Evening Potty-Training in One Simple Step

Maya had never, ever, ever been dry at night. She’s been dry at naps for well over a year (since about 2 1/2), but never once at night.

So when I told Luis it was time for her to get night-time potty-trained this summer, he thought I was nuts. “She isn’t ready,” he protested. “She’s never even been dry!”

“I know,” I said, evenly. “But she has to learn. She’s 3 1/2. It’s time.” I shocked myself at how sure I was that this methodology I’d heard of from a friend was going to work. I just knew it in my bones. Call it “mommy intuition,” I just knew.

I also knew we would surely have many nights of wet sheets and jammies ahead … but I had faith in my kiddo.

And I was right on both accounts: she would have accidents, and she would “get it” quickly.This was the tip I’d heard about from a friend: wake child before you go to bed to use the restroom.

Yup, that’s it. One step. And it worked for our peanut this summer.

I would wake her before I went to bed, put her on the potty while half-asleep, she’d go to the bathroom, and then go back to bed for another 8 hours. It was exactly what her little body needed to train itself to sleep through the night dry and I know this might not work for all kids (especially light sleepers who might think it’s party time instead of potty time) but it worked like a charm for us.

The first two nights, she was still wet in the morning. But by night three, she was dry. We went for a carousel ride that day (her choice) and she was so proud of herself that each morning she’d come running in, shouting, “I’m dry, Mommy!”

We had a couple set-backs over the summer — which is to be expected — but she really handled it like a champ and we never looked back. I try not to be a liquid czarina at night, but we do keep an eye on her intake and make sure she goes before bed.

A couple months ago — after we’d been doing this wake-and-potty routine for three or four weeks — she actually said to me, “Can you please stop waking me, Mommy? I don’t need you to wake me. If I have to go potty, I’ll go by myself.”

Well, then … !!! She sure told me. But you know what? She hasn’t had an accident since.

I don’t know if this same methodology will work with Ben; all kids are different and people tell me potty-training is harder with boys … but I do know it gave her the confidence she needed to get over the hurdle.

I’m sure she’ll regress at times — as many kids do. But for now, she’s doing awesome, and we couldn’t be prouder.

How about you? What night-time potty-training tips worked for your child? Did he/she regress with age at all?

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