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To consider giving up on potty training my three year old for now?

(16 Posts)
chocolatesolveseverything Sun 16-Oct-16 14:38:39

DS turned three over the summer. He has always preferred to be in nappies at all times (no running around naked for this child!) and has never given any indication that he knows when he has done a wee or poo, or wants one.

I've always said I wanted to wait until he's ready, but time is getting on, and DH has kept making comments, so I suggested that we try this half term when we'll be at home a bit more than usual.

The good news is that for the first time, he has consented to go nappyless, and seems quite happy in pants. The bad news is he seems to have no idea when he wants a wee or poo, and often, even whether he's wet himself full stop. Yesterday evening he wet himself about 6-7 times within a single hour and whilst naked I could see he was oblivious to the wee coming out until I pointed his attention to it. Then he stared at it with a sort of "Oh really?" expression. This morning I could smell something and I had to practically drag him to the bathroom as he declared he definitely didn't need the toilet, despite - of course- having filled his pants with a huge poo. Twice today so far we've sat him on the toilet for 20 minutes with no result, then he peed himself again less than ten minutes later...

I don't think he's being naughty or obstinate. He's a child who wants to please us, and he knows he'll get a sticker each time he manages it. But I genuinely don't think he understands his bladder or had control over it yet. Some friends are suggesting therefore that we should give up for the moment. But DH is stressing the importance of getting him training before going to nursery school next August. (Yes, I know that's ages away, but he keeps on mentioning it.)

So any experienced advice out there? Am we best to keep going until he eventually gets it hopefully? Or is it best just to go back to the nappies and wait until he (hopefully!) shows more signs of being ready?

(Apologies that I accidentally double-posted this in another forum as well)

idontlikealdi Sun 16-Oct-16 14:41:18

He's not ready. Give up and try again later.

user1474320794 Sun 16-Oct-16 14:49:34

My daughter is three in January and I was feeling the same as you, other friends had toddlers months younger than mine and been dry for a while. I do think it is one of those things when they're ready there ready and if they can't control its not their fault, but I do think maybe they learn to control it with help. At the moment mine is dry when at home but the minute we go out she has accidents so we are putting nappies on to go out and bedtime. What helped me was sitting her on the potty for five mins every hour and giving her a sticker each time for sitting there, when she finally did the first wee (she was unaware) giving her chocolate buttons (which health visitor advises no sweet or chocs for rewards) but it worked she realised I wasn't giving her choc buttons when she didn't wee and kept trying.

lionsleepstonight Sun 16-Oct-16 14:53:45

I'd leave it too. Plenty of time until next Aug. Mine was a late one too, but in the end got trained in a week about 2 months before reception. The fact that he's oblivious means he's not ready yet. Try to relax about the whole thing, it will happen. I stressed about it too!

Florin Sun 16-Oct-16 14:53:47

My son was the same I went on like that for a solid month making us all thoroughly miserable. I eventually gave up (on Christmas Day!) as I just couldn't take it anymore. He was also the same not liking being bare bottomed which made it trickier. Tried again when he was 3 years 9 months! (I thought he would be going to uni in nappies!) And he got it instantly, you can't do it unless they are ready.

Afreshstartplease Sun 16-Oct-16 14:54:51

He's not ready I'd wait a while

lionsleepstonight Sun 16-Oct-16 14:56:04

Oh Yes and I bribed in the end. Sticker pack for a wee and choc buttons for a poo!

NannyR Sun 16-Oct-16 14:57:20

When he is wearing nappies, can you tell how often he is weeing? For example, does he have a dryish nappy then do a big wee every hour or so or is he doing lots of small wees much more frequently? That's one of the signs of readiness I look for when starting potty training. You said he wet himself 6-7 times in an hour, to me that doesn't sound like he's quite ready yet.

I would go back to nappies for now, but carry on with things like having the potty around and encouraging him to sit on it at bathtime and when he wakes up, letting him go to the loo with you, take him to choose some new pants that can stay in his drawer till he's ready.

Also, you could try using cheaper nappies that don't absorb so well, the problem with nappies like pampers is that they soak up the wee so quickly and efficiently that the child doesn't really have any sensation of being wet or dry.

Finally, don't worry about time constraints. If you wait till he's ready, especially with him being a bit older, he will get the hang of it pretty quickly. It's when you try to train children that are not ready that training can go on for ages with months of accidents.

Aeroflotgirl Sun 16-Oct-16 15:05:51

I thought it would take forever with ds 4.10 years, he eventually cracked after 1.3 years of potty training and was dry and clean in July. He has a dev delay, and a speech delay. I think what helped, is that he was older when he started to get it, I started timing regularly when he had to go, would clock watch, and take him every 45 mins, and sit him on the toilet for a min, then a chocolate button at the end. I got him also a potty training watch, that you set to go off every say, 40 mins, so he would automatically go to the toilet when it went off and sit on it.

Ds also started school attached nursery at 3.5 years, last year and loved making friends, I think seeing his friends using the toilet and in pants spurred him on. As we all used to go to the park after nursery, and a few of his friends used to al fresco wee, he wanted to copy them. So it finally fell into place at just over 4 years.

JosephineMaynard Sun 16-Oct-16 15:11:40

He doesn't sound ready.

DS2 has recently turned 3, we started potty training at about the same time, and it's been going well - but there's some key differences between DS2 and what you describe.

DS2 was aware of wees / poos happening before we started potty training, and would be able to tell us when something was happening, or had just happened.

DS2 was capable of being dry for several hours at a time, we could tell this from looking at his nappies (and from the time I was following a half naked DS2 around with a sample pot for hours when the GP wanted a wee sample).

Once we started potty training, he got the basic idea very quickly - there have been accidents, but after the first day or two, the majority of these have been when he's making his way to the potty and hasn't been quite fast enough, or when he's not positioned himself correctly and accidentally pointed the flow of wee out of the potty / toilet rather than towards the bottom of the potty / toilet. Even when he was having lots of accidents the first day or two, he was aware they were happening and telling us that he was having, or had just had, a wee on the floor.

So if you've been trying for a few days and there's no progress, I'd personally put him back into nappies and try again in a month or two.

Cerseilannisterinthesnow Sun 16-Oct-16 17:00:33

Ds is 3 next month and I trained him in august. My friend suggested giving it 3 days if he wasn't getting it by then to shelve it.

For the first 2 days he was like your Ds just seeing everywhere doing nothing on potty, oblivious when he was wet etc. On the 3rd day I just let him run about bottom half naked and just as I was about to give up he seemed to suddenly get it, doing wees on the potty and even poos! He liked to help empty the potty too.

After a few days of no pants I put pants back on him and has been fine since still has odd accidents but other than that it's been fine

Usernameinvalid16 Sun 16-Oct-16 18:17:23

I just potty trained my dd. I found that when we started and i put pants on her she would just pee and poo in them as if she was wearing a nappy. So i left her to run around with nothing on for 3 days (with the potty in the room) she could pop on and off whenever she wanted (sometimes she wouldn't do anything)
It started to become really obvious that she was holding in a pee (jumping around, crossing legs etc..)
Once she got used to using the potty i put pants on her then we quite quickly progressed to leggings and she has been fine since. She has had a few accidents because she hasn't quite got her bottoms down in time but thats ok.

I didn't even think she was ready but she's surprised me at how quickly she's learned.

TruJay Sun 16-Oct-16 19:24:41

DD is 3 next month and I've tried a little bit of training, she can be nappy less with no accident for up to two hours but won't use the potty and will just pee as soon as a nappy goes back on or on the carpet.

She has speech delay so it is so difficult as she cannot tell me she needs the toilet and I have no idea how to toilet train a child that cannot talk and struggles with basic communication. DS was a dream and dry and in undies before 2.

I'm not rushing DD, to be honest we're focussing on getting her talking and communicating first as I feel that's more important. I'd like her to be dry by 3.5 and definitely by 4, I will give it a good try next spring/summer when hopefully she will have learned more speech.

I'd relax with the training for now and then start again when you he shows signs of readiness. Good luck.

dontpokethebear Sun 16-Oct-16 19:39:37

Urghh potty training is so stressful! I don't really have any helpful advice, but three of my mum friends struggled to potty train their dcs around age 3. When they did succeed (all over 3.6 by this time,I think) I think it was probably because the dcs were that much older and they understood the process better, it was pretty much an over night success. The odd accident here or there, but otherwise dry.

Tiredtomybones Sun 16-Oct-16 19:55:27

Give up and wait a while. A friend of ours started at 2.6, child is still having accidents at 3.6 so a full year later and won't say he needs the toilet. I waited until DS was 2.11 and seemed ready and he was dry in a week. You could try giving a sticker if he can tell you when he's done something in his nappy then move on to telling you he's doing it and then to telling you he's going to do it and then try potty training again.

chocolatesolveseverything Sun 16-Oct-16 21:42:08

Thanks so much for the advice. It has really helped. We chatted with DS and asked if he wanted to carry on wearing pants or go back to nappies for a little while. He chose the latter, so we've gone with that and will instead work on our daily routine to get more nappy-off, potty-out opportunities in there. FX in a few months all will be different!

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