Are you over your head with worry because you still can’t successfully Teach your 4-year-old to go to the bathroom.? Has thinking about what else you can do keeping you up at night? Is it normal for a 4 year old to still wear diapers?
First of all, relax. Your baby is not the first 4-year-old to still be seen walking around in diapers. In fact, this occurrence is not as uncommon as one might think. My own experience with my son who is now 5 years old can attest to this.
Because I read in many parenting books that children should not be forced to be potty trained, I waited for the day when my son would express an interest in the process. As you may have guessed, I waited in vain. To this day, I remain a firm believer that he would still be walking around in diaper heaven if he hadn’t stepped in.
This is not to discredit what many authors say about parenting. It is true that each child learns differently from the others and that parents should not rush their children to do things they are not ready for. But it just so happens that my son is one of those people who just needs a little push of encouragement to jump on the bandwagon.
So what did I do to potty train my 4 year old? One afternoon I sat him down and explained that starting the next day he would be wearing “big” boxer shorts instead of diapers during the day. He seemed eager and interested at first, but the next few days turned out to be a horror. He missed the comfort of wearing a diaper and threw tantrums about it. But I stuck to the plan. I made him clean himself in the bathroom when he got dirty. I applied simple reward and punishment tactics: reduce TV time when he made a mess, offer him a hug or a cookie every time he used the bathroom. I am proud to say that my son has not had a diaper in almost a year.
Potty training a child requires a lot of love and patience. But with helpful hints and tips, it’s doable and rewarding.