XP: Potty training. At what point do I give up and try again in a few months? — The Bump
Toddlers: 24 Months+

XP: Potty training. At what point do I give up and try again in a few months?

We have been at this for about 1.5 weeks and I'm ready to say uncle.  She can pee and poop on the potty IF I catch her at the right time and make her sit.  We even had 2 days straight of NO accidents, including several trips out and about for 2+ hours.  And then today between wake-up and lunch time, she peed on the potty (once, when she woke up and I told her it was time to go to the potty), then pooped in her panties, then peed twice in her panties, the second time only like 10 minutes after the first time.  And when she does this, she just keeps on playing.  She doesn't come get me, she doesn't complain, she doesn't tell me she needs new pants, she just keeps playing.

I really hate for the progress we've made this past 1.5 weeks to go to waste, but I feel like it's not going anywhere.  She's stubborn as a mule with EVERYTHING. But the fact that she doesn't seem to get upset when she poops or pees in her panties is concerning me.  I'm also worried because we are going to Disney at the end of September and if it's still like THIS when we go, it will be a disaster.  She will be 3 in November.  Opinions?
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Re: XP: Potty training. At what point do I give up and try again in a few months?

  • Is she the kind of kid who would be motivated by treats (mini-m&ms are great) or stickers? It sounds like she might not be ready, but I would try some kind of reward system before giving up (like every 10 Stickers she gets ar new book or small toy or hair clip or whatever excites her).

    If you do back off, you could try keeping potty time as part of pre-nap and bedtime routine, to help her more slowly develop the habit of using the potty.


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  • Honestly, if it were my child I would reluctantly throw in the towel and start again after Disney. My oldest was ready at two when we trained her and it was relatively easy, DS was not. It was exhausting because we couldn't take our eyes off him the first time around and rewards were zero help. We put off potty training for a few months and he did better than he ever did the first time, right from the start. I was worried that all the work would be lost as well, but at least in our experience it wasn't.

    I would keep the potty out and maybe ask your LO would like to use it before bed or whatever, but not push it. Give everyone a break and a chance to mentally regroup.
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  • Is she ever going to the potty on her own when she needs to go?  Or is it just when you take her due to a wake up, leaving the house, catching her, etc?  Because if after 1.5 she isn't going on her own at all and she is happily sitting in her own mess I'd say she she's not ready.  I know it's frustrating to go backwards but having a child that pees on the potty only because you physically put them there is not really potty trained.  

    I'd go back to diapers until after Disney.  For the next few weeks keep her potty out and give her praise for choosing to use it on her own.  Then try again after you've been home a week or two and she's back in her routine.  
  • I agree with PP about trying the naked approach. Undies feel too much like diapers. If she's naked, she may have fewer accidents. Good luck, and if she's not ready by Disney time, just go back to diapers for your vacation. :)
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  • I'm having a terrible time deciding between this: 
    ashiscute said:
    Is she ever going to the potty on her own when she needs to go?  Or is it just when you take her due to a wake up, leaving the house, catching her, etc?  Because if after 1.5 she isn't going on her own at all and she is happily sitting in her own mess I'd say she she's not ready.  I know it's frustrating to go backwards but having a child that pees on the potty only because you physically put them there is not really potty trained.  

    I'd go back to diapers until after Disney.  For the next few weeks keep her potty out and give her praise for choosing to use it on her own.  Then try again after you've been home a week or two and she's back in her routine.  
    and this:

    I would stop using panties. Go naked again for a day or two until she figures it out. Make her help you clean up all pee messes. I wouldn't go back to diapers unless you are really just done and need a break, but you are already past the easier ages of potty training and it sounds like you are dealing with a behavior issue - not an "I'm not ready" issue. 

    I recommend reading "Oh Crap, Potty Training" for any suggestions she has of how to deal with a reluctant child.  If she doesn't care about wetting her panties, maybe if it drips down her leg in loose shorts, it will bother her more. 

    :-(

    I have noticed progress after the past week and a half, whereas she was peeing in small squirts as she sat on the potty, and now she's peeing in a steady stream.  I really think it's a behavior issue, not a physical one.  My older daughter was so much easier to train, but my little one has taken longer with everything - crawled later, walked much later, when we took away the paci my older daughter cried for 5-6 days, it took my little one over a month :-(  She gives me a hard time going to sleep, lays in bed awake for an hour or sometimes more, and then in the morning doesn't want to get out of bed.  She's just more stubborn all around.  My husband doesn't think we should throw in the towel.  DD flip-flops between telling me she wants to wear diapers, and telling me she doesn't and doesn't even want to wear pull-ups/diapers for sleep (which is the only time I've been taking her out of panties).  I feel like if it had been 3 days or so, it might be better to give up and try again, but since it's been over a week I feel like she really understands but just is resisting.  

    She even peed in the bathroom at Target the other day!  All her accidents are happening at home.  I think she doesn't want to stop playing.  My only concern is that she doesn't cry or get upset and come tell me when she wets herself.
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  • @Pelusa214‌ Do you have a potty that you can keep very near her when she is playing? You could make naked time an optional thing and take a relaxed approach. What we did with DS was at his first morning diaper change, ask if he wanted a new diaper or to be naked. He loves being naked now and chose that. So I would remind him that when he needed to use the potty, his potty was right there.

    We also watch the Daniel Tiger about going potty. It covers stopping playing and going to the potty so that you don't have an accident. It's great; "If you have to go potty, stop and go right away. Flush and wash and be on your way!" :)
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  • Pelusa214 said:
    I'm having a terrible time deciding between this: 
    ashiscute said:
    Is she ever going to the potty on her own when she needs to go?  Or is it just when you take her due to a wake up, leaving the house, catching her, etc?  Because if after 1.5 she isn't going on her own at all and she is happily sitting in her own mess I'd say she she's not ready.  I know it's frustrating to go backwards but having a child that pees on the potty only because you physically put them there is not really potty trained.  

    I'd go back to diapers until after Disney.  For the next few weeks keep her potty out and give her praise for choosing to use it on her own.  Then try again after you've been home a week or two and she's back in her routine.  
    and this:

    I would stop using panties. Go naked again for a day or two until she figures it out. Make her help you clean up all pee messes. I wouldn't go back to diapers unless you are really just done and need a break, but you are already past the easier ages of potty training and it sounds like you are dealing with a behavior issue - not an "I'm not ready" issue. 

    I recommend reading "Oh Crap, Potty Training" for any suggestions she has of how to deal with a reluctant child.  If she doesn't care about wetting her panties, maybe if it drips down her leg in loose shorts, it will bother her more. 

    :-(

    I have noticed progress after the past week and a half, whereas she was peeing in small squirts as she sat on the potty, and now she's peeing in a steady stream.  I really think it's a behavior issue, not a physical one.  My older daughter was so much easier to train, but my little one has taken longer with everything - crawled later, walked much later, when we took away the paci my older daughter cried for 5-6 days, it took my little one over a month :-(  She gives me a hard time going to sleep, lays in bed awake for an hour or sometimes more, and then in the morning doesn't want to get out of bed.  She's just more stubborn all around.  My husband doesn't think we should throw in the towel.  DD flip-flops between telling me she wants to wear diapers, and telling me she doesn't and doesn't even want to wear pull-ups/diapers for sleep (which is the only time I've been taking her out of panties).  I feel like if it had been 3 days or so, it might be better to give up and try again, but since it's been over a week I feel like she really understands but just is resisting.  

    She even peed in the bathroom at Target the other day!  All her accidents are happening at home.  I think she doesn't want to stop playing.  My only concern is that she doesn't cry or get upset and come tell me when she wets herself.
    It doesn't have to be a physical "not ready" issue to mean she's not ready.  If she doesn't mind sitting in her own pee or poop the motivation to use the potty isn't there yet.  You can give it a few days and she if she makes or doesn't make more progress but from the way I've read your post it sounds like her successes are based on your prompting and not on her own actions.  I could be wrong.  

    Also, I never left DD naked for potty training  We just did underwear and I don't think it increased her chances of accidents.  
    Cherryblossoms07blu-eyedwife
  • but you are already past the easier ages of potty training and it sounds like you are dealing with a behavior issue - not an "I'm not ready" issue. 

    I'm not quite sure what this means.  Anecdotal, but I think aging makes potty training easier, not harder.  Of all our friends, my son has been the easiest to potty train - because I didn't train him, I just waited.  All our friends who started training their kids at 2 had massive hurdles and difficulties.  All the kids are now 3 and nearly 3 and some of them still aren't completely potty trained.  (won't poop in the potty, still wet the bed at night, still have accidents). 

    Instead of "training" my son, we waited for him to be ready.  He decided he wanted to poop in the potty on his own.  He started waking us up at night because he had to pee.  He decided he wanted to wear underwear and pee in the potty.  He was never naked. I didn't follow any books.  I never gave him any treats for going. We don't have to have a potty anywhere near him, he goes to the bathroom himself or gets one of us every time he has to go.  He has had one accident.  When they're "ready" no matter what age, it's really easy.  They train themselves. 

    I would let her decide what she wants to do.  You says she's stubborn, so let her feel like she has control.  If she wants to wear diapers, let her wear diapers.  If she wants to wear underwear, remind her that means she needs to use the potty.  When it becomes something she wants, her stubborness will work to your advantage.
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  • Why rush it? I wouldnt want the stress on vacation. But thats me. I had way more success waiting till my now 5 year old was ready to do stuff. doing the same with my 2 1/2 year old.
    ashiscuteblu-eyedwife
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