Book Discussion: Oh Crap! Potty Training by Jaime Glowacki

As you know I only review parenting books when they are seriously good. Oh Crap! Potty Training is one of these books. If you have a toddler or soon to be toddler, you have probably already heard of this book from friends or other moms. I did and I’m so grateful for it.

As soon as my daughter turned two she was determined to use the potty. Unfortunately, we really didn’t know how best to support her. We were trying to be consistent, but we were just confusing her. We’d have her wear underpants, but then she’d have an accident and we’d put her in diapers. I worried constantly that she wasn’t ready. When she did go on the potty, we’d reward her with stickers. We’d let her play with her potty, pushing it around the house like a shopping cart. I figured the more time she spent with the john, the better off we’d be. I’d read to her and entertain her for 30 minutes at at time while she sat and stalled, panties around her ankles.

I finally just got fed up and decided to try this book. Immediately, the problems I was having became clear. Turns out I was making some really typical errors. I was overthinking things way too much. Obviously she was going to have accidents, she was learning something new. The key was to keep the diapers off and keep steering her to the potty. Clearly she was going to stall on the pot as long as possible because I had turned into the purveyor of non-stop story time. It’s better to get them on, let them do their business alone, and then call you back to clean them up and help wash hands.

Within a few days, I saw marked improvement. In a few months, she was totally trained. The commonsense approaches and tactics that Glowacki describes in her humorous and fun to read book are really invaluable. I love her straightforward style and honest advice. I’m sure some might find it abrasive, but to me it was refreshing and helpful to have someone just tell me the truth. I was the reason my daughter was having trouble potty training. It wasn’t her fault and she was totally ready (actually in retrospect, she was probably ready around 20 months). I just needed to give her the help she needed to get there.

I’m totally thrilled to be rid of diapers, but the best part is the confidence my daughter has in herself. She still yells “hooray!” every time she successfully goes to the bathroom. She loves being a big girl.

Don’t make the same mistakes I did. If you have a hunch your kid can go on the toilet, he probably can, regardless of age. Don’t let friends or family talk you out of what you know is right for your own kid. And most of all, keep calm and potty train on! Perseverance and consistency is the key!


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