Hiring A Potty Training Consultant
If you’re like me, the thought of starting potty training can be so overwhelming that you may end up putting it off in hopes that your little one will magically figure it out themselves! Well, that most likely won’t happen so where do you even start?
The internet is FILLED to the brim with potty training techniques that some people swear by but may not necessarily be the best option for your specific child, after all, all kids are different right? So where can you find all the info you need in one spot, get your questions answered along the way, and make sure you're choosing an option that takes into account your little one’s own unique personality? I've found it, or rather I found HER! Allison Jandu is a mother of two and is an expert in potty training. She has had so much success training her own children and family/friends children that she created a business as a Potty Training Consultant. She has customized potty training programs for families all over the country and if you're in need of some help, look no further.
I think she’s definitely onto something and filling a much-needed void in the potty training market. Thankfully she took the time to chat with me so that I could learn more about what she does and why it's such a unique and successful approach making potty training a lot less painful and a lot more fun!
Check her out on Instagram @pottytrainingconsultant and if you are in need of some help with your potty training adventure you can learn more here www.pottytrainingconsultant.
How did you decide to become a potty-training consultant and how did you become an expert?
When I knew it was coming time to potty train my son (who is now 4 years old), I started to research some methods online since I had no clue what I was doing and I was quickly overwhelmed with all the information that’s out there! So I compiled the things I liked from various methods into a plan that I thought fit our family. Despite all the horror stories I have heard about potty training, I ended up having a wonderfully positive experience. I actually loved it and seeing how proud my son could be of himself was the best feeling in the world. Since I had such great success with my son, friends and family and friends of the family started asking me for potty training advice and somehow, they all ended up having the same luck I had. I thought I must really have a knack for this; maybe I can help other people too. And so my little business was born. Come to find out, there aren’t too many of us out there!
When I decided to start my consulting business I also started researching any and everything potty training related on the internet, and reading seemingly every potty training and parenting book available. I lost count after the many hours I spent reading after my kids went to bed every night, but I would guess I have well over 100 hours of research invested. And, just when I think I’ve encountered every type of potty training scenario, I end up learning something new from working with my clients. In this field, I think it is really all about experience.
What is the biggest benefit to hiring a potty-training consultant and what is the typical cost?
It’s hard for me to choose one thing, but if I have to pick, I think it’s just having someone you know you can rely on for support (and someone who knows what they are doing) through what can be one of the most trying times of parenthood. I make myself available to my clients with real-time virtual support until they feel like they don’t need me anymore.
My typical cost is somewhere in the range from $175.00 to $250.00 depending on the amount of time I think is required to complete the potty training process which includes the support mentioned above. I have also heard of in-home potty trainers that charge upwards of $800.00 per day.
When someone reaches out to you for a consultation, what is the process? Do you have to be there physically or do you just design a plan for the parents to follow?
Actually, 80% of my clients are remote from all corners of the world which is super cool. When someone reaches out to me I ask (a lot!) of questions to try and get a feel for their specific situation and based on the answers, provide a quote. If accepted, I move forward with a formal questionnaire to find out as much information about the child as possible. I use that information to compile a full written assessment and a potty training plan that is usually ready within about a week to ten days, depending on how booked up I am. From there, the client lets me know when they are going to start the plan so I can be available to provide any support as needed, like if something isn’t working and we need to change our approach. Phone consultations can be added for additional clarification as well. I always request payment up front to cover the time and love I put into each of my reports.
Since all kids are different with potty-training, how do you decide what method to use? Is it different for each child or do you use the same method?
I decide the best approach based on the information I compile from the questionnaire and from speaking with the parents. In all the families I’ve worked with, aside from the workshops I give, I have never used the same exact method twice. Every child is different, including in the way they potty train!
If you had to give one tip to all parents about potty-training, what would it be and why?
The one problem I encounter the most in this business is parents that can’t get their kids to poop on the potty. (Hence, me writing my book The Poop Puzzle: What to do if your child will not poop on the potty.) To prevent this from happening, I suggest sitting your baby on the toilet to poop from the age of about 8 or 9 months. It is usually pretty easy to tell when a baby is pooping just by their facial expressions and body language, so as soon as you notice that, take off the diaper and support them over the toilet with their knees to their chest. At this age they are too young to protest and they don’t have the muscle control to stop their bowel movement once it has started. If you can get them used to pooping somewhere other than in a diaper from a young age, it is going to make future potty training much easier and in some cases, cut the amount of time it takes by half.
What age should parents start the potty-training process?
Again, this is different for every child, but usually the ideal age for potty training is somewhere between age 24 and 30 months. It is important to look for signs of readiness and act on them quickly so the window of opportunity isn’t missed.
Do you draw any correlation for kids that go to daycare vs. stay at home and potty-training success?
Usually, stay-at-home parents are more set up for success because the schedule and environment are more consistent. However, daycares can lay a good groundwork for potty training and being around other children who are having success on the potty can be a great motivator.
What are your favorite products that parents can purchase to help ease the potty-training process? (Favorite potty-topper, training toilet, training underpants, books, toys etc.)
My favorite potty chair is the Summer Lil Loo. It is simple and easy to clean with a decent sized bowl to contain even an older child’s pee/poop. My favorite potty training books are Where’s The Poop? by Julie Markes and The Potty Fairy by Mary Pap.
Do you have any favorite diaper brands? Are you a fan of disposable vs. cloth diapering? What are the best transitional diapers and do you see a need in the market for products that could help?
I was always partial to Pampers for my kids, but looking back now, I would consider going the cloth route. Did you know it takes an average of 450 years for a disposable diaper to decompose in a landfill?!
I don’t believe in Pull-Ups of any variety because I think they only prolong the training process by sending the child mixed messages (“Sometimes it is okay to pee in my pants, but sometimes it isn’t?”). Removing diapers altogether from the get-go makes the expectation clear – pee/poop only go in the potty.