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I Feel Like a Potty Training Impostor

image source: thinkstock
image source: thinkstock

I should’ve known there’d be a catch when potty training came fairly easily and naturally to my son at a semi-youngish age of two-and-a-half years old. So many parents dread the potty training stage, yet when it was our turn, it seemed fairly simple and straightforward. He was interested in the potty, loved the no-pants at home learning stage, and made the transition to diaper-free relatively seamlessly, with few accidents and very little battling.

When we first bridged the gap into “officially potty trained,” which I unofficially measured as me no longer fearing short trips in the car seat or asking if he had to pee 800 times a day, I joked that I wouldn’t touch nighttime potty training with a 10-foot pole. Sleep has always been a rough spot for us and I wasn’t going to mess with what little success we’d had.

I laughed to my husband that he could sleep in a diaper until he was 10 for all I cared, as long as he was actually sleeping. But although I joked, I figured I had the freedom to do so because he’d simply transition naturally into being night potty trained on his own. I figured naps would come first because they’re shorter (if they happen at all), and night time would eventually follow. But that hasn’t even hinted at happening yet.

While I’m not stressing about having dry nights yet, I am a little dismayed.

The same parents that dreaded potty training and struggled and battled and threw their hands up in frustration are the same parents who are telling me a month or so later that their kids just woke up dry one day and that was that. My son probably spends quite a fewer hours less sleeping at night, yet he’s nowhere near dry in the morning. In fact, half of the time he wakes up with his sheets and PJs soaked the whole way through. Nap time, though often less than an hour, is no different. He has nothing to drink leading up to his nap and always goes to the potty before heading to bed, but inevitably he wakes up wet almost every time.

Can I really call my son potty trained if I’m still buying diapers and going through two a day?

We’ve tried ditching them completely for naps so we’re not sending mixed signals, but that is way more laundry than I’m willing to sign up for. If I don’t put a diaper on him, it’s inevitable he’ll wet the bed. Ironically, if I do put a diaper on him, the odds go to about 70/30.

To make the situation even more baffling, on the few occasions that he’ll make it through a nap dry, he’ll go another several hours afterwards before needing to go. The kid can physically hold it for almost a whole afternoon, but not for 30 minutes if it involves sleep.

I’m guessing this is one of those things I’ll have to chalk up to the “it’ll happen when it happens” philosophy. Kids don’t tend to wear diapers throughout all of elementary school, so they must figure it out sometime. And hey, it’s better than dealing with bed-wetting every night, right?

Although, it does make me feel like an impostor when I confidently state that my son has been fully potty trained and accident-free since he was two and a half. If only you knew how many boxes of diapers I still buy …

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Article Posted 5 years Ago

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