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Getting my 17MO DS to pee or poo in his potty

post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 

I started potty training my DS 3 weeks ago.  I have yet to have any success with him going on the potty.  He has lots of naked time of which he pees and poos all over the place as well.  He only wears his diaper at naps, nights, errands.  I know I am getting the timing right he will sit on his potty for 10 minutes.  It seems to me that he holds it in and once he gets up he pees.  How do I connect the potty to peeing and pooing?  BTW I do this all day everytime he drinks or eats I time it to when he is just about to go, and on occasion.  I'm really surprised as the lack of results I would have thought I would have had some success by now. 

post #2 of 16

Has he shown any interest in going on the potty?  17 mos seems a bit young to me, unless he's already interested.  I know a 17 mo who goes on the potty because she wants to, but not sure how far you're going to get trying to force that interest at that age.  I'd wait until he starts showing an interest, which may be a while depending on your kid.  I know my 27 mo is just now starting to show interest. 

post #3 of 16

Boys generally train quite a bit later than girls.  Our ped has a "rule" that most boys will be right around age 3.  So far, that has been true for us.  While I think some boys will be ready to train at 17 months, they are the exception.


I agree with PP as well, you need to wait until he shows some interest.

post #4 of 16
Thread Starter 

Thank you cristeen and liberal_chick!


I'd love to hear some tips!!  Anyone have any great advice? 

post #5 of 16

We are on day 7 of potty learning over here and we've definitly made some progress.  My daughter is 19months and had 3pees and 1 poop on the potty today...she also had 2 misses. 
We are doing naked potty learning 24/7.  Yup, I am tired of cleaning up messes all day long.  I am so ready for this to be over..lol. 

My LO did the same that as yours up until day 5. She would hold her pee forever even to the point where she would look uncomfortable.  She did not want to 'release' while sitting on the potty. We read, sang songs, played patty cake, watched some potty videos on youtube..but nothing helped.  she willingly sat on the potty for almost 45mins one time, reading and playing and never went pee..and then when she finally got off the potty, she peed within 30seconds and said "uh-oh mama. peepee". It was so frustrating for all of us.  And then suddenly on day 5, if finally clicked and she started to release while sitting on potty. Day 6 she actually told me she had to pee and poop and all though we tried to keep the potty chair within 5 feet of us at all times, she wouldn't make it to the potty..but at least she told us right?lol. 

And then today, she told me she had to pee/poop and then held it until we got to the potty.  FINALLY!! LOL. 


Not sure if your situation will allow you to do naked time 24/7 but I think that is what helped her. I haven't put her in a diaper in 7 days for naps or bed time. She stays try for naps and has been dry for 4 nights in a row (she sleeps 12hours at night and nurses several times throughout the night).



I REALLY hope that we continue to make progress... 


good luck mama!



post #6 of 16
Thread Starter 

Blessed 1 Thank you very much!!!  You have given me hope!!


I do naked time all day except for nap (on and off if he peed prior)  and for overnights and errands.  Though correct me if I'm wrong I was told not to use a pullup at all even on trips.  At this point I don't feel he is there yet but when he is how do you manage at stores etc? 


In the beginning he peed and pooed everywhere.  But to my surprise there are only 2 spots in the house that he will go both walls BTW.  Usually when I see him running to those spots I immediately take him to his potty.  I usually say "it's time to go pee pee" and he will sit on his potty for 10 longest 20 minutes.  Slowly but surely he is learning I have full confidence that he will be potty trained in a few months. 




post #7 of 16

I totally think you can potty train at any age. I highly reccomend the book "Diaper Free Before 3" and at this young an age would treat it a little more like EC. Try not to stress him out, but to offer a new better (maybe even FUN) way to go potty. Hey who likes sitting in poop anyway? 


It will be slow going at this age, but he can do it, just work it into the routine. My son is about the same age and uses the potty several times a day, but also has accidents several times a day. We try not to make a big deal about misses, we just take him straight to the bathroom (get him undressed if needed) and sit him on the potty for a minute. He's starting to realize he's going to the bathroom every time he poops or pee's so he might as well get there as soon as possible, and yesterday (while naked) when totally by himself! I just saw him come out of the bathroom and I went and looked at there was pee in his potty! This is a major advantage to being naked at home and having a toddler sized potty in each bathroom! 

post #8 of 16

I agree, and when PLing w/ our son at 24 months, I got advice more from ECing sites than PTing sites.


DS did not show the slightest interest in the potty, however, we got him interested.  These were our two favorite videos.  Neither has anything to do with the actual potty.  (just in case you don't catch it, in the first one it sounds like they are saying 'rock the potty').  We watched them often as a build up, then during out 'boot camp'





We put tarps down on the carpets, baby gated the places we didn't want him to go, went bare and took him to the potty every 20 minutes till he started cuing.  When he started going on the floor, we yelled "yay!  potty!" and took him to the potty (chair in living room).  He caught on by the end of the second day and was accident free by the end of day 5 and could wear undies.  Poops were a little harder.  The first poop in the living room turned into a slightly traumatic experience.  I wasn't home... DH freaked out a little... and the dog may have eaten poop.  Gross. Reason #1359 I don't let dogs lick me.  Took a couple weeks for DS to poop w/o freaking out.   (However, it turns out DS may have some sort of 'issue' with his intestines, so maybe it wasn't all DH's fault). 


We did the same thing with another 2 year old placed in our house.  Worked like a charm. (He caught on even faster.)


I think if either of the boys didn't seem to enjoy the experience and start 'getting it' after days 1-2, we would probably have stopped right away and tried again later.   However, neither boy liked diaper changes and both seemed to appreciate having more control of the situation.


We decided that from now on when we have little ones we are going to try this around 18 months.  About a month after DS was 100% during the day at night, he entered the 2-Year-Old-Tantrum phase.  I can not imagine trying to potty train him now.  We would have a huge power struggle.

post #9 of 16

At 17mo, E was doing just like your son and peeing all over the place. We had tried one naked morning and it was craziness. But, by 18mo she had entered into the "proud stage" where she was just so totally proud of every little thing she could do. Wow! I put a shirt over my head! I'm so awesome! ... Wow! I took my shoe off! I'm the greatest!!! ...  You could see in her face that she was realizing all of the things she could do, and loving that she was able to do it by herself.  We got several little potties out (had been storing them for months), and took off the diapers.  This was three weeks ago and they haven't been back on since! In the week before we started, she had a poop on the floor incident where DW pretty much freaked out. ;)  Once we took the diapers off, she peed on the kitchen floor twice the first day and once the second.  In the first week she peed in her high chair once, in the tub once, and in her pjs once. That's it. 

She's at the point now where she'll stop playing and go pee in her little potty in her room, then carry the potty to the bathroom to say 'bye bye pee pee', her favorite thing to do all day.  Sometimes she still needs a little help to aim her little tushie onto the potty, and she has a tiny moment of panic right before she needs to poop, but as long as we're right there with her, we're not getting any misses!

post #10 of 16

At 17 months I'd be more tempted to call it EC rather than potty training.  Not to say that it can't be done, but it probably needs to be done with a different attitude and expectations than if, say, you were dealing with a 3 year old.  


I'd go about it with a very relaxed attitude with no goals in mind.  If you catch, great, if you miss, whatever.  If it's too frustrating, then it probably isn't a good time to start.  


A few weeks ago I noticed that my 15mo could pee intentionally (he peed while waiting for the bath to get going, I wiped it up, he peed again, I wiped it up, he peed again - just little drops, because he wanted to play with it), so we got a little potty (the Ikea one) and set it out in the living room.  He probably has a total of 3 diaper-free hours a day, only when I can be right next to him, giving him 100% of my attention with no distractions at all.  We can catch almost every pee, but it's totally dependent on me - he'll pee if placed on the potty, but won't go to it himself.  That's fine, i don't expect him to yet.  He has the sphincter control to release on command, but recognizing the urge AND developing the sphincter control to actually hold it - that's a big leap.  So I just set him on the potty every 15 minutes or so, and hopefully eventually he'll make the connection between the urge to pee and the act of peeing.  


I think ti's really important at this young age that it be a very casual affair, and definitely avoid rewarding or punishing (even showing disappointment or being overly enthusiastic).

post #11 of 16

watching this post - my 18 month old is 42 lbs.  i recently had to special order size 7 diapers - and they are still a little tight - so i bought a little bjorn potty - and he is really too big for it - plus he keeps taking it apart and putting the potty part of it on his head....i do not have high hopes!   Cant wait to check out that book though!

post #12 of 16

Seems young to me as well. I have heard of ONE boy who was ready at that age, but usually, the closer to 3 boys are, the better. Girls seem ready around age 2-2.5. I'd forget about it and just wait, it'll be less stress for you both.

post #13 of 16
My almost-21 month old is pretty much trained. (Or I am, whatever, I'll take it smile.gif) We did lots and lots of naked time where I'd watch for her cues, and then I'd take her when she cued (she would kind of pause and grab/touch her vagina). We started at 15 months maybe 3 hours a day and then at 19 months went to naked all day minus a diaper for naps and bedtime. When she'd pee or poop (no matter where) I'd say "Yay! Pee! You peed! Pee goes in the potty!" or if she pooped, I'd take the poop and plop it in the potty with the same deal "Yay! Poop! You pooped! Poop goes in the potty!" (Hint: line the potty with toilet paper -- it makes it easier to see if a few drops of pee came out and to get poop out less messily.)

I totally agree with the PP who said that it needs to be really gentle and child-led. No shaming at all by any means -- seriously, don't even act grossed out by the poop on the floor, just really matter-of-factly handle everthing. If you can't do that, I wouldn't try PT this early at all. (Not saying that you can't, I just know a lot of people who are a lot more freaked out by poop than I am, apparently.)

I did see a suggestion somewhere that you can put the kid on the potty in front of a movie, and then they'll sit and watch and be likely to go. DD doesn't do any TV yet, so we didn't try it, but I can see that working.

I did catch her a few times mid-stream and get her to finish on the potty and I think that helped -- but again, we made it kind of like a game with laughing and she wasn't too far at all from the potty when she started going. If it would freak your DS out, I wouldn't move him.

He might like standing to pee into the big commode (maybe on a step), but I only have a daughter, so I can't help you there.

Also, if/when the weather gets nice where you live, I think naked time outside could be good.

Finally, we had a completely open-door bathroom policy from 15months to 20months, where she could follow us in and we'd narrate what was going on. "Mama has to pee. Mama is going to the bathroom. First, I take off my underwear. Next, I sit on the potty. Now, I am peeing. Pee!" DH would sit if she followed him in just to be consistent. Once she did stick her hand into his stream of urine and it kind of freaked him out, but he was a potty-training rockstar and kept his cool and just matter-of-fackly washed her hands when he was done.

I did have good luck at the beginning over the weekend when DH could be home helping and also when my mom would come over. Two adults paying attention mean fewer misses and it was also someone else to hang out with in the bathroom waiting on her to go -- and if she did go, there was positive attention from dada and nana to boot.

Oh, and finally, we didn't use any bribes at all (and I definitely don't think you need to at this age) but we did give her watered-down juice so that she'd drink a lot and need to go a lot -- more opportunities to catch a pee in the potty that way!

Good luck! I know it can be frustrating at times, but it's so much fun to see them learn
post #14 of 16
Thread Starter 

An update!


I'm happy I posted this a few months back.  Since I wrote this many changes have happened.  My almost 19MO DS is becoming very consistent in peeing and pooing in the potty.  Only minimal accidents here and there.  When he has to go he goes by himself to the bathroom.  Only when I see he's distracted but has to go will I intervene and gently push "go potty."  He still wears a pullup at night but we are on the right track.  Thinking back to some of the books and posts I've read.  Most discourage PT till they are 2-3 till they are "ready."  I really hate that term "ready" no it's really when you are ready.  It's a big challenge that most can't be bothered with so they put it off.   I didn't despite comments of "give up" I persevered.  As a mother one point always stuck out and the biggest driving force in my decision to PT at this point.  Why let your DC sit in his/her's own pee/poo for ANY time in the waking hours?  I think it's cruel I can't do that to my DS so I don't.  



post #15 of 16

Thats great!  what finally helped it 'click' for your DS?  i stopped putting hjim on the Baby Bjorn potty in the LR - i ordered a potty seat for the REAL toilet - hoping that will be exciting for him...i am not hopeful that this will go well - and he is now 45 lbs....i HAVE to do this!

post #16 of 16
Thread Starter 

Motherhendoula---  What helped my DS "click" was my unrelenting persistence and patience!  Do lots of naked time let him poo/pee but when he does say "accidents happen we poo and pee in the potty though."  Watch him closely I know easier said then done especially while doing daily chores/cooking.  But when he gets really quiet and hides that is most likely when he will go.  Look at your DS's eyes.  When peeing/pooing my DS has a far away look then once he's going he looks down.  Another interesting tip put your DS in the bathroom and close the door behind him.  Tell him you are waiting outside the door and say "go poo/pee."  It would eerily surprise you how fast they pick that one up.  Good luck!!!

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