How To Help With Potty Training On The Go
I am a mom of three kids with a husband that was active duty military. We had to travel a lot and be on the go with our children. I am here to share my experiences and tips and tricks with you to help you through potty training your little one on the go.
First things to remember while traveling with a toddler that is potty training:
• If you're going on a long trip make sure you schedule in bathroom breaks. If you get easily distracted don't worry, set an alarm on your phone for every 25-30 minutes.
• Make sure you bring an extra change of clothes for your little one. If your child has an accident “don't get upset, reassure them that accidents do happen but that pee goes in the potty.” This will help your child to feel reassured.
• A great idea to bring with you on the road is a potty chair. I will share with you a great tip for a potty chair later in this post.
A Little Background:
To start things off my husband was an instructor in the military during our oldest daughter's potty training stage. With that being the case we were constantly traveling on TDY's (Temporary Duty) to different bases around the United States. For example, we would drive to Fort Carson, Colorado for a week, return home to Iowa for a few days, and then he would get assigned to travel to Fort Bragg, North Carolina for a month or Capitol Hill in Washington D.C. for a few days. In order to be able to spend as much time as we could together before his next deployment, we chose to go with him. That's where learning on the go potty hacks came in for me.
Unfortunately back then we didn't have Pinterest. <- so glad we do now. 😀 please follow me here 🙂
Here are some tips that helped with Potty training on the go…
Each time my child went pee on the potty I would make a big deal. I would clap my hands and say, “Yay! Good Job” or other positive re-enforcement and it never failed that the accomplishment of going pee pee in the potty made them feel so proud. I continued this whether we were out and about or at home.
To make it more fun for them and to continue their success, I would give them a reward of one small tiny M&M an example of the tiny M&M'S you can go here. I personally often found them at Walmart for around 97 cents. I figured if I only gave them one M&M at a time (it wasn't a lot of sugar) and if they went poopy on the potty they would get two M&M's. Honestly, this works REALLY well. Plus, it was easy to put the M&M's in my purse for when we were on the go.
Another thing I would do is make a sticker chart. The sticker chart was created on a piece of copy paper (it made it easy to fold and stick in my purse.) I used colored pencils and created a praise chart. On the praise chart there was a side to place a sticker for going pee and aside for two stickers for going poop. The kids enjoyed picking out the stickers and placing them on the sticker chart. It was like a mini celebration with a high five after.
The Potty Chair To Have
When we traveled we took our potty chair from home. This helped a lot for times that we couldn't get in a public restroom quick enough. Now there is a great option for a travel potty it is called an OXO Tot 2-in-1 Go Potty for Travel. I would love to have had something like this especially for potty emergencies while traveling. The thing I love about this travel potty is that the legs fold in for flexible storage and it's easy to fit in the car, your stroller, or a diaper bag. ←That's awesome!
Automatic Flush Terror
Now with my oldest daughter, everything was NOT peachy keen when we would go to public restrooms. My daughter went through a phase if she heard the sound of an automatic flush toilet she would FREAK out. There was something about the sound of the automatic flush that really scared her. I felt bad, I didn't know what to do at first or how to change it.
I asked my husband to take her into the bathroom and see if that would help but she did the same thing to him and (he was mortified) because he didn't want someone to think the wrong thing. We had to come up with a plan. My husband suggested that we take toilet paper and put it in front of the sensor so there would be no way for the toilet to flush.
The next time my daughter had to use the restroom in public I tried it. My daughter was still hesitant but I continued to reassure her and we made a game out of it. I had her hand me the toilet paper and we just did a little game of 1-2-3 and it worked!!! Each time after that she would hand me the toilet paper and I would fold it together and we would stick it in front of the sensor and she would go potty. PHEW!
Tip: Another idea to put over the sensor is a Post-it (plus easy to pack in your purse!)
Poop, already child!
Now on the other hand with my son, it seemed like he loved the toilet. That kid would take forever to poop. I felt like I would stand in the bathroom for hours waiting for him to go (not really) but it sure felt like it! 😉 He would be there dangling his feet, talking about Disney infinity, or singing. I would be there waiting and waiting and tell him… “POOP, already child!!!!”
I knew there had to be another way to get him to go faster! That's when the bribe came in. 😛 Whenever we were out in public restrooms and he had to go #2 I would tell him if he goes and doesn't play he would get a sucker. It worked. As a matter of fact, to date, he is the fastest pooper that I know. LOL 😛
Tip: Suckers are great for getting your kids to sit still and behave in a grocery cart while shopping as well.
Something else to keep in mind while traveling is that your child isn't as familiar with a hotel layout, a relative's house, or another place that isn't like home. Here is a great post for a Mom Hack to help with that! A Potty Training Hack For Travel You Don't Want To Miss
Additional Tips For Potty Training on The Go:
♥ Family Bathrooms are a huge help. Your child can go at the same time as you but feel comfortable you're still in the same room.
♥ Create a game out of it
♥ A great product that I heard about that works for a lot of people (I didn't know about it when my kids were younger) is called a Summer Infant Piddle Pad. This helps contain messy diaper blowouts and accidents that happen while you are on the road.
♥ Celebrate their accomplishments for going potty! This will start them off with a great sense of support and encouragement.
♥ Keep a schedule and avoid accidents.