Thursday, July 12, 2012

{Messy Parenting} It's Potty Time!

Over a year ago, Emily potty trained herself.  Then un-potty trained herself.  She now comfortably pees in the toilet but still refuses to poop in it.

Andrew, on the other hand, will poop in the toilet but refuses to pee in it.

So, I have one child who pees and another who poops in the toilet.  Half + half makes a whole, right?

Potty training is difficult.  The tips and tricks that various books, websites, and blogs offer aren't suited for individuality.  Thus, with the personalities of my kids, I could follow the advice found on Babycenter or in books but I know my kids will stubbornly refuse any rigidity.  In fact, with Emily, the more we push her to poop in the toilet, or follow the steps listed in parenting resources, the more she fights back.  Andrew is the same way.

This lesson has leaked (excuse the pun) into other areas of parenting. I have learned to let Emily and Andrew lead in developmental milestones.  Ultimately, they must decide whether or not to pursue something a "big kid" will do, otherwise tantrums and accidents will ensue.  But isn't that what I, as a parent, am really fostering?  My kids ability to make their own decisions without pressure from outside sources?

As frustrating as it is to have 2 kids still in diapers half the time, I prefer my happy, worry-free kids to the kids they became when I pressured them to potty train on my schedule and in a specific way.  While this approach may not work for everyone, I am glad that neither Ben nor I feel pressured to potty train our kids by a certain age or in a specific manner. Wouldn't it be nice if we could all feel less pressure when it comes to parenting?


I am out of my writing groove.  I thought I would have more time when I was placed on modified bed rest.  However, like most moms of young children, I have found bed rest to be a hope rather than a reality.  In fact, I think I am more busy on "bed rest" as I attempt to keep the kids happy and entertained while I maintain some order in this house.

Luckily, tapping into Messy Parenting again has helped me post at least once a week.  Care to join me?  Share a parenting experience you are proud of, either on your own blog or in the comments, and we can all support each other in this messy adventure.

As a reminder, the book club discussion for chapter one of Women Who Run With the Wolves starts on Monday!  I am SO excited!


  1. Yeah, Luke is 3.5 years and still isn't potty trained. He hasn't been ready! And some people give me weird looks. I'm hoping to get it done this fall, but if he isn't ready, there is just honestly no point in pushing them.

  2. My sister had the same problem with my niece - She would go pee in the toilet, but wouldn't go poo. Even when wearing underpants and not pull-ups, she would still go in her underwear rathen than using the toilet.
    They tried all the tricks. She had potty charts and stickers and rewards - nothing.
    Until one day my niece just randomly decided that from now on she was only going to use the potty.. I think she was about 3.5 (just before her little brother was born!) and that was it. It was just a decision she needed to make on her own terms.

  3. Potty training is humbling. You learn exactly how much you control. I'll say no more.

  4. My husband decided Edie would be potty trained and that's all there was to it. He spent a week at home with her while I was working. I know there were glitter stickers and M&M's involved but that's all I know, after a week of daddy home with her, she was potty trained. A few months later when he decided we were getting rid of pull-ups at night, he made a bet with her that if she could keep them dry for a week, he'd do something with her that she really wanted - I can't remember what it was now, but it worked too. So for me, potty training was easy, only because I wasn't involved.


Comments are disabled.

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.