Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Potty Training Twin Boys - It's not twinposibble, afterall!

All undies, all the time.
It's been a while (again).  I say that a lot, don't I?

Twin boys and potty training. Ugh.  I was seriously starting to think that my little Drew and Dubs would each be hauling a diaper bag off to college, (preferably a paid-for-by-two-full-scholarships sort of college).  We started getting them both familiar with the concept of using a potty around 18 months and we are just now reaping the benefits of not buying diapers and Desitin just weeks away from their turd birthday. (Sorry, couldn't resist).

By getting familiar with, I mean with potty books and the actual potty (read: 47 potties):  The adult potty, the toddler potty, the tiny seat that goes on the big potty, portable seats, outside in nature (yes, I have boys), everything. You name it, we have it. I swear, I have at least 7 potties in addition to the two that came bolted to the floor of our house.  We've tried them all.  What ended up working?  The permanent fixtures in the house. That's right. You turd me.  (Now that one was just too easy).

Andrew was first to succeed, but what we didn't know (18 months ago) was that we just had to wait until HE was ready...  I wouldn't believe this unless it actually happened.  And it did.  Andrew decided for us when it would happen all on his own.  About 18 months of on and off, very stressful "trying to potty train" and one day, out of the blue, the kid just decided "today is the day."  It was wonderful. (Insert angelic voices, here).

Throughout this adventure, I've learned how difficult it is to have a mom (and/or dad), second sibling and three dogs all in a tiny bathroom at the same time.  Distraction, distraction, distraction.  I decided to weigh my efforts more towards the child that seemed to have the hang of it instead of trying to train both at once. WAY EASIER, and Wesley wasn't jealous  at all, (Just like his daddy, not an ounce of competitiveness).  We always called him in after to help us wave 'bye-bye' to our flushable friend(s), but one at a time was the way to go for us.  Give this a try if your are struggling with two at once.

Wesley is now (finally) getting the hang of things, but that 'light switch' hasn't been flicked quite yet.  We are in the constantly-reminding-him-to-stay-clean-and-dry phase, and sometimes he'd rather continue to play then take a needed potty break.  That being said, I'm refusing to buy any more diapers and still have a brand new pack that I'm not planning on busting open any time soon.  All undies, all the time. (Pull-Ups at night, but that's a whole other can of worms).  Now that I see how things went with Andrew, I'm trying to stay as positive as possible with Wesley, even though their approaches to the concept are different.  When an accident happens, I have him remove his clothes and after he visits the potty, he helps me clean the area he messed in.  No yelling, no judgements, just matter-of-factly.  You made this mess, kid... you clean it.

There is hope out there. We didn't find hope in a toddler potty, or by using Cheerios as targets.  We found it by sitting backwards, "making as many bubbles as possible" and by categorizing the end product, (Ex: "Wow! You made a dinosaur/crocodile/daddy-{yes, daddy}-sized poop!")  ...and a sticker or M&M work well, if you're into bribery!  Do some research for new and fun ideas if the ones you are trying aren't working.

Hang in there.   I truly think we give them the guidance they need, but it is up to them when it happens.  Stay positive (so diffucult, but sooo important), be prepared to do some extra laundry and buy stock in Lysol wipes.  The day will come when they are ready for it and you'll be their biggest cheerleader.


  1. This story sounds really similar to ours. Baby A, at 27 months, surprised me by taking off her diaper and saying she wanted to use the potty. I hadn't even mentioned it at that point (I was still trying to plot my strategy!). At the time, Baby B was completely uninterested. I let her go at her own schedule, and at 33 months, she told me she didn't want to wear diapers anymore. And there you have it!

    If you'd asked me before this experience, I would have said I wanted to "train" both girls at the same time to "get it over with". I only have these two kiddos to draw from, but they very much led the show, and I'm actually very thankful they trained at different times. Even with them being what I consider "very easy", it still took a lot of hands-on attention during that first week or so, and I can't imagine trying to do that times two!

    Congrats on no more diapers! Pretty amazing, isn't it?!

    (And I laughed at you having to undress your duo in public potties...you get some sort of medal for that, I hope! ;) )

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