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Potty Training at 18 Months - Lexington Park,MD

I would like some opinions and advice for potty training my son at 18 months. I am a stay at home mom (and former teacher) so I have the time and willpower needed for this endeavor. If you have had success this early, please share what you did. If it was a nightmare, please share your horror stories as well. I am currently expecting my second child who is due when my son will be 21 months old, and I would really like to have him out of diapers by then. Everyone I talk to thinks I am crazy for wanting to try to potty train this early, but I am amazed at how much my now-14 month old can do and understand. Opinions?

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It's not a matter of him understanding what you're asking or telling him to do. It's a matter of his body being ready to potty train. My honest opinion on this is to really wait until he's ready. Get used to the idea of changing the diapers of two little ones for a while. It's really not as much work as you might think it is.

1 mom found this helpful

You could try now-my second child trained early-like 17 months-if they have the willingness-and you have the time-try it!

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He will train himself when he is ready. Just sit back and enjoy you toddler.

3 moms found this helpful

Our pediatrician's advice was not to push it with either child. Our son was 3 before he was ready. We had to wait for the obvious cues (longer periods of time before he needed to be changed).

Our daughter just turned 2.5, and she has NO interest. We're encouraging her, trying to bribe her with prizes for going, but we're making little progress.

It's possible with a boy that age, but most boys are closer to 3 because of their ability to recognize bladder fullness. Another issue we took into consideration with both kids was the ability to pull their clothes up and down.

Our kids are 21 months apart as well......most of the people I know who potty trained early had issues with regression a few months later. My best advice to you, though you might night want to hear it, is to wait. That second baby is so much harder than you can possibly imagine, especially with the age difference being so close. I thought I was SuperMom, and reality hit like a ton of bricks.

Best wishes to you. Hope you have better luck than we did.

2 moms found this helpful

I have worked with my daycare families ( I am a provider) for the last year with the essentials of Lora Jensens 3 day potty training method . http://www.3daypottytraining.com/ It starts with a sort of potty boot camp. I have posted other lengthy explanations of it. The youngest in my care was 22 mos (a girl) for boys it was a 24 mos old. Usually, however, the poo part takes longer and I know many parents return to a diaper or PU at night, but not all (I prefer this, but thats up to them) I use nothing but undies here once they do this process.

Her methods recommend 22 mos but I actually have a 15 mos old girl in care who we may attempt this with in a few months as she is already showing us there may be some minimal readiness. I no longer will have FT children in my care who are 3 and not trained. right now I have none that even hit 2 1/2 who are not trained.

You could look thru this method and consider trying it. Don't believe all the naysayers who say you are crazy and he will be 3 before he is trained. I have a houseful of 2 year olds who tell ME (I NEVER take them at intervals..that just trains the adults, not the child) when they need to go pee and rarely have accidents all day. Its fantastic!

2 moms found this helpful

i had the same situation with my oldest-- i wanted him done with diapers before the baby showed up at 23 months. i taught him all about potty, and he could go in the potty easily at 18 months. (both number 1 and number 2) i felt much like you, and thought there was no reason not to train him early.

however... he was unable to go by himself until well after his third birthday. (by that i mean he felt the urge to pee and stopped playing and went to the bathroom by himself--as opposed to me telling him to go every hour or so) and we had LOTS of accidents, puddles, wet underwear, tantrums where he peed all over his carseat......... and lots of power strugggles because i tried to make him go when he didn't want to. it was hard to potty train with a newborn-- how do you take a two year old potty and feed a baby at the same time? and it created a lot of stress for me.

looking back i don't know that i regret trying to potty train him early, but i do regret putting him in underwear before he could keep them dry and making so much stress for myself when he just wasn't interested/ready. when he decided he wanted to be a big boy, it was like a light switch. he just did it. but it was a really long, frustrating year for me until that happened. i wish i would've tried potty training, but kept diapers on him until he could keep them dry all day long.

i recommend trying cloth diapers for training him-- kids don't like the feeling of a soggy wet towel between their legs :)

my advice would be, whatever you do, to remember to focus on enjoying your baby and your toddler and not stressing out too much about potty. don't make it a negative thing for him or you.

good luck!

2 moms found this helpful

Here is the potty training readiness checklist for a 2 yr old , there is none for 18 months.
Physical signs

Can walk and run steadily.

Urinates a fair amount at one time.

Has regular, well-formed bowel movements at relatively predictable times.

Has "dry" periods of at least three or four hours, which shows that her bladder muscles are developed enough to hold urine.

Behavioral signs

Can sit down quietly in one position for two to five minutes.

Can pull her pants up and down.

Dislikes the feeling of wearing a wet or dirty diaper.

Shows interest in others' bathroom habits (wants to watch you go to the bathroom or wear underwear).

Gives a physical or verbal sign when she's having a bowel movement such as grunting, squatting, or telling you.

Demonstrates a desire for independence.

Takes pride in her accomplishments.

Isn't resistant to learning to use the toilet.

Is in a generally cooperative stage, not a negative or contrary one.

Cognitive signs

Can follow simple instructions, such as "go get the toy."

Understands the value of putting things where they belong.

Has words for urine and stool.

Understands the physical signals that mean she has to go and can tell you before it happens or even hold it until she has time to get to the potty.

In addition if you start too early and he's not ready it will take longer to train him.

2 moms found this helpful

I'm going to try not to say a lot because a lot has alraedy been said. But I will say that my daughter was 29 months when my son was born and my first thought was to have her trained before my son was born so I wouldn't have 2 in diapers. The idea is great- the execution is not so easy. I won't get into if you son is ready or not- who knows really. But even if he is ready- as somone else says- it's not like he'll be going without any help even if he starts going. So helping him go with a newborn might actually turn out to be more trouble than just changing his diaper too. There are times witha newborn that you cannot stop what you are doing to go help and little ones cannot hold it. Also, a lot of kids regress so in the end I decided to wait until the the baby was home for a while and everyone could get adjusted before we started to train. I was happy with this decision because she was even more ready and it was a less stressful time.

1 mom found this helpful

There certainly is a lot of information here. I would just like to add that it's great that you are so determined to devote your time and energies to achieving this worthwhile goal. You are obviously a dedicated mom.

Something to keep in mind for this process is the developmental stage your son is in. He's doing more than just growing taller. In his body several billion changes occur every day. The bladder is growing at its own pace, and so are the number of nerves which provide cues to the brain to say "It's time to go." Training is woefully more than an education process, it depends on your child's physical growth as well. What's more, that part of the brain which controls muscle function of the bladder sphincter, the voluntary and involuntary coordination which are necessary for potty training is still becoming coordinated and fine-tuned. Please bear this in mind on those frustrating days. It's not simply a matter of willpower and determination, but also a physiological process.

One of your readers touched on this when she said to check him when he first wakes up to see if he's dry. By this, she means, is his bladder big enough to hold all his urine through the entire night. This is a good indicator that at least the bladder is becoming ready.

Another thing one of your readers mentioned is that children have different ages when they seem to be capable of doing this. It really is a physiological achievement, as much as a learning one, and only a part of it is within your son's control.

My mom was old-school as well and felt that children SHOULD be trained by two. Back in the 70's, it was like a sign of your parenting success if you did or did not have your child trained. But they did not have such things back then as access to the broad range of knowledge that we do today with groups like this, and the internet, where we can look up information for ourselves and not simply rely on our check ups at the pediatrician's office. I was urged on my my mom as I taught my daughter (We began at 19 months for her.....and she wasn't trained for another 14 months....yes, I put my time into it and was dedicated just like you).

For my two year old son, I continue to ask him if he wants to go potty when we get up in the morning, because he is dry, but he's not interested. He's very determined. I know that trying to force him when he's not ready will make it harder down the road by creating a potty "aversion" so I'm just waiting it out and trying not to stress about it. If it's going to take him as long as my daughter (and different kids have different timelines, even within the same family) then it is, in fact, less stress on me to not force him through it.

One of my girlfriends SWEARS by the candy method. Another one uses stickers and singing and clapping. Different things had different effects on my daughter depending on her mood that day. Sometimes she was buying it. Sometimes not. Ha ha.

I'm so incredibly excited for you with your new baby on the way. Congratulations! I'm wishing for a peaceful, stress-free journey into mothering with two!

1 mom found this helpful

Oh, I LIKE your question! I'm 53 and mother of 4 grown children who were all fully potty trained by their second birthday. Just a few suggestions that made all the difference for me.
>Notice if he's dry ASAP when he wakes from overnight sleep or a nap. If he is, the #1 training is twice as easy. Just take him as soon as he wakes up.
>Any time there's success (even a few drops -- which means you have to clean the potty out and dry it each time so you can tell), praise him and clap and dance (some people use skittles, M&M's or stickers, etc as 'reward', but it's not necessary. I didn't)
>Take him to potty about every hour and every time you go. Let him hear the noises made (by you AND by the receptacle) when eliminating (#1 AND #2)
>Take waterproof pants off while at home and use cloth diapers or thick training pants. When they can feel the 'cool' (evaporation), they notice more quickly that they're wet, and this doesn't happen with anything waterproof.
>Be consistent.

I believe early potty training empowers kids!

1 mom found this helpful

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