Any parent who has twins or two or more children very close in age will be more than familiar with the daily battles. Parenting is challenging enough without having to respond to two or more very different sets of needs and demands from your children.
When it comes to tackling the milestones, approaching the situation armed with knowledge is the best way to go. While there will always be an element of the unexpected, being even the slightest bit prepared will go a long way.
Every child will show signs of readiness when it comes to potty training and each of your twins should be considered an individual in this aspect. Don’t assume that they will be ready at the same time because every child is an individual. If you have a boy and girl twinset then it’s even more likely that one will be ready much earlier than the other - as boys are typically more difficult to train, you should expect this process to last longer for him too.
We would certainly advise not to push one of your twins to be ready when the other has shown the signs just so that you can train in tandem. It may be easier for you but pushing any child into something will lead to disaster and prolong the process. However, the good news is that many children will want to ‘keep up’ with their sibling and do the same thing that they are doing. So, when child A starts to potty train, child B may well mimic his/her actions and you’ll end up training them together anyway.
As with single potty training, it’s important to focus on praise and not punishment. Encourage your children by putting their Family Seat progress charts up in the bathroom and celebrating every achievement. Avoid putting the charts side by side – comparisons will only make the child who is training more slowly feel worried or inferior and may lead to regression.
What you can do is involve both children together in the process – encourage your second child to come to the bathroom when the other one needs to go so that you are all “in it together.” They can also learn by example in a no-pressure environment – spend the bathroom time reading books (ideally toilet training related ones!) or singing your special bathroom song to help the kids feel more relaxed and comfortable.
The last thing you want is to be so overwhelmed that you cannot take one child to the toilet when he needs it because the other one is taking your attention. Minimise risk and accidents by asking your mum/partner/mother in law/a close friend to help you out and watch one child while you keep an eye on the other.
No one likes asking for help but sometimes needs must and you shouldn’t be ashamed to call in the troops. Especially in the early stages of training, children will wait until the very last minute before they signal the need to go to the potty. That’s why you need to be on full alert at all times. Accidents are not the end of the world but too many may cause setbacks.
Extra help will also be valuable when one child who is not yet ready interferes with training the other child. Keeping focus is so important for healthy potty training development, and having an extra pair of hands to take care of your other child will give everyone the attention that they need.
For advice and support on any aspect of potty training and the Family Seat, please do not hesitate to get in touch via email at firstname.lastname@example.org