Having been all the way down the road of potty-training once before, I've heard my share of advise. While I know most advise comes with the best of intentions, I fully believe in only listening to about 50% of it at the most! (ah, parenting advise... a topic for a whole lot of blog posts... but not this one!).
One memorable piece of advise regarding potty training, seems to be regarding the use of Pull-Ups. You know Pull-Ups right? The diaper/underwear combo, that go on like underwear to make the kid feel like a "big kid" but that protect like a diaper. The majority of parents I know (or at least who have commented to me on this topic) seem to feel that pull-ups just allow the kid to keep peeing in their pants, and don't force them to learn what happens when they pee in their undies. Most of these parents I have talked with, agree that it's just better to cut to the chase, put the kid in undies, and let them learn thru trial and error that they have to learn to hold it, and then go to the potty. This happens to be part of the 50% of advise I'm willing to listen to. Use pull-ups rarely if at all.
For Trevor, that was the case. He didn't think pull-ups were undies, he thought they were diapers. And he didn't care that the designs faded, or that they felt wet (his cloth diapers usually felt wet!). Trevor was also a peach of a child to potty train. I knew he was ready to learn, as he would come up and tell me, "Mommy, I peed/pooped while I was playing trains." Then when I asked him when he would start wearing underwear (he was just about 2 3/4) he said (oh so logically), "When I run out of diapers." And pretty much that was it. He 'ran out' of diapers that weekend (I didn't wash the cloth and I took away the 'sposies) and he looked around the room, and then put on undies. He wasn't instantly trained, but he was willing to try and practice and learn. It took him a few months to completely get it, but right from that moment, he was trying. During the early part of the training process, if we were going out, I put him in a pull-up. Sometimes he used the potty, other times he didn't. But he still knew when he peed and could tell me.
I also knew, as Trevor completed potty-training in a few short months, with few roadblocks... That I couldn't expect to be lucky twice. I KNEW that as similar as my boys were (and are!), I was probably going to get what was coming to me (a royal pain in the @$$) when it came to training Blake. Why then do I stress so much about it?
Anyway... the point of this post. We've been down the potty-training road with Blake before, wish some success and quite a bit of failure. At hubby's request, we started again on B's 3rd birthday. Both of us agreed that he seems to be the kind of kid who will believe he can do it simply because he's 3 now! Well, it's been relatively positive so far. It has not been completely successful, and we've had our share of fights and issues, but we're doing much better than a few months ago. And heck a week later, we're still trying and succeeding!
In part, I think this is due to the, "I am 3" mentality that we are pushing at Blake... about everything, not just potty training.We've raised our expecations (just slightly) and we keep pointing out to him, "You're a big boy, you're 3 now". At the same time, I think the fact that this is not an entirely new concept is also helpful-he knows what we expect, what he needs to do, and what it feels like to sit on the potty etc. Knowing Blake, that's a very good thing. It may even by helpful that he starts pre-school next week.... Big Boy! He doesn't have to be trained for school, but we keep telling him that all the big kids who go to school use the potty, and he REALLY wants to go to school with Trevor.
So.... yesterday, we got up and had plans to go out, so I put Blake in a pull-up. I asked him to go potty before we left, and he did. I reminded him to keep his pull-ups dry, and he said he would. He has previously kept them dry for a 5 hour period while we were out... major progress. He prefers to hold it, than use a big potty (something we'll deal with eventually!). So we went out, he kept them dry, he came home and went pee on the little potty. He napped, stayed dry, and so kept wearing the pull-up since he already had it on. He wore that one pull-up all day, and itwas DRY at bedtime! Holy Smokes!! He stayed dry an entire day (and in a pull-up no less). Celebration ensued with ice cream and lots of kisses!
This morning, we got up, and when given a choice, he put on a pull-up vs. underwear. Fine with me. We reminded him during the day to keep it dry, and had him go potty (at our request) a few times. Fine, dry through lunch time. At nap, he pooped in the pull-up (this is no surprise!), so when he got up, we got out a new pull-up. Nope, he says "I want undies". Fine with me (great even...maybe we're making progress). In the next 2 hours, he pees in 2 pairs of undies and pants. So we go back to pull-ups.... and he stays dry from then until bed time! What the HECK!???! I have such weird children!!! He just likes to be different/difficult??? I don't get it!!