Stress-free Potty Training

Stress-free Potty Training

A Commonsense Guide to Finding the Right Approach for your Child

Book - 2016
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Successful potty training begins with the approach that is right for your child. Is your toddler frightened of the process, afraid even to go near the bathroom? Or does he or she seem to know when it's time to go, but can't quite make it there in time? This insightful guide helps take the stress out of the situation. The book distinguishes between common childhood personality types, providing simple strategies tailor-fit for your child, whether he or she is sensitive or stubborn, cautious or impulsive, goal-oriented or clinging to diapers. A quick quiz helps you pinpoint which method will work best. You'll learn how to: Determine your child's readiness--Build on each success--without adding undue pressure--Handle accidents and temporary setbacks--And more. Now in its second edition, "Stress-Free Potty Training" also provides targeted techniques for challenges including toilet training resistance and refusal to poop as well sensory issues. Filled with straight talk and practical advice, it takes the worry out of this important life transition.
Publisher: New York : AMACOM, American Management Association, [2016]
ISBN: 9780814436660
Call Number: 649.62 A8879s 2015
Characteristics: v, 218 pages ; 23 cm
Additional Contributors: Stavinoha, Peter L.


From Library Staff

No two chlidren are alike and that is true for toilet training too. A variety of strategies are suggested to help find the right time and approach for you and your child.

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Nov 01, 2019

Although this book has some interesting insights into different personality types of kids and how to keep them motivated, I would read its potty training advice with a grain -- or maybe a whole spoonful -- of salt. In particular, I think it gives dangerous advice in these areas:

1. Telling parents it's "perfectly normal for a 3-yr-old to not yet be out of diapers." It may be common these days, but that doesn't mean it's advisable or even healthy. The actual scientific studies this book cites identify component "readiness" skills as coming online between 22-30 months, which is when I also think consistent, gentle but effective daytime potty training should be completed. As this book also says on p.197, as the child gets older (like 3+), defiance and refusal naturally increase. So why would you want to wait until then to train them?

2. This book way over-stresses the idea that we can't force kids to use a potty and concludes wrongly that this means we have to wait for them to want to do it. We should be using all the tools and tips at our disposal to motivate interest and show that we expect them to do it (which is much easier to do with a 20-26-month old than a 3-yr-old too, by the way).

3. Along the same lines, I would love to take a big black pen to this book every time it suggests that a parent say "someday you'll WANT TO TRY using the potty" or "we were scared when we were learning - everyone is" (p.119). WHAT? Way to prime your child not to want to train. How about more like "we're going to have our special potty training week soon, when I'll help you learn to get all your pee and poop in there!" and "Is that scary? I know it's new and different, but there's nothing to be afraid of. You're safe and I'm here to help you."

I think this kind of overly tentative, delayed, prolonged (=inconsistent) potty training can lead to a lot of confusion for our kids, when all they need is a relaxed, poop-positive atmosphere, clear expectations and loving support from attentive caregivers. The book Oh Crap Potty Training gives much better advice and explains in much more detail the learning process kids must go through to be able to use the potty with consistent success by age two and a half.


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