June marks National Potty Training Awareness Month - believe it or not there is such a thing! So I thought it would be the perfect time to share how we've started the (often dreaded) journey of potty training Isabella. She's almost 15 months, which some may think is too early to properly start and it is for Isabella. She can't clearly communicate, isn't aware of when she is going to the toilet and doesn't understand the concept of going to the toilet. Despite all this we have been starting to do little things, in the hope that it will make the journey easier when the time is right.
The biggest thing we've been doing for a while now is letting Isabella sit on the 'big' toilet, with the hope that it will not seem like something scary. When we first sat her on the toilet she cried, which confirmed to us that we wanted to try and gradually make it a normal place for her to sit. Before bath time we sit Isabella on the toilet, using the Oxo Tot 2-in-1 Go Potty* (£20). It only took a week or so before she began to get used to it and feel safe. The first time we didn't use the Oxo Tot 2-in-1 Go Potty and the adult sized toilet seat only made the experience worse for her. I can only imagine the feeling of being held on the edge of a large hole you don't really understand, so I can't recommend enough using a child sized toilet seat like the Oxo Tot 2-in-1 Go Potty or Sit Right Potty Trainer Seat.
Personally I prefer the 2-in-1 Go Potty because it is designed to be used as a standalone potty with disposable bags (that have useful absorbent pads in to reduce the mess!) or as a potty seat on a toilet. The shield at the front helps to prevent splashes and the smooth surfaces make it easy to clean. I especially like that you get a travel bag included that you can pop the potty in when the legs are folded down. I've worked in a nursery in the past and I know the mess potty training can create, so anything that's going to make it easier has my full attention! When we do start properly potty training I know that having a potty with disposable bags will help make the process easier for us. The idea of cleaning out a potty with a number 2 genuinely scares me - the horrible potty training stories I could share from working in a nursery have traumatised me! Being able to just tie a bag up and pop it straight in the bin seriously appeals to me.
Another way we've been starting the potty training journey is by saying the relevant words when we can tell Isabella is going to the toilet...parents you know what I mean! You can just tell when your child is going to the toilet, so we'll say "are you doing a poo poo?" (sorry if you're eating!). We hope that she will start to associate those words with the motions her body is going through, so when she is ready to potty training she'll know how to communicate with us.
Do you have any early potty training tips?