Potty All Night Long!

My name is Lori, and I am a pull-up addict.  No. Not really.  ButI am very hesitant to night potty train my four-year-old girl and have basically stuck my head in the sand while singing “lalalalalala” anytime the subject is broached. 

My dear little girl was REALLY hard to potty train as it is, and I just cringe to think how hard night-time training will be.  I think I know what I should do to make it happen, but then again, I don’t.  Here’s my current plan. I would really like to hear from anyone that’s been down this road already…especially if you have a child that has been tough to potty train:

  • Use a gate to ensure she has access only to her room and the restroom (brother’s room is right next door to hers, and I fully expect that she would delightedly go in and wake him up as well as come into our room to wake us up under the pretense of going potty.)
  • Use multiple waterproof mattress pads and fitted sheets to make layers of bedding so that middle-of-the-night sheet changes are somewhat simple.
  • Put her to bed in panties/remove the option of wearing a pull-up.
  • Make sure she doesn’t drink anything after 7ish.  Right now, we eat dinner starting at 7 because that time works best with our daily schedule, but I am thinking it might be too late of a meal/drink time in relation to her bedtime, which is 8 or 8:30.
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  • Make sure there’s one more potty run right before lights out (we already do this).
  • After a couple weeks, start using a reward chart for dry nights.

A MAJOR factor in my hesitancy to start night-time potty training with my daughter is that anytime we’ve talked about night-time potty training with her, she has told us over and over that she wants to wear pull-ups to sleep and not panties.  Also, she has woken up dry only a couple times since we started putting her in pull-ups a couple years ago.  According to this article, it’s likely she is not physiologically ready.  Maybe I am jumping the gun?

Much of the trouble with day-time potty training her (at the age of  3)  came from her insistence that she wanted to wear diapers (this was after having successfully worn panties and kept them dry for a few weeks).  It turned into a big, emotional, life-impacting battle that lasted several months and, due to withholding issues, resulted in some pretty extreme medical situations and treatments.  My daughter turned four in January.  I do not know how much time I should give her to get/be ready to night-time potty train before I insist on it.  Right now, our plan is to start trying this summer. 

I would really love to hear from folks who have already night-time potty trained a child or are about to begin.

4 Comments on Potty All Night Long!

  1. Our four year old was also wearing ‘goodnights’ to bed every night, and it was always full in the mornings, and then I discovered, that she was in fact staying dry ALL NIGHT and then peeing in it first thing when she woke up in the morning, instead of getting up out of bed to use the toilet! Little stinker…….so upon this discovery, we put her in panties the very next night, and she has only had a few accidents. Good luck!

  2. I think physiological readiness is a good thing to take into account. Every kid’s different, and if anyone wore Pull-Ups in college, I didn’t know about it.

    My daughters actually night-trained first. Go figure.

  3. My son, also 4, still wets the bed/pullup every night. We tried several of the things above with no success. He would prefer to wear undies and sometimes we let him but it still results in a wet bed. Our ped said he wasnt concerned with bedwetting unless it happens beyond 10yrs of age. My research turned up that the causes are sometimes their diet, physiological issues or that they are deep sleepers. I’ve decided to just let it go for now. I have also looked into investing in the cloth bedwetter pants which may be a nice transition for her if she loves her diaper.

  4. Lori, first of all don’t stress about this! My seven year old son wore a pullup everynight up until a couple of months ago and it was completely full every single night. He never once kept it dry! I was seriously stressed about it and kept feeling a huge amount of pressure to “fix” this problem. It really started bothering him when his four year old brother was sleeping in underwear and he wasn’t. What I found is that like most things, it fixed itself. He made the decision that he was ready to sleep without pullups and he did just that. He’s had occasional accidents but nothing too major. The one thing that I require of him is that if he has an accident that he remove all his bedding and wet clothes and put them on top of the washing machine so I know about it. We never pressured him, never offered to reward him and just told him that when his body was ready he would know. Don’t worry about it – I’m sure she’ll be out of pullups before she’s off to college ;-)

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