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  • 5 Things No One Tells You About Potty Training: 'Prepare For Poop On The Couch'

    It's an exciting milestone, but it won't be easy for everyone!
    by Kitty Elicay .
5 Things No One Tells You About Potty Training: 'Prepare For Poop On The Couch'
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  • Potty training is a toddler milestone that is always a hot topic for moms — many look forward to the day their little one shows signs of readiness so they can finally say goodbye to dirty diapers. But while you might hear of celebrities like Solenn Heussaff training their babies starting at six months (read how she did it here) or moms who succeeded in less than a week (read it here), the reality is that potty training isn’t that easy for everyone.

    What no one tells you about potty training

    Parents should learn to set their expectations when their baby’s journey to toilet training finally starts. Here are a few things you need to know that isn’t often told to moms.

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    1. Potty training doesn’t make life easier.

    Yes, you’d be ditching diapers after years of nappy changes ‘round the clock, but you’d also have to deal with a toddler who needs to go right now. According to Mayo Clinic, one sign a child is ready for toilet training is if he can stay dry for up to two hours. This means his bladder muscles have developed enough for him to hold his urine.

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    But of course, this doesn’t always mean that you won’t be dealing with mess along the way. While changing dirty diapers can wait a minute or two, a toddler undergoing potty training will need close supervision so he or she can make it to the toilet in time.

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    2. Mastering going to the toilet on their own doesn’t happen right away.

    While some parents start potty training as early as six months to nine months old (read how Vietnamese moms do it here), each child hits the milestone at their own pace. Some can master it in as little as three days while it can take up to a year for others. If you have a stubborn toddler or if he is not yet ready, no amount of stickers or rewards can convince him to learn potty training in less than a week.

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    3. Accidents will happen.

    Mom Jane Alcovindas-Carriveau, who was able to potty train her 2-year-old daughter in less than a week, admits that potty training isn’t as smooth-sailing as she expected it to be. “We were so ready to give up yesterday when she ended up pooping on the couch!” she shared.

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    What worked for them was to teach their daughter about rewards and consequences. “We made a chart where she can place her stickers to keep track of her ‘achievements,’” Jane shared. “When she pees or poops in other places, she doesn't get a sticker. When she pees or poops elsewhere but was able to make it to the toilet before she 'ends' her journey, sticker is dependent on how bad the mess was.”

    As you can see, no matter how well your child is doing with potty training, expect accidents or slip-ups to happen any time. So be patient!

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    4. Your little one might master peeing before pooping.

    On our parenting community, Smart Parenting Village, one mom was concerned that her 2-year-old daughter went back to pooping in the diaper after being able to successfully do it in the toilet. But it isn’t uncommon for a toddler to learn how to pee and poop really quickly then suddenly refuse to go to the bathroom after a while.

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    They may be scared of the toilet, experiencing constipation, or they might be more comfortable peeing than pooping (read more possible reasons here). But no matter what, all you need is a whole lot of patience, words of encouragement, and reassurance that you’ll be there throughout the process.

    5. It will happen eventually.

    Don’t worry too much if your child still cannot master going to the toilet on their own by age 3 or 4. There is no need to rush. One mom in our Village shares, “Ako ‘di na nag-potty train kasi feeling ko darating din naman ‘yun naturally. And it did. My son was 3 when he said, ‘mommy, wiwi ako.’ So I bought him a nice urinal. He’s been peeing na sa banyo since then. Just recently tinanggal ko na diaper niya sa gabi.”

    She adds, “Don’t worry too much! Hanggang XXL ang size ng diaper. Hehe.”

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    Want to potty train but don't know where to start? Click here for some expert tips.

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