When you begin potty training you end up realizing that you, essentially, have to do it twice. You potty train for the daytime, of course, when your little one can tug on your sleeve and ask to “go.” But then you have to deal with bedtime, and suddenly it’s like your kid has never seen a bathroom before. And that's when nighttime accidents become relatively common. Luckily, there are ways to get your kid to sleep through the night sans accidents, and those ways are best learned about from other moms.
I’m currently working on potty training my own kid, and I've found that other parents are a valuable source of information. My son has been reluctant to start the process, so we’ve started and stopped a few times. Currently, I’m working on seeing if he can stay mostly dry at night. It can be a struggle, as he rarely wakes up when he feels wet... unless it’s ridiculously wet, which presents an entirely different problem. He’s had some occasionally dry nights, though. I attribute that mostly to opting for the potty before bed and not giving him much to drink after a certain hour. These small adjustments seem minuscule, but they've made a substantial difference.
Still, I don’t want my son to be thirsty all night long, so I’m not exactly taking away his water entirely, either. Some of the moms I spoke with had solid advice. Others, well, they just wanted to remind us all that we might need to keep our senses of humor while on this journey (because there truly is no one-size-fits-all approach to parenthood, let alone potty training). Either way, if you’re potty training right now, you might find some solidarity below:
“With my eldest, we cut liquids an hour before bedtime and make sure he pees before going to sleep. He's 4 and has maybe one accident once in a while.”
“Keep them alive until age 10, when it stops.”
“Make sure they're not constipated. Also, in some cases, the so-called ‘dream pee’ (meaning you sit your kid on the toilet while they're still sleeping) can work wonders, but this wasn't the case for us.”
“Just always make sure they go in the potty before bed and don’t drink water right before bed.”
Momma Jorje, 44
“I did Elimination Communication with my two youngest. At 9-months-old, [my daughter] could co-sleep diaper-free and stay dry. I had to be attentive. She would get wiggly once per night and I'd potty her.
My son has delays and I still use a baby monitor with him in his own room. He wakes for water and to potty, but it's up to me to potty him at certain intervals (the third waking, if at all).”
“Birth a camel. That's what I did.”
“With my first, I woke her up before I went to bed to have her pee. With my second, I did nothing. He has never wet the bed. He was older (closer to 3) though.”
Check out Romper's new video series, Bearing The Motherlode, where disagreeing parents from different sides of an issue sit down with a mediator and talk about how to support (and not judge) each other’s parenting perspectives. New episodes air Mondays on Facebook.