...or whatever the so-called "experts" are calling it these days. I have to say that many moms, myself included are so stressed out by this process that we push aside our own instincts, grasping for whatever advice the experts or other moms have to give...regardless how inane it sounds!
I do not consider myself a potty-training expert by no means, but I do have experience in this area...I have three boys! Their ages are 6, 5, & 3. Of course the first two boys are potty trained now, thank goodness! But it wasn't easy. Nick was my first to train, and boy! was I ever lost! I employed the help of the preschool that he went to at the time...only because I was clueless, and nothing the "experts" told me worked. We started out slow...using pull-ups on the bus, and underwear in the classroom. It took Nick about 3 months before he finally "got it," and was able to make the one hour bus trip in underwear. It was a trying experience for all.
Stephen, my next son, was a bit easier. He followed his older brother's lead. They did everything together after all, and going pee in the potty was not excluded. So, basically, Nick taught Stephen how to pee in the potty. Pooping, on the other hand, was not so quick to come. (no pun intended! LOL) It took Stephen the better part of 6 months to sort that one out, and pooping in his overnite pull-up was the thing to do during this time period. It drove me nuts!
Then along comes Jake. The strong-willed, stubborn child. I thought to myself, "this will be a breeze!" NOT! When Jake turned 2, everyone, including the pediatrician, my neighbor, my mother, etc...were pressuring me to get him trained! SO, I went against my better judgement and started the process. I got pull-ups (which I now can tell you did not help Jake at all!), and the potty chair. I explained to Jake the process & that he would be a "big" boy now and be able to go to school, etc. Jake heard "blah, blah, blah..." All he did on the pot then was SCREAM! So, I waited another 6 months and tried again...same result. No, Jake did not care to be a "big" boy or even care about going to school. He did not want any part of that potty.
(And yes, I even tried sitting him on the toilet.)
This past January, I was getting a bit annoyed at the world, still pressuring me to have this kid in underwear. I was so stressed out about it. Then I just quit! I said "he will be trained when HE is ready." I talked with Jake about going potty, being a big boy, being able to go to school, no more diapers, etc. He was a little older now, so he actually got something out of the conversation. He saw a Diego potty in an ad, and wanted that potty sooooo bad! I told him that if we bought it, he would have to USE it. He said he would, and so we bought it, along with Deigo undies.
When we got home, he picked a day on the calendar to start. We stuck to it. The day came, and the underwear went on. I sat him on the potty, and said "this is where you need to pee and poop. Every time you pee, you get a sticker. after 10 stickers, you get a lollipop. If you poop, you get two stickers!" We were both excited! I had high hopes. (Later we changed that to a lolly every 5 stickers.)
After the first week of cleaning up pee on the floor, and poop out of undies, my high hopes crashed with a resounding bang! But I persevered. and so did Jake. He eventually got the idea about peeing. He started recognizing the signs that he had to go..and actually going to the potty. He made pee on the potty more often that not during the second week, and by the third week, no accidents! cool. The poop, however, was more difficult. When a child is used to pooping standing up behind a couch, it is difficult to all of a sudden change the way he poops. Lesson learned--mine!
Anyway, now Jake is peeing and pooping on the potty on a regular basis. And I have to say I am very surprised it took less than a month for him to get it. I am also very proud of him!
Yes, he still has accidents. But they are few. And, so far, none of those accidents have been poop. Mostly, it's because he is too busy playing to realize he has to pee. He runs to the potty, only to stand in front of it and pee.
So, to all of you moms out there yet to potty train, have faith in yourself, and your child. You will both get it together, and your child will not be wearing diapers to kindegarten!!