About 2 weeks before Asher's 3rd birthday, I decided it was time to potty train hard core. As in, no quitting until we got the hang of it. I was imagining my life as endless days of changing dirty diapers once #3 comes along in late January, and I was not pleased by that thought. Enter potty-training mode.
At first, I put Asher in underwear that's a little thicker than regular underwear so it would absorb more pee, but definitely didn't feel like a diaper. He was in those and shorts. I took him to sit on the potty about every half hour, and he would sit on there for 20-30 minutes each time. And he still wouldn't pee in the potty. He just peed in his underwear and didn't even seem to notice!
After a day and a half of that, I decided maybe just underwear would do the trick, no shorts. And then, I tried no underwear and just shorts. Neither worked. We had a few successful potty trips, but he would just pee in his underwear or shorts unless he happened to be sitting on the potty at the time.
I was beyond frustrated - I think it was day three with no major success to note. Now, don't get me wrong, I was fully prepared to clean up accidents around the house, but it was like he was just not getting it. And I was at my wits' end trying to figure out what else to do with him because I was not about to give up at that point!
The next morning, right after he woke up and we got downstairs I took his diaper off and his jammy bottoms. So he was naked from the waist down; but when he peed like that, it really bothered him. He would call me downstairs or I would hear him crying and he said, "Mommy, I pee-hee-heed." I viewed that as progress because before that he really didn't care one way or the other - it was like I had to be the one to discover that he had had an accident. But, later that morning after having had an accident and me saying, "Okay, if you have to pee just come tell Mommy so we can go on the potty" . . . I heard this magical sentence: "Mommy! Mommy! I have to pee!" So we ran upstairs, sat on the potty, and wonder of wonders, he did it!
When I talked to my husband during his lunch break that day I told him I just didn't have any bottoms on Asher and it seemed to be working. When he got home from work that day he said, "Um, did you know Asher doesn't have anything on right now? Not even underwear?" He thought I meant he was just in underwear . . . I guess it was a surprising sight. :)
Anyway, that was really the turning point. He spent about three days half-naked, and we spent almost an entire week home. Inside the house. I think we were all going stir-crazy. But, it worked! Once it dawned on Asher what it felt like when pee was coming and that he didn't want to pee all over himself, he really progressed quickly.
He still has an accident very rarely, and we're still trying to figure out how to get him to poop on the potty (he tends to wait until naps or bedtime when he's in diapers before he poops). But, most of the time he'll even go through naptime and all through the night and his diaper will be completely dry in the morning!
*We also bribed him with treats if he went on the potty - just as an added excitement and motivator to get him to do it. I really don't feel guilty about doing that - it's only for a few days, and it's something he understands.
**My husband and I tried showing him how we do it to encourage him, and although he got excited for us (yay, us!) it didn't seem to help him.
***I also discovered that even though he liked us to wait in the bathroom with him, he would never actually go until we stepped out for a couple minutes to do something else or check on something.
Anyway, I'm thrilled with his progress, and although the process isn't complete, it's so wonderful to have him in underwear!