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4 months into potty training and still 'accidents'

(16 Posts)
RolyPolierThanThou Sun 28-Jun-15 11:09:20

DS turns three in two months. We started potty training when he was about two and a half and it took about a week to get him to learn how to wee on cue (as in, sit on the potty and produce a wee in under 30 seconds) and to be able to hold it for two hours or so.

We thought we'd cracked it, but he always needed to be told to use the potty. Occasionally he'd take himself but mostly it was prompted by us.

So now, four months on and his potty training is driving us (well, more DH is who is the SAHP) to distraction. We have to nag, persuade, order and cajole DS to use the potty and get a LOT of resistance. He's very oppositional at the moment anyway (about all sorts of things - normal for a three year old, I guess) and it's SUCH a battle. I thought we should just leave him to it and let him decide when he needs a wee and see if he just resents the nagging. He does sometimes go by himself (poos are more reliable for that though) but only occasionally.

This weekend he's weed on the living room carpet, on a dining chair, on the kitchen floor. Out of about 8 wees, only 2 went in the potty. The low was yesterday, shortly before dinner time when we discovered a large wet turd on the dining room floor. It definitely wasn't mine. DS seemed unconcerned at what he'd done.

DH is despairing and wants to put him back into nappies. I think we should not go back and stick with the pants. We went through a really good phase where we were seeing zero accidents, he'd go and visit the potty either by his own initiative or go straight there if we suggested it. And he'd come back from nursery in the same pants we'd sent him in and we were full of praise that he had kept his pants dry all day long.

And now, we're sick of the battle to get him to sit on the potty and sick of the accidents.

update: DS has just done a poo in the potty, unprompted. So he does know what to do. But getting him to wee on the potty this morning took about 20 minutes of persuading.

Is this normal or am I flogging a dead horse, here?

RolyPolierThanThou Sun 28-Jun-15 20:32:41


MyNameIsButterfly Tue 30-Jun-15 01:46:13

got no advice but it sounds like my dd. I'm going to see a health visitor about it this friday. I'll let you know what they recommend

RolyPolierThanThou Tue 30-Jun-15 07:33:57

Thank you. I am so envious of people who claim theirs were dry in three days.

And you posted at almost 2am! Insomnia?

RoganJosh Tue 30-Jun-15 07:38:22

Ours was looking like this at six weeks. He's a bit better the last few days, but who know if that'll last.
I have noticed that he's better when he's drinking a lot. I think the signs of needing to go are clearer. I tried to get him to drink more and I stopped putting him only the potty, only asked him sporadically if he needed to go. I am also VERY pleased when he takes himself off to the potty. Full on dance and song pleased.
Are any of those things that you could introduce or are you doing them all already?

MyNameIsButterfly Tue 30-Jun-15 20:33:42

hehe, was just feeding dd2 who decided to have a mega long night feed sad

odyssey2001 Sat 11-Jul-15 10:53:10

18 months on and DS is still not consistently dry. In fact we have had to go back into pull ups after a disastrous few days. We are almost at the end of our tether.

frankietwospots Tue 14-Jul-15 11:38:26

What reward system to you have in place? What motivates him? Definitely do not go back to nappies. That would be such a backward step after all the good work you have done. You know he is capable of it. My DS is 3.5 yrs old and still has the odd accident. Boys will be boys!

flamingtoaster Tue 14-Jul-15 11:51:18

Personally (and lots of people will disagree) I would put him into pull-ups so he can choose to use the potty or not and accidents aren't an issue. I didn't "potty train" - I explained about the potty and offered pants and potty or nappy at intervals from about two and a half allowing both DS and DD to choose when they would try. They were both over three when they did. They each had one accident and that was it. They could also go for much longer between visits to the potty than friends who were "trained" to empty their bladders at regular intervals rather than when it was full. You can lead a child to the potty but you cannot make it pee - they will do it when they, and their bladder, are ready. Remove the stress from everybody for a while.

stinkingbishop Tue 14-Jul-15 11:57:15

I salute you flamingtoaster

nottheOP Tue 14-Jul-15 11:59:39

I wouldn't go back - it sounds like more of an issue over his behaviour than his ability to hold it. In that sense, they're not really accidents.

I wouldn't ask him if he needs to go. I'd go back a step, every 30/45/60 minutes, take him to the bathroom and announce that it's time for the potty. If he says 'no' give 2 options - do you want the potty or the toilet? Only negotiate that far.

If he still says no, maybe bribery.

I found that the giving of two options which only have the right outcome was a good technique generally for the 'no' phase. I do it with outfits for the day, food options etc. Too many options aren't good but two seems to fool them into thinking they're making the choice.


PosterEh Tue 14-Jul-15 12:07:15

Dd took nearly a year sad to stop having regular wee accidents and a further two months with poos. It's not uncommon to have a regression at 3 ish and I know kids who trained quickly to start having accidents again at that point. It seems to have clicked properly again now at 3.5 and she hasn't had any accidents at all for a while. We just persevered with it because we'd had such a promising start, and then I felt like we'd committed too much to go back, but I'm not sure it was the right thing to do!

PosterEh Tue 14-Jul-15 12:09:50

I found that I did better with the potty/toilet resistance than DH because I didn't ask, I told. Ie I'd say "it's toilet time now" whereas he'd say "do you want to use the toilet".

MrsMarigold Tue 14-Jul-15 12:10:56

My DS just four took ages they will do it when they are ready and each child is different. He managed fine for the three hours at nursery if I took him t the loo as soon as we got there and then as soon as he came home. My DD (15 months younger than my DS) was potty trained before her brother. I think DS was a bit lazy and not bothered about being wet - in the end I said the Easter bunny would not come if he had accidents - there have been none since. And people who recommend chocolate buttons as incentives - well I should've taken out shares in cadbury's when I was potty training him. DD announced in John Lewis that she wanted pants we bought her some - she has never looked back since and is now dry at night too.

MrsMarigold Tue 14-Jul-15 12:13:06

Also I find joggers or soft jersey elasticated waist shorts make it much less stressful as they are easy to get on and off. Although that said DD managed with tights but she is very fastidious.

kaffkooks Mon 20-Jul-15 19:51:24

I'm in exactly the same situation with my DS who is 2 yrs 9 months. He knows when he needs to go but is far too busy to go to the potty. We have resorted to bribery. He gets a few raisins every time a wee goes in the potty. There are also certain times when he has to sit on the potty: when he gets up, before a meal, before we go out and before bed. If he refuses then we just take him anyway. I've given up asking because the answer is always no and the more I ask the more vociferous NO becomes! If wet pants aren't an issue ie when we're at home, then I just leave him to it. He's not going back in nappies because that will just reinforce "I'm to busy to go to the potty so I'll just pee here!"

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