Reason #4954 Parenting is Just the Best

Over the past week or two, we have slowly ventured into the parenting minefield known as potty training with Ferris. He usually goes on the potty in the morning and before bed, and maybe once in between. I was afraid we were heading into “waited too long” territory, but it finally started happening.

With Bowie, we were new parents and we started right when he turned 2, thinking that’s just when you started, that’s just how it worked. We’d put him on the potty every few hours, like a puppy, and give him a little treat when he went, and then in a few weeks he’d be all potty trained, just like that. Over and out.

Any seasoned parent reading this knows that’s not entirely how it goes. And with Bowie, it ended up being as easy and enjoyable as giving a dental exam to a hungry lion. And the journey that began when he turned 2 didn’t end until he was about to turn 4. There were many a day spent at home with him running around completely naked from the waist down so he could make a mad dash to the potty when he felt that urge. We gave more than one UPS guy the most interesting day of his career.

So, when it came to Ferris, we took a much more relaxed stance on the issue. We encouraged it, of course, but never forced it. Some days he was excited about it, some days not so much. But, it’s starting to work. He’s getting self-aware, knowing when he has to go, though he generally just tells us as he’s going, or shortly after. But, we’ll get there, slowly but surely. And then we wait for our good friend, regression.

But, it’s also been a good 3 years since we’ve really had to worry about the issue at all, and so much of it has been blocked out and tucked away in my subconscious to protect my sanity. I feel like we’re totally new at it again. I hesitate to use a reward system, because we have been showering him with praise whenever he’s successful, which he hates (a trait no doubt inherited from his mama).

So, what were your experiences like? Any pointers for anyone out there doing this for the first time? Any tried and true methods? What motivates a kid who hates praise?

As you can see, he’s having a blast with it, and giving us all that toddler respect for elders.

ferris on the throne


2 comments on “Reason #4954 Parenting is Just the Best

  1. You’re doing it right. Just relax. Boys are never in a hurry. Bert and Jeremy were both three before they took training seriously.

  2. Out of my 5 kids, NONE of them cared about using the potty until their 4th bday. They all knew what to do, but they just weren’t motivated. So after catching on to the pattern, (it took 4 kids), I decided I wasn’t going to let my youngest stress me out over this. So we waited. At about 3 and a half, I could bribe him with 2 jelly beans but soon decided he was just holding it and peeing 10 drops at a time to get more jelly beans. So we waited more. Then one day, he ran away before I could get a pull up on him. I totally got distracted with another child and forgot he was naked. When the urge hit, he just went. No fuss. He didn’t even know I saw him. I pretended I hadn’t and he went back to playing. I am all for praise,but sometimes it complicates things. For the next two months, he was naked from the waist down. He surprised several UPS men as well. While this was working well, there came a time when he needed to wear clothes again. So we got some VERY loose boxers and that worked well. Soon he was fully potty trained even at night. The only draw back to the naked method (besides disapproval from the inlaws) was that anytime he had clothes on outside of the house,he wouldn’t go on his own, but lucky for us, we stay home the majority of the time so eventually it worked itself out!

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