Potty training mistakes to avoid

Ready for Potty Training? Avoid these simple potty training mistakes

So you have read our blog on  Pre potty training tips and are ready to start the process. We asked the experts (and many parents) for some tips on some potty training mistakes to avoid making to ensure your little one is out of nappies before you know it. Like walking for the first time, this is an important milestone in your child’s life. Relish in your child’s successes – isn’t that what being a parent is all about? Make toilet training easier by avoiding these potty training mistakes.

Potty training mistakes

Potty Training mistakes:

Starting before they are ready:

The number one potty training mistake parents made is to start before their child is ready. All parents want their children to be the best that they can be, but there is no prize for potty training first. We promise that the Olympic committee will not be calling. Timing is everything. Parents need to look for signs that their little one is ready and not put pressure to start earlier. You will have a much easier time if your child shows signs of toilet training readiness. Find a time that is not stressful for both of you. For example it may not be a great idea to start with the arrival of a new baby in the house. This is a very common potty training mistake that can easily be avoided.

There is no perfect time to start. Experts suggest potty training between 18 and 24 months, they also advise that potty training can take up to 6 months to be completely accident free. The older your child is, typically we find that the training is quicker. A potty training mistake can be to try and fit toilet training into a due date.


Being inconsistent:

Children do best when we establish routines and they learn the safety of boundaries. When children know what they can expect and when, they often fall in line more agreeably. A common potty training mistake can be to not include all caregivers in the toilet training strategy. Sit down and decide, ahead of time, what approaches you are going to use and stick with them. Some parents prefer a different toilet training strategy for day and night, while others follow the same procedure. It can be a potty training mistake to change the strategy too many times.


Failing to prepare, is preparing to fail:

As we outlined in our post there are a few things that you need to prepare to avoid potty training mistakes. Make sure that you have all the necessary tools at your disposal. Bambino have a wide variety of items that will make potty training a lot easier. Also choose which advice you are going to follow. Some parents bought special underwear and that did the trick. This may not work for you. There is no one-size-fits-all potty training solution so have a few options or ideas of what will work best for your child. Discover your child’s motivator, this will ultimately lead to your success. This potty training mistake can also lead to over-buying, so only buy the items that you need. For example, one mom bought a potty that had sound and music. Her child was too scared to even go near the potty and so it quickly become a potty training mistake.


Temperament training:

Personality is also key as your child’s temperament will guide the process. Is your child adventurous and impulsive? A challenge or game may be the best approach but they may have trouble with endurance as it becomes mundane. Their “distractible” nature may mean that this child will need more of a parent-led approach reminding them to use the potty. If your child is more introspective – then praise and encouragement may be most effective. This child will need a bit more time to get used to the idea, so prepare them by showing them the potty and even training a toy first. If your child is rigid and battles with change, work on setting a consistent routine that is followed by all.


High Expectations:

Know that potty training is a messy process, and we mean this very literally. A common potty training mistake is to forget that the process needs to happen on a timeline governed by your child. Forget all the “rules” and old wives tales (like girls are easier than boys). We are all human and are all different. Understand that this is something that they need to learn and there will be ups and downs. Potty training does not happen in a day. If it does, that’s great – praise your child. If it does not, don’t punish them. Potty training will take time and as parents we need to allow this to happen as it will. Don’t feel like you are a bad parent, but keep trying. Many parents experience setbacks and regression, but they all get through it. Set reasonable and realistic goals that are flexible.


Don’t make it a chore:

As an adult if you have to do something you are less likely to want to do it. Kids are smart and soon figure out if this is a chore, then they will not want to do it. Many parents find fun ways of toilet training. Some examples include reward charts, placing Cheerios (or other flushable items) in the toilet for little boys to aim at. A common potty training mistake is to make it something that your child has to instead of a fun game they can play. Make up a potty training song or a dance. Cheer them on!

Quitting time:

Avoid the potty training mistake of giving up too early. Attitude is everything. By lowering your expectations you will not be as frustrated. It can be very disheartening trying everything and nothing works, but you can’t give up too early. Your child will pick up on your frustrations. Many parents found that the worse their frustrations got, the worse the children did with the potty training. Take breaks and try again later.

Praising good behaviour is often the best way to handle the situation. Encourage your child, tell them that you believe that they can do this, and praise them when they do! Use team work, after all you are in this together. Often just as parents are coming to terms with using nappies forever something clicks. Keep trying! One mom gave up completely and said that the second attempt was even harder than if she had just kept at it. Her son understood that if he didn’t want to he could go back to nappies, and so he stopped trying. Be consistent in your approach and things will get easier.



By avoiding these potty training mistakes, we hope that your story will be an easier one. Let us know how your potty training process went, we would love to include your tips and advice.


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