The Great Potty Debate

We bought a potty. 
We have been debating for a couple months now on when to start the girls with potty training, and when is the ‘right’ time, when will they be ready, and when is too early/too late to get them started.  When I was 18 months old my mom had just had my eldest brother (I have three..) and I’m pretty sure she had the same thoughts as any mother with another new baby..
No way am I having these two babies in diapers at once.  
So I was potty trained at 18-months old after wooing me with ONE m&m any time I made it to the potty successfully.
I have twins.  I can attest that diapers are expensive.
Having two in them at once is nearly liable to break the bank.
Back to the potty.  
After going round and round we decided to wait until they were closer to 2 years to even remotely toy with the idea of potty training.  They weren’t ready, or so it seemed, and so Jordan and I agreed.
AND then our decisions and questions came full circle with a conversation Parker and I had about a month ago.  She was going on and on.  I was on my phone (awesome mom of the year, right here), and totally not paying attention to her little jabber, jabber, jabber.  She finally grabbed my face to get my attention and I realized the entire situation in about 3 seconds flat.  
disclaimer: there is poop in this video. Tears were rolling down my face trying to hold back the laughter as this conversation played out, hence the shaky voice and the weird look Parker gives me at the end.  The look only her mother could have handed down to her. 

SO badly did I want to share this on The Gram, but I couldn’t imagine the comments I might have received.  PLUS- the 15 seconds allowed wouldn’t have encapsulated to true hilarity of this video and what it all meant for us.
 So I texted it out to my entire family.  
And my friends.  
That was the day we started wearing at least a swim diaper to play in the backyard.  
..but we do have a couple dogs.. 
Too far?  
Parker was ready.  Ready to talk about it.  Knew what she had done. She knew where she was supposed to have done it, and she made sure her mother knew all about it.  
The next day (literally) Jolie started to tell us when she had ‘stinky bootie’ (technical terms, ya’ll), and it was merely days before they both started talking about when their diapers were just wet.  I could video allllll day the faces and sweet little voices telling me about this stuff.
I’m sort of loving the poop talk right now.
Last week we bought a potty.  
To be honest my kids have zero idea who Elmo is, or any other animal/princess/cartoon on the other potties on the shelf at Target.  AND they all make noise.  Music, sound effects, and shouts of joy when a kid tinkles.  
ANOTHER thing I need batteries for.  Awesome.   

The moment we pulled it out of the box after getting home Jolie walked right up and sat down on it.
Did she know what she was doing?  I haven’t a clue, but the moment she lost interest, Parker plopped right down on it.  We moved the potty to the bathroom and had a little talk about it.  With a couple rules.

  • No flushing (which meant no ‘hooray’s’ from Elmo (who’s Elmo..) and no music) unless we actually DID potty in the potty.  Jolie might have a stroke when she finally gets to flush the thing.  I might have a stroke when she finally tinkles in the potty.
  • The bathroom is NOT a place to play.   
They have been following us (at my feet – literally) to the potty since forever, and most recently they’ve started talking about it while Momma goes.  
All the books and websites I’ve read (more like briefly skimmed) say nearly the same exact thing on a child’s readiness:
  • she can pull her pants up and down by herself (we are nearly there) 
  • is aware of being wet or dirty (we are totally there) 
  • understands and is able to tell you in so many words when they need to ‘go’.  
  • Understanding the sensation or feeling of actually needing to go. 
They are at the point of telling us (grabbing their diapers) BEFORE they tinkle.  Its the walk to the potty that gets us every time.  Training TWO toddlers could go one of two ways.. complete disaster or complete success.  Right now if I ask Parker if she needs to potty, it is always a nod ‘yes’, and then Jolie immediately follows up with an elaborate nod of her own – it becomes a game to go to the potty.  
Not good.
We are still working on it, without the pressure, at this point- talking about it and working through it and encouraging ‘potty time’.  I asked a sweet friend of mine that just got through with a ‘3-day’ method of potty training and had major success.  Jordan and I have toyed with the idea of sending one off to BB’s house for the weekend while we work with the other, but that makes me sad to think about separating them for this milestone event when they’ve done everything else together since birth..
Yea.. I just convinced myself to a NO on that idea.  
For now the potty-ing remains a hot topic in our house.  
Tinkle and poop also has become table talk a time or two.
I’m such a mom.  
What about you ladies (and gents)?  Anyone have some potty tips to share? 


July 15, 2014

  1. Samantha says:

    After reaching almost every milestone at the same time, potty training was something that was completely different for my girls. They were just ready at different times. It's okay to embrace the uniqueness even if it means a complicated few months of potties and diapers. Now at 3.5 years old both girls are completely potty trained at both day and night so we are a diaper and pull up free house woohoo! Good luck.

  2. Kathy Klauer says:

    I used "Toilet Training in Less Than One Day" by Nathan Arzin. A few of the ideas/routines to follow were a bit far fetched for us, but I modified it a bit and my daughter was trained after that one day…able to pull up and down her pants, dump the potty in the toilet and flush. They also recommend if they're struggling pulling their pants up and down, go a size bigger for a bit. The entire day (I blocked off a weekend and took Monday off work) she wore a size up in panties and that was it. It was easy for her to pull them up and down. At the end, I was able to use Monday as a "me" day and not use it for potty training! Another thing they recommend is that you focus only on going to the bathroom the entire time. Even if your spouse is home, only talk potty shop 🙂 So…he left for the day while I talked 24 hours about "are you dry, are you wet, do you have to go…." it was exhausting but so worth it. Good luck! Also, I've been following your blog now for about two months…I just found out I'm having boy/girl twins and love all your information 🙂

  3. we waited until both of ours were beyond ready. Both were a little older than 2.5. We had a potty like you and talked about it but around the same exact age I knew they were ready. We "threw away the diapers" (except didn't bc they were needed for bedtime) and never looked back. Panties and undies full time and neither one of them ever had an accident! It was incredibly easy! My biggest tip is wait until they are ready and FULLY understand the entire concept. At that point go full Monty, dont look back. I have friends who pushed too early and their kids always (and still do) have accidents. I'm NO expert but waiting until they are a little older is easier on everyone in my opinion!

  4. Bitz says:

    Sofia(26 mos.) is still in diapers but she from time to time surprises us by bringing a diaper. I still don't think she's ready as she doesn't seem to know when she's wet or not. I got her some cloth training pants to see how she does with that. Here's hoping for success and no more diapers!

  5. LOVESTRONG says:

    Thank you for posting this!! I read this back when you first posted it and now that we're about to jump on the potty train I remembered how great your experience was. I'm a little nervous, but I hope we have as much success as you had with your littles!