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  • Writer's pictureChristine McCarty

Potty Training

I have been anxiously waiting to post about potty training for months now, but I needed to make sure we (Addy and I) were successful in this area. I can now say (after almost eight years) WE ARE! I am so proud of her as I know this task was not easy. You see, she is low tone and often would not feel or be aware that she needed to go. On top of that, she had a hard time using muscles associated with bowel movements. This all took patience, discipline, and time (more on my part) to accomplish this major milestone.


So, you might be asking how did she do it? Outlined below are some of the obstacles as well as solutions we encountered through this long and rewarding journey.


Not being aware

This was a key finding that made all this possible…Addy not being aware that she needed to go to the bathroom. So instead, we made the clock her potty awareness friend. Meaning, first we started setting the timer every 10-15mins to bring her to the bathroom. Once we established a pattern/behavior when it came to using the potty, we gradually extended the time to 30, an hour to two hours and every hour until about four hours. Once we hit the four-hour mark, she went from having an accident every day (multiple times a day) to once every week. As for bowel movements, no one tells you this, but what helped her was showing/pushing on those muscles we all use to go #2! A mom’s got to do; what a mom’s got to do! One more tip, she often refused to sit on the potty. We made it a game and gave her a sticker for every time she went on the potty!


Accidents

These are going to happen. Just accept it. Getting angry or frustrated does not help. Trust me I’ve walked that path! The one thing that was productive was telling her we were disappointed that she didn’t make it to the potty or didn’t try. She loves to make us proud, so we used that to our advantage. I know that may seem harsh, but for her to function in society, she needed to be potty trained. Between the clock, praise, stickers and not wanting to disappoint us…fingers crossed, I think we’re finally there!


Over night

Saving the hardest for last! Addy was almost seven before she was able to sleep through the night without a diaper. This was more on me than her. I was afraid that she wasn’t ready, but she was, and I was enabling her by giving her a diaper every night! She knew (they always know) that the diaper was there (like a safety blanket), so she only pooped at night when the diaper was on. It wasn’t until I stopped putting the diaper on at night that it started to click.

A couple of other tricks that made this transition work. I gave her no fluids an hour before bed. Eventually, this stopped, but for the first couple of months it worked. Then I always forced her to go potty right before bed, no matter how much she resisted. This was a game changer but took a ton of patience and willpower (on my part).


The one thing to remember is if it’s meant to be it will happen. Like all things in life, you just need patience, belief, and time!


Much love,

Raising Addy

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