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How can I get my 3 yr old on the potty w/o traumatizing him?

He's seen DH and other DS do it, helped pick out underwear, has his own potty chair, doesn't seem afraid of the regular toilet, yet he freaks if I try to put underwear on him or sit him on the pot. Literally sits on the floor and bawls so I can't put them on. He says he's a big boy, wants to go to school like brother some day, but no amount of reminding him of that, or bribes :-), seems to work. Wears pull-ups, but treats them like diapers. I don't want to force, but is he just being stubborn? He will be four in August....

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Asked by arpkdmom at 5:44 PM on Mar. 24, 2011 in Preschoolers (3-4)

Level 7 (200 Credits)
Answers (8)
  • Throw out the pull ups, be the parent and put underwear on him. He'll get over it.

    Answer by ObbyDobbie at 5:51 PM on Mar. 24, 2011

  • I dont know if this will help but when I was little my dad wrapped a bunch of, "treats", in tissue paper and I received a "prize" for each time I would go potty. I remember that to this day! Just anything small and thought of as a treat. Hope this helps.

    Answer by beyondhopes at 5:55 PM on Mar. 24, 2011

  • I agree with Obby...try the 3 Day Potty Training method.

    Answer by Syphon at 6:01 PM on Mar. 24, 2011

  • It seems mean I know but just put his underwear on him. Pullups IMHO don't work. They are diapers. Sure they are great for us but I think they just confuse the kid.

    Answer by reaandiziesmama at 8:30 PM on Mar. 24, 2011

  • i think forcing him is what's traumatizing him. I have ALWAYS heard that they will do it when ready. I don't know why people put such a set time on everything. My daughter is 2 1/2 potties in her potty every night before her bath. She stopped for a couple weeks then started again...stop stressing and if he's that scared, then there's NO need to push it.

    Answer by calliesmommie at 8:32 PM on Mar. 24, 2011

  • Try all underwear for a week, being wet and uncomfortable in them might make him want to use that potty. When you go out in public, to avoid embarrassing accidents for your LO have him put the underwear on first, the pull-up on second. This way he's not confused with the feeling, because the underwear is touching him, but if he does go he's not embarrassed because the pull-up will prevent a huge leak. Try letting him "aim" at cheerios when peeing, and don't force the plastic potty if he hates it but likes the real one. There's no rule that says a child has to use that plastic version, it's just for convenience. Give it a good week, and if there's just absolutely no progress at all then back off, wait a month, and give it another good week. Even if he has an accident 10 times a day stick with it for at least a week before giving up.

    Answer by ba13ygrl1987 at 8:39 PM on Mar. 24, 2011

  • You might try picking out one of the childs favorite toy and the only time he can play with it is when he sits on the potty.

    Answer by GrandmaT63 at 1:09 AM on Mar. 25, 2011

  • Stop buying pull-ups they are a waste of money and they are just like diapers--be consistent and keep reminding him(every half hour if needed) and praise him when he does go in the potty---my sons both learned by sitting down at first and then mastered standing later on. getting them trained to poop in the toilet takes longer then peeing.

    Good luck and God Bless

    Answer by Christmaslver68 at 9:24 PM on May. 21, 2011

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