We tried the Oh Crap Potty Training Method – Your Step by Step guide
Potty training is hard! I know because I put off potty training my second 2 year old until it was almost time to submit his nursery application. And then it dawned on me that he can‘t wear nappies to school! I don’t want him to wear nappies to school! This stubborn 2, almost 3 year old has his own way to do things. Admittedly my previous half hearted attempts at Oh Crap potty training were answered with a straight up “no”. I protested a bit but eventually he won, because I didn‘t want to deal with it. Especially when I had a newborn to wrestle as well.
So when nursery preparation panic set in, I decided to give the Oh Crap potty training method another go. From beginning to end, it was over in less than a month. Of course, this is much longer than some of the methods floating all over the internet, but it worked for us.
Getting use to the potty
DD was straight up upset about sitting on the toilet or even potty. He almost felt like he was being punished when asked to sit on it. We had to show him we ALL did it, so every bathroom visit, we pulled him along and demonstrated what we did in there. We also suggested that he give it a go as well. Sometimes he would refuse, sometimes he would play along, but we tried not to push it. Having an older sibling show him was even better! He absolutely related to #JasperBean and happily sat in his potty when his brother was nearby. Proudly shouting out and announcing that he was doing what big boys do. So we tried to be as consistent as possible and would offer the potty everytime we went as well.
The Oh Crap Potty Training Method
Step 1: No pants
So when he got comfortable with approaching and sitting on the potty, this is when we decided to go cold turkey and say bye bye to nappies. It was kind of perfect timing as it was the Christmas holidays. There was no school run and it was too cold to go anywhere. When we did go visit grandparents, we still insisted on the no pants rule.
All I did over the Christmas holidays was watch him like a hawk. (That’s a lie, that is not all I did! 😝, this was on top of everything else I did). Even when I had to prepare meals or wrap presents, I had one eye on him and repeatedly chanting “pee pee/poo poo goes into the potty”. Hubby thought I was possessed at one point, but being able to figure out his pee/poo signs made things so much easier.
Every time he went to the potty to do his business, we would do the potty dance, praise and sometimes prize. This got him really excited, but ultimately, he just wanted a high 5 and to let us know he did it! Once he got the hang of going to the potty consistently, we moved onto step 2. We stayed in step 1 for about one week.
Step 2: Pants, but NOT underwear
Now that he was ready to graduate from no pants to some pants. Our daily exercise consisted of pulling them up and down. The Oh Crap potty training method asks that children go commando for approximately one month, but I think this is child dependent as with all things. However, it makes sense because when the child is wearing nappies, there clothing pressure on them, so this will trigger them to pee/poo in their pants. Absolutely normal!
So the hack? Wear loose fitting elasticated pants or dresses for girls.
Now that the kiddo is wearing pants, going out is “much” easier. But keep these short and local as they will still need to frequently visit the toilet as their bladder control matures.
Step 3: Still no underwear, but longer trips
We kind of skipped or even merged steps 2 and 3 together because really it was kind of unrealistic for us to keep to short trips. However we did make sure he had a pee before the start of every trip. Although we didn’t make him sit on the potty for long periods of time because this was against the method’s methodology. Plus I didn’t want to force this on him and making him feel like its punishment.
If you decide to night train at the same time, make sure the little one pees before bedtime and nap time as well. Of course, you could hold off as their bladder control might not be mature enough yet. However, the author of Oh Crap does claim that it is easier to get day and night time training done together. With DD, he had been dry throughout the night for a while anyway, so we decided to take the plunge. We just had to make sure that he goes on the potty the second he wakes to avoid any accidents.
Step 4: Underwear!
Hooray! If you’re in step 4, your potty training days are almost done! Step 2/3 for us took about 10-14 days, as we wanted to take our time to make sure he’s capable of effectively communicating and pulling his pants up and down himself at least 99% of the time. This was super exciting for DD as he could choose his own big boy underwear and feel like he’s just like everyone else and no longer a baby. If your little one starts peeing/pooing when they are wearing underwear. Backtrack. Go back a step to just wearing loose clothing or even step 1 to refresh their minds and reset. It’s all very normal and down to the individual. Especially when other things are happening at home or around them that may distract their potty training journey.
Step 5: What! There’s more?
Technically, once you’re in Step 4, you’re done! Unless, you still have the night time nappies to get rid of, but of course this is less of a worry for most parents. If you’re following the Oh Crap method, step 5 is something your child does. This is when they are able to consistently go to their potty/toilet themselves rather than needing you to prompt them all the time.
So in step 5 you can relax a bit on the prompting. But don’t completely stop as there will be times when they are too distracted to remember themselves. Continue to prompt before leaving the house, bedtime and any other time that you feel they should go.
Takeaway: Be consistent and be prepared
Wherever you go and wherever you are, be prepared to make a mad dash for the potty/toilet. I was like a helicopter during the first few weeks of potty training. Constantly hovering and asking whether he needed the potty or not. If the answer is a resounding no, then move on. There is no point dwelling on it or making a big fuss.
For my boys, I always bring a pee bottle for emergencies, there are lots of other styles and colours, but I find the look of this one the most discreet. For emergency number 2’s, we have the Potette Plus 2-in-1 Compact Universal Potty and Toilet Seat and Babymad potty liners instead of the Potette branded ones because these are biodegradable and cheaper.
So that’s it, potty training. 2 down, 1 more to go! Sometimes it sounds easier than it is and sometimes it’s not as hard and daunting as you think it’ll be. So relax and happy training! If you are still finding the potty training process stressful, here are 12 more tips that might just help you!
Thank you for reading and until next time,
Love, MsMamaBean x