All About Potty Training Twins!
All About Potty Training Twins!
My darling divas are 28 months, 2 weeks, and 1 day old
Much like two, wobbly walkers, I feared potty training much the same as twins becoming upright and mobile at the same time. Both frightened me greatly, however, neither has been as bad as it sounded prior to happening.
Though we are only at 28 months, my twin girls are completely potty trained inside the home, basically without any effort like my singletons, and have even opted to use the potty while out many times.
Admittedly, I haven’t been strictly enforcing it because I simply hate public restrooms and am dreading trying to hold them up one after the other or simultaneously which is impossible, like I did for my other until 4 or 5 even. It’s not possible. I think I’ll opt to buy a couple of these which they didn’t have on the market, or at least I didn’t know about in prior children. This may save my back actually. While most parents of multiples like myself are also scared of the prospect of potty training their multiples the reality is that twins seem more independent than singletons are in many cases. This may be a total plus in this department. Plus, they tend to watch one another and want to do what each other does. If they have older siblings this helps all the more.
Sometimes, as in this case, having a partner in crime if you will, is a good thing. It’s like they are having their own little pee party. My girls think bathroom time is fun. (But it’s not for play it’s for pee and poo time. Not clog up the toilet with paper time.) My singletons were much more obstinate about using the potty. Does this mean multiple moms and dads have the advantage here? I think in some ways we do.
It will be harder when out and about, but after awhile this will become much like every other obstacle you have tackled and conquered up until now which has been many. Soon enough they’ll have everything down pat and life will be simpler and much cheaper again.
Here are some basic potty training factoids and helpful hints you should know. Especially if the twins are your 1st children, or even if its been awhile. Brains can get foggy .
Potty training factoids & helpful information
1. Boys typically become potty trained later than girls do
The average age for boys to give up their Pampers is at 39 months, while for girls it is 35 months. However, exceptions do apply. It’s simply an average. Back in the 1940′s the average age was half of this….only 18 months!
2. Your child must be emotionally ready for potty training
(Look for the signs)
You could sit them on the potty all day long, but if the child isn’t ready.. the child isn’t ready. You can’t force potty training. However, they may definitely learn, in part, by example. Or at least get the desire to learn. (A great start!)
Example: The twins may want to follow what they see you do, and/or each other do, but until they truly have the desire within, can follow simple instructions, don’t want to sit in a wet diaper any longer, and maybe rip dirty diapers off of themselves like mine have done the past few months, and may even show an interest in ‘big kid’ underwear, you can’t force or truly train any child for this milestone. It can only be achieved when they are emotionally prepared.
Physically, children start having the ability to hold urine starting at 12-18 months. Of course, that would be very young to begin potty training. (At least in my opinion.) They have to put together that the toilet is a place for elimination and not just for making flushing sounds and trying to stick their hands into it. (God knows why.)
3. Early or late potty training does NOT affect future bed-wetting or lack thereof
There has been some controversy over this. Some have claimed that early potty training leads to bed-wetting problems and other issues, and this is simply unfounded. 22% of all children are still wetting their beds from time to time come 3 years old and 10% are occasionally bed-wetting at 7 years of age. There is a hormone that signals the body to stop producing urine overnight. This happens when it happens. It is not caused or delayed by early or late potty training.
4. Reward good behavior
Though you can’t force your twins to use the potty, when they do do it or anything really good for that matter..rewarding them is a step in the right direction, just as it is in all ‘training’. (Animals & humans alike). It will help your child feel proud of him or herself, develop self-esteem, and want to repeat the rewarded behavior. Reward with your voice and a special ‘gift’ like an ice pop, a sticker, along with claps, hugs, and kisses.
5. Don’t push it
When you don’t push and pressure the potty training issue it tends to happen quicker, easier, and is an overall more pleasant experience for both mother and child(ren). I know how expensive diapers are for twins, as I buy them more frequently now as the girls rip them off all day long because they don’t like the feel of any pee in there. I never, ever pushed them, though I do give credit where it’s deserved.
6. The age of potty training has nothing to do with intelligence or future abilities
Potty training earlier or later has nothing to do with intellect. It has to do with personal ability, desire, and readiness. Just like one of your twins might crawl and walk faster than the other but the other excels in other areas, so is the case in this. Everything happens in its time, and that time is different for every thing and for every one.
The advantage with twins is that they try and often mimic one another, but one might be potty trained a bit quicker than the other, nonetheless. It does not mean there is anything ‘wrong’ with the other twin. Again, comparisons are no good in this case as well.
7. 98% of children are independently potty trained during their daytime hours by 4 years of age
This means by the time nursery school would start.
8. It takes approximately 3-12 months after beginning the potty training process to accomplishing the task full-time
The readier they are, the quicker the process will be. Hang tight.
9. The majority of children are ready to be trained.. (start the training process) between 20 & 30 months of age
10. Keep the the 1st potty simple and for only one purpose…alright TWO purposes
A potty is meant to be a place to pee and poo, not a place to also play and have fun on. I have learned from the past that buying those potties with all of the bells and whistles, (meaning sound effects, music, little ‘things to do’ while on it), are only a distraction. Buy a basic potty that resembles the one in your own bathroom. It will serve as a purpose of elimination and not entertainment.
Also, at 2 years old you can even buy a little potty topper with handles so your child can feel like a big kid and mimic mommy even more so. My girls just love that! Since there are two of them and only one potty though, and they tend to be on the same urination and poo-poo schedule most often.. (it’s almost bizarre.) We have a small potty by the big one for the other twin to use if and when need be. They love going potty together.
Items you should purchase when you start training your twins
1. A toilet seat topper and basic potty so both twins have a seat at home
Buying two little potties is a good idea for when you are in a bind with someone else using the bathroom, or for on-the-go. I think a light, portable potty for outings to keep in the car is a great thing.
Potties for totties
2. Potty covers (disposable or plastic) for public toilets
One child I can hold up at a time..but not two. And it certainly isn’t easy. The disposable seat covers found online are awesome, but for twins would get mighty expensive. I personally am buying two plastic, foldable, travel covers, and will sanitize them when I return home from an outing. We go out daily for long periods of time. The throw away covers may get too pricey for our lifestyle. The choice is yours, but protect your back and opt for one out of two of these products.
Travel, foldable seat toppers
Hey look…a padded one to!
(I’ll bring plastic baggies to store them in.)
3. Cleaning supplies
Some Clorox spray for messes and something I just love..my Swiffer Wet Jet, are great for cleaning up both small and larger messes. There will be some, so prep for them.
swiffer cleaning supplies
4. Big kid undies
I’m personally not a big believer in the whole ‘pull ups’ scheme. It absorbs the pee better, but then the child doesn’t feel wet and doesn’t always recognize his or her body’s cues. One of which is not wanting to sit in a dirty diaper. Nix the pull ups and when interest is shown, buy some big kid underwear. You will have some extra laundry to do, but it will make your child feel more grown up and definitely more able to stay in touch with the signs that their bodies are sending to them.
5. Keep rewards handy
Be it a box of stickers for them to choose from, a bag of sugar-free lollipops, etc. etc. don’t forget to stock up for these proud pee and poo moments. Never reward until the task is completed, of course.
So in conclusion, potty training with twins is really not so bad. It will mean more trips to the public bathroom which is never a super fun experience, but before you know it it will become yet another memory in the back of your mind.
Encourage don’t force
Reward good behavior
(This goes for every big, good thing they do right.)
Never compare your multiples to one another
(In this or in anything.)
Show your twins by example
Look for cues, which are signs of readiness
Never scold or punish for accidents, bed-wetting, or toilet misses
Praise, praise, praise
Know it will happen when they are completely ready
(This may be faster than your singletons were. My girls started going on the potty on their 24 month birthday. The earliest of all of my 5 children. It’s not a definite, just be patient and know it will happen before you know it.)
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Good luck and happy training!