tottpy rintiang

I don’t know if you’ve seen a certain Pamper’s commercial where a mom is reading a book to her child about potty training, but the letters on the book are all scrambled to show that it’s like a foreign language to the kid. Hence the name of this post. Only in my case, I am the one who is thoroughly confused and frustrated. Because I’ve never been good with foreign languages.

My 2 year old used to use the potty – he would ask for it. Now, all of a sudden, he refuses to use the potty. It results in kicking and screaming and “no, mommy, no!” when I try to get him to just sit on the thing. And we are using small pottys, it’s not like he’s going to fall in the big toilet.

I’m a firm believer that there are certain things you cannot force a child to do. You cannot force a child to eat. You cannot force a child to sleep. And you cannot force a child to put his bodily waste in an acceptable receptacle. All you can do is provide the proper environment for these things to occur. You offer a wide variety of foods. You create a bedtime routine. You provide nice pottys, stickers, rewards, praise, and some amount of “you really need to tell mommy when you need to use the potty” after you’ve changed the third dirty diaper of the morning on a child that is capable of doing it in the potty.

Parents who read this blog – do you have any advice? I’m at my edge of sanity with this one. He’s four months shy of being three years old. Please comment below (no emails) – everyone should get the benefit of advice on what I hope is a common predicament.

9 thoughts on “tottpy rintiang

  1. I dunno….reverse psychology? My daughter went through the same exact pattern. I think we just dropped it for a while, thinking maybe she was just trying to assert her independence by refusing to do something that we so clearly wanted.

    After a few weeks, she peed on the potty. But I can’t say it was a direct effect of what we did.


  2. Oh boy. I don’t have a lot of advice, but I do have a lot of stories. Look at it this way. Children are really helpless and dependent on their parents. Toilet use is the first thing the CHILD really controls. That is the essence of why it can be so hard. Both of my children resisted. With my daughter, we followed all the rules about waiting until she was ready and well into her twos. She wanted to be a big girl and wear big girl underpants. All was fine for the first week. Then she said she wanted her diaper back. We said, “You are a big girl now.” She said, “I want to be a little girl.” We said no, once a big girl always a big girl. She eventually settled down, then started having “accidents” again (at age 4!) when her brother was born. She explained that this was necessary so that we would see what a mistake it was to have her brother. My son was not quite as articulate about the whole thing, but also got trained and untrained a few times. Short answer: it ain’t easy. And, you are not alone.


  3. Some kids, especially boys, aren’t really ready until they’re three. In your case, though, it sounds like a power struggle. I would drop it entirely for a while, and then see if he shows any interest on his own. I know having two kids in diapers really sucks, but it’ll only be a few more months of it.

    If he doesn’t show any interest, you might try bribing him with candy (worked with my kids, but some people have strong feelings against it).


  4. I used an egg timer to potty train my oldest son. This was great for two reasons: (1) it became a game for him and (2) it was a helpful reminder for me. I started by setting it every 30 minutes then extended it as time went on. Oldest was trained in one week.

    Youngest, however, didn’t buy the whole timer thing. He was almost 4.5 when we used “big boy pants” exclusively. Each child is different and what may work for one may not have the same effect on the other!

    As olderwoman said, it’s definitely not easy! Good luck with your little one!


  5. This is a tough topic, but rest assured it’s a universal frustration for parents! Do you have “Once Upon a Potty?” Our oldest loved that book, and we read it to her every night while we were potty training her. I wouldn’t say that there was necessarily any “cause-effect” relationship between her reading the book and being potty trained, but it definitely helped to have an opportunity every night to talk to her about using the potty and to have her be able do identify that when she did go she was doing it “just like Prudence!”

    Good luck!

    P.S. You’re right on about the “not forcing it” thing. And as others have pointed out, it does not seem uncommon for boys to take longer (sometimes upwards of 3) to get the hang of using the potty.


  6. thanks everyone for your advice and suggestions. i will get some more potty training books for him – we have one, but it makes the sound of the toilet flushing and that’s all he wants to do. i also like the idea of the timer – we might try that out too. thanks for letting me know that i’m not the only one trying to figure this out 🙂


  7. we used the timer, books, etc. Junior is now trained at home but holds it at school and she is currently back-tracking. She loves the book Everybody Poops — Once Upon a Potty also has a video (one for girls and one for boys). After struggling for two weeks, one day she watched the video and trained herself. We also bribed her with M&Ms.


  8. My son was adamantly anti-potty, and we didn’t force it. Then, at his 3 year well check, the pediatrician said it was time to start training whether he was interested or not. He didn’t respond to any of the usual strategies. He is the type of child who doesn’t want to try anything unless until he’s sure he can do it well. What ended up working for him was finding something he really, really wanted. Not what we offered, but something he decided he wanted for himself. It was Thomas’s Roundhouse. So we told him only big kids who are potty trained get to have a Roundhouse. And what do you know, he was trained within two days. For him, I think he just needed the push of wanting something so badly that it was worth risking failure. And because he had been ready for awhile just unwilling to try, he succeeded right away. Even now, he’ll play trains and say, “I got the Roundhouse for doing a great job potty training!” Every child is different, so who knows what yours will respond to. But hang in there. This is a challenge for just about everyone and sometimes it just helps to know you’re not alone.


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