My Little Kingdom

A day in the life of me and my kingdom. Thoughts of a mother of four amazing little boys, a wife of an incredible husband and a woman trying not to forget about herself.

August 02, 2008


I did it! I did it! I did it!
I am diaper free! Well not me, literally. But, our household, our bank account, our boys! It just happened out of nowhere unexpectedly. I’ve been dreaming of it for what seems like forever and even bought little undies in anticipation months ago.

So this is how it happened. One morning a couple months ago I was cleaning up breakfast dishes or sorting laundry or something of that nature when Hudson, the youngest comes in the room and announces he has to go. I paused, more like froze as I tried processing what this meant. He said it again and I promptly ushered him to the bathroom and he went! A couple hours later he said he had to do the other kind so I proudly and excitedly escorted him to the bathroom again. But, that was it. He was no longer interested in it after that and wanted his diapers. I didn’t want to turn it into a battle so I obliged. Every so often I would ask him if he wanted to wear underwear today or if he wanted to try the potty again. He’d answer with a ‘no’ and shrug of the shoulder. Bummer, I thought.

Then the other morning the boys were all out on the lawn bright and early helping their dad load up and head off for a high adventure camping trip. As I emerged through the front doorway I saw a hilarious sight before me. There was Hudson running around with his diaper so full it nearly touched his ankles and knocked against his knees as he ran. Quickly changing his diaper. I didn’t think much of it until Cameron had left and things had quieted down.

The next diaper change I asked the question again, not expecting a positive response. BUT, he shook his head yes and asked for the transformer underwear! He’s never gone back! Having the right underwear is key in pottie training. He also liked the idea of surprising daddy with his new ability as well.

Okay secret’s out I am a professional diaper changer (it’s true there is such a thing)after four boys, an estimated 14,000 diapers and 8 consequtive years I think I qualify. I know a thing or two about diapers, diaper changing and well everything else having to do the subject. I can change with the best of them and have been exposed to it all as well. I can change an explosive diaper on an airplane on my lap in the midst of high turbulence, alligator rolls – bring it on, any position – not a problem, in their sleep w/o waking them up, speed, discretion…

So here are a few of my tips for the diaper stage and the transition to the non-diaper stage as I feel a sense of duty to pass them on to all diapering parents.

1)If at all possible don’t skimp on quality diapers for obvious reasons. It’s worth the extra little bit.
2)Don’t skimp on wipes either. The higher quality ones are tough, durable and don’t rip in the middle of their job and they are the multi purpose handi do all cleaning tool for everything in the home to the car and of course in regards to the bum.
3)A+D or Butt Paste are THE best diaper rash ointments. They don’t sting, not that I’ve tried them personally on myself. However, my boys don’t scream bloody murder ‘it burns, it burns’ with these brands as they do with say, um Desitin and the like.

1) Like I said underwear is key
2) Incentive is also helpful, such as a reward, a pizza/movie night, storm trooper…
3) Praise, praise and more praise, build the confidence
4) Never turn it into a power struggle or associate going to the bathroom with negativity
5) Timing is everything. Every body is different. Talk to your pediatrician if you need. My pediatrician told me (after I had already gone through three) that white males are the last to learn. So don’t rush or push you will only be met with frustration and resistance.
6) Involvement and exposure: let them pick out their underwear, toilet seat, casually and randomly discuss the topic
7) Patience

A method I used with my first two:
‘boot camp’ which is anything but boot camp. Just something I dubbed it as. It’s more like block-out-a-week-with-no-appointments-or-dinner-dates-and-stock-up-the-pantry-we’re-ditching-the-diapers-this-week-camp. It’s low key, friendly, no stress and they can run around the house and yard in their underwear.

Whatever method you find that works for you, it’s good to prep them. Shop for underwear, toilet covers and so forth letting them choose the ones they want. If they don’t want to start when you get home, it’s something they can look forward to. Bring out the toilet seats and training potties making them visible and accessible, sparking interest. Accidents happen, never make your child feel bad for that. It takes a lot to get the hang of it. Relay that thought to them, they’ll be more relaxed and unafraid wanting to try harder and will be more confident. After all they are new to this and shouldn’t be made to feel bad about or punished for something they’re learning. So teach them and teach them tenderly.

I’m still in the clouds somewhere, NO DIAPERS! There’s more room in my shopping cart, more money in my pocket, space under the bathroom sink, no more smelly packages. We’ve officially graduated to another phase in familyhood. No more cribs, no binkies, no bottles, no cumbersome diaper bags, no stroller/infant carriers, no diapers….

WAIT, where have all my little boys gone!?


Anonymous Anonymous said...

In addition to being the diaper equivalent of a Navy SEAL You're a pretty good writer too!

However you said "white male boys are the last to learn."... as opposed to female boys? Or male girls?

1:12 PM  
Blogger Suzanne Moll said...

thanks, just over emphasizing ;)

4:39 PM  
Blogger nikki said...

Yeah! hail the conquering hero! i totally know the feeling. Zach decided to potty train himself (similiar to your Hudson) a couple months ago. Aside from the extra cash you get - the freedom of not carrying a diaper bag is fantastic!
enjoy your new freedom!

I agree underwear choice is the best, I had purchased some spiderman, cars and Transformer. But Zach only wanted the Bumble Bee and spider man ones! so i washed a lot!

7:31 AM  
Blogger Jared and Erin said...

Congrats! What a feat. And to think, I haven't even started. I'll have to remember this in 5-10 years.

8:43 AM  
Blogger Smedley Family said...

Nice! Owen is two so I've been wondering on when to do him, thanks for the tips. Never had to train a boy. As far as the smells of wipes, diapers, dirty diapers . . . it's almost embedded in my brain like roses. Hope when I am done I will be disgusted at the smell instead of missing it. It's bitter/sweet to see them grow! -Lisa

10:37 AM  
Blogger my little kingdom said...

As for training boys, I've found they are really easy, it's all in the timing though, so if you have to wait til they are a little older, it's worth the wait.

6:26 PM  
Blogger Goodkids said...

Congratulations, Suzanne! I'm a little bit jealous, though! It will be so very nice to get to that point with my little one. Yet, I think I'll be just a tiny bit sad, as you are, that my baby will be all "growned" up.

12:12 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I did an evaluation the other day with a 17-year-old mentally retarded boy who still messes his pants...sad...

1:48 PM  

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