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How to Potty Train When You're a Working Mom

How to Potty Train When You're a Working Mom

How to Potty Train When You're a Working Mom

Wondering how to tackle potty training as a working mom? If your child has started showing signs of potty training readiness (See 5 Signs Your Child is Ready to Potty Train), consider these six strategies from other working moms for achieving work-potty balance.

1. Start on a Long Weekend or Holiday

Gradually getting your child interested in the potty is great, but when you’re ready to seriously start potty training, many working moms recommend waiting for a long weekend or holiday, and then focusing intently on the task. Christine J. suggests: “Take a day or two off work so you have a long weekend to focus on it yourself (or wait until a long holiday weekend like Memorial Day when you might have a long weekend.) Then just focus on it.”

2. Don’t Stop and Start

Even if you’re not around in the daytime, be consistent with your morning, evening and weekend routine. As Tomeca H. advises: “Take her when she wakes up and after breakfast then when she gets home and after dinner and before bed. The more you take her on a routine she will know that its part of her day and expected of her.”


3. Use a 3-Day Method

Many working moms recommend the 3-day potty training strategy, which entails staying home, diaper-less, for three full days to focus exclusively on potty training, and switching permanently from diapers to underwear. Working mother of four Cyndi C. shares: “We did the 3-day potty training... Worked like a charm! The first boy we did it when he was about 3 1/2 and he got it in a day. His little brother was 22 months…and he got it in a day and a half.”

4. Skip the Pull-Ups

Another common potty training tip from working moms is to avoid using pull-ups. Christine J. shares: “I would suggest also if you want to do potty training—and fast—don't mess with pull-ups other than (at) night and (during) naps. Put her in underwear and just deal with the messes (maybe throw away underwear that are really messy). Most kids don't like that wet feeling and pull-ups are just like diapers to most kids."

5. Diaper-Free Time

Having your little one go diaper-less in the evenings and on weekends is another strategy many working moms have used successfully. Stephanie S. recalls: "We started on Friday night (I'm off weekends). I took our son out of diapers and let him run around naked, and seriously by Sunday he was getting himself to the potty every time."

A more gradual approach worked for Stephanie C.: “We didn't pressure him, but would keep his diaper off every time we were home, and tell him to use the big boy potty like us. He had several accidents, but once he started watching adults use the potty, it became pretty normal.”

6. Get Everyone on Board

It's essential to get whoever is looking after you child during the day on board with your potty training strategy. As Mamata D. advised: “Your child's day care or school has a big part to play in this, and you should talk to the teachers.” Krisitn B. agrees: “I let the daycare know that I was potty training and they needed to take him to the bathroom every two hours...they were all for it.”

Image Source: Abbybatchelder via Flickr/Creative Commons

Join The Conversation
KristinCurry KristinCurry 6 years
regarding the first comment, wow is all i can say! i don't think its the daycare providers "job" to potty train the children but they need to try to follow the parents routine! my daughter is 2 and will come tell me when the 'poo pooed' (everything is poopoo :)) or she will tell me she has to go but has already gone by the time we rush to the potty! she tries to wipe herself when we change her diapers and knows how to flush so i think its time to start potty training, again. i think we might try the no diaper method since she is watched by grandparents, and not a daycare with $7,000 furniture :)
BrandyZurbano BrandyZurbano 6 years
My oldest also didn't want to go even though she knew how. it wasn't until she was 3.5 and we took her to a Montessori school to look at. She was so excited to go to school like a big girl. The head of school was so sweet and asked if she liked it and then told her she couldn't wait until she came to the school, but she had to be a big girl and use the potty. I tell you that motivation put her into overdrive and she was potty trained within weeks of that. She had a goal
StephanieMillaway StephanieMillaway 6 years
I am a working mom with a 3 year old boy who has autism. He is non verbal and doesn't understand commands/directions. I sometimes set him on the potty just so he gets used to it. Any other working moms out there who have special needs children? Is potty training even a reality?
LindaHarrisWheeler LindaHarrisWheeler 6 years
I have to agree that every child is different. I have 3 children, my 2 girls didn't start training until they were 3 1/2. Before that they didn't show any interest or willingness. My son is now 3 1/2 and he has started training as well. Diaper-less worked well with my girls... Pull-Ups are getting the job done with my son. It's great to take advice from other moms or from articles, but you can take it or leave it... in the end, you have to decide what is right. Whatever you do has to work well for you and your family and not anyone else's... and that's not a choice for other people or author's of articles to make... it's your choice.
AliciaSundermeyer AliciaSundermeyer 6 years
Skip Pull-ups!
juliestahle juliestahle 6 years
sorry maria you don't wish to spend the day in the bathroom, but do you think us moms do either? it is part of the process. i think as a day care provider it is part of their responsability to be on board with the parents and not confuse the child, ie underwear one place and not at another.. how confusing! anyways, my daughter is 30 months and we are on day 8. we did the three day potty method, took more like seven for my daughter to get it completely.. she is in underwear full time and has few accidents, good luck everyone!!
RachelVallender RachelVallender 6 years
That first comment was incredibly cold and nasty sounding. Why work with small children of your that inflexible about potty training? I also would be very uncomfortable leaving my child with you- people like you are the reason I use a daycare centre which is child centered and not a childminder who is self centered.
AmandaJenner62892 AmandaJenner62892 6 years
Good morning everyone, i think you should always start potty training in the comfort of your toddlers home where they are familiar with their surroundings. It i important to take a potty with you everywhere whilst potty training, It is a huge pressure on a child and a mom and dad when potty training it take time and patience from both. Make it fun but routine is key. Let me know if you want more advice. Amanda My carry Potty xxx
BelindaDaniel BelindaDaniel 6 years
Maybe you should cover your $7000 furniture with plastic if you are that worried about it. You do sound like you are in the wrong business and I'm glad my child isn't attending your care.
KristiCorey KristiCorey 6 years
WOW!! I dont think anyone was suggesting that a daycare provider take on "that" particular potty strategy. The statement was that people should alert the day care provider to the fact that the child is being potty trained and as a child care provider, it IS your duty and expectation that you adhere to some standard and schedule of toileting that child. So that by being at a daycare, it doesnt UNDO what the parents are trying to accomplish. And if you have $7000 furniture,as a daycare provider, its pretty unrealistic to expect that with children in the home, no damage...big or small...will be done (on accident of course). Further more, its probably your "daycare" income that paid for that furniture in the first place!! Most people that can afford stuff like that without any additional income probably wouldnt be doing daycare in the first place! You sound like an arrogant and ignorant person who maybe shouldnt be in the daycare business if all you care about is "your needs" and possessions over the needs of a child. You dont sound like you have any compassion for the working moms and dads. You are a glorified housewife who probably just does daycare for one child, just to say to be able to say to your friends that you work.
CoMMember13629065826632 CoMMember13629065826632 6 years
As a child care provider letting the kids run around diaperless isnt an option and dont like clients thinking I want their child eliminating all over my carpet and furniture. There is another theory of taking a child to the potty every 30 minutes. I would like to remind parents 1. I am caring for other peoples children as well and we dont wish to spend the entire day in the bathroom. 2. Do you have a concept of how much pressure this is on a child? And forgetting the pullups are a great idea! They prolong training forever! Just make sure you provide your provider with plenty of coverups or you will have a very upset provider because I for one dont want your kid eliminating on my $7000 livingroom furniture or have to replace my carpeting everytime I help a client toilet train their child..
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