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Potty Training - Accidents If Underwear Are Used

I began potty training my 28 month old son last weekend. He does wonderfully if he is at home and naked - only one accident that I can think of. However, the minute I put underwear on him, he has an accident (3-4 accidents a day when underwear are on). Through comments that he has made, it is obvious to me that he sees no difference between underwear or a diaper.
At daycare, they do not take him to the potty often enough in my opinion. I discussed this with them, but not sure it's really changed. (He does not stay dry for 2 hours at a time). However, daycare is quite eager for him to wear underwear and say "they are ready for accidents!"
Anyway, I'm wondering if by being allowed to have many accidents at daycare, this contributed to his confusion? I am unsure how to proceed. I am keeping him naked as much as possible for now, but obviously can't continue this forever and I'm not sure whether to tell daycare to stop with the underwear and we'll try again in a few months.
Can I keep him in underwear at daycare, naked at home and put him in diapers when we go out and about, or is this confusing? Are 3-4 accidents/day a sign that he isn't ready? Should I stop training and try again later? I hate to do that as he likes to pee in the potty and has pooped in the potty for 5 days. Any advice appreciated.

What can I do next?

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Same thing happened to us. Keep up the same thing with underwear, he wont like being wet. We did a skittle reward every time they went potty, we are almost there, one or two accidents a day. My twins are 2.5.

Don't put pull ups, you don't want to go backwards. Just get him boxers to wear. My first son did the same thing, at first he would just wear shorts, no underweare but I learned boxers work just fine too. If he does fine without underweare, he's ready.

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My son potty trained at 28 months. He also was dry through the night from 9 months on. He would pee almost immediately when waking though, so I'd go in there as soon as I heard him in the monitor and take him to the potty! When we started potty training, we just said good-bye to diapers altogether. We had a potty party and ceremoniously tossed the diapers. This really helped me and him! There were some times when I was tempted to put a diaper back on him, but I told myself that would make J*** think I'd didn't think he could do it, that I didn't trust him, and that I didn't have faith in him. So I didn't.

Anyway, to your questions:
1)Yes it is confusing to wear a diaper sometimes, underwear sometimes and be naked sometimes.
2)3-4 accidents a day are a sign that he's learning. It does not mean that he's not ready. If he likes to go pee in the potty - then take it from there. If he starts to show signs that this whole thing is stressing him out (sleeping/eating messed up/acting out), then that's a sign that he's not ready.
3)Remember the goal: the goal is to get him out of diapers and into underwear. So set the standard that underwear is what he'll wear. If you present other options, they have a choice, which will delay them and confuse them. If you can't get him to a potty in a timely manner, then don't go out right now, but don't put him in a diaper to go out. Diapers when you go out is for your convienence, not in the best interest of the potty trainee.
4) Hang in there honey! Oh, and don't forget to teach him to flush, clean up any dribbles, and wash his hands! :)

1 mom found this helpful

I am in the same boat. I have been hitting my head against the wall with my son, a little older. I said no diapers a few days ago. He acts like, no big deal to have an accident but when it starteed to happen and I just said oh well, you stay that way-He began to care!! Now after a lot of trial and error, he is peeing on the potty with 1.) a bribe, he picked out a truck at Target and I have it hanging over the toilet for his first DRY day. 2.) I set a kitchen timer for every hour and he he is learning to go pee when he hears the bell (very Pavlov). It is working for us. He is having less and less accidents but it is toilet training mom not kid. Good luck.

1 mom found this helpful

Same thing happened to us. Keep up the same thing with underwear, he wont like being wet. We did a skittle reward every time they went potty, we are almost there, one or two accidents a day. My twins are 2.5.

I think 28 months is early for a boy my friend trained her boy at 31 months and most books I've read says after 30 months. Its a difficult time to potty train but consistency and persistance is key, wet underwear 3-4 accidents is par for the course I'm afraid, but they will want to go dry and they will get better it just takes their desicion not yours.

Good luck

Don't put pull ups, you don't want to go backwards. Just get him boxers to wear. My first son did the same thing, at first he would just wear shorts, no underweare but I learned boxers work just fine too. If he does fine without underweare, he's ready.

If it is stressful for you and it is stressful for him than I would just wait. He may be a bit young but it depends alot on you and him. If he wants to wear the underwear than go for it and yes, he may have 3-4 accidents a day. If he is really resistent and it's stressing you out then just wait! At 29 months my son declared no more diapers (he was ready, I wasn't)so he went to underwear and he very regularly had accidents until he turned three. I think he needed that extra maturity to gain full control. But he would have been devestated if I put him back in diapers so I just cleaned up the messes and didn't make a big deal out of it. Best of luck and follow your instincts on what is right for your child.

Little boys, on average are ready, physically and mentally around the age of 3-3 1/2. Yes it is very confusing that he wears underwear at school but if he accidents they just change him and at home he is naked. Also their bladder is still very small. At 28 months he cannot make it thru the night. Do some research on babycenter.com

Definitely continue the trainig. When at home, put him in underwear, the boxers idea sounds great. Take him to the potty very often. If he has an accident, have him take off the dirty underwear and help him clean himself off. Do not put him on a changer or pull out all the diaper changing towelettes. Instead, it would be shower time. Yes, it might be alot of showers at first- sponge bathes will work for urine accidents, but the seperation between diapers and underwear needs to be established.

Practicing at home with clothes will help him be more comfortable at daycare and out and about.
Before you know it, he will get it.

When out and about, have him go before you leave the house. Be sure to schedule frequent potty breaks, and if he has an accident, well clean up time should be standing at the toilet and not laying on a changer.

As far as daycare, I dont know if you will be able to change thier 'system'. Just try to communicate his habitual timing so that they can know what might work.

Above all, stay calm. This does not have to be a play time but it shouldnt be a stressful time either.
Well, hope to help-

My son was just like that and he was about the same age. Perfectly potty trained when naked, but he had trouble with underwear. Finally, I told him we do not go potty in our underwear. We can go in the potty or in a diaper, and he can tell me what he wants. The next outing, I had a diaper on him, and I was using the restroom. He told me he needed to go and that was the end of the it. He was fine and accident free after that.

I think it is important to sit down and have that conversation with some kids. I also think backing off helped a lot. Once it wasn't an issue, and I had resigned myself to diapers, he was ready.

First of all...I want to extend my cangratulations on your upcoming blessing as well as our current one.

As far as the confusing thing...Any children who are in the process of being potty trained and in daycare should be being taken to the potty at least every hour to help prevent accidents...Children having fun often forget to "listen" to their bodies signals. They should also be taken before and after meals/snacks.

As for at home and on errands...If you are comfortable leaving him running naked for a while longer and it's working for you, I do not see any problem with it..Instead of a diaper for your trips out of the house though, I would get the pullups that let them know when they have wet. Make sure to give him plenty of opportunities while oyu are out to go potty. More by taking him and sitting him on the potty rather than by simply asking him. He may not get the concept, at this tender age, that there are other potties available when you are not at home.

I would talk to the daycare and provide them with a Hourly calender each day that they have to intial each time they take your son to the bathroom. The provider who takes him should be the one who does the intialling (as there are usually two in each class throughout the day). This will halp you to see how often your son actually gets the opportunity to use to potty in daycare. Make sure to tell them it is only to be intialled when he is physically taken to the bathroom and not when he is simply asked. If you still have a problem believing them require them to write if it was simply a P or a BM. This should make them actually do what they need to do.

Good Luck in your process!!! ;-)

There probally is alot of confusion with naked, underware and diapers. Ihave no advice but to pick one thing or the other . underware during the day but yes go to diapers at night and see where that goes

Hello, have you tried using boxers, or just no underwear at all, just shorts? The closed in feeling of briefs feels like underwear, and so the comfort of diapers. That worked best for us!

I have worked in daycare and I NEVER enjoyed cleaning up all the pee messes. But obviously he can't go around naked. I would either postpone training and put diapers on him OR get him some good absorbent training pants (I think Fuzzi Bunz makes some you can stuff to make as absorbent as you need!)

He probably has some sensory problems. My girls have to be naked also to keep from peeing in the floor. My oldest still in diapers is 4 1/2 and I know boys can take longer then girls, so he might just not be ready yet. :(

But you SHOULD tell them he HAS to go every so often (give specifics) he can have it written on his daily chart when you walk in to drop him off. Just write for each time slot to take him potty!


I started my 2 1/2 year old in June. I told him no more diapers. He didn't like that on the first day and it was a struggle so I let him have the diapers. On day 2 he came into my bedroom in the morning and said, he wanted to tee tee on the potty. It's been no more diapers since then. I think putting diapers on him will really confuse him. Even when my son was having a few days of accidents after several weeks of success, I didn't go back to diapers. He has taken longer to master the pooping end of things. When we started I used potty candy for using the potty and he gets a lolly pop for pooping on the potty. I am not above bribery. I know he can control it so it's getting him to decide he wants it. You can't decide that for him. It sounds like your son is more than ready and I don't think you should go backward. He obviously can control it and just doesn't with underwear on. When my son had a couple days of wetting his pants I decided to take something very dear to him each time he had an accident then giving it back when he went for a day or half a day without accidents. Keep in mind this was after several weeks of him in great control. He quit going in his pants after just 2 days. I think going naked is a great way to train and mine often ran around naked. However, with the daycare end of things you may want to practice with the underwear on at home so that he can be more successful at daycare. I also think the boxers idea is a good one. Or just loose shorts. Good luck!

I agree that it sounds like he is not quite ready. It is pretty common for boys not to be fully potty trained until age 3-4. I would suggest to use pull ups while he is still learning. Pull ups are specially made f training and they are not as absorbent as diapers, so he will feel the wetness more than in a regular diaper. Once he is staying dry for 4 hours and realizes how uncomfortable he is when he is wet, he will start to put the whole process together. I don't think it is fair to put him in underwear, it may damage his self esteem having so many accidents. On the weekends you can still do the naked/potty thin and praise him, but don't push too hard. When he is ready he will be fully trained.

Our son was 28 months when we seriously started with the training. The daycare did it their way and we just kind of followed suit. They put him in undies long before we did and had him going on the little potty in no time. At home, he refused. We kept him in pull ups in the evening and at night. He was never confused about what he was wearing, it was almost as if he just hadn't decided that he could go at home yet. We bribed the kid. We would give him M&M's or marshmallows anytime he even sat on the potty. If he sat on the potty naked, he would get more treats. If he actually went on the potty, the sky was the limit on treats!! We never made him feel bad or yelled or anything if he had an accident. After about a week we went to Target and he picked out some more big boy undies for home. He was very proud and pranced around. He had a few accidents in the undies, but within about 1 1/2 weeks was completely potty trained on the big potty! Try not to worry about confusing him so much, he's smarter than you think, he'll get it!! good luck!!

If you are saying that he doesn't have accidents when he is naked (often) but he does in underwear then it has nothing to do with his body and everything to do with guess what? MANIPULATION!! (My Godson and nephew who I keep often did this same exact thing) We forget that no matter how much we love them, adore them, care for them and know them they are natural manipulators from birth. It really sounds like his body is ready. If he can use the potty without clothes then he just needs to make up his mind to do the same thing in them. Maybe tell him his pee-pee and poo poo WANT to go in the toilet, not the underwear clothes and big boys do this. Sounds crazy, but been down this road, really! Oh, yeh, and the froot loops in the toilet for aiming purposes and fun also as motivation to keep it going. Just be sure you and everyone else who is hands on in his life are all on the same page. The best of intentions can get botched up if there is confusion. Trust your instincts and your little boy's body and listen to what they tell you; usually you can't go wrong. Good luck with this!! Oh, also, keep in mind he is a little human so for example, shortly after he drinks, eats he should try to go and before a nap and immediately after a nap you should try also. Could you send this schedule to daycare and have them mark down when they have completed this and how he did? I would imagine it would be difficult to truly gauge his progress without it. Again, good luck!!

All kids are different when it comes to potty training, but possibly what you may want to do is emphasize keeping anything dry--whether pull-ups or underwear or diapers or whatever. Pull-ups with designs that fade when wet have been helpful for this with my little ones. I use the White Cloud ones because they are cheap --and have trucks on them which he likes. There are three tires which disappear if he goes pee pee. You could give him treats if he can keep the tires from disappearing.

I had my son potty trained at 17 months, but then dad came home from Iraq. So needless to say I had to start all over. So I just let it go, and keep him in pull ups all the time till we were ready to start potty training again. We just got him potty trained again. He's 28 months now. I quite buying pull ups all together cause he was still dry in the morning. I just keep underwear him all the time. Even when we would go out to the store or anything else we might have to do outside the house. I would just take a little bag I would fill it with clean clothes. If he had an accient while we were out I would just change him and go on. I might add to he is my 4th son. So he had 3 older brothers that he was looking up too. He want's to stay up with the big boys. Just if they didn't grow up so fast. So don't rush it. A side note I have had two kids in diapers before.

My own experience says he may not be ready. Boys are much slower to want to be potty-trained than girls, and as much as you or your day care person would like for him to be trained...it will happen easily when he is ready. All my mom friends of boys have assured me, boys are just different! My son is now 3 &1/2 years and he just got totally trained at 3yrs, 4 months.

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