Potty Training Help – Mommy Insight Q & A

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My 3 year old WILL NOT potty train! I have tried so hard and nothing is working. I am getting so frustrated. She just pees in the pullups I put on her.  If I use underwear she just pees in them too.  What can I do?

Jen, NJ

Signs that your Child is ready to Potty Train:


1)He/she remains dry for at least two hours at time during the day
dry after naps
2)Their bowel movements are regular and predictable
3)He/She shows that they need to use the bathroom by their facial expression, posture, or words
4)He/She can follow simple verbal instructions
5) He/She can walk to and from the bathroom
6) When he/she can undress, and dress again
7)He/She seems uncomfortable with soiled diapers and wants to be changed
8)He/She asks to use the toilet or potty chair
9) He/she wants to wear “Big boy/girl underwear.”

“Don’t put too much pressure on your child.  This tends to only make things worse.  Unfortunate;y they will train when they are ready.  The bigger deal you make out of it when they refuse the worse it can get sometimes.  My 31/2 yr old son fought us tooth and nail.  He completely refused.  We finally eased up a a little and he stopped resisting.  One day he just decided he wanted to wear underwear and go potty on the big boy potty.” 
Meghan, FL Experienced Mama

“Are you using a potty seat or are you trying on the big kid toilet.  I found my daughter wouldn’t go potty on the seats you buy at the store.  My pediatrician suggested buying one of the seats you put on top of a regular toilet seat, along with a stool.  I went out and bought a dora the explorer one and she loved it.  I tried to be really positive and showed her how I went first.  She wanted to be a “big girl” like mommy. “
Jennifer, TX Experienced Mama

“I couldn’t use pullups at first.  Both of my boys would just pee in them like diapers.  I really didn’t push potty training.  I started asking hear and there at around age 2.  When my boys seemed interested we went cold turkey.  They both trained arounf 2 1/2 years old. 
Thankfully it was summertime. 🙂  I didn’t use pullups or underwear.  I let them run around naked.  I did try underwear initially but to them it was no different than diapers and they would pee.  They have to associate the sensation of having to pee with them actually peeing.  If that makes sense.   I would asked every 20 to 30 minutes if the had to go potty and also regularly encourage them to try to go.  They of course had accidents and I would grab them and put them on the toilet.  Once they got the idea and realized the sensation, things clicked.
I did use a reward system.  When they peed on the potty I would clap and act very excited and praise them up and down.  They would get one skittle or M&M for peeing and 2 for pooping. After a few days I then put underwear on them.  I used pullups for nap/bedtime and if we were out and about for a while.
I was lucky and my boys potty train within a week.  I will not they still had accidents occasionally for a while.  We tried to give them positive reinforcement and not be negative.  “
Nicole, Experienced Mama – MSM Publisher

My daughter is potty trained but she will only go pee.  She seems constipated and is scared to go #2.  Is there anything I can do?
Lauren, MA

I can remember this happening one  of my boys.  I really had to encourge him.  He actually got very constipated and we had to use over the counter stool softener our doctor recommended to help.  I would contact your pediatrician and see what they would recommend you use because it’s different for young kids. Don’t try it yourself because the dosage if very different.  It ended up being a 20 minute ordeal  of him crying off and on and he finally went.  When he did it hurt and he was afraid to go again.  We had to continue to use the softener.  Evenually as you may know he had no choice but to go.  We just used a lot of positive encouragement and he got through that stage.  Our pediatricain said this is very common with kids who are potty training.
Nicole, Experienced Mama – MSM Publisher

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1 Response to Potty Training Help – Mommy Insight Q & A

  1. When parents (even ever so subtly) nudge a child to begin using the potty, the sensitive child resists. Urinating and moving bowels is one of the few areas of life in which the child is in control, not the parent. We must respect toddlers, have a potty available, but then leave them ALONE, allowing them to tell US when they would like to use a potty. All normal children will eventually potty train. It is vitally important that parent back off so that the child achieves this skill for herself. Constipation and resistance are red flags that mean the child feels pushed. Treats and tricks might work to coerce puppies, but they are not a respectful way to teach our children. I just posted an article about this issue on my website: http://www.janetlansbury.com

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