One of the most important milestones of a child (and parents too) is being toilet trained. There is no definite age to start a child’s potty training. It can start as early as 18 months, or maybe around 3-4 years, or later than that.
Initially, we started training Marshall just before he turned 2. Back then, with the help of my mom and mom in law, we would wean him on his nappy when he’s at home. We also bought him potty chair, and toddler seat cover. But it was not successful. He was not yet able to hold his pee and he would wet his pants most of the time and whichever place you can think of.
That time, we decided to put him back again on nappies. When I finally left work for good, I wanted to start training him again. But in preparation for our transfer to another country, we were not at home most of the time, so I thought of delaying it.
Same thing when we went back to the Philippines before coming to Sydney, I could not start training him for the reason that we travel most of the time. Then I made a plan to probably do it once we arrived in Sydney. When we came here, the plan did not turn out as it should be thinking that it wouldn’t be a good thing to mess around the house we were renting at that time.
After a month, Dada was assigned back to Singapore. Again we traveled with him, and so it was postponed. After a month we came back in Sydney. This time, I didn’t rush on things. I just allowed Marshall to take his time using nappy. Until May this year, I decided we need to start training him. If not now, then when? So slowly we took off his nappy when we’re at home. At the start, I reminded him to pee every 30mins. I would set an alarm so I will be reminded as well.
Marshall first learned to poop in the toilet. We were actually surprised hearing him call us that he’s done and he needs help to wash. As a matter of fact, he just had one pooping accident on the floor and that was during the first trial of toilet training when we were still in Singapore. Other than that, we are still lucky enough.
But it’s a different story when it comes to peeing. There were times that he does not want to pee even after few consecutive alarms. But after few minutes he would wet his shorts. Consistently, I and Rod still reminded him to go and pee.
Until one day before going out, I was surprised that he was wearing his shorts by himself. I told him he forgot to wear his nappy. Cause usually he would wear his nappy and clothes by himself.
This time, he replied, “I don’t want (to) wear diaper.” I’m not a baby.
I was hesitant in my mind, But I trusted him.
I replied “wow, you’re a big boy na! Ok, you will tell mami or dada if you wanna go to toilet ok. Kasi if you “wiwi” in your shorts you’ll be wet and then the floor outside will also be wet.”
“Ok mom”, he answered.
When we arrived at the mall, I reminded him to pee first. Cause I was worried he has already the urge. He politely obliged. Then we roam around, and after few hours, he was the one who told me to go to the toilet to pee. We then went home and it was the first day of success. That night he still refused to wear nappy during sleep. Again I was hesitant at first, but I trusted him again. I just thought to myself, If ever he wet the bed, it’s alright, at least he tried. The next morning, I was surprised that he had really controlled his urine.
It has been a month and he is officially out of nappies. Yey goodbye diaper! goodbye Huggies! Although we were very thankful that Marshall never had a nappy rash when he was using Huggies. He was very comfortable with it for the past 2 years.
Things I’ve learned in this toilet training process:
-Don’t rush things.
Kids know when they’re ready, and we (moms and dads) need to catch that moment.
I am thankful that Dada helped me with this process. He would also remind Marshall especially those times I missed the alarm. Toilet training is not just for the kids. It also creates bonding within the family while cheering up on your child’s progress. And we are also very thankful to have wonderful housemates that understand the mess of our training process.
Of course, there will be a lot of accidents. He will pee in every place you can think of. And you would have to clean and wipe not just once or twice, and you don’t need to count. That’s gonna be included in the process. Every one of us has been on this stage. And we just have to give encouragement to our child that eventually, he can do it. You can actually ask him/her to help with the cleaning so he will be aware and be more mindful the next time.
For additional protection especially during bedtime, I placed under pads under the bed sheet so as not to wet the mattress itself.
There were times that when Marshall wet his pants, I also blame myself because I probably forgot to remind him. What I did was to set an alarm, initially every 30 minutes, if he did not pee within that 30 minutes, I snoozed it. Until he peed, then I set the alarm again. Slowly progress to hourly, 2 hourly, and so on, and eventually he will have the control of it. I also downloaded some toilet training apps that have a record page that he can refer to and he’d be eager to look at it every time he gets to pee on the toilet.
-Trust your child.
Parents (especially moms) think too much. I myself is an overthinker. But give your trust to your child and he would be happy to see that you believe in him/her. One day, you’ll be surprised, he did it. You did it! 🙂