Last year I posted about infant potty training where we had successfully started putting Miss A on the potty for poops from 5 months old. You may be curious to find out what the progress been since then. Has it made the transition to full toilet training quicker? The short answer for us is NO.
I don’t have any doubt that infant potty training has helped many kids get to toilet training faster and easier but we are at 2 years old now and not fully toilet trained so the hoped outcome hasn’t eventuated (before you think I’m a militant mum, I should mention that in Asian cultures it is normal for kids to be out of nappies by 2). It’s definitely far from being a failure though. Not having to clean poopy nappies from 5 months onwards is a pretty big win! It has also helped Miss A understand the concept of using the potty/toilet very well.
So what has happened in our potty/toilet training journey? We started off with putting Miss A on the potty twice a day for poops from 5 months old but still let her wee in nappies for the rest of the day. At around 1 year old we then transitioned to putting her on the toilet with a child seat. At about 18 months old she could say “toilet” and do the sign for it too so was able to tell us when she needed to go. After a while, she started saying “toilet” for wees too so we started transitioning to undies at home.
Then JUST when I thought we were really in in the home stretch – *BANG* – she decides to go on a TOILET STRIKE! She just suddenly stopped telling us when she needed to go and would just wee wherever she was and keep quiet about it. Aren’t toddlers great at keeping us on our toes? It’s like she was saying “Hah! You thought it was going to be so easy?? Nuh-uh!” I think the fact that she is one of those babies who are not fazed to sit around in a dirty nappy has been a factor. She has never been bothered with being wet. I reckon it would be much more motivating for a child who hated being wet to use a potty/toilet.
At this point the older folks may suggest cracking the whip and just forcing them to use the toilet. This I do not agree on. Not only is almost physically impossible to force a toddler to sit on a toilet when they don’t want to but you’re also creating a negative association to toilet training which is counter productive if you ask me. So what we did is just took a break and put her back in nappies. She was already talking in full sentences at that point and we just had to trust that she would tell us when she was ready. We read potty books and encouraged her to use the toilet but we didn’t force her if she was adamant she didn’t want to use it.
It has taken a few months for her to get back on the toilet. I admit I was starting to get worried we’d taken the wrong approach and had visions of her still refusing to use the toilet at 3 years of age. But then just like that out of the blue, she started asking again to go on the toilet and being happy to do it. I definitely breathed a big sigh of relief.
So now we are back in undies at home. Hooray! Hopefully there are no more strikes ahead and we will keep going forward from here!