Real Life Potty Training STories

About This Series

This is the third installment in our series of real-life stories about how real parents helped their children move from diapers to fully potty trained. We created it in recognition of the fact that all kids are unique and that no two potty training journeys are exactly the same. There truly is no better way to grasp what needs to be done (and to motivate yourself) than learning how other parents tackled this major milestone!

Introducing Rosdaly and Calvin

Our third story is from Rosdaly. Let's find out how she potty trained her son, Calvin, during the pandemic in New York City!

Question #1 - Please Tell Us About Yourself and Your Son!?

Hey, hey! My name is Rosdaly Ramirez, and I live in New York City. I’m the parent of a cute two-year-old toddler, Calvin, and am currently expecting my second son. I work at a high school as a school counselor, and I'm also a part time blogger. I love sharing my motherhood journey and also meeting other moms in the city.  

Question #2 - When Did You Start Potty Training?

I first introduced potty training to Calvin after he turned two years old, when I noticed that he would remove his diaper a lot and also could identify when he had to use the bathroom. However, it wasn’t until after I got pregnant that I became really motivated to get him trained, which I'll call "round two."  Round two actually happened during this pandemic, and I'm so glad it did because it allowed us to be more patient and involved.

Question #3 - What Helped You The Most?

Before I started potty training I read a lot of articles but I also used Instagram to get tips from experienced parents. It was helpful getting different tips from parents because it gave me the choice to choose which method seemed like it would work for us. It turned out that having a sticker chart in the bathroom was a game charger and we’re glad we used it to train our son.  

Boy Inspecting Potty Chair

Question #4 - How Long Did It Take to Click?

It took about three days to get him to understand the routine we were creating for him to use the potty. When we first started on this journey back when Calvin just turned two, it took him a while to understand why he couldn’t just pee in his undies. The second time around we made sure the routine was the same everyday but added the sticker chart. His routine was this: Wake up, use the bathroom, put on undies, ask him every 20 - 30 mins if he needed to go, take him to the bathroom, reward him with a sticker every time he went, and repeat till the end of the night.  

Question #5 - When Were You Really Confident They Were Trained?

By the third day Calvin was saying when he needed to go to the bathroom. Mostly he did this just for pee. He would say it loudly and run to the bathroom. After two weeks he would say it and began putting his potty seat on the toilet on his own. During this time we taught him to clean well, flush and even place his own sticker on his chart.  

Question #6 - How Did You Tackle Poop?

Yup, poop is a scary one. In fact, Calvin did not poop during the first two days of "round two." The first time he pooped he actually cried because it felt uncomfortable. We made sure to celebrate him for it through cheering and stickers. We also waited for him to finish or asked if he needed space.  

To be honest though, pooping is still a struggle for us even after 3 months. He’s regressed to pooping in his undies at times, so we still have bouts of accidents.

Question #7 - What About Training Outside Your Home?

Going potty outside was also challenging. Calvin was very afraid to pee standing up. He either would hold it till we got home or he would pee himself. It helped that we spent a lot of time with his friend who's also his age. Watching his friend go potty gave him the courage to try it. He actually told me he wanted to try one day at a parking lot and ever since that day he goes anywhere. Toddlers learn from watching others, you may want to use animation videos to help your toddler understand what it means to use the potty.  

Question #8 - How About Nighttime Training?

I have not started night time training yet, Calvin has a very heavy flow and we wanted to master nap time first. He uses the bathroom before nap time and he hasn’t had any accidents for two months now. This month we did notice that his training undies are dryer, we think that's a great sign to start night training and intend to do so quickly.  

Question #9 - Any Potty Training Hacks You Can Share?

Boy Inspecting Potty Chair

Be consistent with your setup. If you are using a potty chair, make sure it’s in the same place always. It helps your toddler recognize his or her area and also gives them the independence to go when they want to on their own time. I also found that having some wipes and undies next to it, helped encourage Calvin to go on his own. 

If you’re using a potty seat instead of a potty chair, make sure to place it in the bathroom in a location that is easy for them to quickly grab and place on the toilet. 

Out and about with a potty training toddler? Pack extra clothes and undies, bring your travel potty seat, use the potty as soon as you get to where you have to go and be patient with the accidents. 

Oh, and use the sticker reward chart! I promise it will help. You don’t have to give a prize every time they use the bathroom but after finishing two charts we got Calvin two small cars as a prize for being "potty trained." He was super excited!

Question #10 - Any Last Words For Parents Just About To Embark On Their Potty Training Journey?  

Attitude plays a big role in potty training: it’s important that as parents we cheer them on and celebrate the small wins. You may have four accidents in a day but only one “pee in the potty” win, but that’s OKAY. Toddlers are very smart and they know when someone is excited for them; the result was that we went from celebrating our son to he himself celebrating his own wins.  

More Interesting Reads

smiling toddler showing diaper bum happy

Real Potty Training STory No. 2

The second installment in our series showing how real parents potty trained their kids. If you think training one child is a challenge, imagine training two at the same time!

toddler smiling in onesie

Real Potty Training Story No. 4

The fourth installment in our series showing how real parents potty trained their kids. See how this father of FIVE potty trained his children!

toddler sitting on potty chair

Real Potty Training Story No. 5

The fifth installment in our series showing how real parents potty trained their kids. See how L.A. actress potty trained her two year old son!