Painting With Poop: How I Knew My Child Was Ready to Start Potty Training

Yesterday I posted about our adventures at the state fair. Well, she fell fast asleep on the way home because we were out during her nap time. We put her down as soon as we got home and she went to sleep with no problems. Later that night before I went to bed I checked on her to see if she was comfortable in her bed. I was NOT expecting to see what I saw: Poop. Everywhere.

Luckily I found it before we went to bed so Steele was able to help me clean it up. If I had found it after he went to work and I had to do it by myself I probably would have completely broken down.

What was interesting is that after she had taken her diaper off she seemed to have tried to clean herself off. Besides her bed, the only place that was messy was where we keep the extra diapers and wipes. We think that she tried to change her own diaper, and when she decided she couldn’t do it she went back to bed.

Lately she’s been taking off her diapers or waddling around when she’s wet. We were waiting for my mom and sister to leave before starting potty training. So here’s what I’ve learned about how to tell if your child is ready to be potty trained:

Potty Training

This list is from Huggie’s Pull-Up website, and I found it to be pretty complete.

Look for these signs in your child if you think they might be ready:

  1. Stays dry for at least two hours
  2. Is dry after a nap
  3. Is uncomfortable in soiled diapers
  4. Shows increased interest in the bathroom
  5. Asks to use the toilet or potty chair
  6. Has regular and predictable bowel movements
  7. Asks to wear Big Kid or “grown up” underwear
  8. Uses words or body language when he or she needs to go
  9. Follows simple verbal directions
  10. Walks to and from the bathroom, helps undress his/herself

Your child doesn’t have to show ALL of these signs, just a good portion of them. If you try to potty train your child before they’re ready, you will be wasting your time. I’ve worked with children long enough to know that it is extremely frustrating to potty train children who just don’t care, so save yourself the frustration.

In all of my research I saw so many “Potty Train in 3 Days!” or “Potty Train at 18 Months!”

If your child can potty train that quickly or that early, more power to you! But, it’s important to realize that if your child is like the average child, it can take an average of 8 MONTHS! So hang in there! It’s a slow process!

I’ll keep you updated on our potty training adventure! So far Emma loves to sit on the potty, but doesn’t realize that she needs to pull her pants down first!

How have you conquered potty training? What tips do you have for me and other moms out there? Comment below to let me know!



4 thoughts on “Painting With Poop: How I Knew My Child Was Ready to Start Potty Training

  1. I found it was just all trial and error for us! We tried everything between regular underwear, training underwear (thicker), diapers and pull ups. And rewarded from 1 to 2 to 3 stickers depending on what happened. When that got boring for him I threw in smarties, dum dums, m&m’s, “special” fruit snacks (favorite characters). We would also call Gma or Gpa or daddy and leave messages, if we had to, to praise it and make it soo exciting. Haha
    And yes… EVERY kid is different! It was a little frustrating to me for a little while, seeing kids (whether older or younger than H) train quicker and sooner than H had started and lasted training. But learning to just ignore it and just to have patience with the timing in all of it, helped me! It certainly helps the issue when they are ready and willing to do it, instead of “pushing” them through it ­čśë Good Luck!!


  2. Soo….you would think I would be a prove at potty training! I tried 3 separate times to potty train Beckett! Haha the first time I did stickers and once he got so many stickers he could have some juice! That seemed to work but I was pregnant and tired so I went back to diapers! Then the second time I used candy! He got an m&m everytime he went pee and 2 or 3 went he went poop! I was also reminding him constantly! Then he broke his arm and we went back to diapers! Ugh! Third times the charm right? So now he is potty trained with accidents every once in a while! So my advice is to stick with it! It’s frustrating for the first couple weeks! Trust me I called my mom crying multiple times! But also taking them every 15 mins will help them get used to the idea! Soo good luck! It’s a lot of work but totally worth it!


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