There are so many different potty training books out there, but my favorite are the ones written for children because we all need a sense of simplicity. What I found, as a mom, were the most important things to successfully jump start potty training was to support my partner as much as I could, remember that I couldn’t do it alone. Principals over techniques could help me to hold onto the potty training experience, and ultimately I imposed my own ownership of my potty training experience onto my child.
I found that children of course do respond to energy as well as techniques and patterning. There is no simple explanation for how a child potty trains themselves and there will be accidents along the way, but to keep it positive and myself as a secure role model we need to keep our relationship to shame in check. Shame can be a teaching tool but it should be kept to a minimum.
Drawing on a LPN practice question about the potty training reflex gave me insight into other areas of possible methods I could make up for me own… For example,
The latch key method- using triggers to help a person pee this is really about asking a child if they would like to “try,” to a degree. There are different ways of eliciting the potty training response or eliciting a reflex in someone who needs to go but may or may not be able to. Running water, having privacy, stroking the inner thigh. When you see for yourself that a child does not really respond to triggers like these it causes you to return to the “try,” question in order to develop their cognition around the concept more. Toddlers are curious testers and sometimes just asking if you want to try can be an important and ladder part of the picture creating momentum to have motivation towards intrinsicly being able to do something. Once a child has that first potty training experience they are physically capable of doing it but need to develop more congnition around the concept of a trigger, or something that can ultimately lead them to do it again.
Signs of readiness are also so important in potty training and can be something to draw on throughout the potty training experience. Remember what your child did that made you want to potty train in the first place? Whether that was being annoyed with a poopy diaper, saying I am peeing, asking mom or dad about peeing or pooping or something else can be something to draw on if your child hasn’t gotten the cognition part of potty training yet because this provides a motivation through natural consequence as you go about doing something. Starting potty training too early can be a barrier to potty training in my opinion unless you go about it in a way that is more exploratory and awareness based. Our first experience with the micturioun reflex can be our first experiences with safety or a sense of safety. Thus keeping a child to do some sort of over ride method like the idea of putting your hand in warm water can give a child a sense of lack of control later on. Tying a sense of safety to shame can also make a child to feel unsafe.
I found that cognition is important because it leads to behavior issues in other ways. I personally believe that all children are born good and we learn to be good or bad as part of experience. That is also why I like to draw on things that elicit the response of needing to go to the bathroom over giving someone a chance to control themselves later on. I think that having an override sense may help with pooping ability later on.
For me, potty training had to do with how a sense of privacy is provided to a child and that sense of privacy can have to do with security or mental health as well. Is privacy something your child is looking for? Or is it a delusion that they are trying to provide for themselves? Having awareness can be something as simple as a child having their feet on the ground when they are pooping, to as complicated as imagination about something.
If you keep things light, like only being in the bathroom for a short time their interest will grow and grow in their responsibility towards wanting to “go,” to the bathroom. You can talk a lot about wanting to “stop,” what they are doing and go to the bathroom but this will have no affect until it start transferring into other aspects of behavior in their life such as following directions.