Potty training

Advice on when to potty train your toddler, getting started, tips for successful potty training with boys and girls and common potty training problems.
Potty training is the process of teaching your toddler to recognise the feeling of needing to go to the toilet, and gain control of urine and bowel movements until he can reach a potty or toilet.

Children develop at different rates and you should only begin potty training when your child is ready. Before he can be trained, your toddler needs to be able to:
  • Recognise the signals that mean he needs to go to the toilet and can tell you before it happens.
  • Hold on for a short time until he gets to the potty or the toilet.


  • Pull his pants and trousers up or down, though children may need help with difficult clothes for some time.
Most toddlers are not ready to potty train until after the age of two, particularly if they do not have an older sibling to copy. Even after they are trained it's not at all unusual for a four year old to have occasional, or more frequent accidents.

If you try training your child before they are two it may mean you have to keep reminding them to use the toilet at intervals during the day. If you leave training a little later until your child is ready the process will be easier and quicker.

Getting Started

Involve your child in buying a potty and perhaps let them choose their potty with you. Leave the potty so your toddler can see it in the bathroom. At around eighteen months introduce your toddler to the potty. Try to let your child watch other children using the potty and let your toddler see you using the toilet.

When your child is about two, sit him on the potty from time to time, and give lots of praise if he 'uses' the potty. If your child regularly opens his bowels at about the same time each day, choose this moment to sit him on the potty.

It is often a good idea to start potty training in warm weather so your child can run around without pants, or just with a pair of cotton pants. You will need to remind your child regularly to tell you when he needs the potty.

Accidents will happen, do not get cross, simply clean up and tell him where the poo or the wee should go next time. Occasionally, let your toddler try the toilet, some children prefer it. You can put a child seat on your toilet and purchase a step up to it to make it easier. However children often want you to hold them on the toilet, even when they are proficient toilet users. Do not expect your child to be able to wipe his own bottom, most children need help with this for some time.

Tips for successful potty training
  • Choose a time to potty train when nothing else significant is happening in your toddler's life e.g. the arrival of a new baby or starting nursery.
  • Give plenty of praise every time your toddler uses the potty or toilet.
  • Choose a potty with your child.
  • Dress your child in trousers or leggings that can be pulled down easily, preferably with elasticated waists.
  • It is possible to skip the potty stage and use the toilet from the start.


  • Trainer pants (disposable nappies that look and feel like pants) are ideal for trips away from home, but may confuse your child as they are so like nappies your child may forget the need to use the potty.
  • Try to make sure using the potty is an enjoyable experience, try not to let it become associated with telling your child off.
  • Do not get cross! Try to always remain calm, even if your toddler has made a mess. If accidents happen, remain sympathetic, your child will pick up on anxiety or frustration. It is so easy for a toddler to forget about the potty and the toilet. If accidents are making you irritable, leave training for a week or two and go back to nappies.
  • Teach boys to use the potty sitting down at first. They can progress to standing up later
  • You may wish to buy a potty training book, video, or chart, which deal with the issues in more detail.
  • You can devise your own scheme to encourage your child with stickers or stars
  • You could try giving your child other small rewards such as a piece of fruit, if you think it would encourage the process.

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Hi I am having trouble potty training my 3yr old son, he knows when he needs a wee or pop because he asks for a nappie but I can not get him anywhere near the potty or toilet. He gets astercail and very upset he has older borthers and sister but still I find it so hard. And really need some advice as he just started nursery four days ago . Thanks x
by julie03 20th Jun 2013, 3:34pm
Hi my little girl is 22 months old and is half potty trained for about 2 months now she gos to the toilet when she has nothing on her bottom half but when i put pants on her she wets herself need some advice asap starting to lose the plot
by mummy2eva 26th Oct 2011, 4:50pm
If your child still won't poo ont the potty/toilet it might help to get tough on them. It may sound cruel but this is what I did with my son and it worked a treat! When I knew he needed a poo and was holding it in untill his nappy was back on for bed, I sent him to the toilet and told him sternly that he stays on the toilet untill he'd done his poo. He did'nt like it but i stuck to my guns and he finally went! I gave him loads of praise and he was very pleased with himself. He was no longer afraid and we han no further problems.
by Evanique 12th Sep 2011, 9:31am
i had my 25 month old using her potty without us, she mentioned something about her potty we brought it out and she went, been 4 days now she is using it hope the success continues, we had one little accident on the floor, make that 2 today (one of each now) but we haven't really asscoiated the potty can be used for bowel movements i think that's our fault, but will get there!
by bubblechic88 13th Jul 2011, 10:05am
I have a 4 1/2 boy who won't go poo for me on the tolet, i tryed everything even have a big toy for him and its in the tolet waiting but on go. it is so frustrating what am i doing wrong, i think he is afraid now cause i got upset with him when i did i knew i was wrong. please help us out!kilkenny
by kilkenny 15th Jun 2011, 4:22pm
I have a 2 1/2 girl who has been dry for near 2 months and done brilliantly using both potty and toilet. now she seems to be having wee accidents 3-4 times daily. she's not bothered by it although i say its not nice and mummy isn't happy. she's so good other times its frustrating to think we're going backwards. she wears pull ups at night and for afternoon naps but most times she is dry in morning. she has no infection and its not even when she's playing and is distracted, thinks its lazyness. HELP!!
by brandy16 8th Mar 2011, 5:42pm
hi ive got a son whos nearly 4 ,has done potty training really well but since going to nursery he got very lazy and hes started to do in his pants,its very frustrating and hes get upset as when i say about it,any advise.people say fase its hes going through.every child is different and make me cross when people say it wasn't like that in my day,i never pressure my son to start early and when he did,he was very good.
by elllis73 2nd Feb 2011, 8:44am
hi i need some advice,I have a 4 yr old girl,she has not had the easiest time with toilet training,we started when she was 2 1/2 and shortly after we found she has lactose intolerance and so is on laxatives most days,her dad and I split when she was 9 months old and I found out when he had our children he was still putting her in nappies till her 3rd birthday and I found out that he and his wife shout and smack her bum, which they have been warned to stop,or he will no longer see her, now she is 4 and when she is at home or out with me or her stepdad she is accident fee but if she goes anywhere else like to her dads, nan's, or even school nursery I can expect 2 or 3 wet or soiled changes of clothes.
by Gembob81 28th Jan 2011, 4:49pm
my son is 3 years old he's dry when he is at home but he's having accidents at nursery and I don't no why im assuming as its a new setting for him different place different people and has a teacher its different to him. any ideas?
by mandie2011 28th Jan 2011, 4:47pm
Hi I have a 2 1/2 year old who has been fully potty trained for the past 8 months plus and has been accident free for the majority of this time but for some reason he has started to have accidents every day some days it can be 2-3 a day I'm so frustrated with him and really don't know what to do to stop this please any advise would be grateful
by Mingle01 24th Jan 2011, 9:05am
I am looking for advice from any grandparents on potty training. The modern approach informs me boys are lazy and that my child may not be ready but I'm finding this hard to swallow. My son is 22 months old and we are planning to go travelling in six months time and nappies really are not an option. I think the previous comment raises a good point. Modern nappies leave children feeling dry and comfortable unlike terry towels. I think I'll try using them and see what happens
by Fifilala 17th Jan 2011, 2:59pm
my son is 3 and we have started toilet training which is going well for wee wee's but as yet no poo's. he appears to be holding it in, any advice???
by Johayter 17th Jan 2011, 2:46pm
I am so surprised to read about so many toddlers not potty trained at 3. As a new grandma of a 21month girl, I am now updating my skills. 30 years ago I raised 2 children and, as was the norm then, started potty training at about 16months. It seemed a very natural process and both (a boy and a girl) were out of nappies by 20 months in the daytime and by 3 at night. This seemed to be the experience of most of my generation so what's changed? Could it be that our terry towelling nappies became uncomfortable and heavy when wet whereas modern nappies remain dry to the touch?
by nettyc 7th Jan 2011, 8:55am
I need help getting my son to make a bowel movement on the toilet! He is almost 3 and refuses to go and screams for a nappy. Tried everything and nothing seems to work! Help please!
by kebear 5th Jan 2011, 9:21am
My son is 2yrs and 4mths and we've been potty training for a couple of months. We've now got to a stage where he will happily wear pants and will tell me when he needs to wee but then I can't get him to sit on the potty or toilet to actually have a wee. He gets hysterical and will insist on having his nappy back on or wet himself. I've tried making it fun, tried praise and i've ,managed to not get angry but nothing seems to help. Any ideas?
by minimama 26th Nov 2010, 5:14pm
hi ive just signed up because i'm tearing my hair out wondering what to do with my three year old daughter. we started potty training around 4 months ago which was a success (we had our moments) but lately she has started wetting herself again and when we go out she is suddenly terrified of public toilets. is this normal? I've tried telling her we need to look for the tinkle fairy and everything to make it fun to go in and nothing seems to work, has anyone else had this problem?
by deebs 13th Oct 2010, 9:21am
Hi i have a little girl who just went two and has been potty trained for about 2 months, i found that not getting mad and trying to look for the signs that your child's shows just before a poo and try and catch them before hand. Pooing does take alot longer and sometimes boys can be very lazy. Reward charts are a good incentive for them and if they fill the chart they get a new toy usually works really well. I think the main thing when potty training is not making a big deal of it, it might be hard at first but just try and be strong and lots of praise. Trust me it will work i have had alot of experience been in childcare for over ten years and now run my own nursery and have potty trained my daughter and son and both were potty trained before two years old. Hope this help
by faye80 20th Sep 2010, 5:31pm
im potty training my son at moment he is nearly 3 but he keeps pooing in his pants and i get upset and fustrated and tell him off please help i dont know what to do
by mummygem2009 14th Sep 2010, 8:56am
My three year old granddaughter will make pee with no problem but when it comes to poo she does not want to use the toilet, she holds it in for several days until it just comes out. I fear this might be harmful for her, it's like she is afraid to poo into the toilet. Any suggestions? it's our first time training! Thanks!
by chuly 8th Sep 2010, 10:32am
Charlie is nearly 3 and has been out of nappies for nearly a year now. she did really well for the first few months and was really pleased with herself although for the last 3 months she is having loads of accident a day she is also wet probably 6 nights out of 7 even though we take her to the toilet 3 times a night. Does anybody have any views that could be helpful to us? We are trying the reward scheme and take toys away when she doesn't use the toilet as she is quite capable of taking herself. Beginning to pull our hair out now!
by PapaSmurf 6th Sep 2010, 10:16am
I am having exactly the same problems as described by tammywhammy with my 3 1/2 year old son. It seems so difficult to potty train them when they only fill up their bladder and don't wee! Any ideas?!
by nessie1111 12th Aug 2010, 11:03am
Right - this is a response to those with children in nurseries. You may have tried this so I apologise.Yes I bet it's frustrating for you to know your chlld is dry when at home but struggles at nursery but there are soooo many members of staff that sometimes your child doesn't know who to go to, and let's face it, it's not like telling your mummy. Nurseries are supposed to have a 'key person' assigned to your child. This is supposed to help your child, they can bond with them, build up trust and a relationship blah blah. I would find out who this key person is and talk to them. It should be this person that your child feels comfortable telling they need a wee. If they are not, or you do not like how they are dealing with it...get them to change the key person. Explain that you want this key person to help your child by taking them to the toilet at regular intervals ie every half hour not just when the nursery thinks they should (at playtimes, before meals etc). Make sure that your child has a good bond with this key person. Find out what the nursery does that helps your child bond with them. If they feel shy around them they won't ask for their help. You could also ask your child why she doesn't ask for help at nursery. (ie is there something in the bathroom that is frightening them - even long corridors can be frighteneing.)
Childminder situations - I am one so I do understand. Firstly there are a few things to help here. If your child uses a potty at home and likes their potty, take it with you to the childminders. Let your child see you do this so they know it's the same one. (eventually your childmider could buy one exactly the same) - it's amazing but a child will say 'where's MY potty'. Let them have their own. Again your minder could always make a special occassion of it and take your child to choose one to have at her/his house. One question is whether there are still children wearing nappies at your childminders? that might be one explanation.
If your child is doing well at home it's a great start - the rest will follow - you never know - it might simply be that your chiild isn't encouraged and supported enough in the other environments and left to wait too long as there are other children taking carers' attention away for the split second your child wants to wee. - just a thought!
by Minder1 12th Aug 2010, 10:56am
Please help ! My son Joshua 1 year now he scram / crying near the things come out and i say not screaming so i call hes dad and say what he doing so Joshua start on kindergarden soon so he want diapers i say no pottytreaning its for your year i have a 1 monts girl Nevvah she have diaper now she can go say i say go to wc now she doing this so my quseston is : How i doing whit Joshua. I have a sister 4 year near she was little she to screaming / crying near the tings come out too and she is big now she going to wc alone . Can my other child be as Joshua because im pregnant whit twins Weston and Monique they have many stress now want come out so the "dad"s mum she say near i going out Joshua going alone to the wc and what he not doing this near im whit he .
by VanessaAngela 12th Aug 2010, 10:40am
HI. I am new to this site/forum. My son is 25 months and we have had a potty in the house for a few months and has used it on occassions. He is very interested in the potty and toilet. We have purchased big boy pants and are hoping to go ahead and start and take the nappies away altogether, HOWEVER....
Night time, would I still use nappies or pull ups although I am a bit unsure if I want to use pull ups/ they just look like nappies but I might have to budge and use them in the morning/evening whilst travelling in traffic.
Please all comments welcome, there is so much advice out there and very confused...
by costamonster 12th Aug 2010, 10:06am
My son is 3+1/2, fully potty trained so uses the toilet but still has daily accidents, resulting sometime in 2-3 changes, I know i shouldn't but i can get so fustrated with him as he knows what to do and uses toilet properly often. Any advice and is putting him back in nappies after so long a good idea?
by samantha34 12th Aug 2010, 9:18am
Please help! i am having sooo much trouble potty training my 3 year old she will hold it for as long as she possibly can sometimes for up to 7 hours so im worried she will damage her bladder! she will no longer even sit on the potty she just screams until we put a nappy on her,she is really distressed and really sobs her heart out.she will not do anything on the toilet either and we have been so patient with her .she used to do a wee on the toilet and on the potty but she just refuses to now and we have run out of ideas.can anyone help?
by tammywhammy 11th Jun 2010, 5:39pm
I need some advice. My daughter is 3.5yrs old and we are potty training and doing well. The thing is she is dry at home, Nursery or if we go out however at the childminders she wont use the potty and just wets and poos herslef. Does anybody have any ideas as to why this may be happening or just some advice would be great. Thanks x
by nicholson55 11th Jun 2010, 5:39pm
I have the same problem as CAPower. My daughter is 2 1/2 and is fully potty trained at home and rarely has an accident. She's been using the toilet for about 6 months now. However she also goes to nursery 3days a week and will not tell them she needs the potty/toilet. She has pull ups potty training pants but whenever i pick her up from there you can guarantee that she's had 2 changes of clothes due to her nappy leaking and her not telling staff that she needs to go. I get really frustrated at this cos i know at home she's fine. I know there's more distractions at nursery as she has loads of friends to play with but like you, staff at our nursery have said that 'she's still young'. She's not that young!! Don't get me wrong i'm not a pushy parent and she'll get there in her own time but its frustrating that i have to get 3 lots of clothes ready for her just for a day there! I've asked staff to ask her throughout the day if she needs the potty and to take her at regular intervals so she gets used to going to the toilet before dinner for eg or before going outside to play. She won't tell them she needs a poo either and i've lost count of the amount of times the staff have said "oh, her nappy leaked so we had to change her" I've noticed with my daughter that she'll go to the toilet/potty with one of her favourite friends there and she'll use it (not all the time though but it's a start!) so maybe you could ask the nursery to take her every time her friend goes? Hope you get on ok!!
by smitten 11th Jun 2010, 5:26pm
HELP! My 2 1/2 year old daughter has been potty training for over 3 months now, the problem is she is completely dry at home. We can go for days out and she can stay at her nannies all day and night without any accidents, but when she goes to nursery she doesn't stay dry she can have up to 3 accidents on a bad day but nearly every day she can have at least one accident at nursery. I have spoken to her nursery and they are very much like "she is still young", "she has one on one at home we are very busy at the nursery to give one on one". This really annoys me as she asked me to take her nappy off I never instigated it and I am not asking for one on one training at the nursery. Can anyone give any tips of what we can do to try and get her to go to the toilet at nursery?

p.s. we are doing the reward scheme at the moment, doesn't seem to be working!!
by CAPower 21st May 2010, 3:59pm
ok, my daughter is 3 years old and has been potty trained for over a year but keeps having accidents everyday, when she wears a nappy, no mess but as soon as we put her in knickers (which she loves) she wets herself, ive practically given up but dont want to back track by putting her back in nappies. any advice would be good x
by Thorny 18th May 2010, 4:55pm
my daughter is 3 yrs and 4 months and is having problems using the potty she wont tell us and she screams and crys when you tell her to use the potty she still poops and pees in pull ups and big girl panties we've tried everything!! help!!!
by KyannaChloe 14th May 2010, 5:43pm
hi i am trying to potty train my son.. i am using a reward chart for when he does use the potty. the thing is.. he cant grasp that when he is wearin pants/pull ups or trousers he thinks he can ''do it'' in his bottoms. when he has nothing on his bottom he uses the potty great. how can i get him to recognise that he has to use the potty even when he has these on?? xx
by lange 14th May 2010, 5:38pm
Hiya, I have a 27mth old son and i am trying to potty train him. My problem is that when he goes to nursery they say he is doing really well, but as soon as i bring him home he wont do anything on the potty or the toilet he just sits there. Can someone please help?
Thank you
by alexdd 14th May 2010, 5:25pm
hi there every, one my 2yr old son decided last sunday that he is now a big boy and wants go on the potty which is cool and he is doing really well only 4 accidents in a full week (so proud) however i bought some pampers feel n learn pull ups and also pampers easy ups (as he uses pampers active fit nappies) for playschool and in the car he uses proper pants when at home however i have found that he has got a really sore bum from both of them i just wondered if anyone else has found this and if they have which other pull ups do you reccomend as i dont want to keep buying different ones and keep finding the same thing? any help would be much appreciated.
by seck 14th May 2010, 5:03pm
my daughter is 15 months old is that 2 young to start potty training ?
by mummy2one 14th May 2010, 4:54pm
I too have a son of 3 yrs and 5 mths who so far is very hit and miss with the potty, because of his lack of speach we belive we have held him back from certain things and we are fully aware that when he has no distractions (TV) he understands what we are saying!. He will sit on the potty and have a wee sometimes but usally throws a nappy at me for when he needs a no2, hes at pre school 3 afts a week and are very understanding and we are sending him to speach and lanugage therapy (hopefully this will help him talk) he seems to say things and give us some hope that hes starting to talk but like his daddy we seem to think that its a genetic thing and hes being lazy and prefers to comunicate by pointing and taking us to things rather than telling us...(daddy talked at 4), but as im expecting my 3rd baby in june im so determined to get him trained before his little sister arrives!. My eldest, my daughter was no problem with the potty at all we just had to keep saying do u need a wee?? but at least we got an answer!!!. she was 2 yr 10 mths when fully trained!!
by CVA82 14th May 2010, 4:52pm
Hi, I am currently in the process of potty training my 2 and a half yr old son. He's doing really well using the potty for a wee but he appears frightened to have a poo in it. I've tried putting him on the toilet also but this dosen't seem to help either? I have (reluctantly) started putting 'pull ups' on him so that he will have a poo and then take them off once he has, but obviously I do not want to keep doing this because it will confuse him. Any ieas?!
by JaneD 14th May 2010, 4:28pm
Oh my god, why do people listen to such rubbish advice, when did this thing about potty training kids when they are ready start, i started my little girl at 6 months, the minute she could sit up, every time we changed a nappy she sat on the potty for about 30 seconds, sometimes she did something sometimes she didn't at 7 months she had amazing bowel control at 18 months was dry night and day. Absolutely no problems why because she knew no different than to do her business on the potty. If someone asked you to go to a new place to do your business you would resist too. These poor kids have been happily pooing and weeing in their nappies for 2-3 years and now you want to change.

My daughter isn't the only child this has worked on, all of my friends did the same and every one of them by less than 2 years old was fully potty trained. Please mums and dads stop listening to rubbish advice. Start them young and they will know no difference, you wont damage them mentally in fact reading the posts here the older you start the more mental damage seems to be done. By the way now we don't even use a potty its always the toilet and no tantrums or screams and we don't have accidents. Why is it so difficult?
by cazi 14th May 2010, 3:18pm
Hi, please help me. My daughter showed signs she was ready for potty training so I have started her. She wants to sit on the potty all day and when she hasn't done anything for a while and I take her off it and put her nappy back on she goes absolutely mental at me. Please give me some advice on what I should do when she asks for potty because half the time shes asking its because she wants the reward after it. I'm finding it a bit stressful at the moment so any advice would be great.
by Hayleyakg 8th Feb 2010, 9:24am
my son is eight months and keep having cough week after week,i feed him with nestle cereals.is he reacting to the cereal
by osamu 28th Jan 2010, 9:20am
Hi my son is 2 and half years old i have been potty training him 4 about 3 weeks now he is really good at it at first he was going on the potty and the toilet for a wee and a poo but now he is being lazy and wont go on it and just laughs about it but when we are out he goes on the toilet its just at home he wont go how can i get him back on the potty?
by scatster 21st Jan 2010, 9:18am
hiya my daughter is 3 yrs old and is in knickers now but she isnt wetting them she is pooing them she goes to a childminder and school but doesnt do it there she only does it at home or her nanna's does anyone no y this is? please help sam
by samjayden09 14th Jan 2010, 9:27am
hi my son is 3 and a half and started nursery in september. when he started the nursery was concerned about his speech which is slowly improving by copying his younger brother who is 2. we have tried to potty train him before and put him in some pants. the problem was he wouldnt tell us when he needed the toilet and he would just wet himself and carry on even though he was wet. at nursery they tried to take him to the toilet but he just kept screaming and wouldnt go near the toilet his teacher at school told me i should try and potty train his younger brother as he has copied him with his speech. i just dont know what to do can anyone help me please!!!
by emily1980 14th Jan 2010, 9:27am
I am needing major help! My older daughter, 27 month old, has already been potty trained for more than half year. But just starting this week, she is pooping in her diaper again. Can anyone tell me what may be the reason? She has a 15 month old sister who is still in diapers, will that be the reason as they don't usually live together but are right now for the holidays? I am going crazy as to WHY all of a sudden she don't want to tell us when she needs to go poopie! -- Frustrated Mommy of 2!!
by mommyo2 5th Jan 2010, 3:53pm
Hi My Son Is 3 & Half Yr Old, He Started Nursery In September But Before He Started He Wasnt Potty Trained Or Toilet Trained Properly, He Also Had Speech Problems, I Told The Nursery Staff About This And I Thght He Might Not Be Ready To Start Nursery Yet, They Said It Was Ok For Him To Start, But Round About November/December Time, They Started Sayin Hes Not Communicating Wiv Them And Not Going To The Toilet Coz He Was Still In Pull Ups, I Kept Him In Them Coz I Thght He Not Communicating Wiv The Staff To Tell Them !! Now They Ave Had me Staying In Nursery Wiv Him To Try And Get Him To Talk And Go To The Toilet, And They Told Me To Put Him In Pants Instead Of Pull Up, Ive Took Him To The Toilet But He Refuses To Go On And He Had A Accident On The Last Day Of Nursery For The Xmas Holidays And He Never Told Me, But When Hes At Home He Goes On The Potty And The Toilet And Tells Me He Wants A Wee Wee,But Refuses To Do A Poo In The Potty And The Toilet, But Does It If Hes Got A Pull Up On !! I Havent Startd Him On Bedtimes, Wiv Out A Pull Up Yet! Or When He Goes Out Shopping Etc WithOut Aving A Pull Up On!! Any Suggestions Would Be Gratefull. Thanx
by lizzy28 21st Dec 2009, 9:07am
Hi
My son is just over 3 and has exactly the same issues as AllieStops mentioned. He will run round with no nappy or pants on fine, and wee and poo by himself no problems and tell us very proudly what he has done. But if you put him in pants, he usually does it in them !! He has started to pull his pants down and up when we get him dressed and sit him on the potty, but most of the time he will either sit on the potty in his pants and wee, or do it where he is sat. I dont know how we can help him to tell us when he needs it so we can help him, or get him to realise and pull his pants down and go himself.
by bigdave146 15th Dec 2009, 9:10am
I have a 2 1/2 year old that we have been trying tp potty train since September. He is brilliant at doing wee's in the potty/toilet and always tells us that he needs to go, however when it comes to poo's it's a different story. It seems to be very hit and miss. He doesn't always say that he needs to go for a poo and we have to watch him if he hasn't been. Sometimes he will say that he needs to go sometimes he doesn't.He does seem to do more at home and he needs to sit on the potty 3 or 4 times before he actuall manages to go. When he goes to our childminder for 2 days a week, he's fine with wee's but does not do poo's. He will do them in his trousers or take his trousers and pants off and go on the floor. not good when there are other children around. I really do not have any idea where to go from here. He understands that he needs to do a poo on the potty but just doesn't do it.We have tried congratulating him giving high 5's, kisses and cuddles, reward charts, bribes with lollys when he does it on the potty, telling him off, not telling him off. I do not have any more ideas. I would really appreciate if anybody has any more ideas to try.
by smittyselfe 12th Nov 2009, 9:18am
Hi my daughter has been doing really well at potty training now for a good month she is 2.5. She is mostly dry at night and completely nappy free now. The problem is that she goes to nursery 2 days a week and they tell me that when she goes to the toilet/sits on the potty she cries and seems fearful of going. This is not replicated at home so I am struggling to re-assure them. This has been going on for a while now and doesnt seem to be getting any better any suddestions?
by lkerr1975 27th Oct 2009, 2:42pm
hi im new here. my son is 22 months old and has been using the potty at home for a good month now hes doing great,he has great control and always sits himself ont he potty. the only problem being is that he wont wear underwear,he pees in it!! ive not ventured outside in pants yet as i think he will just wet in it. any advice and do u think i should just keep him naked bottom half?? thanks!!
by Annasc 13th Oct 2009, 9:07am
i have a son who is 3yrs and 1 month and will not sit on the potty. he will wee in his plastic pants and not even tell me. on 2 occasions he has wee'd on the potty but only because he was crying. i am exhausted. i know it has only been 2 days but really how long before he starts to realise he has to tell me when he needs to go.
by audrina 12th Oct 2009, 9:59am
my girl is 2yr8m she is so scared of the toilet and potty screams when u put her on there...never use to be like it...we left off for a while thought she would come round...just started putting her in knickers she can hold for hours but if you put her on the tolilet she crys....any tips should we just leave off...or will she get fed up of wetting herself?
by ELLIEW 22nd Sep 2009, 4:04pm
My daughter is nearly 2 and half years old, and i cant get her to use the potty. she'll sit down on it, but won't do anything. But then she will get off it, and wee on the floor. What can i do????????
by karapotts88 14th Sep 2009, 10:24am
I think having patients and time
by camauri 7th Sep 2009, 10:49am
Hi my son is three and a half and still in nappies, we have tried everything from pottys, pull ups, character pants, to reward charts ect...He is at nursery and we have found he has used their toilets but will not try anything at home.
After speaking with our son we have actualy discovered he is scared to use the "big toilets" because of the monsters ( toilet cleaner adverts ).
We have two other children who are eleven and nine who had no problems with toilet training.
We are now going to remove all traces of "the monsters" and try again.....fingers not legs crossed....
by mrspotatoehead 2nd Sep 2009, 10:02am
i have a 22 month old son and he wont sit on the potty unless he has a nappy on and the first thing he does when i take his nappy off is do a wee. iv tried putting him on the potty when i take his nappy off but he gets crabby and doesnt want to. he watches me go to the toilet but it doesnt seem to be working and the only advice i have had is to stop putting nappies on him. Any advice that may make him want to sit on the potty???
by kazza07 24th Aug 2009, 9:03am
Noticed comments about 'number 2' problems.
We have a dog - and a toddler. I have involved my kiddie with picking up dog poops. He sees that as quite normal and has a name for the dog poops - 'ag ags' .Before we moved to potty training (in the last day and a bit) I showed him his poops from the nappies - which he also calls ag-ags. The very first time I put him in pants and put the potty out, he went straight to it, did a number 1 and 2 and referred to the result as 'my ag-ags'. Hey presto.
I'll be reading this forum with interest cause he is pretty proud of his pee profficiency and reach.
by mm33 13th Aug 2009, 6:10pm
my son is 21 months old.We have already started potty training but still sometimes he is telling me he has to go but then he says i don't want to go.plus he feels no different when he wears a breif and accidents happens!We are putting on pull ups that he really likes and chose form the supermarket.so some times especially in the morning he is actually telling me and enjoys that he goes to the toilet and during the day we still have accidents.what do you suggest?
by mariazen 13th Aug 2009, 11:01am
Please Help, My daughter has been weeing on the toilet for some time now, she will be 3 in Oct 09. However she has a real fear of doing a poo!! I have tried many things, and she now holds her no 2s until the evening when we put her in a nappy to go to bed. Reading other comments seems to be a quite a common thing, so would be really grateful for any ides. Thanks.
by Stels1703 13th Aug 2009, 11:01am
My son will be 3 in October and he also screamed when we tried to get him to use the potty. We decided to go straight to the toilet. It took us a good week of wetting himself constantly before he decided to tell us he needed the toilet. Thank goodness we have laminate on our floors! I did read somewhere that you need to show your toddler the poo in their nappy because they never see it as we normally take the nappy away saying things like "dirty, yuk!" I think they are a bit shocked when they see it as they don't realise it comes from them. I don't know if it this is true, but we tried it with my son and he is much better at going for a poo on the toilet than a wee!
by Blondie06 6th Aug 2009, 9:25am
Please help! my daughter has mastered weeing on the toilet about 5 months ago, when she was 2yrs 6mths, but since about january this year she has had a fear of poo!! we have had treatments from the doctor for constipation as she stops herself from going. after many many ruined pairs of pants we have been saying she can have a pull-up on to do her poos. it just seems to have been going on for so long. and now its a case of if there is a bit of poop in the toilet when she goes for a wee she won't use the toilet - its like she has a fear of poo!! what can i do to help her, ANY IDEAS PLEASE
by jobiz32 4th Aug 2009, 12:36pm
My daughter was dry - day and night by 2 years and 5 months without too much problem. My son has shown an interest in using the potty since he was 2 years and 2 months although not been successful when put in pants. Now at 2 years and 5 months I have started potty training properly. The problem I have is that if he runs around naked he will do both wee's and poo's in potty or toilet quite happily but if I put "big boy pants" on he has accidents. It is really frustrating because I know he knows what he is supposed to do. Anyone got any suggestions? Also for the people who have successfully got their children dry but are struggling with poo's - I wrapped an inexpensive present up and put on a high shelf for my daughter, telling her that as soon as she did her poo on the toilet or potty she could have it. Worked within 24 hours - she got her present and she never had an accident again.
by AllieStops 23rd Jul 2009, 9:07am
I have a 3yr 4 mth old boy and he has been out of nappies for five months. We still have regular accidents with peeing but am not too worried about this as are when tired or really involved in play. Hpwever I am concerened that my son seems to pee his pants on purpose if given into trouble or put on naughty step for non toilet related bad behavior. I really don't know if it is a loss of control thing or if he is doing it on purpose. I have yet to find anyone else with this problem and would appreciate any advice as at a loss on how to tackle this.
by Todd1 23rd Jul 2009, 9:07am
I have just read all these posts and I am having the same problem with my son who is nearly three. He refuses to sit on the potty or toilet but he also hates the nappy. He seems to be able to hold it for hours. It seems from reading the posts that there is no answer. At this stage I am reasuring myself with the thought that at least i wont be sending him to college wearing nappies!!!!!! Will I????
by niamhyc 10th Jul 2009, 9:08am
My daughter go to the potty to pee she refuse to do #2
by barth 9th Jul 2009, 8:58am
the posting below is so familiar ... Our daughter is 3 in August and refuses to use a potty/toilet or even wee in the grass when camping. She will hold on for hours until she is crying in pain and refusing to move in case of 'letting go'. She loves wear pants but will help herself to a nappy when she needs to go. We have tried all the tricks - she confidently says she will stop wearing nappies when she is a big girl but seems to be in no rush - despite all her friends at nursery being potty trained. Is it physical or pyschological???
by JulesH 24th Jun 2009, 9:42am
my 2yr and 10m old daughter is still not potty trained. she would hold on for ages before she sits on the potty, sayn she is scared. we have let her pick her own potty,we have 3 now, and also tried books, rewards and running around without knickers. we even left a few months before tryn again. but the result is the same.please help. she is due to start nursery in sept.
by micradg 8th Jun 2009, 9:34am
My son who will be 3 in august has been clean for peeing since feb he even gets out of bed and uses his potty in his bedroom at night. He has no problem using the big toilet in the day and even stands up to pee now, but we are having major poo issues, he poo,s on the floor anywhere even if you put a pull up pant on he would take it out of the pant. He has twice now pooed on the toilet and we did major fuss and treated him taking him out on a fun day and gifts but he still poo,s anywhere but the toilet. I have tried sticker chart, recording times of poo,s and sitting on the toilet at these times to no avail. Any suggestions will be great as im sure it wont be long before my 9month old will end up picking it up!!!
by sneezar 14th May 2009, 9:40am
Help!! my three year old son mastered the art of using the toilet for number ones when he was two and a half., however, number twos are a different story - he seems to have developed a fear of doing them on the toilet. I have tried everything that I can think of to try and encourage him to do them in the toilet but no success. does anyone have any ideas that can help me?????
by JMB12 5th May 2009, 12:12pm
HI I HAVE TOILET TRAINED MY TWO AND A HALF YEAR OLD BOY, HE IS REALLY GOOD AT DOING WEES ON THE TOILET BUT NOT NUMBER TWOS, HE HIDES AND WANDERS OFF, GETTING REALLY FRUSTRATING AS IT HAPPENS EVERY DAY IN THE AFTERNOON, I FEEL AS IF I CANT GO OUT UNTILL HE AS HAD IT. WHY WONT HE DO IT ON THE TOILET.? THANKS.CLAIRE
by cb130974 20th Apr 2009, 9:24am
my 4 year old step daughter is having problems using the potty she wont tell us and she screams and crys when you tell her to use the potty she still poops and pees he pull ups and big girl panties weve tried everything!! help!!!
by mandi23 20th Apr 2009, 9:24am
my daughter is 2 and a half and im struggling to do potty training because my son whos 1 keeps interferring and throwing the potty around. i cant put in in another room because she then wets all over the floor instead even when i sit her on it at regular intervals. Am really getting frustrated because i know shes ready but shes being so lazy. Please help xx
by loadsakids 17th Apr 2009, 9:22am
My advice would be dont use pull ups or anything for the first few days, as my 2 year old son used them and the reusable pants as a normal nappy. He was best with nothing on his bottom half, and within a day he was telling us when he needed the toilet. Now when he has a nappy for bedtime he says if he needs to go before bed. I was stressed with him having accidents in pants, so just let it all hang out for a few days.Also he would scream going on the tiolet (wont use potty), so i started rewarding him with a little bit of chocolate after he uses the tiolet, and let him flush and say bye bye to it! Hope this helps.
by Helz4444 6th Apr 2009, 9:11am
first time on here for me... but I'm pleased to hear that there are other 3year olds out there who aren't yet potty trained. My daughter will be 3 in may and I started to think there was something wrong - other kids I know started before they were 3! She will wee on her potty if she hasn't got a nappy on, but she cries for her nappy when she wants a poo. She won't pull her 'pull up' nappies or her pants down, she just wees in them! It's hard work isn't it.
by Janmm 26th Mar 2009, 9:28am
i have twin boys the age of 3yrs old.they ae driving me crazy that they will not potty.they have a lot of fear of the potty.they scream,kick,yell at the top of there lungs.and this is driving me insane..is this normal for my twins to be that scared of the potty??im so exhausted..please help!!
by redcrow 9th Mar 2009, 9:24am
help, i really am at the end of my tether. i have tried everything to potty train my son who is 3 in april. he has been out of nappies for two days this time it has been two days of tears and tantrums. yesterday after seven hours he had a wee on the potty but today nothing he has weed all over the house but thats it. i really dont know what to do . can anyone help. i also have a four mnth old baby , im exhausted and finding it all very difficult.
by tombo 3rd Mar 2009, 9:19am
my little boy was 2 & 8mths old when i tried him. i had previously tried him two months before and he just kept wetting himself, so i was torturing myself more, so i left it a couple of months and tried it again. he wouldn't tell me he had to go and would sit on the potty for an hour with no result get up from the potty and the next thing he would pee himself. the only thing worked for me was praise and a reward chart - and bribed him into buying a new toy!! good luck, i am in the process of training me little girl 2 years and 6mths has done a pee 5 times today and done her first poo!!!!! Much easier than my boy, but still early days.
by cathyk 25th Feb 2009, 9:23am
hi, my little boy was 3 in November and he will not tell me when he needs to go to the toilet any ideas ? i would be most grateful !!!!
by emrich1974 19th Feb 2009, 10:12am
hey everyone
frist time on here im so lost my lad will be four in april and the whole potty training business is just nt happening at all. any body got any ideas that can help me out??? i would be most thankfully
by Vicky2704 17th Feb 2009, 9:40am
My little boy is 3yrs and 2months and we have started to potty train again! He now has good bladder control but seem to have a fear of the toilet and potty. His control is so good he is now holding on to wee for upto 24hrs. He and we are getting very distressed as he is obviously uncomfortable and distressed. to help him eventually go we have to put him under a running shower. I've tried just about everything and even resorted to putting a nappy back on. Nothing works, he will not soil a nappy either, has anyone got any experience of this
by Andreano1 17th Feb 2009, 9:40am
Hi, First time on here. I have just started potty training my 24 month old and she has taken to it really well. I have a really helpful childminder who has manged to get her dry in a day! Advice that I would give is to make them aware that nappies are for baby's and now they have grown into to a big girl/boy they need to were big pants! My childminder makes her touch the dry pants/pull up so she knows how it feels and then really praises her when you take them off that it is dry. We do a lot of " you can paint/have a biscuit/watch tv if you sit on your potty and do a wee first" My daughter also loves it when she does a wee and we go around showing our cats and ringing grandma! So far so good and I wish everyone luck. Its hard work and I feel really proud of my daughter but dont go back and put them in nappy's it gives them the wrong idea even though it would make life easier! Good luck again x
by Leanne2258 30th Jan 2009, 9:01am
My son Boating is only 2 weeks old and he climbs onto the toilet already! it amazing. but he always leaves the seat up liek his daddy. Its so sweet! xxxxx
by IgotaBJ2008 19th Jan 2009, 9:49am
Hi First time on here ! my son is 3 in april ! were on day3 of nappie free straight to the toilet method ! no progress wotsoever ! has anybody got any ideas
by daddycooln1 5th Jan 2009, 9:15am
my daughter is 2 in january, she played about with the potty for a while, we would let her run about in here bear bum and on the odd occasion she would go and use the potty, we gave her loads of prase. she hates to get nappies put on. we decided we would try to potty train. the first day she only had 2 mistakes the one the next the following day she just went to the potty herself, we thought great. we then put on her clothes and she would say pee pee or poo poo so we took her. then things changed she would just wet herself or do poos in her pants, some times she would say after she has done it, other times she would not. what do i do now? do i go back to nappies or stick with it? it has been 2 weeks. may be this is normal?
by benwen 9th Dec 2008, 8:45am
My daughter will be three in 2 weeks.. we have been potty traning for a very long time.. im thinking now i started her before she was ready and its obviously prolonged things. She can tell me where your supposed to put your pee and poop and where were not supposed to put it.. I can get her to get on the potty ( relunctantly) but she will get on... we tried stickers, candy, pennies, clapping, singing,,, everything.. i dont know what to do to get her to go. She understands it... but doesnt want to... i cut down her tv time and then she gets so into playing that she doesnt want to stop.. any advice?? please help!!
by faithsmommy 3rd Dec 2008, 8:01am
My son is eight and a half months old. Is it time to think about potty training?
by EGO 1st Dec 2008, 9:23am
This is also my first time on here. My daughter is 3yrs in jan and won`t even attempt to go to the toilet. She tells me when she`s wet or as a dirty bum but won`t even try the potty. I`m getting anxious because she could start pre school after xmas but she needs to be dry. The other day i tried her with pants, and yes she was dry all day untill i put her nappy on for bed, so she had held herself all day cos she did`nt want to go to the toilet which would`nt be healthy for her. Her sister is 8 yrs and i never had these problems when potty training her, i know children are`nt the same but need some help if anyone has any suggestion !!
by becca12345 11th Nov 2008, 9:48am
This is my first time on this forum and cant believe how common this is. My son is 28 months old and been off nappies for about 3 months which I have been delighted with but to my horror the past week he has been wetting himself regularly and not asking for the toilet. I have noticed he tends to do it when he is naughty and it seems like he is trying to distract me from the original issue. Having read the previous posts think I might try a reward chart as feel he is well aware of what he is doing. Glad we are not alone with this problemm!
by louisem001 4th Nov 2008, 9:06am
my little girl is now 2.5 years.We started potty training in july when it was warm and i had time to dedicate to her. It went really well and she has been dry appart from the odd accident untill the last 2 weeks. She has stopped telling me she needs the toilet and wetting her pants. I've been asking her oftenif she needs a wee she tells me no then wets straight away.I've tried every thing praise clapping, treats ,stories when she does go but nothings working she has sat on the carpet 3 times today and just wet which she finds really funny.yesterday she put her self in the naughty corner and said she was naughty, wet on the floor, then said told you! should i put her back in nappies or has he been out of them too long please help!! i'm so fustrated
by maceyliddle 20th Oct 2008, 8:55am
I really need some advice. My daughter's 28 months and uses her potty when naked or when she has nothing on below the waist. She knows when she needs to go and when she is but the last month she's started wetting her pants and then telling me and when i ask her why she just smiles and says wee'd. I' going out of my mind and really don't know what to do.
by nataliebrumpton 20th Oct 2008, 8:55am
my son is 3 and appears to find soiling his pants funny. He had 4 'accidents' in 1.5 hours today. he will only go to toilet if prompted and then reluctantly. we sometimes race each other to the toilet - this sometimes works as he always wins. he just does not seem interested. he is my second child, the first boy was not easy to potty train but nothing like this. He has had some changes - mummy stopping full time work, leaving childminder, I wonder if this could be it
by JLBarnes 7th Oct 2008, 9:31am
it looks like alot of us are in the same situations. i've asked alot of my relatives but they just dont seem to have good advice my daughter is now 3.5 years old when i put her on the toilet she just crys and i am just getting so fusterated as she was to start pre school at the beggining of this month and she cant because she needs to be fully potty trained so if any of you came across some great tips for the hard to train please share you info
by canttrain 24th Sep 2008, 9:41am
Can anyone please help me. My daughter is 3 next month and she has control for up to 6hours and even waking up during the night wanting a new nappy cause the other one is wet. BUt she will not go in the potty or toilet. She just wants nappy to go. I won't put them on her so she puts it on herself and when she has done her business she takes it off again. I really don't know what to do she is starting playschool next week but thankfully she can go in pull ups but its still not my answer.
by megbea 28th Aug 2008, 5:20pm
can any 1 help my boy is now 3 and startin pre school soon and it hit and miss with himm on the loo has any 1 any ideas as dont want to force it to much and make it a chore and make him hate it
by seaqueen 27th Aug 2008, 9:22am
My daughter is 29 months old and we decided to try the 'nappy off completely' method. We are now 3 days in and don't seem to be getting anywere. We have a star chart and the promise of treats and although she has managed to pee in the potty a few times I think it was more luck than management and she now refuses to be placed on the potty once she has started weeing. Should we persevere or give up and start again later?
by sarahains 18th Aug 2008, 9:15am
I have a 3 year old boy, who took a long time potty training. Eventually got there but is now wetting and pooing in his pants especially at nursery. He will not ask to go. Is this normal???!!!! Its driving me mad!!
by em6 15th Apr 2008, 8:45am
children are very good at knowing their own bodies. my youngest baby has started potty training on the toilet from the ages of 14 months. she still wets her nappy but is now able to tell me when she has wet. we set her three times a day during her washing and eating routine to start with and now I just ask from time to time if she needs to go. she is quite happy to put her seat on the toilet and sit. sometimes she goes and sometimes she justs gets off again without going but the most important thing she knows is that we always praise her. she always follows us when we go to the toilet. soon we will put pants on her when the weather gets warmer and we wil then introduce a more rigid training schedule with her to try and illiminate the nappies. we will be guided by her and there is no time limit to the process.no pressure makes for a happy child.
by honeymum 4th Apr 2008, 8:40am
HI - I have the same problem as MrsHelliwell - My little girl has been dry for weeks for nearly a yer but won't poo in a potty - ive tried sticker charts and presents and singing and reading stories but to no avail - she would rather hold it in for days rather than poo on the toilet - any ideas - thanks
by katybram 6th Mar 2008, 9:09am
Has anyone got any tips?? My daughter is 2.5yrs old, she has been dry in the day, apart from the odd accident, since november/december 2007. This past 2 weeks she has started wetting continually during the day, yesterday she even removed her nappy & then stood there and announced she was weeing her knickers! is it just a phase? Are there any other parents out there experiencing this, it is very frustrating. We have tried stopping her having things but that doesn't bother her, she thinks its funny to do it. She hasn't recently changed rooms at nursery or had any trauma or change in her life so we cannot think why she has started this. Any thoughts would be greatly appreciated
by JanetG 5th Mar 2008, 8:45am
My little girl will do wee on the toilet but when it comes to number 2's she will hold on to it until she has her nappy on. I have tried different methods for her to do number 2's on the toilet but she will not do it. I don't really want to going back to puting a nappy on her as we have come so far.
by mrshelliwell 23rd Jan 2008, 9:13am
hi my son is 2 and a half, he uses the potty all the time without a problem but only if he has no clothes on. he will run about the house with nothing on his bottom and use the potty or toilet but as soon as i put clothes or just pants on him he dont tell me he does it first then tells me. he has been at this stage for about 6 months now can anyone help
by ethanryan 25th Oct 2007, 8:35am
my child is 3yrs now but im not sure how to potty train him at bedtime rather than put on a pull up
by VIV13 31st Aug 2007, 8:41am
hi,could anyone tell me if i should keep on potty training if i have started.I am a 1st time mum and my daughter is 19months old she recently had been telling me when she was wet so i have started. I have been doing it now for 4 days but she is crying sometimes when i put her on the potty and will not p/p in it. What shall i do?
by popeye 31st Aug 2007, 8:29am
my daughter is 3 in january , she does all her wees in the toilet but still poos in her knickers , i have tried different things but nothing seems to work , help! what can i do , any ideas would be greatly appreciated
by niccster 22nd Aug 2007, 8:38am
if possible let your baby play (on a changing mat) on the floor without a nappy on that way they begin to realise that the feeling they get when they need a wee they also get wet! then as soon as they or you think they are old enough take their nappy off to run around again they get wet but introduce the potty when you see them starting to wee stick them on the potty. I never once used training pants for my eldest two and as a childminder i dont advise mothers to use them as they use them like nappies. my eldest two children were out of nappies by the time they were two and two 1/2yrs and i have started to do the same with my baby.
by AskBaby8355 1st May 2007, 8:50am

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