22 November 2013, by Mandy Loh

Potty training…take 2!

I just realised I had never updated everyone that after about 3 weeks of potty training in July, we had put the entire thing on hold, because it just wasn’t progressing well. He was resistant to going to the toilet at regular intervals, and ended up having so many accidents that we concluded he probably wasn’t ready yet.

So we took a break for a couple of months until now. In fact, it was at a parent-teacher meeting just 2 days ago, that his playschool teacher suggested that we tried potty training again. I was a bit hesitant, as the previous experience had been rather challenging, to say the least, but I agreed that it was worth a shot now that Cristan is older and probably able to understand what was required of him better.

There had also been gradual signs that he was ready to try again. Although we went back to pull-up diapers, we kept encouraging him to go to the toilet, especially to poo-poo. The good thing is, about 80% of the time, he would be able to let us know in advance that he needed to poo. It was the pee that had been very tricky. Recently however, he was able to tell me he needed to pee, and actually pulled down his pants and diapers, sit on his potty, and pee, all on his own! I was amazed! Granted, it had only happened twice, but I take it as a very good sign that he’s finally “getting it”.

And so, yesterday morning I told Cristan we were ready to go back to big-boy underpants, packed tons of extra underpants and shorts in his school bag, and sent him off to school without diapers! When I picked him up, the teacher was beaming as she told me the wonderful news that Cristan did not have any accidents at all! In fact, he even managed to hold his pee for a while (as the toilet was occupied when he needed to go) and still successfully peed in the toilet! Hooray! I almost did a happy dance right there and then!

Unfortunately, the happiness was short-lived. Almost immediately after we got home, Cristan had an accident! But oh well, I suppose this is part and parcel of potty training. There will be accidents along the way. I just have to grit my teeth and be prepared for some more mopping and wiping in the days to come.

To alleviate my own anxiety, I’ve decided that in addition to naps and night-time sleep, I would also put him in diapers during longer car rides. It just seems like a smarter thing to do than constantly worrying about whether he would have an accident in his car seat. Besides, when you’re stuck in a traffic jam, it really isn’t the toddler’s fault that he cannot hold his pee in for long!

But now the question is, should I put him in diapers when he attends a kiddy birthday party this weekend? I’m almost certain that he would have an accident or two when he’s engrossed in play. Or during his school’s Christmas concert next week? Perhaps stage fright would trigger an accident right in the middle of his performance. Yet if we keep putting him in diapers, he’d get confused and probably stall the potty training process. So what shall I do? Advice and tips most welcome!


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Posted on : November 22, 2013

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Mandy Loh


December 2nd, 2013 at 10:56 am    

Hi Anthony, thanks for reading! ๐Ÿ™‚ We’re still in the process and will update everyone when I find out what works best for Cristan’s potty training!


December 2nd, 2013 at 9:44 am    

Hi. It’s been fun reading your article. It was really interesting for me, and was really helpful with my needs. Maybe you could research more on this and all other topics you share in your blog. I would love to share what you’ve found to us in the future at my blog site. Keep it up!

Mandy Loh


November 25th, 2013 at 12:38 pm    

Hi Kristen,

Thanks so much for your tips! Yeah its true, Cristan views pull-ups just the same as diapers, and they’re more expensive than the regular diapers, so perhaps we will stop using them!

I’ve been using a star chart system with a small present/ reward given after every 5 stars. He now badgers me for presents every time he successfully uses the toilet though, haha!


November 24th, 2013 at 12:32 am    

Hi Mandy,

We too abandoned potty training with our youngest when we realised it was just too soon. He didn’t understand the signals, couldn’t communicate with us when he wanted to go and it was just a hot mess of wee, extra laundry and carpet stains!!! We’ve started again with much more success though. Fingers crossed he’ll get there before puberty ๐Ÿ˜€ ๐Ÿ˜€

I wouldn’t worry about putting Cristan in diapers occasionally – you would probably still have a diaper on him at night, right? So it shouldn’t confuse him too much. I definitely use them for long journeys and going out where I know toilets are few and far between (e.g. park/public transport). Slowly but surely, he’s learning the distinction that he can pee in the diaper but not in the big boy pants! Reward charts help, bribery by marshmallow also works wonders!

The only thing I’d say is to perhaps ditch pull ups? I know with all three of mine, pull ups are the one thing that have confused the process – we are telling them they must treat them like pants but they can wee in them as well? Best to cut out the middle man I say ๐Ÿ™‚

Anyways, hope that helps and you both finally get there – best of luck x x x

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