17 answers

Potty Training Question - Only Goes a Little Each Time

Hi moms,
My 18 month-old has been using the potty off and on for the last month. I know he is really young and we didn't feel strongly about getting him trained early but he was showing lots of interest so we were just going with the flow.

Now he will tell us when he has to go and he will go into the bathroom and take off his diaper. We sit him on the little potty but he only goes a few dribbles and then he hops up, runs down the hall to his room and pees on the floor! Each time it happens we say "no, we don't pee on the floor, we pee on the potty" and go back and sit on the potty again. We even tried closing the door so he couldn't leave the bathroom without us.

He stays at home with my husband and they do most of the potty-ing during the day when I'm not there. My husband thinks our son is more comfortable standing to use the potty instead of sitting (and of course sees my husbanding doing that.) But we both agree that there is no way he is ready to be standing and aiming and such. We don't want to discourage the potty use but we also don't want to clean up pee all the time. Does anyone have suggestions on what we should do?

What can I do next?

Featured Answers

My son also preferred to stand while peeing so we taught him to "aim for the cave"(the back of the inside of the toilet" and that seemed to work.

Try getting another potty seat and putting it in his bedroom. A cousin of mine when he and his wife were potty training their sons they kept a potty seat in the living room because this is where the boys spend most of their time and they potty trained very quickly and in no time they were able to move the seat out of the living room! Good luck.

More Answers

Hi T.!
My son (now 20 yrs.) & also a 2 yr. old I used to babysit had the same issues. The solution for me was to get a sturdy stool & put in the bathroom, & let them go to town. It was a little messy the first few weeks, but they got the hang of standing up to do their business. The 2 yr old would even stand up & go in the potty. I guess some boys just have the need to stand because they see Dad do it. But, we all are potty trained at some point, so don't worry.

Good luck!

On the suggestion of my sister in law who has 3 boys - she started with paper dixie cups at bathtime.(No mess to clean up and they can put themselves right in the cup) When our little guy was transitioning to standing he liked it too cos it was fun. The great thing about standing up is that they can then go ANYWHERE. We've made quick stops in parking lots on roadtrips just because he could go in the bushes.(FREEDOM) Since the dixie cup idea worked for us - what about any kind of handheld recepticle that would let him stand and still avoid the mess. We have a plastic measuring cup with handle that is about 2C and we can hold it while he goes peepee. Wow - 18months. Think of the diaper savings when you're all done WOOHOO!!

My son also preferred to stand while peeing so we taught him to "aim for the cave"(the back of the inside of the toilet" and that seemed to work.

My son is 16 now and we went through a similar scenario with him. Since practice makes perfect and it is natural for a man to stand while urinating I say let him stand. You may have some extra cleaning at first but he will get better. Try the urinal thing mentioned by another poster and use a cheerio for "target practice"-wish we had thought of that one!

I had a little boy in the day care that would tell us he had to go and when we took him, he would get upset and not go. Finally, I started letting him stand up and hold on to the seat while it was up, and this put him in the right position for him to be aimed into the water. We would also put a cheerio or fruit loop in there so he could practice aiming a little when he wanted to. You little one is trying to be like daddy. Maybe standing is what he really wants to do. I don't know if that helps, but it is worth a shot!

My son is two and I have experienced the same thing, my husband is of the opinion if he stands that it will go easier and wants to get one of the little potty urinals to try. We have not done this yet but he has a coworker that said once he got the stand up urnial for his son the potty training was a breeze. You may want to give it a try - they are sold at places like babies r us and target.

Try getting another potty seat and putting it in his bedroom. A cousin of mine when he and his wife were potty training their sons they kept a potty seat in the living room because this is where the boys spend most of their time and they potty trained very quickly and in no time they were able to move the seat out of the living room! Good luck.

Here, this might give you a laugh... Maybe he's a candidate for this product: http://www.leapsandbounds.com/catalog/product.jsp?product...

I got this one for my son but he won't hold still long enough to use it! http://www.pottyscotty.com/Urinal-for-Boys.html

One of the books I read suggested letting them run around and pee outside, so that their choice to void is okay (ish) and they experience the sensation of staying clean.

If you want more fringe type products for encouraging your little one to go diaper free... http://www.theecstore.com/

My little girl declared herself diaper free at 2 and it's WONDERFUL!


They make a potty training urinal you can try, I included the link to one of them from amazon.com. I can be an eaiser way to deal with aim, etc. Also, we didn't use this with my son, we just let me try to aim in the potty. In the beginning he would just stand on a little step and was completely over the potty to make missing almost impossible. Also, cleaning pee off the bathroom floor while he learns aim is WAY better than out of a bedroom floor. Good luck.


we have started listening to the pee. to make sure she goes a significant amount. we get exited when it's a 'long' one.

Perhaps your husband should start modeling behavior for your son - i.e. sitting on the toilet to pee instead of standing.

If you choose to let him stand, you can also put a drop or two of food coloring in the toilet to get him to direct his stream into the toilet and make colors. If you think sitting will work better right now, what about having him sit while you read a book. This way he has time to relax and let it all out. I actually wrapped up small trinkets from the bottom of my sister in law's toybox and my son held the wrapped potty prize while I read a book to him and at the end of the book he got to open the prize. (He got the gift weather he peed or not, since getting that skill to go when he wants to instead of when his bladder is bursting takes practice and is learned behavior. I wanted him to sit still long enough to obtain the skill.) Good luck and happy savings on diapers! I really enjoy not having to clean poop off my son's bottom any more, other than wiping of course).

Hello T.,

My dear you are cleaning up urine already... you stated that he dribbles in the potty chair and then goes down the hall and pees on the floor which you have to clean up... Either way urine will be cleaned up. He is wanting to be like daddy--nothing wrong with that. I am sure that when you do clean the toilet currently you see evidence that your husband has not always made it in. This is just a guy thing.Your son is 18 mths which is outstanding he is wanting to do this, however, you already know there will be a mess of some sort.
My advice would be to go for it, and make sure the toilet seat doesn't fall down on his little jewel. Blessing to you and yours..... MW

Hello T.,
I am very impress that your son at 18month is potty training. If you think standing up can solve the problem, help him out; to prevent him from peeing on the floor while standing up, get him a step stool and let him use the adult toilet. You or your husband can hold his peepee for him (for the time being). Before you know it, he will be doing it himself.

YUp - little boys like to stand. My pre-school started out by putting a stool in front of the toilet, and letting them lean over and hold onto the back of the toilet (or raised toilet seat...clean it!). It worked with my little guy.! I thought about the little urinal, but the toilet is available everywhere. My little guy learned to aim pretty naturally... cheerios one time, but he was older too. Good luck! :)

I have seen where they have a potty chair for a little boy..It is like an urinal.


My son who is now 20 months old went through a period of "self potty training" when he was about 17 months old where he would tell me that he needed to go, and we would go to the potty and he would either pee or poop or both. But, this all stopped when we went to visit my mother in law at the end of August. He went one time in the potty that she had and has since refused to go. He went to the potty once while we were there, and then he stopped going. I went to a potty training seminar shortly after that, and was told that it is perfectly normal for them to sponatenously start using the potty and then to stop as well. This was referred to as the first window. The second window generally comes when little boys are about 3 (maybe a little younger), but they won't want to go during the second window. This is when "true potty training" takes place.

It sounds like your son is going through the same thing that my son went through. I would suggest that you enjoy the time that you have not having to change diapers, because it won't last long. As far as the peeing goes, maybe it would be better to let him "aim" in the bathroom then to have to clean pee up off the floor in another room. I have heard of people throwing cheerios or other "targets" into the potty so that their boys can aim for those. I know it is frustrating, but it will probably only last a little while.

Good luck, and I hope this helps.

V. F,

Required Fields

Our records show that we already have a Mamapedia or Mamasource account created for you under the email address you entered.

Please enter your Mamapedia or Mamasource password to continue signing in.

Required Fields

, you’re almost done...

Since this is the first time you are logging in to Mamapedia with Facebook Connect, please provide the following information so you can participate in the Mamapedia community.

As a member, you’ll receive optional email newsletters and community updates sent to you from Mamapedia, and your email address will never be shared with third parties.

By clicking "Continue to Mamapedia", I agree to the Mamapedia Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy.