Posted by Duff

It seems like a long time ago that I posted this about how I was having a hell of a time potty training The Dervish.

Since this topic seems to be on a lot of our readers’ minds lately (and still on mine, based on what I spent on regular and overnight diapers for Atticus earlier today), I thought I’d post a follow up on what wound up working for The Dervish.

Here’s the big secret: She just had to be ready. About three weeks after I posted about feeling like a failure because I couldn’t get The Dervish to regulate her bodily functions on my terms, she began peeing on the potty. When I wasn’t looking. And just when I thought the girl who frequently became painfully contipated because she refused to poop – anywhere – she took it upon herself to start using the potty for that, too. And hasn’t been constipated since. This, after years of suppositories and gummy softeners and grape-flavored tongue-tabs. And a window into what it will be like if I witness her giving birth.

I know the second phase of training seems to be a hurdle for many of us, even if the first phase goes quickly and easily for a newly-two-year old. I assumed that would be the case for us, but it seems like The Dervish decided to reserve training for when she could do all of it at once and cut out the accident phase. I’m annoyed with myself now that I harped on her getting started for so long, because eliminating the accidents made the whole deal, once she was ready, countless times easier than I’d imagined.

(Note: if your previously trained child has a setback, particularly during sleep, it might be a growth spurt. Little bladders find it hard to keep pace with growing limbs. You may find that after a night accident, ankle-length leggings have suddenly turned capri, and it’s not your dryer’s fault).

I’ll take it way easier on Atticus, that’s for sure.  Buddy Bear, you sure are lucky your sister has paved the way.

That’s what worked for us – a willing participant, and very little fanfare for a ‘job’ well done.  That’s just her way.

But, you might not want to wait until your child is three to get this going, and your Dervish might be ready long before ours was.  If your child is letting you know when s/he has to go to the bathroom, wants privacy during the process and consistently keeps diapers dry overnight,  you could be there. Google “Potty Training Boot Camp” and you’ll find a lot of tips and 3-day plans that can work for a ready and willing child.

 I learned the hard way that sometimes their bodies are ready before their minds are able to process the enormity of the transition from baby to big kid, and that disconnect is where my frustration came in. If I can spare anyone the ridiculousness of the stand off that occured in our home, I’m happy to.  Because if I had just let The Dervish come to it on her own terms, I wouldn’t have embarrassing memories of the two of us with our hands on our hips, glaring.

Here’s some great (professional) information about potty training and setbacks.

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