10 answers

2 1/2 Yr Old Crying While Potty Training

I have looked over for some posts on potty training and I need some good resources.

My son is 2 1/2 and has tried potty training a few times (none ever more than a week) because we consistantly run into the same problem. He says he wants to go on the potty and is fine with sitting on the potty chair (he chose it when we sent to the store) about 2 or 3 times, but after that he starts to get upset (cries and fusses)and pees in his pull up pants. On 1 hand I think he is ready (he can do everything all the potty training lists say a child should be doing to start potty training), but on the other hand I think he isn't (since he cries after trying it for about 1 day).

Since all the details would be too much to type on this board, I thought I'd just see if anyone has any potty training resources: website(s), books, what-not, that were helpful for them in potty training their child. And possibly figuring our better if their child was truely ready or not.

I really appreiciate it! :)

What can I do next?

Featured Answers

Hang in there, potty training is a tough thing! Even when it's "easy". I used Lora Jensen's method w/her ebook at www.3daypottytraining.com with my daughter at 25 months, she's 3 now. It worked great for us.

More Answers

He may be ready to start potty training, but starting potty training doesn't mean he'll complete potty training any time soon. With our daughter, we let her take care of her own potty training. We pushed a little by asking if she had to go every couple of hours. But if she said no and then when in her pull up, it was no biggie. It took, from the first time she peed on the potty to the time she was 100% trained through the night, about a year. There were days she was gung ho and other days when she preferred her diaper.
My advice is to let him go when he wants. If he is crying and fussing, that is not a good sign. You don't want to make potty training stressful on him. Let him take it into his own hands. If you don't have daycare or preschool to worry about, just take your time. He knows his body best and if you just keep asking him if he wants to go, eventually he will start to go every time. It's a long process. Good luck.

I don't have a website or book or anything like that but my daughter did the same thing, the problem turned out to be that she did not want to be there alone, so we put a chair in the bathroom and when she had to go we would sit on the chair and hold her hands or her cheeks, this for some reason made her feel more secure. we did this for a couple of months and then we weened her off of that by going to one had and moving further away from her, it took about 6 months but now she tells us "I go potty by myself". it sounds like he is insecure and just needs a little reasurance. He does sound like he is ready but not sure what to do. Be patient and it will happen, I was luck with my daughter. I hope this helps you.


My advice would be to just move to underwear - no training pants unless naptime, bedtime or going out. Most kids don't like the feeling of being wet. I'm training my 3rd daughter at the moment. The first week she had a lot of accidents and I was at my wits end - but now we are in the 2nd week and she is starting to tell me when she needs to go. Training pants make it too easy on them. Also, you might want to get one of the kids toilet seats for your regular toilet. Many kids, including my daughter, hate the potty chairs.
One other thing is not to make them sit on it too long. Most kids get bored with that. After you've fed your child a large cup of juice, wait 10 mins. Then go and sit in the bathroom with them. Maybe get some toys and don't come out until they go.
I know it's not easy. Good Luck!

Hang in there, potty training is a tough thing! Even when it's "easy". I used Lora Jensen's method w/her ebook at www.3daypottytraining.com with my daughter at 25 months, she's 3 now. It worked great for us.

Try giving him a penny every time he goes pee and 2 pennies every time he poops on the potty. Also, you can try having him "practice" taking a doll that pees and putting the doll on the potty. I tried the penny thing and it worked great for my son. The doll idea I got from Dr. Phil... =) Good luck! I have 4 children and my boys were potty trained at age 2 and my girls were potty trained at 3 and 4... go figure!

I don't have any resources for you except my personal experience of potty training my 4 children. Even when they show the physical signs of being ready, if they are not wanting to potty train, then they are not ready. They need to want to.

We battled with our first daughter for a year to get her to potty train. She finally did it just before her 3rd birthday.

With our other 3 children, we talked up the potty, asked frequently if they wanted to use it, and made a big deal about going ourselves, but left the final decision up to them. They all began to use the potty right by their 3rd birthdays without any struggle whatsoever.

They are the only ones who can control their bodies. It's a battle you won't win. My suggestion is to wait until he is not only physically ready, but mentally ready. He won't be in diapers forever, I swear! :)

He's ready, I think. My son trained before he was 2, my daughter at a little more than 2 1/2. The biggest thing is to commit and stick with it. Say this is what we are doing, and move to underwear. All kids will go in a pull-up if they have one on!

If you decide not to fully commit to this and aren't really sure if he's ready, then stop and try again in a few months, just don't be wishy-washy about it. The worst thing you can do is go back and forth, on again, off again. It becomes a battle of wills of what you want and what he wants. Just make it very matter-of-fact: This is where we go potty, these are underwear like Daddy wears, you don't wear diapers anymore. Stress the "big boy" thing if it works for him, but some kids don't want to hear that... sometimes they don't want to be "big" if they have a little sibling.

Once they were old enough to start understanding, but not quite ready I would take them into the bathroom to go poop even though they were still going in their diapers. They quickly learned that the bathroom is where we go potty, not squatting in a corner somewhere. They also learned that you must stop playing to go to the potty, not just go whenever. This helped when they were ready to really go in the potty.

I know many people say "they'll train when they're ready" but I think sometimes waiting until they say they are ready is also waiting until they are ready to say "No way!" And I, personally, didn't want to be changing diapers on a 4 yr old, especially when I knew they had the necessary body control. I think I waited too long with my daughter and missed the early window of opportunity resulting in a much more emotional, angst-ridden process. Good Luck!

if you think he is ready, try to get him to stand up on the regular toilet. Or you can have him pee outside to get the hang of it with dad...(just not in the same place!). My first sat down the first few months to pee and our second we are working with right now, just having him stand up which he is fine with.

I'm potty training a 3-1/2 year old boy. He'll go potty for others, babysitter, preschool, etc. But he won't for us until now. Now he is slowly on his way. We ask him if he wants to go potty. It is done on his terms. Everyone I have ever talked to said that don't push the issue-they'll push back. Your son is in that stage of beginning. Don't push. So what if he pees in his pull-up. You are making progress. Sooner or later he'll give it up but do not make it a negative experience. Try giving him a sticker for when he goes in the potty, that's waht we do and it's starting to work.

Hi B.,

It may mean that he is just not ready to potty train yet. Yes there is some interest which is a good sign but it still may be early. Don't push him. It could make potty training hard and cause stress for your son. Most boys do not pooty train till 3 to 3 1/2. My doctor told me that I could wait till he turned 3 and start introducing potty training which should take a few days or I could push it earlier and take months to train him. I have two boys. I let them lead the potty training. We would talk about potty training and watch videos but we never pushed it. My husband would let them go with him so they could see it was no big dea. Both woke up one day and just went on their own and only had accidents when they were sick. I have also read that some children have a hard time using the potty because they think they are losing a part of them. Good luck!

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