Toddler Potty Training

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    Potty training is the D day of toddlerhood: Moms venture forth, fearing the worst, while their little ones leave a trail of damage in their wake. Only it doesn't have to be a long, drawn-out horror story, says Heather Criswell, who's potty trained hundreds of kids and is the founder of On the contrary, "Potty training can actually be a breeze and take as little as three days to a week, tops," she says. The key is to avoid some common potty training mistakes that throw a wrench in the process. Make sure to steer clear of these misguided methods, and try these smart fix-its instead:

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    There's a miracle moment that comes for most parents in the toddler years: your child is finally potty trained. No more expensive diapers. No more stinky garbage. But then it happens. Your potty trained child starts having accidents, you're wondering: is there something seriously wrong with my child?

    Welcome to the stage known as potty training regression. First, some good news. According to family therapist Lindsey Hoskins, PhD, "potty regression can be frustrating and messy, [but] it is a relatively normal part of child development."

    So what can you do about it? Here's what the experts advise:

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    A lot of weird stuff comes out of our mouths when we become parents. And I'm not just talking the high-pitched baby voice we magically acquire once having a kid. I'm talking about the language we use; the nicknames and the synonyms. Water is no longer water, but instead wa-wa. The toilet is no longer the toilet, but instead the potty. And let's not even get into the non-universal, completely wacky words different families and kids use for various things.

    On second thought, let's.

    Suddenly started using completely immature, positively ridiculous terms for "pee" and "poo" once you had a kid? You're not alone! Here are 25 alternative potty words real families use. And, it's okay. Even though you're an adult, you can laugh.

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    Think your not-so-little one is ready to make the leap from diapers to a potty? Good for him! But moms and dads should know that potty training typically doesn't come without its share of challenges.

    To help parents make the transition from diapers to potty as smooth as possible, we talked to top experts on how they can overcome the 9 most common potty training hurdles.

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    Three options exist for me when my daughter needs changing, the car is too far, and there is no family bathroom. They include: (1) walking her by a bank of dangling adult penises, only to discover there's no changing table anyway; (2) risking arrest by entering a women's room myself; or (3) assigning a stranger to escort her inside, based on the theory that having female body parts makes one entirely trustworthy.

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    OMG. Out of all the challenges we go through as parents, potty training our kids has to be one of the toughest for sure. As much as we can't wait to finally kick the diapers to the curb -- let's just say our patience starts wearing a little thin when we have one failed attempt after another.

    Cleaning up pee gets pretty old after you've done it 20 times in one day. (And let's not even mention when they have an accident with number two.)

    But then when the day finally arrives when our kiddos finally get it -- we want to shout the fact that they're toilet trained from the rooftops (or Facebook).

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  • Mom Moment

    10 Wacky Potty Training Problems

    posted by Michele Zipp November 10, 2013 at 11:10 AM in Toddler
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    Oh the emotions that go into potty training! There is elation and set-backs -- celebration, maybe even some rewards, and frustration. For both child and mom and dad. But the greatest reward is not having to change another diaper or having to buy them. Sure, we may still be wiping butts, but as we all know a poop in the potty is neater than a poop in the pants or diaper. Over it! I cannot wait for the day I'm finally free.

    Until then, we all deal with these wacky potty training problems.

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    Potty training. It's a blessing and a curse for sure. On the one hand, it's all sorts of awesome once it's over with -- because diapers are basically hell on earth.

    But the actual process of toilet training your kid, however, can sometimes be enough stress to make you want to keep him in diapers for the rest of his life.

    I know that's how I felt during my first attempt with my son, when he was around 2-and-a-half years old. I swear I tried every method under the sun -- and he just wasn't getting it. And so I did what most frustrated parents of a toddler who won't pee on the potty do. I threw in the towel, assuming that it probably wasn't the right time and that he'd "learn eventually."

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    It's gross but true: Parents spend a lot of time talking about poo. Thinking about poo. Dealing with poo. The only people who obsess over poo more are just-potty-trained kids. Maybe. It's close. Anyway, if you enjoy a good bathroom joke, you will love this video of a 3 1/2-year-old talking to himself while on the potty. His mom helpfully provided subtitles so you can understand what he's saying through his toddler accent. You really need to hear/read this tear-inducing soliloquy on poo.

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  • Mom Moment

    I Let My Kids Pee in Public

    posted by Michele Zipp October 4, 2013 at 9:00 AM in Toddler
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    You think you have a good grasp on potty training until you leave the house and your kid has to pee. Some kids just can't hold their pee. Or maybe they have been holding it for so long and the urge to pee strikes just when you are far enough away from any kind of potty. Even when you've asked 74 times if anyone has to pee before you leave the house. I have twins who are not quite yet 4 and my daughter is just about all set with the potty training. My son, however, not so much. He's getting it (and getting it all over the place).

    So I do what any mom in my position would do. (Though I feel like I'm the only one sometimes.) I let my kid pee in public. Behind a bush. Next to a tree. In the dirt, all tidy like as best as can be. I figure dogs can do it, why can't kids? I know we're not animals, but when you're a kid and you have to go, you have to go.

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