How I Potty Trained My Son on the Spectrum
This is what worked for us, there is no "set in stone" way to Potty Train. This is another chapter in the book of Parenting, where we just learn as we go because our kids did not come with an instructional booklet. And it will be okay! No matter how long it takes, no matter how many times you give in, it will be OKAY! They will get it, and every try, every almost, is a step closer.
My son, who is in the Autism Spectrum, took what seemed like the looooongest time to get the potty training down. I read a lot, tried to incorporate tips and tricks, purchased many stickers, potty training charts, potty chairs of various characters (thank you Amazon), and dealt with A LOT of opinions and comparisons given without any request from my part.
How we got a handle on Potty Training:
- Took our time (We didn't have pressures to start after 3 days or anything planned)
- I knew we were ready because he would stay dry overnight (Make sure your child is ready)
- We could not get a schedule down or anything (waiting 30 mins after eating/drinking and then every 5 mins after that, did not work for us).
- So as soon as we would wake up, I would sit him down on the potty.
- It took numerous mornings, but I would put videos about going to the potty from Youtube and one morning HE WENT!!!
- I celebrated it! Danced to it! Gave him all the stickers!
- Afterwards, every morning he would go. (Still wearing training underwear for number 1 and 2 during the rest of the day).
- After two weeks of going in the morning, we transitioned into "big boy underwear" for sleeping.
- I explained that he needed to go potty for number 1, or else his underwear would get dirty (And they did, we had a lot of accidents, but we just would go straight to the bathroom and repeat that he needed to go in the potty) Do not show them your frustration when accidents happen.
- So after a week of having accidents for number 1, he started going in the potty. He would go to the bathroom and sit down on his own.
- Number 2, that was a hard to accomplish. He would only go number 2 with a training underwear on.
- I repeated the Youtube videos, I explained that everyone goes number 2 (even animals).
- What worked?! Well, we went full "big boy underwear" and dealt with the accidents.
- We had animal water squirt toys and it occurred to me, THIS CAN HELP!!
- I used the squirting action to show that animals went number 2 in the potty, and that, with the fact that he also had a stomach flu during this time, showed him that it was okay and safe to go number 2 in the potty.
He has had no setbacks, no accidents, he goes on his own (although I still help with the cleaning in some instances).
And that is how we did it! It was a long journey but now at 5 years old, we can move on to the next chapter in parenting and make it up as we go along.