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Kristen Bell's 5-year-old daughter 'still in diapers' because every kid is different

Experts say plenty of preschoolers need help with potty training and that's okay.

Kristen Bell's 5-year-old daughter 'still in diapers'
Hello Bello

Kristen Bell is reminding the world that when it comes to childhood milestones, every kid is different and that just because something worked for one kid doesn't mean the same parenting approach will work for their younger siblings.

On the latest episode of Momsplaining with Kristen Bell, the mama of two explained when it comes to potty training, 5-year-old Delta and 7-year-old Lincoln, Bell and her husband, Dax Shepard, needed to use different approaches.

"Currently, my youngest is five and a half, still in diapers," says Bell, who adds that this is a totally different experience than potty training her oldest, who was done with diapers at around 21 months old.


"We merely suggested that she use the toilet in the other room and [she] never wore another diaper beyond that," Bell explains. "We were lying in bed giggling about this, my husband and I, like, 'Why does everyone make a big deal out of this potty training? It's so easy. Just tell the kid to use the toilet.'"

And then they had a child who didn't mesh with that approach and realized that every kid is different—and experts agree.

"There's no one-size-fits-all model of child-rearing advice for all the world's parents," writes Alma Gottlieb, a Professor Emerita of Anthropology at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

In a post for The Conversation, Gottlieb explains that "Nowadays, only around half of children in the U.S. are fully toilet-trained by age three" but some kids around the world are trained before their first or second birthday. It just depends on what works for the child, their family and their culture. In places where disposable diapers aren't available children tend to be trained earlier, says the anthropologist (but that's obviously not a problem for Kristen Bell as she has her own line of diaper products through her baby care company, Hello Bello.)

Gottlieb suggests that as a society, we should be a bit more open-minded when it comes to raising kids because there's no one right solution, no one-size-fits-all approach to toilet training.

As Bell's story proves, even within a family siblings can require different parenting techniques and hit milestones at different ages. What worked for Lincoln did not work for Delta, and that's totally okay.

According to Dr. Laura Markham, a clinical psychologist specializing in child development and the founder of Aha! Parenting, kids Delta's age "are very busy, and they get absorbed in what they are doing. It takes time for humans to learn just how long we can delay starting for the bathroom."

Her advice to a parent having a similar dilemma to Bell's was simple: "You may need to remind your daughter to check in with her body and to take regular potty breaks. At school, of course, bathroom breaks are scheduled in. So offer reminders throughout the day, and have her use the bathroom at regular times, such as before and after every meal or snack. If you see her fidgeting, remind her that she needs to go to the potty AS SOON AS she notices she needs to."

But punishing kids for potty accidents or reminding them that their sibling was out of diapers sooner isn't the way to go. As Kristen Bell says, "every kid is different."

14 sweet 'just thinking of you' gifts for every mama

A sweet surprise that tells her you've been thinking of her might be the pick-me-up she needs.

Who says you have to wait for birthdays or holidays to give your bestie a great gift? A sweet surprise that tells her you've been thinking of her might be the pick-me-up she needs in these more-than-trying times. We've rounded up some of our favorite go-to gifts that are certain to be a bright spot in her week. But be warned, you may want to snag a few for yourself. (You deserve it, mama.)

Here are some our favorite "just because" gifts to give our hardworking mama friends.

New Mother face + body care duo

volition face + body care duo

This correcting oil and stretch mark minimizer is perfect for the pregnant mama looking to keep her pregnancy glow. The correcting oil brightens the skin while reducing dark spots, and the stretch mark minimizer works to smooth her ever-growing belly.

$70

Allover roller

esker allover roller

This jade roller goes beyond your typical face roller and can be used anywhere on the body. It works to increase stimulation and reduce puffiness and is perfect for applying any oils to the face or body. Plus, it feels like a mini spa treatment.

$65

Kombucha making kit

farmsteady kombucha making kit

What could be a more perfect gift for the health-obsessed friend? This kombucha making kit comes with everything you need to brew your own homemade green tea kombucha. They'll think this is the tastiest gift ever.

$45

Laetitia lipstick

cupid & psyche laetitia

This red lipstick is perfect for your makeup enthusiast bestie who is looking to spruce up her life in quarantine. Crafted in the United States, these bee and vegan-friendly and cruelty-free lipsticks are created to flatter all complexions. Cupid and Psyche Beauty makes finding the perfect red lip way too easy!

$23

Jigsaw puzzle

inner piecec jigsaw puzzle

Mamas need to destress now more than ever during quarantine. This adorable jigsaw puzzle is perfect for the mama who needs a brain break! The 500-piece puzzle designed by artist Ray Oranges features an abstract gradient design that fits a standard frame when completed. Bonus: It's printed on recycled paper and the company donates $1 from every puzzle sold to youth mindfulness programs.

$30

Matilda's Bloombox

matilda's bloombox

If we have to be stuck inside, we might as well have some gorgeous florals to brighten up the space. Matilda's Bloombox locally sources blooms, delivers them to her door and provides simple tips on how to arrange it into a beautiful bouquet.

$39

'I Am Enough' bracelet

I Am Enough bracelet

Let this dainty bracelet serve as a constant reminder to your bestie that she is enough. She'll wear this on her wrist and read this daily oath to herself, "I Am Enough."

$35

Glow assorted teas

vahdam low assorted teas

This tea gift box set covers the entire spectrum of flavors from sweet to spicy. Individually packaged in beautiful tins, your gal pal will feel like a queen sipping her morning tea. Originally $40, this set is currently on sale for just $24. We'll take two, please.

$24

Find your voice journal

find your voice journal

Journaling is a great way to ease anxiety and will slow your bestie's racing mind before bed. This gift is perfect for first time journalists and includes prompts, daily quotes and coloring pages to help her unlock her potential and find her voice.

$22

Premium frother

shore magic premium frother

This gift is fitting for your latte-sipping bestie who can't go a day without her coffee. All she has to do is add two scoops of collagen to her favorite drink, and she'll have a perfectly foamy drink ready in seconds. Skipping the drive-thru line has never been so easy!

$25

Bath soak infusion kit

maude bath soak infusion kit

Say hello to hydration! She'll be feeling smooth and relaxed as ever after a long bath soaking in these salts. This vegan + cruelty-free set incorporates dead sea salt and dehydrated coconut milk powder for an ultra hydrating experience.

$32

Tiny Tags 'mama' necklace

Tiny Tags 'mama' necklace

It's a hard-earned title she answers to a hundred times per day. Whether she's new to the club or a seasoned professional, this delicate script 'mama' necklace is guaranteed to be a perfect fit.

$105

Superfood honey

Beekeeper's Naturals B.Powered honey

With a lack of sleep and jam-packed days, getting through the afternoon can be a real challenge. Send her a powerful pick-me-up in the form of a therapeutic blend of royal jelly, bee pollen, propolis and raw honey. It makes the ideal companion for tea, smoothies, yogurt or even on its on.

$17

Calming midnight mask with melatonin

Who doesn't deserve a reminder to pamper themself every once in awhile? Even better, this mask does all its work at night while you're sleeping with no extra effort needed. It's an amazing plant-powered antioxidant-packed mask that has melatonin, wild dandelion leaf and hyaluronic acid to rehydrate, repair and reset facial skin. It's so good, you might want to gift it to yourself. We won't tell, mama.

$68

We independently select and share the products we love—and may receive a commission if you choose to buy. You've got this.

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