Use These Potty Training Incentives To Achieve Toiletting Triumph


My girl likes to potty all the time, potty all the time, potty all the tah-hime! Well, NOW she does anyway. For the first 51/2 years of her life she wasn’t on board with the whole toilet sitch. 


Potty training ANY child takes time and patience and patience. Did I mention patience? Potty training a child with developmental delays is even more “special.” 
I wrote about past Herculean efforts to get this girl out of diapers and into some stylin’ Dora underpants here (tricks like these generally work wonders for most kids). Alas we tried, we failed, and we did a sh*t load of laundry. She just wasn’t ready.

Over the Christmas holidays we tried again. This time instead of sinking into the bowels of hell, we were triumphant.

It’s slightly ridiculous, but here’s what worked:

We choose a quiet week where we would be at home most of the time.

I told Avery there were lots of babies who needed diapers and asked if it would be okay to give them hers? Of course, she said NO!  This girl has a serious Pull-Up addiction. When I hid her diapers anyway, she tore the house apart looking for them. Finally, convinced her diapers really had gone to some random baby, she stopped looking for them.

We made a trip to the store and stocked up on special “big girl” underwear.

I bought several boxes of Skittles to use as rewards. I would have paid her off in cold hard cash if that was motivating for her. Fortunately, Skittles are cheap and highly motivating for my sweet-toothed kid. Also fortunate, Skittle rhymes with piddle so I was able to say, “Let’s go piddle for a Skittle.”  Upon hearing THAT for the first time, my husband shook his head and said, “Does everything have to rhyme?”  To which I answered, “Are you new here…dear?!”

I set my iPhone alarm/”Tinkle Timer” to go off every 20 minutes from the time she woke up until bedtime (she still wears a Pull-Up over night). I set the ringer to “trill” simply because it was the chime that most sounded like tippy toeing off to the toilet. When it went off I’d exclaim, “Tinkle time! Let’s do this thing!” Oh dear god, my husband is right, what IS my problem? FYI — dropping everything to run to the bathroom every 20 minutes, ALL day, is annoying but so worth the effort.

On day two, the “Tinkle Time Alarm” was set for every 30  minutes. By day three, we no longer needed the alarm and waited for her cues. 

Are there still a few moist moments here and there? Yes.

Was Avery ridiculously proud and excited to return to school after the holidays wearing big girl underpants? YES!!!!!

This tremendous accomplishment wasn’t easy for her, but she did it! If we can do this, I can’t wait to see what amazing milestone she’ll reach next!

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