Perhaps you know that my youngest is now 17 months old...and may want to know where we are these days regarding his Elimination Communication progress.
(Even if you're only on this website for potty training, definitely read the below as it can show you what young toddlers are truly capable of...even if yours is older than B!)
I also have a related, classic blog post that I wrote a while back that I'll share after the story.
So, with Branson, we began at birth, the first moments of his life, and have done EC with a full-time focus (no, we didn't try to get every pee or poo in the toilet, but we have raised him with 100% EC-attentiveness, which I consider a full-time focus if that makes sense!)...ever since.
Out of diapers at 12 months old
At 12 months I decided to take him out of daytime diapers for good (we'd been doing back-up experiments here and there). With Cooper, my 3rd child, hubs and I felt we'd waited too long to take him out of diapers, stunting his growth in this area (we chose 17 months with him), so with B, we decided to go earlier, once walking was mastered!
He now wears Tiny Trainers training pants or TinyUps cloth pullup covers (solo) or Tiny Undies LEARN underwear or other Gerber training pants (leftovers from my eldest) during all wake-time, non-travel, non-preschool times.
So, currently, about 80% of the daytime, he has been sans-diaper...and also doesn't wear pants on top of these, for easy access and awareness.
Here he is in his LEARN undies (my creation - they teach self-dressing):
(Want more info on which back-up to use at which age, undies to diapers to nothing? I wrote a post on that here, complete with a baby-by-baby graphic for all of my kiddos so far.)
Now, at 17 months, he is telling us he needs to go, 99% of the time, with his word choice: poo-poo.
Woohoo!!!!! (Knock on wood! I know by sharing this I'm going to have a miss today!)
Sometimes he whispers it, creepily, as he walks up to us.
Typically, he is also pulling at the back of his training pants and trying to pull them down.
Here is a short video of B telling me "poo-poo" at the breakfast table:
Then, we say, "Ok! Run, run, run to the bathroom!" and he says "wun, wun, wun" and waddles off to the toilet...usually getting distracted mid-way there. I pick him up and put him on the toilet seat reducer and busy myself with something in the bathroom while he goes. Then I set him on the stepstool and pull his training pants up onto his ankles, he stands, and we pull them the rest of the way up together - teaching self-dressing!
Sometimes he tells us AFTER he's already peed his pants. We still do the same exact routine as above, putting the wet ones into a bin.
But lately, it's mostly been BEFORE (he even comes indoors if he feels the need to poop, tells me, and we get it in the toilet!), and if I'm really paying attention (with 3 other kiddos around!), I can spot other signs that he needs to go before he gives me the signal that he needs to go (the word poo-poo).
How did we get here?
Well, we've practiced EC by the book since day 1.
We've also treated the signal word "poo-poo" as the same as any other word-learning and attempt at communication. We present food, we sign "eat" as we say "time to eat" or "want food?" And he will say "eat" or "food," sometimes signing, too. It's basic communication and language learning, two-way. :)
How can you do the same?
How to get your child to let you know and be wrapped up in this way by this age? Well, you can also practice EC from the day you're at today...age 10 months...age 16 months...age 2 days old...whenever. It's never too early to begin some part of EC. My book is the best resource for this, ages 0-18 months.
When you make EC part of your day-to-day life, and treat it the same as caring for your baby's feeding, sleeping, and loving needs, you will have the same success. <3
And the blog post I wrote a while back that I think you'll love?
It applies to all ages of children.
(Note in my story above that I did not have Branson naked during this process. I advocate using a "back-up" and the article above will explain why.)
And if you're in the "potty training" mode, not EC?
...then the above article will also show you why your child may be peeing on the floor as well. What more to do in your situation? Get my potty training book and do the whole method, start to finish, to make sure nothing unseen has been missed.
I hope you've enjoyed our update today.
Please leave a comment, below, with what you're going to do TODAY as a result of reading this story (and hopefully becoming inspired by our example!).
And I hope you have the same pottying success as we've had...baby #4! No excuses! Get some resources and enjoy the benefits of making potty time a priority in your home. I promise it's worth it.
PS - What's next for Branson?
We are working on outings with just training pants or TinyUps...and in September we'll be sending him to preschool with no diaper at all. At home, we are working on having him in underwear only, no pants, so he can learn to manipulate his clothing himself. At night, he has been waking up dry but we plan to stick with a Seventh Generation disposable diaper as a nighttime back-up because, well, it's working and we're re-using! Will update you again in a few months. xoxox
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