOU have to be ready.  Not only does your child have to be ready, the parent has to be ready for it too.

6.  If one learned something before the other, I let them help teach the one that has not mastered it yet.  Zoey did a great job on getting her sister to potty train.  I did not push.  They definitely helped each other, that is a great thing about having twins!

7. I recommend two potty chairs if you have twins.  They always have to go at the same time, so its great to put them on their own and watch them cheer for each other.  "Yay, sissy you peed, I so proud of you."  Those are normally their lines to each other!

8.  There have been a lot of recommendations of a potty schedule with twins.  So they both go at the same time, instead of one goes and then a half hour later another one goes.  But, I have not had to do this.  They are pretty much on the same schedule and go at the same time.  If your little ones do not, than I highly recommend a potty schedule.

9.  Cloth diapers-  I think this has definitely helped with potty training the girls.  With cloth diapers, you know when you are wet.  They would run up to me from the time they were 18 months old, telling me to change their diaper.  Disposable diapers have so much absorbency in them that it pulls away and they don't know when they are wet.

10.  The earlier you start the better.  We put the girls on the potty starting at 18 months.  We put them on in the morning, at nap, and at bedtime.  They never peed in it, but it got them comfortable with the potty.  They also watched me use the potty.  They would never let me go alone, they were scared the minute I left them alone to just pee.  So from the time they could move til now, they have watched me every time I used the bathroom.  I think that helped a lot too.

11.  We did do a sticker chart and M&Ms.  Some people don't do this, but it helped me.  They also didn't get an M&M every time they went.

12.  We use pull ups at nap time and bedtime.  From the time they both used the potty (about two weeks ago for Zoey, one week for Harly) they have kept their pull ups dry at nap.  I have been leaving them in their underwear at nap and they have not had one accident.  This doesn't go for every child, this is the last step and it takes time.  The girls just hate that wet feeling.  They have started keeping their pull ups dry at night (the past two nights), but I am going to wait a little longer before I stop using them at night.

13.  Traveling potty sit.  I was against this when I heard people putting potties in their car, but I am one of those moms now.  We have only taken one on our long trip to see Ian's family.  I don't put one in the car when we run errands.  I have them pee before we leave the house. They don't really ask me to use the restroom while we are out.  There have only been two or three times they have, and have done a great job holding it til I located the restrooms.

13.  Stick with it- Once you start, don't look back.  Even if it takes a couple weeks, keep up with it.  The minute you step back, they win.  Then it will turn into a power struggle.

14.  Every child is different!  Don't force it!  GOOD LUCK!!!

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