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Maureen Ryan

Potty Training — Getting Started

By February 7, 2013

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I was reminded this week of how there is no one magic formula for potty training young children. My 4-year-old just started at a preschool co-op where a classmate is not fully trained. This extremely bright, sensitive, and shy boy is not "delayed" even though all his peers seemed to be sporting cotton briefs. Using the toilet is simply something he's not yet ready to master. I wanted to tell his mom, "Good for you!" She recognized that her son needed time to make the transition out of diapers. Of course, she doesn't feel pressure to push her son since she's home with him most days, and he isn't in a formal school or day care program that would insist on having him using the bathroom independently.

For those parents who don't have that luxury, it's important to do whatever you can to follow your child's lead and point of readiness as you move out of diapers and Pull Ups. Otherwise, you may inadvertently trigger defiance and see your child refuse the potty, or you may see significant set backs and regression within a few weeks.

It's a tough process, this potty training thing, but as hard as it is, parents (no smarter or stronger than you) for ages have been able to guide their child through the steps successfully. You will too!

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