Kids,  Party

Batman Potty Party!

We’ve had a potty for 2 years hoping our now 4-year-old son would just use it one day when he was ready, but he was showing signs of readiness so I needed to learn how to teach him. I borrowed a Potty Kit for Boys from the library with books that came with a baby doll, mini potty, bottle, and the book “Potty Train Your Child in Just One Day: Proven Secrets of the Potty Pro” by Teri Crane. I got 3 other potty training books and prayed for success since I really did only have one full day to to dedicate entirely to potty train. A ton of effort but… It worked for us!

Going the Potty Party route felt like a great fit for us. My son is all about FUN, and I enjoy throwing a party haha! My son matches my enthusiasm, so I knew he would be up for all the games, songs, reading, and repetition while waiting for the magic moments to happen on the potty. He has lots of energy and is really into superheroes, so it was perfect as the Potty Party theme. We already had Batman pjs toothbrush costumes etc. but not an action figure, so this method was perfect because it uses a new doll for modeling the toilet training. Our day was filled with lots of positivity, playing, and spending time together which we both really enjoyed.

What Worked For Us

Getting a feel for how often and when they go. I had only about 3 days of data but it helped being confident of when my child was most likely to need to go, or usually went, or how long it took for them to pee after drinking something. Timing their successful potty moments created less stress because it’s not a complete guessing game!

Completely undivided attention for my child. The hassle of my husband making arrangements for the other children from the time he woke up until 6pm was worth it. My child responds well to learning when he is given quality one-on-one time. I was able to focus on him, and that allowed me to relax and have fun with him even though I was severely sleep deprived.

Loving Little Details. For the first time ever the bathroom had decorations! I cleaned that bathroom until it sparkled the night before. Just a handful of balloons and streamers really filled my child with excitement! Yep, totally made the Batman action figure matching underwear! It took hours because I stupidly finished them one by one instead of assembly line style, hand-sewing everything. They were quality and survived the “accidents”!

Part 1: Potty Training Batman Boy Action Figure

Our son spent the morning teaching his doll he named “Batman Boy” the steps to potty! We showed Batman Boy doll fun books and videos on potty training from the library. Our favorite was “Potty Time” with sign language and fun songs that he even sang in his sleep. We also enjoyed an episode from Elmo and “Once Upon a Potty” (super short). After each book or activity we’d check Batman Boy doll’s underwear. More often than not he had an accident! I just cut a piece of sponge and soaked it until it was sopping wet, put it in a measuring cup that I hid under my cape, then sneaked a good squeeze on the doll when my kid wasn’t looking. For pretend poo, I just stuffed a small piece of old chocolate Easter candy in the doll’s underwear and sneakily smashed it in there.

We would teach Batman Boy doll (since he forgot) that we pee or poo in the potty—not in our big boy underwear—and then we’d clean him up and have him sit to practice his “potty muscle memory”. When my kid wasn’t looking I’d dump some yellow-dyed water in a tiny bottle on the doll on the potty, and we’d congratulate the doll, clap and whoop, clean him up again, empty the potty bowl, flush the toilet, wash our hands, pick out new underwear, get him dressed, and give him a sticker and treat. Over and over and over! I only did the “you can have this treat if you promise to pee on the potty, too, *someday*” speech once because it didn’t feel sincere when I wasn’t sure he understood what he was promising.

My son would say that Batman Boy was “naughty” for having an accident (he was getting tired of constantly “taking care of Batman Boy but still did it anyway). I would tell him that Batman Boy is not naughty, he’s still learning and needs to practice his “potty muscle memory”. We reinforced this later in the day, too, when my son had an accident and he felt terrible about it. He was sad asking if I would make him go back to diapers! I told him not to worry because he was a big boy, I was very proud of him, and he’s still learning and just needs to practice his “potty muscle memory”, and someday he would be very good at it.

Part 2: Potty Training My Batman Boy

Don’t Give Up!

Batman Potty Party Gift Training Pants
Batman Potty Party Gift – Training Pants

Things hit a snag. He woke up from his nap and I gave him his training pants gift, but after he realized what they were he didn’t want it and ran back to his room hiding under the covers. I tried to talk with him and give him hugs, but I think he was tired and still waking up; so I set a timer for 5 minutes, put on some Batman music, didn’t make a big deal of anything, and nonchalantly continued playing until he excitedly came back out when he was ready. He quickly did want to put on the underwear. They were large on him to the point where he was constantly holding them up, so adding easy pants made them more comfortable.

Drink and Play / Activity Ideas

Drink, drink, drink! He was over the potty books/activities so we switched gears and just played! His favorite activity was a cardboard crate we imagined was the Bat Mobile, so he had me push him all around the house in it—and of course told me to wear my mask and cape. We tossed a balloon back and forth, pretended the balloons were bad guys and got to punch/smack/sword-fight/arrow them, practiced our climbing and jumping skills on the stools, popped all the packaging that the supplies shipped in, ran in circles around the party table and chased each other, did piggy-back rides fighting imaginary bad guys. We hid under the covers and pretended we were in the bat cave. We had a dance party with Batman themed music and kid radio. And of course, we used the new Batman Boy action figure to beat up crocodiles, save kittens up high on the bookshelf, and fight Iron Man and Super Man. He always obliged me when I suggested we go recharge at the Bat Signal in the bathroom, or that we needed a drink so we could make more pee!

Batman Potty Party Bat-Signal Light Activity
Bat-signal Light for Fun on the Potty

I adapted most of the ideas the author wrote about. Instead of constructing a “recharging board” that the child holds in their lap, we just pretended a portable light was the bat signal and he could only turn it on when he was on the potty! We played lots of games with it, took turns making silly faces with it, and read our “Shine-a-Light” books with it (“The Human Body” one was especially helpful and he liked to point out the kidneys and bladder, and that they made pee!)… I highly recommend!

We ended on a high note with our big boy showing off his new skills going potty a little after Daddy and siblings came home. They were super impressed and added to the party! Our big celebration was a family dinner with pasta that he likes, opening “presents” I wrapped (his big boy underwear and a library copy of the Batman LEGO movie to watch that night). He refused the Pull-ups so we just had him go potty right before bed, in the middle of the night when he woke up at 1:30am, and as soon as he woke up!

UPDATE: It’s been a week since the Potty Party, and our big boy has gone potty in big toilets at church, the library, preschool (with the help of his teachers), and friends’ houses. He also graduated to the big toilet at home! He goes potty right before bedtime, and has stayed dry at night! A minimal number of accidents, but with each one he learned how to better listen to his body, and point down haha. I got worried about him going poo since it took 4 days before he actually went in the potty—but he did it, and surprised me by cleaning himself up, emptying the bowl, flushing all by himself. He still gets excited singing all his potty songs on the toilet, and after many days of practice with me taking him at scheduled times—now he knows when it’s time and reminds US that it’s time to potty! So amazed by this boy!

If I Did It Over Again

No Pull-Ups. Our kid didn’t want or need them! They totally look like diapers including the box they come in. After an entire day of potty successes and the “no more diapers” chant, showing him the diaper-like Pull-ups seemed confusing. He just smiled and said, “Um, no thanks! That’s Walker’s.” Go big or go home I guess? I was pleased and hoping I wouldn’t have to change a horrid mess soon.

More healthy options. This much sugar and excitement when we’re used to very little sugar and no jumping made it hard for him to settle down for nap time. He preferred the healthy options—like real fruit—except for the drinks which I wish I watered down.

Have plans for dinner! Just throw it in the oven ideally. I forgot the dinner thing and didn’t want leftovers because what’s so exciting about that, so my husband had to go to the store last second and it was crazy.

Remember the siblings. My 2-year-old who routinely snatches toys from his brother kept chasing him trying to take away the new Batman Boy doll! We ended up going to the store TWICE that night to buy him one so he wouldn’t take his brother’s hard earned potty buddy!

You are the Biggest Part of Potty Training

I made the mistake of trying to cram another potty training book (“Oh Crap” by Jamie Glowacki) the day before, thinking I would combine the best advice with what I was already planning. It had a completely different approach that honestly crushed my spirit. The no-nonsense advice was amazing, but it was very matter-of-fact on the ideal age to potty train so it made me feel pressure not only for my kid who was already too old according to her, but also my other little one who was right on the edge of the ideal age so I felt like I needed to rush. She did NOT use a reward system—which is my entire potty party as a segue to the internal reward of being independent. She said not to have a potty out for kids to “get used to”, and take it away for at least a couple of weeks before—oops. She said no pull-ups, and many more things that not only could I NOT combine with the other book, I’d have to UNDO just about everything I was doing and cancel.It created lots of doubt and stress the night before the big day to the point where I cried to my husband. I ultimately decided to stop listening to the audio book. I realized I already felt inspired on what was best for my kid, I already made the plan and I needed to believe in it and that would make it happen. The best advice I got from the Oh Crap book was that humans learn through repetition (which DID support my method) and how YOU are the biggest part of potty training because your child senses your vibe—especially your stress, anxiety, and frustration even if you’re smiling through it—so the most important thing was to be sincere, patient, and relaxed. I tried not to put pressure on myself with this has to work, I need this to work–and remembering this is for my kid who may not follow the program and I’d just roll with it. The funny thing was throwing a party for my kid and potty training him marathon-style in one day was NOT stressful for me—doubting my plan from hearing all this counter-advice was. I prayed a lot about what worried and scared me because I didn’t want to mess up my kid, and this was a lot of effort and expense if it didn’t work, and I felt right about it so that calmed me down and gave me the confidence I needed. My expectation was that nothing is mastered in one day so we’d consistently practice for at least a couple of weeks afterward, we would treat nighttime training separately, and even if he didn’t pee in the potty a single time during our day at least we got to spend that time together.

Planning for the Batman Potty Party

We planned this Potty Party in a week! I ordered online:

  • ​ 12-inch Batman Action Figure (only $8 at Walmart!)
  • 5-pack of flushable wipes from Walmart
  • 3-pack of Justice League training underwear
  • 7-pack of Justice League big boy underwear
  • Mattress cover so I could double-make the bed for nighttime training

I also bought:

  • ​1/8th yard of cute Justice League fabric at Joann’s (I don’t think this was necessary but it was def cute!)
  • Black crepe paper/streamers
  • Yellow gift wrapping paper
  • Black and Yellow Balloons
  • Sticker Book at Walmart
  • Box of variety snacks like mini animal crackers, mini Oreos, mini teddy grahams
  • Pringles
  • Bag of Gummy bears & skittles
  • Pack of Capri Sun

Things I wish I didn’t buy:

  • $28 Box of Batman themed Pull-ups (didn’t end up using or needing these! Although if he had wanted them they would be very convenient)
  • Extra small bottle of orange juice, Lemonade powder mix (too many extra snacks/treats/drinks! Lots of options was good, but he stuck with his favorites)
  • Batman plastic cup (too flimsy and he liked seeing the liquid inside which the cup didn’t allow)

Stuff I made:

  • ​2 Potty Charts out of gift wrapping paper & sharpies
  • 12 pairs of doll underwear from fabric scraps
  • Table runner out of gift wrapping paper

Stuff I already had that worked out great:

  • Potty
  • Borrowed mattress cover for couch
  • Borrowed potty books/videos from library
  • ​Costume masks, capes, pajamas
  • Cardboard boxes and packing materials for imaginative games & activities
  • Battery-operated Light
  • Fun stuff for while on the potty- Superman Coloring Book, random Bubbles
  • Tiny cupcake liners to serve small portioned treats

We really enjoyed celebrating this milestone, and are so proud of our Big Boy!

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