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Will potty training mostly happen on its own or is it supposed to be a lot of work?

post #1 of 30
Thread Starter 

So my experience with getting my DD to sleep through the night turned out to be that she would do it when she was ready (at 18 months) no matter what kind of tricks i tried. Now our struggle is potty training. I haven't been very consistent admittedly but we have been loosely trying for 6 months. She is now 2.5 and usually when asked she says no to sitting on the potty. Treats (chocolate chips) worked for a while but she never quite grasped that she needed to go and just ended up peeing on the floor before she realized what was happening. "ut oh i went pee pee". I can't help but feel a bit of pressure to get her trained now that she is 2.5. My mom says i need to step it up and that i was trained by this age as were my sisters. Something i can't help but wonder Is, is this like sleeping through the night and it will happen eventually and i should calm down about it? I guess i feel like i have no clue what i am doing. We have a potty in the bathroom, a potty in the living room, some fun potty books, and i on occasion (once a day maybe) ask her if she wants to sit on the potty but i know if i ask to much she will just get annoyed with me so i try not to push it. She has pooped on it many times the in past (when i whisk her away mid grunt) peed a few times by chance but nothing regular. Sometimes she will sit on the potty but most of the time she will say no and i'm not sure if i should be saying "do you want to try to go potty?" or "it's time for us to go sit on the potty" What are your thoughts on all of this? Is there a certain age where it is time for me to "step it up" or is it ok to just wait and wait until she does it pretty much on her own?

post #2 of 30

Using a toilet is the result of socialization, not an instinct that eventually kicks in.  Teach her what to do, tell her what you expect, and be consistent about it.  

I highly highly recommend http://www.jamieglowacki.com/.  It worked for us.  The new revised book is $15 and worth every penny.  (I am not affiliated with her site.)

post #3 of 30
Thread Starter 

Checking out that book and reviews now. I'd like to buy it but i'm worried about something- she already expects a treat for going and is damn smart with a really good memory- will a method without treats really work now that i have already introduced it this way?

post #4 of 30

It will work.  Be consistent and do the happy potty dance.  (Before I started I had already bought the bag of peanut M&M's, so I ate one every time he went.  Reward yourself.  Potty training is much harder on us than on them.)

post #5 of 30
Thread Starter 

I'm also not digging that the reviews all make it sound like i am screwed because she is 30 months and i should have done it sooner apparently.

post #6 of 30

for us it went both ways, shortly after she turned 2 she decided she didn't want to wear diapers anymore, so I guided her on where she should be using the restroom, for us, it took teamwork and by 2.5 she was fully potty trained. :)

post #7 of 30
I think its an on thier own thing. My first did everything late...she was peed trained by 2 but still pooped in diapers late so i couldn start her in preschool until she was 4...she used the potty to poop a few moths before preschool started. Now there is my 19 month old who pees and poops in the potty and even wipes herself. I didnt teach her a thing she just wants to emulate her sister.

On the other hand my kids are odd in that they night trained FIRST. Even though my daughter had accide ts during the day she would not pee during the night and would pee first thing in the morning in the potty by 18 months. Both stopped peeing at night before a year old. My 5 year old had had maybe 3 nightime accidents in her life she wakes herself up. Weird.

Oh and with my first if you pushed her did stickers did a chart what have you I tried everything...she would resist. She didnt care about stickers toys and the like. Bribing her with candy she just said "no thank you " oh and there was some issue she didnt and still doesnt care about rewards of any kind...all her motivation is internal. Which is good for other things but it means it all on her time frame

Honestly my first had sensory issues and was diagnosed witb spd and tbat could be a contributing factor but then never explained why she went first thing in the morning with no issue. It is what the therapist told me at least..she has no problem now...my goodness I think we have been in every bathroom in the east coast by now!
post #8 of 30
Thread Starter 

Well I DLed the book- i'm willing to give anything a try.

post #9 of 30

    Well, I agree that some of it is socialization but I think a lot is biological too. When dd was younger I was stressed about PT too. DH had a friend w/ a girl about dd's age and  that poor girl was always getting yelled at, shamed and made to sit on the toilet for long periods of time. I felt bad for her and was not looking forward to it.

    I was feeling pressure to PT when I read in a Child Development textbook (I was working on my BA in Child Development) that PT usually happens faster and easier when the child is at least 3 years old. This is because the muscles that control elimination are more developed at that point. I decided not to stress about it and waited until dd was 3.5. It only took dd one day to learn to use the toilet. I did it on a day when we had no place to go. I just put her in undies and took her to the toilet every 15-20 minutes. By the end of the day she was fully PT. IMO, you can start early and make the process long, drawn out, and maybe stressful or you can wait until the child is a little older and have the process go faster and easier.

      I suppose it also depends on the individual child too and other parents might think that 3.5 is too old. I was talking w/ a ex co-worker once and mentioned that dd was not PT until 3.5 and she seemed appalled (she had no kids).

      My 2nd DC is now 32 months old and I'm in no rush to PT until he seems ready. I have no interest in making the process more stressful than it needs to be. I occasioanlly get him books or videos at the library about the potty but I'm not really pushing it.

post #10 of 30
Jamie Jamie Jamie!!!!! Her book is AMAZING.
We used her method with my son starting 2 weeks ago and he is doing incredible. His grandparents can't believe how well he is doing. He will pee and poop in any toilet, big or small, dry for naps and through the night, and we have not bought a single pull-up. Since you already started with treats, she'd probably recommend a "reboot." it's spelled out in the book.

I wish they gave this book out instead of formula samples in the hospital.

Good luck!!!
post #11 of 30

I've found with both my kids that trying to PT before they were ready just led to frustration for both of us.  It always seems like one day it just clicks for them.

post #12 of 30
I'm of the opinion that using a potty/toilet is a skill that can be learned with gentle guidance from an early age. I know it doesn't help the op but I wanted to chime in. Shortly before her first birthday, I started popping DD on the potty after naps and in the morning and when I had to use the toilet. Over time it just blended into our daily routine and now at 16 month she uses it multiple times a day although there are still many diapers to wash too. I'm not worried about catching every single pee and poop, but to me it's important that potty is just part of life and not something new and mysterious. Once she picks up a few more words and reaches the 18 month mark, I plan to give her more frequent opportunities on the potty and work to wean her from diapers. I think as her parent it's my responsibility to support her emerging potty skills just as I am doing in helping her learn to use utensils. I have read many posts on different forums of older toddlers being afraid to use the potty for poop and withholding. If all that comes out of our extended potty learning is comfort and familiarity, then I will still deem it worth the time. FWIW, when we have a second child, I plan on starting elimination communication much earlier. Just my two cents :-)
post #13 of 30

A child learns to use the toilet because of experience and habit. So yes, it is work but in a positive way. They make the connection through experience...at least this is how it works in traditional toilet training at a youngish age. The whole "they will do it when they are ready" really applies to much old children.


Personally, we start at 18m and end by two and I much prefer the bit of work to make those connections. I recommend Diaper Free Before 3. 


And I don't believe in "when they are ready" as a concept, unless it applies to the parent. Children can be ready as soon as an adult helps them make the connection. No one was going around asking my generation if there were "ready" and I and probably you were done by 2. Starting much later means that many poops of habit to overcome.

post #14 of 30

i wonder how this information plays into folks ideas for timing, it really make me think about a lot of things, what is your takes on it?




the longer article :




it is basically a pediatric urologist saying that having kids potty lear too early is teaching them to hold it when holding it can be damaging for the development of their bladder and other issues.



its so hard when as parents we just want to do our best but the "experts" can all disagree so much!

post #15 of 30
To see these arguments refuted in detail, see "the diaper free baby". The gist from what I remember is that even newborns have awareness of their elimination along with control. They will often pee or poop as soon as their bum is bare in mid diaper change in an effort not to contaminate their immediate environment. It is through our discouragement of eliminating while naked and diaper use that they tune out their bodily sensations and learn to depend on diapers. Babies do have control; except a few with physiological issues, babies don't leak. They fill their bladder/rectum and when they get the urge to eliminate, they do so - whether in a diaper or a potty. Infant potty learning and elimination communication isn't about controlling when young ones eliminate. It is about helping them maintain awareness and providing opportunities to eliminate in a sanitary manner (and help cut down on diaper rash too). Contrary to popular belief you don't have to hover over your baby 24/7 - many parents practice part time or occasional EC.
For what it's worth, I read tons of posts about older toddlers/kids resisting the PL process fiercely, even to the point of requiring daily doses of laxatives or even suppositories. My 16 month old regards the potty as just part of the routine and resists diapers with gusto. She doesn't hold her pee or poo unduly. If I don't catch her cues right away, she uses her diaper. She is comfortable using the potty and isn't afraid of it at all. I never need to bribe her. For anyone interested in learning about early potty use, I highly recommend the above book before dismissing the idea based on misinformation.
post #16 of 30

oh in the longer article he specifically mentions that he does not disagree or apply these same concerns to folks that properly do EC and says that is just a very different thing. so i think that address that.

i think that his issues is that most regular parents do not to EC and do not read their kids well or are not right there to do so, that is where his concerns come from.

post #17 of 30

i very much remember my girl popping whenever i took her diaper off when she was tiny, and felt bad that as a overwhelmed first time mom of twins and it being in the deep of a very cold winter that i could not let you do things naturally more.  i remember teaching a dog to ask to go outside rather than to use piddle pads, thinking "why teach then to do something and then have to teach then not to", it is frankly a shame that i personally dont feel that my world could deal with me having done at least that respectful practice with my kids!

post #18 of 30
My dd had to pee every 15 minutes until she was 39 months old. For her it was a matter of readiness, and it was simple once I just backed off for a while. Now my second dd "trained" herself just before she turned 2.
post #19 of 30

I've been having similar question to the OP. And, I did read Diaper Free Baby ( and loved it!) when my son was an infant, and starting holding him over a bowl or potty when he was 4 days old. We did part-time EC all through his infancy and into toddler-hood - lots of naked time, and regularly holding him over the potty etc. But once he got old enough to express his will ( I think it was around 15-18 months), he started refusing to sit on the potty. So we stopped pushing it. Now he's almost 3, and it's pretty much as if we never did EC. He knows very well what the potty is for, we have potties all over the place. When he's naked at home he'll go to the potty about half the time, but he'll also still pee and poop on the floor if he's doing something he's interested in and doesn't want to stop. I am wondering if we should have just dropped the whole thing at 18 months and waited until now to pick it back up again. For him it really seems to be about not wanting to stop playing, and knowing that if he's wearing anything, he can just pee or poop in it. We're trying to put him in undies anytime we're at home but he'll usually just pee or poop in them. 

So yeah. Jamie's book is sounding pretty good right now!


Anyone else have this kind of experience, with EC not panning out to earlier potty learning?

post #20 of 30

i have gotten thru the first 80 pages of Jamies book and i have to say im starting to love that lady, we are not ready in this house as we are just hitting 20months now and have a speech delay that i want to get on top of first, but the way she thinks and talks and related to the world makes me all kinds of happy. 

you know how when you read some things no matter how smart they seem, they either hit a note with you or they dont? her writing hits a strong chord with me. i only just got the nitty gritty how to section the book, so i may feel different in a bit, but im liking it so far, thanks whomever pointed it out.

its not often that one voice really makes you start to think differently and she is doing that for me, i need ot read the whole thing and also do some more research on the bladder muscles and holding issues that urologist is talking about, but im learning a lot and thats what i like to do.

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