Elimination Miscommunication: potty training

Every family is different. Each have their own traditions, routines and rituals that they abide by. They do things this way, we do it that way and it becomes more obvious once you have children.

For instance my partner’s family love to debate and argue about stuff. They really go to town tossing about ideas and it can get heated, but it’s really fun to join in the debate. According to my partner, my family is quite lovey dovey, we supposedly like to exchange hugs and kind words as well as take the mickey out of each other. And now we’re married we are a part of each others families and have both approaches down to a fine art.

The reason I bring this up was because I knew before I started child rearing that the husband’s family potty train their children as soon as they able to begin sitting up. Admittedly I thought it was weird at first. They can’t speak or walk but expecting them to be able to go to the toilet seemed silly to me. But it does work, I’ve seen it with my own eyes. Yes there are accidents, yes it requires a lot of dedication but it can work.

The mother in law has recently bought us a potty and the nagging has already started. I was reluctant to start as originally I had planned to go back to work after maternity leave but as the children need me I’m now not returning so find myself without excuse. Obviously I’ll begin when ever I want to but am hesitant because I have twins. It’s going to make the process so much more difficult.

I’ve watched a lot of Mum’s on YouTube, including Mayim Bialik who plays Amy Farrah Fowler on Big Bang Theory discussing why they did it: Elimination Communication.

Mayim Bialik discusses Elimination Communication

The logic behind it seems reasonable – children indicate they need a poo or pee by crying and other such signs. We tend to ignore it and encourage them to excrement themselves only to then tell them a few years later to ignore that and not do it confusing the child. You only need to watch This Morning for a few months to see a repeated segment on Potty Training and the difficulties a lot of parents have with it. However with twins I still think it would be too tricky to start now.

Andrea who runs Go Diaper Free

Luckily I found a woman, Andrea, whose written a book, does forums on the E.C. movement who says for twin’s its best to wait until they can sit up, spend three days fully dedicated to the delivery of it as parents supporting one another and to buy two pottys but obviously that’s just the beginning to get the ball rolling. It’ll take a while for then to get into the routine of it. Well that was a relief.

I did however begin trying it today just to see how difficult it would be. And boy was it difficult. Not once did they go pee or poo in the potty.

The unused potty

As I suspected with twins it would be difficult. I fed Luna first but unfortunately Lola would immediately want food straight after, they’re trained to eat back to back. Whilst I was feeding Lola, I saw the cues. It was a phenomenal feeling that I was better able to understand my baby knowing her thoughts however by the time I put down an upset Lola the moment had passed and then I had an upset baby to contend with as well as a dirty nappy. I was still pleased I was able to pick up her pee signal now. Poo was easy, she goes bright red however she needed a poo when I was changing Lola after her failed attempt on the potty – isn’t it ironic!

Luna worn out from all today’s activities

Lola was a nightmare. We were both up half the night because she decided she didn’t fancy sleeping last night so was up for ages just feeding, talking, rationalizing and growing frustrated at her reluctance to sleep so much so she was in a terrible mood today. She was having crying fits, which she can get as she can be a stroppy little madam so it was hard to know if those cries were pees or her tiredness. I suspect both.

Lola was tired today

So after carefully evaluation I’ve decided to postpone training until they can both sit up to make it a little easier on my back and my sanity.

What are your experiences of potty training? Was it difficult or easy? Are you a twin parent? How did you do it? I want to know if you have done Elimination Communication. What are your experiences of it? Any tips?


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