Reader Claire writes to the Nanny Godmother of her daughter’s struggles to bid goodbye to the nighttime nappy:
My daughter is almost 3. She has been dry during the day for over 6 months and has been using pull-up nappies at night.
She has started to refuse to wear her nappy at night even though it is soaked in the morning. I have tried lifting her when I go to bed but she just screams at me; I have also tried restricting her fluid intake from 6pm in an effort to keep her dry at night.
Should I just let her wet the bed and see if she stops weeing at night or gets herself up to use the potty? Is there anything else I can try?
Well, generally it is not recommended that you remove the nighttime nappy until the nappy is dry for a couple of nights in a row. I would try to go through the nighttime potty training process with her, but I would start from the beginning, as it sounds like her bladder is not quite ready. But we should definitely not discourage her; she sounds like a very independent little girl.
Before bedtime, if she starts to make a fuss about putting on a nappy, have a little chat with her. Explain that because she is still having accidents in her bed it would be better for her to wear a pull-up, but try to make clear it is not a punishment. Make sure she understands that if she needs to get up, she can call or come and get you at anytime. It might help if you put the potty next to her bed and make sure she can take her pyjamas down, and also that she can climb out of bed so she can do it by herself. A night light will make it easier for her to see what she is doing.
Make sure that your daughter drinks enough fluid during the day so she is not thirsty before bedtime. Taking her to the bathroom before she goes to bed will also help.
Even if she screams at you, I think you should continue trying to put her on the toilet so she gets into the habit of getting up. She will get the hang of it.
Good luck; let me know how you’re getting on!