I thought I would write a blog to update people on where we are at with toilet training Isla. It’s probably one of the most asked questions that pops into my Instagram messages so here goes for those who are interested to know.
I started to sit Isla on the potty when she was about 5 months old as that’s when she experienced her first bout of constipation and I found she went a lot easier and quicker on the potty than she did in her nappy. Because she was constipated it was very obvious when she was trying to go to the toilet and therefore I knew exactly when to stick her on the potty. Eventually the constipation passed but putting her on the potty became a habit as when she was around a year old she started to signal when she needed to go and seemed to only want to go on the potty and no longer in her nappy.
Every time she used the potty we made sure to congratulate her by using lots of positive words and inforcements that she understands e.g. good girl, well done etc and we would clap our hands and sing happy songs to make the experience positive and rewarding. I think because we started to train her when she was very young we have had an easier ride as unlike older children and toddlers she couldn’t get up and walk away and now that she is able to, she doesn’t because that’s not what she has been used to doing for the last year or so.
It has been 8 months now since Isla last went for a no2 in her nappy. There have been very few occasions when we are out or she is heavily distracted that she might start to go in her nappy but this rarely happens. She is now 22 months old and will say ‘Isla poo poo toilet’ when she needs to go. She recently had a sickness bug and even throughout feeling ill she would grab my hand and take me to the toilet when she needed to go.
We transitioned to using the toilet from the potty when I first fell pregnant as I found it too uncomfortable sitting on the floor with her for long periods at a time. She can take anything from 10-30 minutes and has always wanted me to sit with her so I decided moving her to the toilet where she is higher up and I could comfortably sit on a stool in front of her was a better option for us both. Its also far less messy and means I don’t have to carry a potty around when we are out as she is used to going on a toilet. I’ve taught her to wipe her ‘noonie’ and she will always wash her hands at the sink afterwards. These are things she sees myself and James doing (we aren’t shy!) and so she loves to copy us and revels in the excitement of doing something she thinks is an adult task.
We use a toilet seat which I purchased from Ikea £5, linked here.
She finds it super comfortable and it means I can safely leave her sitting on the toilet and wait in the next room waiting for her to tell me she’s finished. Dunelm sell a really discrete family toilet seat which I think is super handy but as Isla is used to the Ikea seat I’m abit hesitant to change it up. Here is a link to the Dunelm seat.
We haven’t yet mastered doing a wee on the toilet. A few months back when I wasn’t so heavily pregnant and had a lot more energy I tried her in some knickers for a few hours to see how we got on and it was very messy! I soon ran out of energy (and knickers!) and decided to put a nappy back on her. She wet herself three times in an hour and bless her each time it happened she had tried to get to the toilet but didn’t make it in time and couldn’t hold it. I had tried to explain to her to tell me when she needed a wee so I could help her to the toilet but I think she was too young to understand.
I was hoping to have her completely dry during the day before baby no2 arrives but I think that’s abit optimistic now. I’m too heavily pregnant and my body aches too much to be carrying her to and from the toilet multiple times a day and maybe I’m lazy but getting down on the floor at 9 months pregnant and clearing up wee is beyond my capability!
Myself and James have decided that once the weather turns and it’s set to stay nice for a few weeks we will do it then when she can roam around at home (mainly in the garden) without a nappy on. She will be slightly older and more likely to understand that she needs to tell us when she needs a wee. James is usually around at home slightly more in the summer too so that means an extra pair of hands on deck to help me!
I will keep you posted.
Lots of love