Reluctant Potty Trainee - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 10 Old 06-13-2012, 05:23 PM - Thread Starter
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My daughter is 29 months old and refuses to use the potty. She prefers to sit in a dirty diaper! I've tried letting her go naked and she just pee's on the floor and walks away like nothing happened!

Then sometimes she'll ask to go on the potty but then she'll sit and sit and sit forever but won't pee but then will get up and pee on the floor and almost not notice!

I have never done any sort of potty training in my life and have no examples to follow so I'm at a loss on how to make her more interested in the potty.
It's almost like she doesn't care. 

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#2 of 10 Old 06-14-2012, 02:04 PM
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I haven't BTDT, my son just turned two and we haven't really "done" potty training, so take this for what it's worth:


but from all I've heard and read, potty training works best...or at all...when the child is good and ready. Supposedly, when they are they will show signs of readiness and a general interest, and you can then gently encourage ~but never force~ them to start using the potty. And it's not a linear process, meaning they can make progress and then regress...sort of like with sleep or anything else!


Maybe I'm talking out my ass here (no pun intended, lol), but my "plan" if you can call it that, is to just wait and when he seems ready help him learn. So far he has shown interest, we have a small potty for him and a seat for our toilet, and he has had phases of interest but so far nothing more than just "play" (which is how they learn BTW). We have an open door policy for our own bathroom use and he is well aware of how adults and big kids use the toilet. We have talked about how one day when he is ready he will use the toilet too and no longer need diapers. I always make him aware (in a neutral, matter-of-fact way) of the older kids we know using the toilet so he sees that kids do it too. So the ground has been laid and I am basically just waiting for when he asks to go on the toilet. You can also get books about it which I may do soon just for more input....but keep it positive or neutral and with no pushing him or pressure.


Again, maybe I'm naive but everything I've heard points in the direction of just relaxing with it and eventually they will learn.


Maybe your daughter is just taking her time learning. If she senses your tension over it, that could make her more resistant. Maybe just drop your idea of a result for a few days or even weeks...meanwhile still supporting her to use the potty when she seems willing....and then try again after some time.


Sooner or later, every child learns to use the toilet. It will happen for yours too!

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#3 of 10 Old 06-14-2012, 02:25 PM
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Had to chime in here. My DD is 2.5 now and completely and entirely regressed. I started when she had interest at 17mo. When she turned 2, she was going on the potty all day and I stopped diapers during the day and just used a disposable at night. She even held it in the car and during naps. It was wonderful. We moved 2 months ago and she regressed so entirely!!! She does not hold it. Does not give any indication. Just pees where ever. She can tell it upsets me. Which I should not be showing emotionally as I'm sure it's not helping. I stared CDing again in shock over the insane cost of disposable dipes.

I don't know what to do. She wont pull up or down her pullups so why am I paying for them? She's so busy right now I can tell trying to get her on the potty is just going to be a struggle. I'm right here with you ladies! Le Sigh.

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#4 of 10 Old 06-14-2012, 07:18 PM - Thread Starter
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thanks for your responses! 

In all honestly I don't care if she uses the potty right now or not I'm just feeling the pressure from family and friends that she should be trying to use the potty. Honestly I'd rather change a diaper then clean a mess off the floor or her pants!


I plan on waiting for her to be ready I just don't know how to go about it all. She sees us use the bathroom but we have no other children for her to mimic, I wish we did since I know she likes to copy older kids. 
I think my son will have a better time with it since he'll have seen her use the potty but she just isn't interested. 


You made a good point tillymonster about the pull ups. I've been buying the pull ups in the hopes that she'll use them but she never does. She just pulls the tabs off and takes them off like a real diaper. I'm thinking now what's the point in pull ups if she doesn't use them as a pull up but like a diaper!?? They cost way more than a regular diaper and I do have cloth I could be using instead.

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#5 of 10 Old 06-14-2012, 10:09 PM
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We tried potty training around 2.5 and then a few months after.  It went badly and DD was not interested at all.  We waited until a bit after 3 before reintroducing and she was completely day trained in less than a week.  No accidents, using public bathrooms, etc.  It was so much easier then asking her every hour if she had to go, making her go before we left the house, bribing with M&M's and all that.  With my current kid I'm waiting until she asks to do it.  

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#6 of 10 Old 06-15-2012, 06:06 AM - Thread Starter
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Ya, I think I'm going to keep playing with the idea but just letting her play and not pushing her. I can see as she's getting older and understanding more that it would be easier to train an older child than a really young one, especially since she has zero interest right now. 

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#7 of 10 Old 06-15-2012, 06:39 AM
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I think it's the age.  there seems to be this magic window before kids hit the resistant 2's.  I'm sure the window of ages differs per child, but 2.5 year olds love to resist things.  My DS was nearly done at 18 months.  At 2.5 he hated the potty, would not go when I asked, and if I sat him on it he would sometimes actually say "la,la,la,la,la,la... I'm not going!"  Now at just past 3 the resistance is gone.  I don't know if it's gone because I completely backed off for a couple of months, or if he just finally aged out of the resistance.  We're not done yet, but it's much better.  Good luck to you!  I know it's very frustrating.

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#8 of 10 Old 06-15-2012, 07:38 AM
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I have been putting my 24 month old on the potty since April, and getting mixed results. Sometimes she just won't sit. I brought a stool in as a table and put different toys on it (things that were too big to drop in the potty - she loves to do that ugh). Since we are on a super tight budget, my goal is just to avoid throwing out diapers that still are barely wet but have been pooped in. I have her eat meals in her high chair, buckled in, and she will make a fuss to get down even if she's not done eating if she has to go, so then I put her straight on the potty, and sometimes feed her some yummy fruit or snack so she will relax and stay on the potty. That's been working fairly well. She still seems to prefer pooping in diapers because it's easier to push standing up, but her bottom gets red every time. 


Yesterday at her ped's office, she was reluctant to get in the car, so we went back in to use the toddler sized porcelain potty, and it took a good 20 mins but she finally went!


I usually read a story and/or sing a little made up song about how we go poo poo in the potty but don't really focus on what she's doing, and when she goes pee or poo, she turns and looks at me, and I look at her with wide eyes, and ask, "Did you just go peepee in the potty!! YAY!! YOU DID IT!!" Sometimes I whisper it in excitement, sometimes I shout it and do a little dance. I change it up so she gets excited trying to anticipate what reaction she'll get. At home she gets one tiny candy for pee and two for poo, and the same number of smiley stickers go up on her sticker chart, plus she always wants one on her knee. She reminds me if I forget. 


At home she'll still rarely ask to go on the potty, but sometimes she does. She almost never willingly walks to the potty when she has to poop. She'd rather go play until she's done, and even then still doesn't ask to be changed. Occasionally she'll sit on the potty and not poop even though I KNOW she needs to, but someone mentioned the relaxation factor in another thread, and that is probably what I need to work on. I hate it after we spend 30 mins in the bathroom only to have her poop the instant I put her diaper on. 

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#9 of 10 Old 06-15-2012, 05:49 PM
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I used to think 'we' did such a good job with ds 1 by introducing the potty early and having him potty trained by 24 months at home and 28 months or so at daycare.  Ha ha ha ha....I realize now that really wasn't the case at all and my second ds has proved it. We've done everything we did with my first; had a potty available, read books, lots of naked bum time, etc and he wasn't having it.

He wasn't interested AT ALL until maybe 26 months. We've seen a lot of progress in the last couple of months (now 30 months) and he pees on the potty 90% of the time at home. He still uses a diaper for naps and night time (still waking up wet) and he wears a dipe when we leave the house (we haven't crossed that bridge yet either).


Here's our problem though.... I really think we'd have more progress but he will not poop on the potty. He won't sit on it to try and when we almost catch an accident and get him to the potty, he will hold it and then become constipated. He's never been constipated or have difficult or hard stools (quite the contrary) until he started this behavior. I always give him the choice to wear a diaper for the poop (and he often asks for a diaper), but also encourage the potty. I know it seems to be giving mixed signals but after 3-4 days of constipation and whining and crying when he needs to go, I figure a diaper is better than him being in pain.


I really do think it happens when their ready and you can't force it, but I also think the option should still be given. So I wouldn't remove the potty or stop asking if they want to use it, but if they say no then I'd let it go.


I've also had no luck and even regression with pull-ups. In my experience they are not helpful at all.

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#10 of 10 Old 06-17-2012, 02:10 AM
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I'm a late ECer or I guess really early PTer and I'm very glad I casually introduced the potty at 11 months. I also switched to mostly cloth diapers around 12 months to help DD feel wet (we do disposables overnight or if going for a loooong car ride or I otherwise anticipate a location with potty/diapering challenges. She's 14 months old now and still in diapers of course but the big win in my book is that the potty is just part of the routine like a bath or having lunch. On bad days I have two pees in the potty with wet diapers throughout but on a good day I will catch 5 pees and her poop and she will be in the same dry diaper for 3 to 4 hours at a time. I'm just tossing my two cents in. It's working great for us and if it does nothing else, it establishes the potty as part of life instead of some strange new thing for when we are ready to get more serious somewhere between 18 to 24 months.
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