Saturday, May 26, 2012

Potty Training Thoughts & Summary

A lot of you have asked me to do a follow-up on our 3 Day Potty Training Method and how Braden is doing. I, of course was going to anyway, but am happy to give the readers what they want!

Firstly my update on Braden:
  • From day #4 on...he had no accidents. Just like the method says - he learned his cues and would tell us "go pee on potty" and we'd happily take him
  • On day #8 or so, he had a decent sized accident, he never told me and I never discovered until he asked to go to the potty before nap time! Oops! This was a healthy reminder to me not to take for granted that he's "100% potty trained" and its okay to give him the odd reminder about the potty, especially when he's busy!
  • Then we had/have a poop issue. He saved his poop for his nap time "sleepy bum" as we call them. Once last week and then again 2 days ago. He didn't nap either days, and as soon as I went in to get him...I could smell why he didn't nap. I did tell him he needs to tell mommy when he has to pee or poop and that he needs to put his poop in the potty
  • He did have 2 small poops, 2 days in a row after that first incident, but I can see him getting a bit constipated or again saving his poop for his nap diapers
  • He did ask for "no sleepy bum" once, so I obliged. He didn't nap that day, or have an accident. I think that in his head he thinks that if he doesn't have a diaper on...he doesn't have to sleep! Sorry kid!
  • I'm working really hard on increasing his fibre among other things in his diet to get him more regular, it would be easiest for PT and also better for his health. I'm trying to cut out some dairy, giving him more fruits (especially pears), and offering him a bit of natural fruit juice with probiotics every morning...hopefully it helps!
  • Once his jar of M&M's/Smarties were gone, I filled it with natural fruit gummies and told him these new potty treats are only for POOPS on the potty, seems to be working well and he still goes pee in the potty no problem, even without treats
  • He made his first trip to town (1/2 hour away) last Monday for groceries accident free, but had yet to pee in a public toilet
  • On Wednesday we all went to the city, he did pee twice on the potty before we left, but still managed to have a huge accident in the car seat - he didn't tell us about it either. I guess I'll have to kind of restrict his fluids for awhile when I know we're going out
  • He did pee in the public potty twice on our outing though, so I'm happy that milestone was reached!
First pee in a public potty! Isn't that the cutest?!
Some of the things I'm thinking about lately are:
  • How do we handle our first road trip to mom's (3ish hours away)? Restrict fluids and bring our small potty with us so he can go whenever, wherever are my thoughts...
  • He doesn't always nap in the car and I do NOT want to get in the habit of using diapers in the car...even if I think he might nap
  • We are going on a big 8 hour road trip to BC in June...same as above, but hoping he WILL nap
  • I'm considering training him through his nap time...not 100% convinced yet! But going to at least give it a try, especially with the pooping in the nap diaper thing
  • He did finally have a nap yesterday with no diaper, slept 1.5 hours and predictably woke up wet. Not a lot though, just a little, and then had a huge pee in the potty after
So am I sold on this 3 Day Method? Absolutely. So grateful for friends and their suggestions and advice! If you're interested here's the gist of it:
  • You must remember to be positive and patient. This method does not involve discipline or punitive measures whatsoever.
  • In all honesty, this is NOT for the lazy parent. It takes 3 days of pretty intense focus and dedication to your child. But as I say with sleep training - short term pain, long term gain.
  • The author states all children are ready at 22 months, verbal or not. For me, I just knew Braden was ready and the timing in our lives was right to do it
  • As the title suggests, dedicate 3 days to stay at home and be at your child's side
  • Say goodbye to the internet and "you" time for those 3 days, stick by your child at.all.times. Repeat - at all times!
  • She suggests training for naps and at nights...but I decided not too, if you want more info on training through sleep, please email me!
  • Supplies: potty chair (using big toilet is fine too), lots and LOTS of underwear/panties, lots of fluids for your child to drink, lots of rewards/treats
  • Keep potty chair in bathroom - to associate going to the the bathroom!
  • Only wear a shirt and their underwear for the training days (them - not you! :)
  • On the morning of training, take off that diaper and put on their underwear
  • This is a huge step: PACK AWAY ALL THE DIAPERS (if using cloth) OR THROW THEM ALL AWAY (if using disposables) AND GET YOUR CHILD TO HELP/DO ALL THE WORK!! This is SO key! It really helped Braden make that association and he said "bye bye diapers" and then I could remind him of that if he asked for a diaper during training
  • I also moved the change table out of his room that morning, another diaper-related association that I wanted gone
  • For you: get rid of all your "emergency" diapers in the car, diaper bag, etc to avoid temptation of YOU reverting back to using diapers
  • Do NOT use any type of  "pull up" cloth or disposable, no more diapers
  • Now take your child to the bathroom, show them the potty and explain to them that their "pee pee and poop" now goes into the potty
  • Tell your child to "keep your underwear dry!" and give them frequent reminders/quizzes throughout the day and give LOTS of praise when their underwear is dry
  • Frequently say to your child "tell mommy when you have to go pee" as opposed to asking them "do you have to go pee?" we want THEM to tell US when they have to go
  • Do not take them to the potty on a timed schedule or even to "try"
  • Offer plenty of fluids, we want them to have to pee lots!
  • Remember to FOCUS on your want to spot the second they are having an accident, when they do scoop them up, carry them to the potty and say "your underwear isn't dry anymore" and set them on the potty to see if they will be able to finish
  • Keep reminding them to keep their underwear dry, it may take 20+ times but they will eventually get it - I promise!
  • One thing I had trouble with - don't remind them "if you pee on the potty - you get a treat!" don't try to coerce them to pee, it's negative and we want to stay positive
  • When they do pee in the potty - PRAISE, PRAISE, PRAISE! Remind them that their underwear is still dry, they're such a big boy/girl whatever works for you. Call daddy, call grandma, share the good news and get them really excited
  • Throughout the day(s) keep asking them if their underwear is dry and to have them tell you when they need to pee. Seriously - I said both these things every 5-10 minutes for 3 days straight! But it really stuck and he loved checking to see that his underwear was dry!
  • Some kids don't get it until the end of the 3rd day - but they will
  • As weird as it sounds, accidents help them learn, it finally "clicked" with Braden when he had his 3 small accidents in a row, and then finally released it all and had a big pee in the potty and he was SO proud of himself, and of course I was too!
  • Try as hard as you can to stay positive, when they do have accidents, even when Braden still does say "Braden, remember to tell mommy you have to pee in the potty, okay? Pee goes in the potty." 
From my personal experience with Braden:
  • don't use any devices to "keep" them on the potty, like I did the first day with the iPad
  • I found he "got it" when he peed in his little potty - he could literally see his results, whereas when he went in the big potty it's like he didn't know he'd done anything, he REALLY liked to empty his pee/poop in the big potty and flush it away
  • reading him "The Potty Book" months and months ahead of time, with his learning skills, really helped him to get the idea of the potty down. Luckily he really loved "The Potty Movie" too
  • the fancy charts I made for him...not worth it. Maybe it's a "boy" thing, but he didn't give one lick about the stickers on the chart!
  • you can read about my pre-potty training thoughts here
Potty Trained
I am no expert, nor am I associated or affiliated with the 3 Day Method. If you would like more info, please visit the website, but I am happy to answer any questions I can too! There are a lot of special circumstances that I have not covered.

I also wanted to note that I update on Facebook a lot so please go on over and like my page! I love to feel the like!



  1. Awesome post! I have been following your "potty journey" and really appreciate you sharing it with us. I have a 21 month old boy and plan on using this method when he is ready. Thanks again!

    1. Thanks for following, I hope it works as well for you as it has for us!

  2. Nice job, mama! This is really encouraging. A lot of people have told me boys are harder to potty train, and that a lot of them aren't ready until around 3. I'm hoping we will be able to PT Colin earlier than that!

    1. Yes, I had heard how dreadful boys are, but Braden is potty trained before a lot of girls around his age now...and it makes me beam with brags that boys can be just as smart as girls!

  3. Great job Momma!! you rock, I read the method, I totally agree that you really need to invest the time, you cant wing it. Hopefully Frankies dr gives me the A OK go ahead next monday and we can start, Im SO ready to be done with diapers!! Im scared of doing this with 2 kids at once, but it has to be dome, they are practically twins so I will have just have to treat it as such, need to go get another potty so they each have their own!

    1. I'll be looking forward to your updates, Jill and wishing you the best. Yup, this method isn't for the lazy's so worth the effort you put in! I almost had to double check that Frankie and Ava WEREN'T twins!

  4. Yay Braden!!!
    It took Livi until 3 months after originally PT to REALLY be 100% with poops, not holding it in. My boys still have accidents, (some days seems really bad, but I have to remind myself that its always x2.) But I am lazy & do revert to pull-ups out of the house.

    We just did a 7 hr car trip this weekend. We took a little potty along (& some bottled water to rinse & some chlorox wipes). So we could just stop alongside the road instead of always having to use a public restroom. We did do the "stop & try" thing & not always let them tell us when they had to go for the car trip. But on the way there, the boys were each only wet once & Logan stayed dry the whole way home & again Hayden was just wet once. Livi of course stayed dry, but I expected nothing less from her. I would just restrict fluids before & keep reminding him to tell you when he has to go. Maybe practice pottying outside in the little potty (my kids were a little off put to pee alongside the road in a travel potty).

    1. Yeah, I still really don't know what we're gonna do with poops. I really didn't wanna do ANOTHER potty post so soon after this...but he held it in for 4 days (not unusual for him anyway) and finally had a big poo-splosion accident in his undies. He was mortified, home with his daddy, so I need to get him more regular and get him to sit and be patient to actually poop on the potty. It'll take awhile to get 100% poop trained, but we're 100% pee trained, but haven't had a big travel yet.

      Thanks so much for your advice on traveling, it sounds really good. With our 8 hour trip, a 20 week prego and a 33 week prego and 2 little boys...there will be plenty of opportunities for lots of potty breaks that's for sure. But I did buy an extra potty today at Ikea to bring along with us.

  5. You are doing a great job! I can't believe how well it is going! H wasn't potty trained till 3 year, 2 months!

  6. Thanks so much for this big update -- I am contemplating doing this with Lennox - I don't think she is 100% ready yet, but when she is, I think it may be worth a good try! I will have to come to you with questions when the time gets closer ;-)

  7. Wow! Thanks so much for this! I really would love for Clara to be done before the baby comes, I'm just nervous about my energy levels not being high enough right now. Also, do you think she's likely to revert after the baby is born? Should I wait until after?

  8. Wow! Thanks so much for this! I really would love for Clara to be done before the baby comes, I'm just nervous about my energy levels not being high enough right now. Also, do you think she's likely to revert after the baby is born? Should I wait until after?


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