21 answers

How Early Is to Early to Start Potty Training?

My daughter is 17 months old and has been real intrested in the toilet. It's not so much as putting toys in like other kids =) but what we are doing and how it works. She's pretty smart (not just because she's mine) so I think she might grasp the concept. I've heard that they don't have good bladder control until 18 months. what are the down falls of to soon? Has anyone had any experiences like this?

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What can I do next?

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In my experience, if a child is interested, do it! I have a son who was trained at 18 months (except at night) and a daughter who waited until she was 38 months.

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Do it now. I bought my daughter a little toilet at 17 months and by 18 months she started using it. Her ped. told me that any kid can potty train at 18 months.

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my grandson whom i have on a daily basis started pulling off his diapers around 12 months. at 13 months he was very interested in the toilet. i have to taek him with me when i go because he is a terror. at 14 months i got him his own potty and started sitting him on it 15 mintues after he ate because that is when he usually goes. i would sit on the big toilet myself and read books or sing to him. he would go occasionally. he is now 15 months and he tells me he has to go poo and points to his butt. he doesnt do it all the time but just this week he has told me that he has to go almost every time. he still pees in his diaper and tells me after he does it so i dont think hehas bladder control but at least he knows to tell me before a bowel movement which is a blessing becasue he has truck criver sized poops. i think if they are interested then go for it. im not ready to take him out of diapers just yet but at least he is getting the concept of going in the potty. my husband and his daddy wont let him go in the bathroom when they go pee so he doesnt see what that is about but i guess he will just have to sit when he pees until he gets the concept of that. i potty trained my youngest son when he was about the same age but he started with pee first. i ould let him pee off the front porch and he thought that was fun and we transitioned into going in the toilet after that. also put some cheerios in his little potty for him to aim at so it was fun. iknow that peeing off the porch sounds awful but we live out in the boonies and i sprayed the ground off after he went , my husband didnt think it was a goodidea but it worked. he is now 18 and in college but when he comes home he still pees outside, cant break that habit. doenst do it off the porch anymore but goes off by the barn and does it as soon as he gets up. and i keep getting lectures form my husband for that so he doesnt want me to teach Charlie that trick.

2 moms found this helpful

Hi L.,
We should rename this website "Potty-training survival."

Hi, my name's T., and I survived potty-training. (ha-ha)

If it feels right to you, I say "go for it." I have a friend with 5, and she potty trained them all by the age of 2 by getting a potty chair, and letting them "go commando" until they got the *feel* for it.

My son had to be commando too, and I think it worked well for us.

Look forward to hearing updates from you - lol

Good luck!!!

1 mom found this helpful

Hi L.,

From my experience, 17 months is a great age to begin working with your child on potty training. In fact, and this might sound wild to you at first, but you could even begin introducing your 2 month old son to it. If you have time and interest, research "infant potty training" and "elimination communication" -- these are approaches to potty training with the very young that involve the caregiver tuning into the signals that a child gives when needing to relieve herself.

It's pretty incredible to think that even babies can communicate such a need, but in this country we are just rediscovering how capable and "smart" our children really are (most "developing" countries begin training their infants to use the potty from the very start -- they simply do not have the option of disposable diapers).

On a personal note, we worked with our daughter on using the potty since she was about a month old, not rigidly or even 100% consistently, but she and we steadily got the hang of patterns and picking up on cues, and she had mastered the concept by her second birthday.

I hope this information provides some encouragement and resources. Take good care.


1 mom found this helpful

We started when my daughter was 13 months because she was waking up dry after a nap. By the time she was 2 she had it down pat. She regressed a little when we had our next baby, but that resolved pretty quickly. You just have to trust your instincts about your children. Each one is different and what works with one may or may not work with another.

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I don't think there is a too early. If they are showing interest then go fo it. My oldest daughter was the same way, she was soooo interested in using it, and we were first time parents so we didn't know when to start either. We just took her cues and she was fully potty trained by 18 months.

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If she is interested - go with it. My son was interested in potty training at 18 mos, but I've always been told that's too early, boys train later than girls, blah blah, so I didn't do anything with it. He's 2 1/2 now, and just starting to be interested again. The added benefit of potty training is the money you'll save on diapers!

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Like a previous poster, I used elimination communication (not even always consistently) and my daughter has not had any accidents since age two. (Not that I could not handle it very well if she did...accidents happen!)
If the child is ready...try. Don't put expectations and pressure on...just go with it.
The whole idea that kids don't have good bladder or bowel control until age "X" was created by our diaper wearing culture. The habits, experience and traditions shape our views about what is "normal" and possible. (Just remember how the idea that new babies should eat only every 4 hours came from formula feeding...not from actually seeing babies eat as they naturally would.) Babies in other many parts of the world have bladder and bowel control...it is not a concept the people there challenge.
Good luck...have fun!

1 mom found this helpful

My mom potty trained both my sister and myself very early. I was trained at 14 months and my sister at 15 or 16. We just tried with my daughter last weekend and she's 16 months. She have also been very interested in the potty like yours. She did ok but after trying we decided that she's not quite there. We'll probably try again around Christmas when I have some time off. My suggestion would be to give it a try and after a few days, you'll know pretty quick if she's really ready. I would also advise against pull-ups. From everything I've read and heard, they don't help with the process because the kids can't really feel when they're wet. I would suggest the more traditional training pants (cotton with thick crotches) and rubber pants. Good Luck!

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