As my daughter began to approach her third birthday, I was feeling the pressure to potty train her. After watching for signs that she was emotionally and physically ready for months, I began to feel like she was. We began a couple of months before potty training by reading books and watching videos about using the potty. She was really captivated by an Elmo video on YouTube about the subject. She began to stay dry through the night every now and then, and was really interested in the toilet.
My mother-in-law had already purchased us a potty seat that sits neatly on a standard toilet. After reading and talking to other parents, the consensus was to skip using the traditional stand-alone potty seat and go straight for the one that sits on the toilet. This worked out best for our family because it doesn’t take up any extra room in the RV. It sits in the space between the toilet and vanity when not in use.
The first couple of days in underwear involved sitting on the toilet many times a day for long periods of time while nothing happened, and several accidents. On the third morning, straight out of bed she pooped in the toilet!! She was so excited. She ran to tell her Daddy and we all had a nice celebration. Later that day, she peed a tiny bit in the potty. We did a little PeePee dance that we had made up for the occassion. Over the next few days, she started using the toilet with success more frequently. By the end of the first week, she was using the potty exclusively for peeing. She was still having some difficulty with pooping in the toilet, but was getting better everyday.
Just a couple of weeks into potty training, she was completely day trained. She is wearing diapers to bed at night. Sometimes, she wakes up and asks to use the potty, but it’s pretty infrequent. I don’t think she is old enough for her brain to wake her up when she needs to go. From what I understand in my reading and talking to other mothers, there is nothing a parent can do to speed that process up. It will come in it’s own time. We are proud parents of a “big kid” now.
A couple of times, we’ve been out hiking around the park when she needed to go. When she says she needs to go, you have about 2 minutes to get her to the potty or else. So, we had to let her pee in the woods a couple of times, but she didn’t seem to mind.