By the title, this sounds crazy, right? But this is my reality! I want to share my experience of trying sibling led potty training with my boys.
As a mom of multiple kids, I’ve learned that I can’t be the only person that pours into my children and their development. Learning can come from anyone, including a sibling. My dramatic three bonds so well with each other! I want to help them foster healthy and trustworthy relationships with each other. So when it was time to potty-train Lyon, I felt it was the perfect time to put this into practice.
Luna did play a role in helping Liam become potty trained. Now that Lyon is in the mix, there was a stronger desire for her to step up and help. Liam wanted to be involved, too!
We all know the saying, “One’s company, two’s a crowd, and three is a party.” This is the best depiction of the transition of going from one to three children. It also describes how potty training is going for Lyon— a party to celebrate Lyon growing into the next developmental stage and learning to use the bathroom independently. The encouragement from his siblings is what helped him to become potty trained!
Although this process hasn’t been easy, it’s been worth it. Here are some of the benefits of sibling-led potty training:
1. Trust Development
Lyon never tells my husband or me when he has to potty. The first person he tells is Luna! He trusts her enough to help him to the bathroom and get on the pot. The bond of trust is impressive to me because it is consistent. That’s vital to any relationship. Do you trust the person enough when you are most vulnerable?
2. Teaching Responsibility
Luna and Liam love the fact that they are “responsible” for their little brother on the potty. Of course, I’m watching from around the corner, but they each play a role in making sure Lyon makes it to the bathroom. They also have a system in place to get mommy when things get out of hand. Since I am using potty training as a teaching moment, I also reward and thank them for being “responsible.”
3. Help Encourage Others
Luna and Liam sing songs to Lyon as he is on the potty. Whether he goes or not, they tell him “he is doing good,” “we are so proud of you,” “you are such a big boy.” Lyon walks away feeling happy every single time because of this. He knows he is doing a good thing. Encouragement is the one thing that helps fuel any good behavior.
4. Zero Stress
Sibling led potty training has taken the stress off of me. When I was a first-time mom with Luna, I had no clue how to potty train a child. I tried everything, and nothing seemed to work. It stressed me out! I was afraid she was going to be in diapers forever! It wasn’t until I stepped back that she started going on her own. So I decided to do the same with my boys … step back and not stress!
Potty training is a process and won’t happen overnight. Getting into the rhythm of sibling-led potty training could take weeks or months. The most important thing to remember is not to force it! Lyon showed interest on his own.
With any potty training, there are going to be accidents, but that’s where patience is needed most. And because there are multiple children involved besides the one being potty trained, be wary of how you react to these accidents. How can your children be a source of encouragement if you tear them? That’s a word for more than just potty training! But that conversation is for another post.
Looking beyond the now is essential. I encourage my children to do more than use the bathroom together. I encourage them to pray, work, and learn together. They are each other’s best support system. I want to instill this in them at a young age. No matter the task ahead, they get through it together.
By no means am I saying this is a proven method. I’m just a mother speaking on her experiences for what worked for me. Have you tried to include your kids with sibling potty training?