Potty Training & Chicken Pox – Combining the Two

Potty Training with Chicken Pox. What people don't tell you about potty training a toddler.

Potty Training with Chicken Pox. What people don't tell you about potty training a toddler.

Motherhood has done many things to me. It has changed my body, it has dulled my memory, it has mellowed my opinions (ok only a little but they have mellowed). But as I have found out recently motherhood has also made me certifiably crazy. Oh yes people! That is right! I decided to potty train my toddler during the chicken pox.

Hear me out… Hear me out!

The chicken pox started Thursday morning for Trixie. I noticed a couple of spots the day before, no blisters. Ellie had one blister on Wednesday night so I was hoping it was a false alarm but really I knew exactly what I was waking up to. So Thursday morning arrives and both the girls are covered in spots. Chicken pox is a strange thing, I swear their spots were multiplying in front of my eyes. Dutifully I barricade us in, got the Disney films on and send Hubby out for pox supplies. Much to my surprise Thursday passes without much drama, in fact by the end of it we just wanted a little air more than anything.

At this point I should point out we couldn’t even go out in the garden as it was in a state of disrepair waiting for the landscaper to come and sort it out (next week!).

Friday came and things got a little more fraught. Not only was I lamenting the fact that Hubby and I had now lost the chance to go out at the weekend for one of our blow out dates, but the spots were starting to get a little itchy for both the girls. Fortunately the calamine lotion seemed to take the edge off to the point they were both asking for more. Friday too passed without too much drama.

Now comes my crazy thought process….

  1. We are stuck inside the house anyway.
  2. Trixie has been showing signs she is ready to train for a few weeks now.
  3. I was going to do it the following week anyway.
  4. The girls are itchy and a little grumpy but not poorly with the pox.
  5. If I don’t do it now I will put it off for another couple of months… GET ME OUT OF THIS HOUSE!

So as Saturday morning arrived I went for it. I announced it to Hubby and Trixie and told them that’s it were doing it. Hubby thought I was crazy, my mother in law was ready to phone the hospital, I was determined.

My first experience of potty training was pretty painless…. Unsubtle brag there. But it really was. I am aware that Ellie was about 6 months older when I trained her and we did actually have a few failed attempts practice runs. So I was fully prepared to give up on it all and try again in a few months.

This is how it went…

First day Trixie seemed to get it. Yes there were accidents but thats normal. This was also the worst day for the pox and it was the hottest day of the year so far so everyone was tired, itchy and too hot. But the potty was used! Whoop whoop… Maybe I’m not that crazy after all?

Second day there were still accidents but that is normal. Things were looking hopeful considering these accidents were along side successes!

Day three was not so good. There was a total refusal to use the potty or even ask for the toilet at some points of the day. It was the ‘big girl toilet’ or nothing. Which of course is either upstairs or downstairs but not on our floor of main living…. Well done property developer! I can tell you have never been in charge of toilet training a child! Plus it was becoming very clear that any previously awareness of poos was no being defiantly ignored! Bloody brilliant.

It was at this point I really considered giving up.

But they say it can take four days…. Just one more day…. Maybe I really am insane?!

The fourth day… Ding, ding, ding. We have a winner! 1 accident all day and that was really my fault and not hers! It also looks like this is the last day of the pox as each of the girls only had 1-2 spots each left to scab over. Hallelujah! Freedom is coming.

Well… A freedom of sorts. Now I have a potty trained two year old and I had forgotten how draining that is.

Here are a few cons of potty training that no one ever tells you about:

  1. It is messy. If you miss a brown motion you can bet your life they will play with it. If your really unlucky they may even try and feed it to the dog.
  2. The potty/toilet becomes the best thing in the whole world. I find going to the toilet a total inconvenience and waste of time. But a newly toilet training toddler thinks it is potentially more fun than soft play. Go figure?
  3. Emptying poo from a potty is more disgusting than an explosive nappy. I’m serious! There is something seriously heave inducing about emptying Captains Log from a potty.
  4. You will get a lot of exercise. Some may see this is a pro but this isn’t good exercise. This is frantic, hectic, panicked exercise, because when you are out and about in public and your toddler says the dreaded words ‘wee wee’ you can bet your house on the fact that they will have said it in a desperate way and the the closest toilets are a very, very, very long way away.
  5. Your washing will double. Even if you use the bare bum method to potty train, your washing will somehow double. How does their wee go up????

Did it work….?

The upshot of it all is we did it! Trixie was potty trained during the chicken pox and it was possibly the best decision I ever made. It took about 2 weeks to get her to poo on the toilet. She didn’t seem to understand that that was what she needed to do. All it took in the end was me watching her like a hawk for an entire day until the time came. I ran her up the stairs faster than I have ever gone before and I plonked her on the toilet to finish her deposit. I was greeted by protests of ‘No wee wee!’.

Then the penny dropped as it were! ‘Oooooh poo poo mummy’.

Yep, thats right love… I expect you to do that here too! Like I have been telling you for the past TWO WEEKS!

So there we have it. It worked. Maybe not so crazy after all? I am not sure I would recommend potty training during the chicken pox. I certainly had my hands full but I did manage to minimise the amount of time we would be confined to the house by combining the two. If the girls had had fevers or were off colour with the pox I wouldn’t have done it, or so I have told everyone. But the truth is after just two days stuck in the house I wasn’t thinking all that straight so I probably would have given it a go anyway.

Potty Training with Chicken Pox. What people don't tell you about potty training a toddler.


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  1. Congratulations on getting through the potty training! Just shows that you should always trust your intuition- mummy knows best! #DreamTeam

  2. Woohoo you did it!! At least you managed to keep them entertained while stuck indoors so double win. I agree it’s the grimmest thing ever. Gabriella announced just after she had turned two her she wanted to use the potty after seeing her friend do it in the park one day. I thought she was 6 months too early. It went with it and by day 4 I think we had it pretty sussed at home. It took a good few weeks when out and about though. So while you were mental to do it during the pox season, I was mental to do it while I was also starting to wean my then 6 month old. So I’d be mid spoon of mush feed when G would announce a need for a pipi. Grrrrreat timing!
    Well done. Two now out of nappies!!?? Can’t wait for that day!

    1. HAHA! I’m not sure there is ever a good time to do it. It took us a few weeks to master the poo situation but she got there eventually. I finally caught her in time and the penny finally dropped what I also wanted her to do that on the toilet, not just wee!

  3. Wow well done on persevering! We’ve been trying to encourage Clara to use the potty but she just doesn’t seem that interested and she turns 3 this week. She will go on the potty or toilet now and again but most of the time will sit on the toilet for half an hour then get off and wee in her nappy within minutes. So frustrating! However we are currently waiting for the pox to hit as a few of her friends have it, so if she does get it in the next few weeks I might just try full on potty training and see how it goes. You are stuck in the house anyway, might as well! #fortheloveofblog

    1. She will do it when she is ready. The only other thing I would suggest is just take the nappies away all together. Force the subject. That was what I did with my eldest in the end. She obviously knew I was serious because after four or five failed attempts in the past she just got on with it and didn’t make a fuss. But wait for the pox. No need to be house bound twice. And then if she is really poorly with it or it doesn’t feel right you can do it another time. x

  4. I don’t think you’re mad at all – great idea if you’re locked in anyway! I’ve heard similar approaches with friends who have been indoor with a newborn and a toddler…errr?!!
    I’m massively procrastinating potty training second time around… maybe we need a does of an infectious illness to give me a kick up the backside 😉
    Thanks for sharing with #coolmumclub

    1. That was the only reason I actually did it! I would have found any possible excuse not to do otherwise. I was dreading it the second time too. Were just over a month in now and I’m so pleased I did it! Other than the night time I don’t miss nappies at all!

  5. Oh WOW! Such a fantastic achievement, well done! I’m so glad it worked out for you. We tried potty training a few weeks ago and I abandoned it at lunchtime.

    Nobody tells you how hard it really is do they? Thanks for linking up with #forhteloveofBLOG

  6. I must admit, when I read your title I too thought you’d gone mad!! But once I started reading I totally saw your logic. We’ve got both the pox and potty training to come…wish me luck!! Thanks for linking up with #DreamTeam!

  7. Good job keeping it up when you were about to give up! I can totally see why you decided to do it and if i’m honest i would probably do the same. I agree that emptying a potty is vile and yes worse than a dirty nappy 🙂 Thank you for sharing with #StayClassyMama

  8. Good job keeping it up when you were about to give up! I can totally see why you decided to do it and if i’m honest i would probably do the same. I agree that emptying a potty is vile and yes worse than a dirty nappy 🙂 Thank you for sharing with #StayClassyMama x

  9. Good job! My little one was in the early stages of potty training earlier this year when she got chicken pox. She got a fever in the middle and stopped wanting to use the potty. Once she recovered, it took about a month before she got her interest back again. She was only about 25 – 26 months at the time but it was still a bit frustrating as she was doing so well. We have recently made the move to pants and it’s not gone too badly, although whilst she knows to use the toilet for #2’s, she is still prone to telling me a little too late. Glad I’m not the only one who finds dealing that worse than any nappy ever experienced!!! Glad it went well and you got some extra success out of being stuck in the house 🙂

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