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How do I successfully potty train twins?
Q: My twins are almost 2 ½. A few weeks ago we began potty training. One of them excelled immediately, while the other resisted. After a week or so, they flip-flopped; the original “resistor” became perfectly trained at this time, and the original “excellor” acted as if she hadn’t been trained at all. She knows what to do and how to do it, as she exemplified a few days ago when she emerged from the bathroom saying, “mummy, I pee-peed in the potty! I surprise you! I get treat!” And she had done it all by herself. But since then the accidents are the norm and the pottying the exception. Parenting multiples is absolutely exhausting, and the potty training makes it even more so. I can find no books on this and really need some advice or direction or encouragement or something. Much thanks.
Ashley Orlando
A: Ashley, as the mother of twins, I know what you mean by “exhausting.” As a couple of weeks have elapsed between the writing of your question and the preparation of my answer, I’m going to hazard the guess that your problem has solved itself! If your “excellor” (I love that term) has remained dry and your “resistor” has demonstrated that she can be dry when she wants to, I’ll wager that your resistor has decided she likes being dry and getting treats! She sounds pretty shrewd to me. In case I’m wrong and she is still playing “hard to catch,” may I suggest you take advantage of your built-in helper: the other twin—in this case, an excellor. Talk to her, not to your resistor, and engage her as a co-conspirator. “Show your sister how easy it is to pee-pee on the potty.” And make certain she gets plenty of praise for her cooperation.

Finally, I can’t resist offering one wild and crazy suggestion. As you lift your resistor out of the cot tomorrow morning, snuggle against her warm face and say, “Surprise me; stay dry today.”
Dr. Bettye M. Caldwell Ph.D. Professor of Pediatrics in Child Development and Education