The Writing Mamas Daily Blog

Each day on the Writing Mamas Daily Blog, a different member will write about mothering.

If you're a mom then you've said these words, you've made these observations and you've lived these situations - 24/7.

And for that, you are a goddess.

Saturday, August 04, 2007


Go Green: Potty Train Now

Recently, I attended a potty training class that was advertised as getting toddlers between the ages of fifteen and twenty eight months potty trained in one long weekend.

My toddler is nineteen-months old and doesn’t speak yet. He doesn’t point to a toilet or his diaper when he has to go. He has his own potty, but mostly he uses it to store toys. He does, however, strongly dislike having his diaper changed, and according to leaders of the potty training class, that’s one of the signs.

When I told friends about my intent to potty train, I was surprised by the wall of opposition I got. They said: “He’s way too young.” “He’ll tell you when he’s ready.” “He has to be able to talk first, so he can communicate his needs.” “When they’re ready, they practically train themselves.”

Even my daycare provider shook her head and said flatly, “He’s too young.”

In the class, I learned some interesting statistics that supported my intent. “Eighty-five percent of all twenty three-month olds in the U.S. were out of diapers in 1957 and 1971. Today, the average U.S. age of getting out of diapers is thirty nine months.”

The difference is huge.

The teacher, Julie Fallom, a long-time daycare provider and preschool teacher, also said that it was harder to train three-year olds and that those toddlers who learned before twenty seven months had less day-time accidents.

This is not surprising to me. In developing countries, kids are out of diapers long before three, if they’re in them at all. My mother reminded me that in her generation, kids were out of diapers by two. What happened between then and now?

Disposable diapers, which are convenient.

The downside is that they’re loading up our landfills. According to Fallom, “In two years of wearing disposable diapers, one child will produce nearly four tons of solid waste in the landfill, and an additional half ton is produced between ages two and three.”

This is what’s driving Fallom’s mission, which is to get as many of the 4,000 toddlers in San Francisco as possible out of diapers by twenty eight months. She hopes to start a revolution.

I’m on board.

After all, if you can train a dog to poop in a certain place, then why can’t you train your toddler to pee in a potty?

In other words, why not now?

By Cindy Bailey


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The key is disposable diapers. I have several friends who all trained their boys before they were two. They all wore cloth diapers and were quick to want out of them. I believe it is possible. Good luck!


PS I was never a fan of plastic potties. Peeing standing up outside and in urinals is better training for boys.
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