A week ago today, we ventured into the 3 day weekend method of potty training. It was terrifying! All we knew was what we had read...
-let them be naked
-watch them like a hawk
-ask if they need to use the potty every 15-20 min (ALL DAY LONG)
-when you see they need to pee take them to the bathroom
-if they have an accident, rush them to the bathroom or nearest potty to hopefully finish their peeing there, or at least help them understand the connection of their peeing and using the potty
Yeah, yeah, I read all of these basic directions in every post I could find on the method. But nothing could tell me what my boys were really going to do or how they would handle the whole thing. Oh, and there is practically NO information out there on potty training twins!! Like, would we have been better off doing this one at a time, or is it better to bite the bullet and get it over with all at once? That's the method we took, bite the bullet! Let's get this overwith. After all, with twins there is often curiosity or jealousy of what each other are doing constantly. So telling them to do different things with their waste probably would only confuse or upset them.
So anyways, we went for it. All in, lets potty train both at once. Let's get this done! And to be honest, the first four or five days felt like I was trying to watch two movies at once. I was constantly on a stakeout, scoping back and forth between the boys watching, waiting, for accidents, unreasonably terrified of cleaning a little pee or poop when I've been changing double duty in diapers for the last year and a half. When I finally realized accidents were going to happen and they would learn from them, I got past the anxiety of them. Instead I was terrified of failing them. I needed to be there for them, both of them, the minute they needed to go potty, or I was not doing my job to help them through this milestone. That was probably the hardest part in this, the pressure from yourself and hearing how other people gave up or it didn't work for them. But I knew they could do this, and I could help them get there. It was just going to take time, and a whole lot of effort from all of us.
Day 1 was rough. We watched them like hawks. I'm so grateful I had my husband home with me for the long weekend to help me get used to the new normal. I think they peed 15 times in the first few hours. It was like they had no Rhyme or rhythm to their schedule. Surprise surprise... we put them in diapers that catch their pee and poop every day for a year and a half, get them used to soiling themselves all day, then suddenly expect them to be in control of their own bodily functions and it's like a never ending faucet. But it gets better. After that first day, when they started to understand their bodies were in control, they started holding it and letting it out more fully. By day 5 I was feeling much more confident, and so were they. They knew the drill. They had a lot more rhythm, and I no longer felt like I was going cross eyed watching them both like hawks. I learned their rhythm and signs. CJ is more willing to tell me when he needs to go, while Greyson needs to be watched. But that's okay. I will take 1 out of 2 in that! (Twin mom constant realization... one can do it??? Meaning I only have to struggle with the other one? GREAT!! better than both!! I'll take it! )
So the best advice I can give anyone attempting potty training at any age, twins or not, is to stay consistent. Get on a schedule, so they can come to rely on it, and feel comfortable.
Our schedule goes something like this:
- wake up
-take pajamas and pull-ups off (we are not nighttraining yet)
-put a shirt on
-milk & bananas
-naps (with pull-ups and pants)
-milk & stories
By the end of potty training days, I'm exhausted! It takes a lot of consistency and effort on your part. Between the scheduled potty times, you have to still be on watch and take them if they ask or need to go. But it's so worth it. I can already tell they're getting there!
We ran into a few bumps. Like, Greyson wanted to pee during meals, in his high chair. I guess he felt more relaxed while he ate, haha! So we improvised. We moved them to the dining table, and used their potties as booster seats. They loved it! It was mainly for our own sanity though, because I was sick of cleaning up accidents from the high chair and watching them leak down onto the carpet. Then I began to worry about creating a habit, and how we would break it. Ugh, more anxiety, haha it was never ending.
Fast forward one week, and after spending 7 days naked (nay nay-CJ or nay-neck-Grey) inside, we moved on to underwear today!!! I woke up at 4:30 and couldn't fall back asleep I was so nervous. I just was terrified they'd think it was a diaper and start peeing in it immediately! But 30 min passed and they hadn't had any accidents. Then, an hour, and I was feeling at ease, like they really got it. My morning speech had really sunk in. I thought I might be talking to a wall, but I still tried. I told them, "these are special Elmo pants, and we don't pee or poop in them. We still use the potty. Let mama know when you have to pee or poop." Then they got their underpants. Both of them clearly tried to continue using the potty and holding it in between. It was amazing, and I finally felt better about this whole potty training ordeal. They DO get it, and they ARE learning!
So we aren't out of the woods yet, but we are getting there and training two at once under the age of two IS possible!! Don't get me wrong. It's been hard work, and I never want to do this again!!! Baby number 3 can have her diapers til she's four, I could care less! But these two are on their way out, and I am not going back now!
Goals for the next few weeks:
1. Poop on the potty
2. Get out of the house
3. Continue using the potty all day everyday
4. Use the potty somewhere other than home
More updates to come!! I hope this helps anyone wanting to try potty training before age two, or potty training twins!