Ramblings on Potty Learning

I have been thinking about potty learning for way too long. It’s time for me to move into the research phase of this topic. You with me?
I’ve been hesitant for a few reasons … 
  1. Potty learning makes me feel like Jemma is grown up, more grown up than I want her to be
  2. It takes effort on my part to get this process going and I’m a third trimester tired mama
  3. I don’t really know where to start. Part of me feels lame for not pursuing elimination communication techniques from the beginning and now, I’m at a loss trying to determine where to start. There are many theories out there!

But then, I connected with Steph at Super Skivvies and seeing her training pants helped me take the plunge into my research. Super Skivvies offers adorable cloth training pants and since I’m a cloth diapering mama, cloth training pants seemed like the natural option as we transition out of diapers. Plus, Super Skivvies are lined with bamboo – the most luxurious, absorbent fabric. Bamboo pretty much makes me want a pair of Mama Skivvies pronto :) Super Skivvies FAQ page offers great resources and details on the topic of cloth trainers and potty learning. That’s where my research started.


So far, I’ve determined that the first step in potty learning is assessing awareness. At 20 months, Jemma is definitely aware of the toilet and diaper time. She loves watching me use the restroom and tries to help me flush. When I go to change her I ask her to lay down for me and half the time she does. The other times she runs away :) Mid diaper change she tap her bottom and grab a wipe and try to help too. She has used the potty a few times in the early morning, right when she wakes up, but other than that she doesn’t really tell me when she needs to pee or poo.

So … awareness. I’d say we are getting there.

Now, the next step? I’m not really sure. I really don’t want to put a ton of effort into potty learning, have brother arrive, and then have Jemma regress. I’d almost rather wait until she is overly ready. Any thoughts or ideas? Especially from mamas who have welcomed a second baby during the potty learning?

In the meantime, I’m off to do some more research/reading. Thank the Lord for the internet and for mama’s who are sharing their experiences!

Oh, and one more thing … I was amazed by this chart when comparing disposable and cloth trainers.


Kind of makes the decision simple, doesn’t it? Cloth is the way to go! Plus, if you use coupon code THATMAMA you’ll receive 20% off your order (excluding packs). If you’re ready for a pack, you can sign up for the Super Skivvies mailing list here and receive 10% off!

Send me your tips and resources on potty learning! I’d love to here your personal experiences too!

  This post was sponsored by Super Skivvies, I truly love their products and my words were in no way tainted by our advertising/product swap.
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  1. Amy Kattre says

    I just posted about Potty Training this morning too! My daughter is 18 months and starting to be curious about me going potty so I've been wondering when to start. I'm due with my 2nd the end of August so I'm just not sure I should even attempt it yet. I'm going to buy her a little potty this weekend and see if she shows any interest in sitting on it. I'll have to check out some of your links because I have no idea what I'm doing. Thanks for sharing :)Amy

  2. Lindagiangregorio says

    What worked for us was letting them run around naked for a few hours a day. I would say wait until baby brother has arrived and you've settled into a routine with that, and Jemma is comfortable with all the changes. And let your intuition guide you as to when you think it's the right time for all of you. Then…let her run around naked!! LOL…it really does wonders, and will really let you know her awareness level. If she doesn't notice it at all being naked, she's not ready. But if she does on any level, the more chances you let her go bare, the quicker her awareness will be. Then just have the potty ready, and instead of having to coax her onto it, or making it a struggle, make it a game to get to the potty in time. When she has that recognition in her eyes, show her where the potty is. Good luck mama, and don't worry about it….just breathe and let it happen naturally!!

  3. ThatMamaGretchen says

    Thanks so much :) I love the advice if just letting it happen naturally.

  4. Ktsberg says

    We've started Dee to potty training and it is hard! We got her a potty of her own and all she wants to do is play with it!

  5. ThatMamaGretchen says

    Yep – definitely not the easiest thing! Jem is happy to sit on her potty if she gets to read books, but other than that I think she thinks it is boring :)

  6. M Lissar says

    Boys are slower but I completely waited until Bishop was ready. I was afraid of regressing when Duke came. My attitude was no reason to rush him. He would learn how to use the toilet eventually so may as well let it be dictated mainly by him.

  7. Ktsberg says

    Just bought two of the deal of the weeks and some inserts!! Thanks for the link and coupon!! XOXO

  8. ThatMamaGretchen says

    Of course! I love that they can be used as underwear when the insert is no longer needed – totally a worthwhile investment!

  9. ThatMamaGretchen says

    It's so hard to juggle what to do when you have another little one on the way! I'm right there with you!

  10. ThatMamaGretchen says

    I think I felt pressure to start early and be all, "Jemma is so super and started going in the toilet before she could even say toilet". Now I'm totally over it and am feeling pretty content waiting on her to be ready :) Mom was reminding me that Hannah practically potty-trained herself when we were visiting you in CA one time. She just up and said she didn't wear diapers anymore and went in the hotel toilet one morning. Mom had to go out and buy panties while on vacation because there was no way H was planning to be a "baby" anymore! Talk about being ready!

  11. says

    I would wait. We are in the middle of potty training right now. My daughter is almost 2 1/2. She instigated the potty training by asking to go. I think that you will have way more success and less regression if you wait until Jemma lets you know she is ready. Even though my daughter was doing it mostly on her own – there was still a little regression when our son was born.

  12. ThatMamaGretchen says

    Good to know, Nessa! It is always so helpful to hear from mamas who are a few steps ahead :)

  13. says

    Having boys I have a total different perspective. BUT Carter arrived just 10 days after Brendan turned 2 and there was NO WAY I was going to spend all that time as a 3rd Tri tired mama trying to potty train and to risk him regressing (if he even succeeded in the first place at all). We decided to wait til he was 3 and it went so fast. I think there is way too much pressure out there on kids to get out of diapers before they are ready. I'd rather wait an extra year and have them transition in a week or two then start a year early and deal with all the accidents and such for months maybe a whole year! No thanks. Thats my 2 cents but remember that girls are more ready earlier so maybe start at 2 1/2? Once Brother is here and more settled in. :) Those training undies are SO adorable! I might have to check those out for Ethan when we start in 18 months :)

  14. Cassie says

    Ugh Potty training is definitely my least favorite part of motherhood! I really love those skivvies, though… I haven't seen anything like them before! I found you via the Facebook hop and decided to check out your blog also. I'm happy to be your newest follower! I'd love a visit back at http://www.two-in-diapers.blogspot.com. :)

  15. says

    We actually went against advice and we're doing our "potty training" just a week or two after baby brother has arrived. I *think* it's working. I was just too tired to deal with it in the last trimester and even with a new baby I feel a lot more prepared to deal with it now. Now… if he would just decide that he doesn't LOVE his diapers so much that he doesn't want to give them up….

  16. ThatMamaGretchen says

    I totally agree with the 3rd tri lack of energy … perhaps I'll feel more ready when we are staying home more with the new little one :)

  17. ThatMamaGretchen says

    Hopping over to check you out now :)