I’d rather push a child out my vagina again (as a newborn, not as a toddler) than potty train them. Potty training is one of my LEAST favorite parts of parenting.
I never know if I should do it — when I should do it, if they’re ready, if I’m ready.
Princess P was a pretty great dream to potty train. We used the ol’ Potty Training in a day book and it worked like a charm.
….. Then, my parents came into town and I attended a work seminar for a couple of days.
When she decided she could no longer get her pants down, or poop without someone by her or flush….
And then it turned back into wetting and me pulling my hair out.
And finally, I realized that my favorite book Love and Logic had the answer for me.
My child had proven that she was able to be potty trained. She was now making the choice (whether consciously or unconsciously) to wet her pants.
And why don’t I wet my pants?
BECAUSE I DON’T WANT TO CLEAN IT UP!!!!!
So, I just started making her clean it up. When she would wet it would involve carpet cleaner, new pants, new underwear — and then taking the soiled items to the washing machine.
Often this took upward of 20 minutes, with a fair amount of crying.
I tried to remain unbiased on the sidelines reminding her that this is why I don’t wet my pants.
That, and extreme embarrassment. BUT, I didn’t ned to embarrass her — I just needed her to take charge of the consequences of her actions.
To be clear, I didn’t shame her for not staying dry. I just let her pay the consequences.
And slowly, she realized she’d much rather pee in the potty, than get her clothes wet.
And sometimes, in a home surrounded by teenagers I remember this lesson.
The actual consequences are a much better lesson than anything I could make up.
You can have all the sticker charts in the world — but until their find that inner motivation to get something done for the right reasons — you’re going to have to keep making sticker charts.
[clickToTweet tweet=”You can have all the sticker charts in the world — but they have to find their inner motivation!” quote=”You can have all the sticker charts in the world — but until their find that inner motivation to get something done for the right reasons — you’re going to have to keep making sticker charts.”]
So, love and logic wins again. Potty training, lack of preparation before a big test. It’s all about natural consequences.
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