Another post where I talk about poop

As any mom with a toddler/preschooler (read: 3 year old) will tell you....potty training is never easy. Oh sure, there are books out there claiming you can POTTY TRAIN YOUR CHILD IN 20 MINUTES! (OK, so I think it's really two days, but c'mon...seriously) .... but it's really not that easy.

I have yet to find a tried-and-true method to get my kid to sit on the potty and do her business.

And believe me, I've tried just about everything.

When we were potty training Olivia we were essentially clueless (as most first-time parents are...and if anyone tries to tell you they knew EXACTLY what they were doing...they're lying! Yeah, I went there). We had potty training charts (thank you, Huggies), we had potty training books ("Potty Time with Elmo" was my personal favorite, although our copy said "Uh-oh! Who wants to die?!" rather than "Uh-oh! Who has to go?" You think I'm joking? I'm not.). We also had prizes and we bribed and we pleaded and finally, in April 2007, Olivia was potty trained.

Yes, she was 3 years 3 months old. We almost had her potty trained BEFORE she turned 3, but then Emma was born and Olivia reverted back to 'wanting' to be in diapers (just like the pediatrician said she would). And we actually accomplished the potty training in about a week. The 'overnight' training would take a few more months.

And now, Emma is almost 3 years old.
And we've been trying for a few months to just get here interested in sitting on the potty....to no avail.

We've tried telling her that EVERYONE sits on the potty and then she proceeds to list everyone she knows (Nana, Papa, Daddy, Mommy, Sissy, Mady, Tami, Jon and boy). "Boy" would be my almost-two-year-old nephew Cameron ... Em just calls him "boy". When I say "No, boy doesn't sit on the potty", Em says "No Emma sit on potty!"


The frustrating part is this: Emma tells us she needs to be changed as soon as it happens. "Mama, pee!" or "Daddy!!! Poopy!!!!" are heard daily around here. [And I'm going to talk poop for a second - for the record, a 3 year old's poop is NOTHING like a baby's poop.] So, it's not as if she ENJOYS walking around with a soiled pull-up. Nope. She just refuses to even TRY.

I tell her every single day that she needs to try and that it would be so "cool" to get princess underwear and it all just goes in one ear and out the other. While I KNOW that you can't force a child to get potty trained, it would be so nice if she would just show a little bit of interest in at least TRYING.

So, all you moms out there who might be reading this blog -- what worked for you in the quest to potty train your toddler?

I suppose as someone who has already successfully potty trained one child, I shouldn't be asking for advice, but what worked for us with Olivia is NOT working with Emma. And I'd really like to have Em potty trained before the end of 2010.


  1. Oh man, I sooooo understand this this week. Since LUke will be 3 in a month (and a baby on the way) I'm trying this week to potty train. I did not have an easy time with Kylie at all. I feel this is THE WORST part of parenting thus far!!!!!

    Luke has no interest in sitting on the potty. Currently the only way I can SOMETIMES get him on there is bribing him with a Starburst. But he wants it no matter what, even if his pull-up is already wet and he doesn't go. So I'm not sure what to do about that. B/c if I don't give him the candy, he'll NEVER sit on that potty. He could care less. Doesn't bother him to have pee/poop diapers either.

    PLEASE if you figure out anything, let me know. I feel I've done everything with the first and there was no magic formula. It finally worked when we stuck her in regular big girl pants. A few times peeing in those and she was running to the potty. But this boy has never pooped on the potty yet, so I know I'll just be throwing out underwear left and right.


  2. Tears, vodka and sadness worked on my end. Stubborn, willfullness and indifference worked on the daughter's end.

    She decided on her own one day and that was it--it was about a week after she turned 3, and we never had another accident.

    I had begged, pleaded, treated, clapped, danced and threw a party when she would use the potty, but the full blown I no long wear pull-ups was all on her.

    I think the new saying should be:
    You can lead a kid to the potty, but you cannot make them eliminate.

  3. I fully believe my son would be fine being 8yo and in his diaper.

    (I like the new saying above...)

    btw, my word verification is "psises" which if the letters were rearranged, spells something very appropriate! lol.

  4. Gotta tell you, I thought Louis and I were totally screwing this potty training thing up. Your description sounds exactly like Athena. While I'm sorry I don't have any advice, you are all making me feel so much better for having a poopy-pantsed 2 1/2 year old with a potty aversion.

  5. I was just talking to my Mom about this. My little sister (now 22), wasn't potty-trained at 3.

    Wanna know what did the trick?

    My Mom sent her to my Aunt's house (with me). (My Aunt is about 15 years my Mom's senior.) The MINUTE my sister walked into the door, my aunt took her diaper off of her and put underpants on her.

    She REFUSED to put a diaper on her again for the entire weekend.

    We took her to the grocery store, the mall, everywhere - sans diaper. The whole time, I, the ever-wise 11-year-old kept telling my Aunt, "You're going to be sorry. She's going to pee all over your car."

    Yep, she had an accident or two.

    But, NO kidding - my Aunt had my sister potty-trained in ONE weekend. I'm SERIOUS. Constant potty-breaks and rewards: which were olives stuck on her fingers. (After she washed her hands, of course. And, she still eats olives today.)

    That said - I'm wondering if little ones are just too comfortable with their parents. Maybe someone else needs to give it a go?

    (Again, I have NO idea. But I would like to interject that I was potty-trained at 10 months old. :) My Mom said that we couldn't afford diapers.)

  6. that's sort of what we did with olivia -- we had one weekend where it was all underwear, all the time. that sort of sealed the deal after weeks of 'on again/off again' success. i am thinking i may have to resort to this w/ emma.

    thank you all for you wonderful, witty comments.