My daughter is 3 years and 2 months old and is being trained for the potty but is showing signs of resistance. She is in nursery school. We send her in pull-ups. In case she has an accident they have a change of clothes but my husband and I work full time and can't run back and forth during the day to bring extra clothes.

At home, we keep her in underpants and have her use the potty. Sometimes she's good and runs to the potty in time or realizes she has to go... other times, she's too busy playing and if we forget to ask her every so often, she'll have an accident.

At school, she seems to go in her pull ups and I think she sees it as a safety blanket; as if it's a diaper and what is the point in her using the potty...

Any advice? I feel like we take one step forward and one step back every day... Should I send her to school in underpants and just let her have accidents? Is it too soon? Is she not ready? Part of me thinks it's just laziness and she doesn't want to stop playing long enough to stop and use the potty... she'd rather just pee in her pull ups.

asked 28 Sep '09, 17:04

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edited 28 Sep '09, 23:29

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Scott ♦♦

Why don't you speak to the nursery about the situation and see what they say about your little one, she may well be behaving differently in the nursery enviroment and if so you could take steps to stop using the pull ups.

Alot depends on how they approach the situation too. Our daughter didn't become ready overnight, but it was a combined effort both at home and at the nursery that helped during that period. My husband and I were also both working full time, so the teachers in the nursery were more involved during the day, by 2 and a half they were only making her wear a diaper during nap time incase of an accident, we were doing the same at home, and suprisingly not that many accidents.

I think that summmer months are easier for continuous potty training because they are wearing less clothing and are able to remove it much easier, than in the colder months when they tend to be more covered up.

I believe a few accidents will not hurt, they will just remind her that she needs to communicate her toilet needs. If you all adopt the same approach for a couple of weeks ( you, your husband, the teachers in the nursery school) and frequently enquire whether she needs the toilet, then you may get a quicker result.


answered 28 Sep '09, 17:55

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According to the parenting "Goddess" (whose reference we can't put a finger on at the moment), putting her in pull-ups some of the time and underpants the rest of the time will confuse her.

We did have a number of puddles around the house the for first week (but this decreased over time), but both of ours learned surprisingly quickly (although it didn't seem like it at the time).

After discussing the situation with the nurseries involved, we sent a number of changes of clothes in a bag in case of accidents.


answered 28 Sep '09, 22:03

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edited 28 Sep '09, 23:30

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Scott ♦♦

Our daughter was about the same age as yours when we finally got her potty trained. We got her done just in time to start nursery. We had had several false starts before. That was maybe a month ago now...

She knew what to do. She just didn't want to do it, and hadn't yet figured out the link between feeling full and having an accident.

The problem was that having an accident while wearing a nappy (or pull-ups) had no consequences.

She still has nappies overnight, and thinks nothing of having a wee in them.

The good news is that during the day, when out of nappies, she has no accidents to speak of. She knows the difference, and chopping and changing hasn't confused her.

For a short while she was in nappies outside the house but knickers inside.

There were three parts to the trick. The first was to wait until she was ready. The second was to make sure there were consequences to not making it to the potty or toilet. The third was to reward her (with stickers) when she made it.

The stickers were only needed for two weeks. By the end of that time, she was dry.

We're summoning up the courage to leave the pull-ups off overnight now!


answered 29 Sep '09, 23:53

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Bill Michell
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I don't think she's too old to not be fully potty trained. But that point will be here before you know it so you're right to be thinking about it now. I had a daughter who exhibited the laziness that you described but she grew out of it without our intervention (though I guess "she grew out of it" might be helpful). I would definitely continue working with her when you're home and let her have accidents--she'll get used to going by herself eventually.


answered 28 Sep '09, 17:37

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Potty training is a tricky subject because every child is different. One of my 5 year olds still wears pull-ups to bed at night, the other potty trained at the same time but never had troubles, and a 4 year old who potty trained herself at 18 months and had no further difficulties.

(28 Sep '09, 23:56) bbrown

I think if she has an accident at the nursery it might help. She might feel like some of the other kids are bigger than her and can do it better than her. That might make her want to try harder. My daughter (3 1/2) treats pullups just like diapers.


answered 29 Sep '09, 23:22

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Mommy trial and error
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I was also a bit worried about the preschool teachers' preferences when my daughter started there and wasn't %100 trained (she was almost 4 - occasional accidents with #1, rarely on potty with #2 - we were a bit distressed about this). The preschool was actually very accommodating, assured me that several of the children were in a similar situation, and asked that I just bring a few changes of clothing and they would be happy to change her.

She actually adapted quite well and rarely had an accident. Although we may dread peer pressure in some respects, it can actually really give children a boost with their potty training, speech and language skills, eating habits, etc. as they want to be like the other big kids!

Try not to worry - they'll get there! As children pick up on their parents' anxiety, they may become concerned/self-conscious and this may hinder them in their attempts to master toilet training.


answered 03 Oct '09, 19:51

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Mandy 1
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My kid got around to using the potty full time as soon as she got to the nursery - at 2 years and 3 months. But long before that she she was already making number 2 into the potty and not in the diaper. It took mostly our persistence to seat her onto the potty as soon as we knew what was going on... And I guess that pooping into the diaper was not that much fun either for her - she did not like to change (and still does not like it). In general I'd agree that she should have same standard at home and at nursery - think about how you would feel if you were to pie differently at work and at home ;)


answered 03 Oct '09, 20:29

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Bartosz Radaczyński
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Asked: 28 Sep '09, 17:04

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Last updated: 03 Oct '09, 20:29