20 answers

Hates Potty but Aware of When She Needs to Go & Can Go on Command in Diaper.

My daughter is over 2 1/2 years old and hates the potty. I can't tell if she's afraid of it or what the issue is. We've tried everything and she insists on not. If we mention the word potty she will pee immediately in her diaper so she doesn't have to pee on the potty. OR she'll hold it while sitting on it and then pee in the diaper when we put it on. I delivered a son 3 months premature last October and brought him home at the end of December. The social worker in the NICU advised not trying the potty training during that time or shortly after because she had enough stress processing everything at such a young age. I feel like she should be ready now as things are sort of back to normal and she's totally aware of when she has to go and if I ask her to pee in her diaper she will. Any advice or tips/tricks are appreciated! I don't want to make it traumatic but we've tried bribery and that hasn't been successful either.

What can I do next?

Featured Answers

What I did with my daughter is put her straight in panties. She did not like the wet feel and it took a messy week but she got it. I also had 2 options for her, a kiddie potty and a seat that fits on the big potty.

She's been potty trained for 7 months now and doesn't use the small one anymore and only the special seat when she needs to sit a little longer.

I hope this helps

She doesn't have control of anything in her life, this one thing she can control and she's going to hang onto for a while. I'd just not sweat it, she won't go to kindergarten in a pullup. None of mine were close to ready until after 2.5, even though they liked the idea of the potty and big-kid underwear from 18 mo or so, none were consistently trained until 3 or a little after. If you push in this area, it will just make her more stubborn, I'd just back off. You could try using cloth trainers and rubber pants, then she may choose to potty on her own. Other than that, I'd back waaaaay off.

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She is definitely ready-physically since she can do all that you mentioned. I would just tell her one more time that going on the potty is what we do when we grow up as big as she is, tell her "BUT you must not want to right now so I'm not going to make you unhappy by talking about it all the time." Ask her to choose a place for the potty to 'live' until she is ready and put it there. Tell her is it her job to let her mommy know when she would like to use it and you will get it back out when she tells you to. You can add that you hope its soon though because its not so fun cleaning dirty butts. (Mention that too while changing the baby sometimes.) If it is her deal and she's in control of it she may be ready sooner. Also, make sure she sees you use your big girl potty. She may be one of those kids that you have to make everything look like its thier idea to get them to do anything. I have one of those and she is a very independant and capabale soon to be 16 year old now. I'd love to hear how my methods work for your daughter. Let me know; ____@____.com

D. ~
I'd say, get her out of the diapers, even pull-ups. The best thing that worked for my son was being naked. If he had anything on, he'd forget, but if he was naked, he'd go in the potty every time. Are you making her use the big potty or a little one. Sometimes the big one is too intimidating. I'd also give her rewards for making it.
Good Luck!

Hi D.,
My son was almost 4 and was the exact same way! I too tried stickers, M&M's on a 1-try, 3-pee, 5-BM scale, and cheerios in the water to make the whole thing more entertaining. None of that worked. I was so frustrated also.
Then I was at IKEA with him looking for something completely unrelated, and we happened to see these little plastic potties in really bright colors. They were something in the range of $4-$5. I told him he could pick out two colors (we have two bathrooms).
This little potty changed my life! I know that sounds silly, but it really worked wonders for him. It sits so low, it really mimiced the "potty-stance" he had used when wearing a diaper. It really only took a few times of going, for him to get the hang of it and within the week, he was out of diapers all together!
I hope this helps. Good luck on your search.

There are some great books out there about potty training in a day. It worked for my daughter. Maybe take her to the store and let her pick out her own undies and a potty chair. It sounds like she is totally physically ready and something is blocking her. I have heard a lot of people have problems at this age. I think it is easier earlier or later. Maybe you can just wait until she is 3 to 3 1/2. It's not such a horrible thing and she will probably potty train herself when she decides it's not... it really isn't that uncommon to do it that way anymore.

Otherwise, you might just want to wait a month or two. Don't say anything about it at all. Treat it like she is 1 again and try to get away from the power struggle (that's what it is) and just change her when she needs without talking about it to her or around her where she can hear. You might be surprised what happens when you "no longer want" her to potty train.

Hi D.,
I see so many moms getting upset about potty training and I am not sure why. I can honestly say I have never seen a kindergardner go to school with diapers. I know it's frustrating but here is my thoughts. I have 2 kids and I never really pushed them into going on the potty. My reasoning is this. Once they get out of their diapers they have to go everytime you leave the house. Which means you better know where evey public restroom is. They will have to go at the grocery store, at the mall, at every restaurant, and almost always in the middle of a car ride where there is no place to go. If you are busy like I was and am, this is quite a hassle not to mention some of those bathrooms are disgusting. While I did try to encourage my kids to use the potty, I never really pushed. Kids seem to do the oppisite of what we want them to do. Somehow they learn that at an early age. From reading your submission it sounds to me that she will be going on the potty soon. I think I would just stop making a big deal about it and stop giving her that attention. My kids had both just turned 3 when they learned. We still had to search out the public restrooms and it never really stops ,they are now 5 and almost 9 but at least now it is not everywhere we go. Good luck.

Sounds like she's afraid of the potty. Maybe something happened (slammed a finger, pinched her skin, etc.). Do you have a small potty? You guys could pick one out together... something special for her. We bought the cheapest one we could find, and someone suggested letting our daughter put stickers all over it. It could also be that she's just not ready yet. My sister potty-trained her stepson with a rewards system I've been using for my daughter for months. He was trained in less than a week. Our kids are the same age, but I think she is finally done. Another mom I know of twin girls couldn't get them potty-trained until the summer they were 3 1/2. One last suggestion... it's summertime, you're a SAHM, try naked or bathing suits only. She'll have to go eventualy.

A lot of kids act like this, even after they turn 3, but they eventually want to do it. Given your situation with your infant, I think it makes sense that she isn't ready to not be a "baby" emotionally. I'd totally back off at this point, and be very casual about it, and give her a lot of attention & cuddling. Over time, I'd begin to mention what a big girl she's getting to be, but right now I'd try to meet her where she's at. Many kids aren't trained till they're 3, or even 4! Don't worry - she won't go off to kindergarten in a diaper! Sounds like you've got plenty on your plate without trying to train a child who doesn't want to be trained yet.

I think the child is training you. I would buy training pants - they are really thick underware. My daughter tried the same thing. The pullups were horrible - they allowed her to just keep going. I had to suck it up for 2 weeks and clean up messes. When she went in the training pants, it wet all her clothes and didn't allow her to keep playing. Eventually she got better with the potty. It took her 2 weeks when I made the switch. It was an inconvenience to me, but it was a larger one for her. JoAnn Fabrics also carries that waterproof material that Walmart sells in small squares for babies. I bought 2 yards of it and cut it in 2. Then I could line the bed and have a spare for the middle of the night in case she had an accident.

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