Thursday, May 16, 2013

Life With Twins---Potty Training Take 4

We've been a pretty big failure as far as potty training goes, so please take my words with that in mind. Everyone always says that it's hard and especially if you have a boy. I'm here to tell you that potty training twins is no picnic. I've wanted to throw in the towel countless times and resign myself to the fact that they'll be in pull-ups forever. I've done more laundry, outfit changes, and throwing away of soiled undies than I really ever thought possible. We've done naked days that seemingly turn into weeks. 

The one giving me the hardest time is Naomi. The Girl.
I think it's mostly because she's stubborn and want to do things in her own time. 
Peeing in a potty when you want her to---no way. 

Here's where she really tricked us: For about three weeks, we thought she was potty trained. And then she decided she wasn't interested anymore. We tried everything. We had potty candies, naked days, lots of celebrating, and even some time outs for accidents. 
Nothing worked. What was hardest was when one was "getting it," the other child was having accident after accident. Then they would switch. It's really enough to make you a little crazy & Mark and I talked a lot about why it felt so much harder than with our eldest. 

Then we got real about how we weren't really being consistent enough. We would stretch the reminders too far. We didn't have potty breaks built into the routine and just thought they'd go when needed. We dropped off using the potty candies too quickly and just trusted they were done. Obviously they weren't done. So we started over. We built in breaks and started using the potty candies again. EVERYTIME. I even carry some in my purse for away from home potty breaks.
For my kids, one piece of candy does magical things.

The new thing that we started was a treasure box. I filled it with Dum-Dums, stickers, Smarties, toy dinos and other $1 store treats. Any time they poop in the potty they get a treasure. Creating that treasure box was a genius move.
Who knew that my kids would do almost anything for a Dum-Dum?

I'm not ready to say that we've got it totally figured out, but it's been a little over two weeks and we've had very little accidents. In fact, both kids are sleeping diaperless at night too---a decision they made on their own. I just make sure and wake them up for a quick potty trip before I get in bed.

In writing this up, I wanted to be the voice of imperfection about potty training. I've seen and heard too many things lately about how easy it was, and so and so practically trained themselves. At first, I had a pity party and declared myself the worst mother ever.
Then I realized that I'm in a whole different world than most mommas. Doing anything with two kids is just going to be different and sometimes harder. I've got two very independent and headstrong little people to tend to. We've got to be kinder to ourselves and realize that parenting is an imperfect system filled with all sorts of bumps in the road.
Potty training is one of those bumps that hopefully we'll soon be over. 


laura kate said...

Eesh. That does not sound fun.

Though I'm not yet a mama, I did have the joy of helping to potty train a 2 year old the summer I was 15. I babysat 50 hours a week and became the "meanest" when I got to be the one put the mom's rules into play (aka: no more pull-ups or diapers, etc.). I joined that little gal toward the end of her potty training journey, though, so didn't have to deal with too much trouble. That aspect of parenting is something I am 100% NOT looking forward to!

Good luck! And yay for treasure boxes! Are your little ones into stickers? I have learned as a teacher that 4-6 year olds will do nearly anything for a tiny sticker. :p

Denise said...

Stickers are a good treat too! Dum-dums are still winning though!! ;)