Toddler Milestones

Updated on August 08, 2007
N.S. asks from Pleasant Hill, CA
10 answers

My almost 2 year old daughter, Raven is trying to pass many toddler milestones at once. I am still nursing her once a day (for naps) and really want to finally wean her completly. I've tried to get her to nap with other comfort items, with no success. She also has started telling me and my husband when she is having a dirty diaper so we were thinking about the potty training start time too. She still sleeps in a crib though because she has never climbed out before. Should we transition her to a bed before trying potty training?
I don't want to push too many things at once, but she seems to be starting them all :0
any help would be good!

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answers from San Luis Obispo on

Dear N.,

You are right about not trying too many new things at once. I would say that it would be better to leave her in the crib for a while, and concentrate on the potty training. Isn't it just wonderful to have a child who is telling you when she is ready to go to the next level? So lovely.

She probably feels very cozy in her crib . It has been so long for me, that I cannot remember how we did that one. We did use one of those bed railings that you can slip between the mattress and the box springs when we moved them to the next bed. It made me feel safer and kept the kids from falling out of bed until they got older. It is nice to have around for when younger ones come to visit and nap too.

C. N.

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answers from Modesto on

Hi N.,
I'm 27 also with a son who just turned 3. We just went through potty training- it's a tough battle- for some people!- that includes me!! Granted training a boy and a girl are quite different- if she is telling you when she's going try it.. start setting her on the potty and when she goes set a timer for 20 minutes or so.. when the timer goes off set her on the potty again.. Keep the timer for you!! When you start to see a pattern set the timer for longer. Buy some pull-ups- I used the ones that had disappearing shapes on the front and inside that way they have something to look for- They don't disappear if they don't have an accident so when my son had to go potty he would ask if he still had his stars- meaning when he pulled his pull-ups down he was looking for the stars on the inside of them. He loved that because he knew he didn't have an accident!- As far as the transition into a bed.. Do you have a 3in1 or 4in1 crib where you can make it a toddler bed? That way you have the rail on the side... If not you can buy rails at just about any retail store.. Try it and see how she does! Hope this helps!!

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answers from San Francisco on

Wow, that's a lot of changes you want to make there! I say tackle the one you want done the most which may be the breast feeding. She should be able to put/soothe herself to sleep at this age. I've heard of so many moms who think 2 is the golden age to get kids out of cribs but I say, if they aren't trying to climb out, you don't need it for another baby & they're sleeping solidly thru the night, don't mess w/it! I also think 2 might be a bit young to tackle the potty traiing. Letting you know that she needs clean pants is just one of many skills needed for potty training. Go ahead & get her a potty of her own & encourage her to use it but you might want to wait til 2 1/2 or closer to 3 to start seriously training her after you've wean her from the nap time nursing. Save the crib for last. My oldest son was in the crib til a week before his 3rd b-day & then we used the mattress for his toddler bed until he was just over 4 years. I know at 2 they seem so grown up (compared to the previous year) w/all the talking & their creative play but they're really still just babies. Good luck!

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answers from Bakersfield on

N., Do you work part time or are you home full time? I ask because it means a lot about what kind of security issues that your daughter has and why she insists that you still breast feed for the award of a nap. You have probably noticed that I said that her napping is an award for you, not her. As you train your child, she is also training you and she is much better at it than you will ever be.(Big :-)) Right now she feels that you need her nap more than she does so she bargains with the closeness of breast feeding to accomplish that goal. Tire her out instead. She will fall asleep without any "comfort items". Take her to the park, give her some chores that she can safely do, tire her out. Set up a schedule for activity time to do this everyday. See what happens. At two years old, your child should be potty trained. Start with no liquids from one to one and a half hours before bedtime. When she wakes up take her to the potty. Shortly after you feed her liquids, take her to the potty and so on. Compliment her every time she makes a deposit. Also ask her if she has to potty or did she dirty her diaper. Buy her pull up disposable panties and use those while she is awake and diapers when she goes to sleep at night. The crib is OK for now. As long as she stays in, it is alright. It will be a while before she goes to the potty at night or during nap time. If you don't give her liquid before sleeping, there is less chance that she will have to go while sleeping. She is an only child and you have given her all of your attention and that is great but it is also addictive. She'll work on keeping that attention and if breast feeding is one way to do it, Bingo! If you plan to have more children, you should also think about having her interact with other children so she will learn to share and relate to others outside of herself. I am not saying that she is selfish or that her actions are negative but it is just the nature of the beast. I was an only child for 6 1/2yrs and I know very well of what I am talking about :-). I now have 8 siblings. Good luck!! Keep me informed on your progress. R. T.

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answers from Las Vegas on

Hi,I am a 36 year old mom. I think you need to set your milestones one at a time. first you really need to stop breastfeeding, at almost two years, you may be hurting your daughters chances at alittle independence. once that is done. You can start to get her into a bed. Then potty train her so if she has to go potty she will get out of bed on her own.

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answers from Fresno on

It's time, mom. For all of it. It is so hard to transition but it is time. Good luck to you N. and little girl, Raven.


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answers from San Francisco on

I would say to definetly do one thing at a time.I never wanted to push my son (almost 4 now) to do anything that he was not ready for. I tried to see where he was emotionally and physically before transitioning him out of or into something. My advice would be to start with the nursing becasue that's going to be a big one for her emotionally. Take time to read articles or books to see what method suits your daughter best.
One very important thing I learned about potty training is that it is important to have a consistent and predictable environment for the child during this time. If you transition her to a bed and potty train at the same time I think you will have a bit of a disaster.
I know it's exciting to switch to a toddler bed, but try to keep her in her crib as long as she is still safe because if she's got a lot of energy she might be waking you up at night wandering around the house. Make sure she understands what's going on.
Encouraging her to use her potty when she needs to go is a great start and again, find books or articles to read about the best method for your child.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Sacramento on

Hello N.. I am not to sure what to say about the nursing because I was unable to nurse my daughter. As far as the potty training my daughter was around 2-3 when she was potty trained and she was in a toodler bed. It made it easier for her to get up out of her bed and go to the bathroom like a big girl with out having to tell me. Plus, in the middle of the night it made it alot easier for her to come into my room and wake me up to take her to the bathroom, instead of screaming from her room that she has to go potty. I do agree with you about not wanting to push to many things on her at once. You may want to wean her prior to the potty training because if you have to nurse her in order for her to sleep(nap), then she most likely will have an accident during her nap time, and you want to avoid that all together. Hope I was of a little help(I am a mother of an 8 year old).



answers from Las Vegas on

Hi N.! Sometimes they want to grow up faster then we want to let go!! It's great that Raven is doing so well with her maturing and at a yound age too!! Go Mom!!! If you feel it is time to end the nursing I would start there, it shouldn't be too difficult since she's only nursing at naptime! Try snuggling with a book before nap instead. This will give you both the closness desired and cuddles and a story are never a bad idea!! As for the potty, do you have a chair set up already? My girls both followed me to the bathroom from about 8mo. I had their chair set up in there so they could enjoy it diaper on. They knew early on what I was doing on the toilet, so they understood what their chair was for early on. Also a lot of potty issues come from a fear of the chair, so if you don't have one in the bathroom yet get one and just let her get used to seeing, sitting on it, looking inside of it, pouring water in it. All of this will eliminate the "scary" associated with the potty. She'll be going in no time!! As far as the bed, I think you are still okay for awhile. When you do transition, if you choose to use a totally new bed and have the space, leave the crib up for awhile, maybe let dolly sleep in there. Our kids have a very strong bond with their crib (they have spent most of their days in there, it's kinda a big deal!!) so keep it close for awhile! Good luck (as if you need it, sound like you are totally on the right track!!)



answers from Bakersfield on

Raven sounds smart and ready to go! i would suggest you start potty training-2 yo is about the right time to start. but start with the day time panties and the night time diapers. kids (especially girls) tend to do things on their own initiative-kinda like when they grow up...haha j/k. as far as her nap/sleep time toys-its important she feels comfort enough to sleep sound- she had her whole life to grow up...sometimes i feel we rush our children to grow up too much, then wonder why the act so grown, ya know? well, either way good luck and your family will be in my prayers.
God Bless.

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