I think the best way to begin this epic tale of pee and poo is at cloth diapers. We were using toddler sized prefolds and Flip covers at 16mo, and that was when Squish started informing me of his “PEE!”. I’d already planned on using the Three Day Potty Training for my twins. Cloth diapers don’t pull the moisture away from baby like a disposable does so baby feels the wet. Cloth diapered babies are said to potty train earlier because of this.
I bought BabyBjorn Potty at 18mo because they were the shortest I could find for such tiny babies. They come in a ton of cute colors, we had blue & green but the turquoise, pink and purple are adorbs! They loved to sit on them before bath, and loved to be removed from the tub every five minutes to sit again. Both Squish and Stretch peed in the potties multiple times before we did the Three Day Poopathon. We made it through Christmas, and the Super Bowl and then planned our weekend.
We followed all the steps lined out in her downloadable book. I made my helpers read the book, I read it no less that 5 times. We used raisins as treats, to help encourage pooping. We had 1 helper, but two would have made it a lot easier. One person should be designated Clean Up Crew, and nothing else. The amount of pee and poo, on the floor is incredible. You get distracted or attempt to make lunch and you’ve got a huge mess on your hands. Don’t do anything but follow the rules for those three days. Want the rules? You can purchase the Ebook here.
It’s very common for the first two days, and even the beginning of the third day to be awful. They aren’t getting it, and it feels like they will never get it. Never. Ever. Then the planets align, a unicorn poops magical sparkly poop over your house, heaven opens, angels sing, and suddenly they have got it! Is that how it was with my twins? Nope! They started getting it on day two, but I’ve seen lots of twin moms post their Three Day Potty Training twins experiences thanks to Bay Area Moms of Multiples.
There is something magical about 18-22 months, or so I hear. It took me A YEAR to potty train my singleton, and she was almost 4 before that horrible year was completed. I’ve read that only 20% of babies that age can physically hold it overnight. My boys are now part of the 20%, but I don’t mind doing diapers just at night. We will revisit night training when they are a little older.
So my twins were potty trained by 20 months, oh joy…right? Turns out, that is where the work started. A newly potty trained kiddo needs to pee before you leave the house, when you arrive at the store, before you leave a store and when you arrive home. Times two. Seriously.
And you can’t just hold them so they can sit on the “big seat” because their twin is now crawling under stalls, touching (and licking!!!) everything. So you need a handy, portable, baby-butt-sized potty seat. The Kalencom 2-in-1 Potette Plus is our favorite and I tried multiples kinds. Not only does it fold out to sit on a big potty, it’s also it’s own portable potty. Fold the legs down, MAKE SURE THEY ARE LOCKED IN PLACE, insert the bag with the absorbant liner and it’s good to go. I’ve used it in the back of our minivan on more than one occasion. At the park, I leave it in the red wagon and we don’t have to keep running for a disgusting portapotty. It works in three ways. This first way on top of a toilet, the second way with the absorbent liner.
Now how do you carry it around? Excellent question! If you cloth diapered, you already own a wet bag. Never heard of a wet bag? It’s just a waterproof/washable bag to put dirty diapers in. I own one of these Double Zipper Wet Bags and our portable potty fits perfectly in the larger zippered area. I put 2 pairs of clean undies and knit shorts in the small pocket. Any dirty things go in the larger pocket, with the potty.
Oh, and did I mention it probably won’t fit in your purse? I went to Marshalls and found a cute $30 bag that it fit in. I’ve never owned a diaper bag, and don’t even believe in them – but that is another blog post!
While you are at it, go ahead and stock up on flushable wet wipes. The sooner they learn to wipe those tiny tushes, the better. What is your sanity worth? That’s what I thought. Just add it to your cart. Isn’t Amazon a total lifesaver? I’m pretty sure a Mom of Multiples invented it.
So your twins are potty trained before two years old and you’ve worked out the whole potty situation, so all should be right with the world. Did ya know that most kids can’t pull their own pants up or down at that age? So you have to go in there with them.
EVERY SINGLE TIME.
Ok, not forever, but it feels that way. My twins are 25 months and I still let them run around in just t-shirts and undies around the house. Squish can pretty much pull his down now, without help. He can’t get them back on, so there is still a fair amount nudity. He is showing some interest in learning to put them back on, so I have hope. Stretch is such a bump on a log and wants me to do it most of the time. I think it’s mostly because he enjoys the company in the bathroom, he’s always been like Velcro with me.
The top three hardest things about my twins, in order of difficulty:
- C-section recovery (thanks to severe nerve damage) combined with learning to tandem nurse, combined with the exhaustion of the first 10wks
- Potty training.
See? If you have already survived pregnancy and the first 10wks, potty training will seem easy.
Post Script- Now for my truth. Just two weeks after successfully day time potty training my boys, they caught a stomach bug. Stretch did fine, but Squish regressed. It took 2 months to get him back on track with pee and 3 months to get him *mostly* on track with poo. Am I glad we potty trained so young? I’m happy to not be washing all those cloth diapers every 2 days, and that is all I will admit to!
As with all of my posts, my experience is based on full term twins. Babies that come early tend to be on a different timeline for adjusted age. Join your local Moms of Multiples group to meet MoMs who have experience with preterm babies!
Keep up the great work Momma, you are doing the most important job on the planet.