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Tips for Toilet Training


By Cindy Schweich Handler

The old adage that "no one ever graduated from college wearing diapers" may be true, but parents struggling through potty-training may wonder if their child will be the first. Below, moms and dads from around the country share their own creative -- and successful -- strategies for toilet teaching.

A manly man's M.O. "While my wife was away on a well-deserved extended weekend with friends, I covered the couch and chairs with plastic, then went to the store with my son to buy "manly-man" underwear just like Dad's. We went home and gave the pull-ups to the garbage man so he could "give them to little babies who didn't have any." Then we spent the weekend in underwear and sang the "manly-man song" ("Men, men, men, men, men ...") There were very few accidents, and we had a great surprise for Mom when she got home." --Scott Smith, Louisville, Ky.

A hero's habits "My son looked up to a 10-year-old neighbor named Josh. Once, after Christopher turned three and still wasn't potty-trained, I pointed out Josh's school to him, and told him that diapers weren't allowed there. That seemed to be the incentive he needed. A few months later, he was peeing in the potty and announcing that now he was going to school with his hero!" --Sarah Stibbe Damaskos, Montclair, N.J.

The right morning ritual "After my daughter Coco woke up in the morning, I took off her wet diaper, and instead of bringing her to the bathroom immediately, waited until after she'd eaten breakfast. Then we went together, and I read her favorite books to her until she used the toilet. At this point, it didn't take long." --Sally Marshall, New York, N.Y.
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