My 3 and a half year old isn't potty trained yet: Advice?

My son is three and a half and still isn’t potty trained. He will sit on the potty and go when I put him on it but won’t say he needs to go, and when asked if he needs to go, he says no. I have split custody with his dad, which makes it hard for me to do the three-day method because I work, and my only off day with my son is Saturday. His dad is kind of trying but not really and the same with daycare. I’m worried that he isn’t potty trained yet, I see lots of kids his age or younger that are. Any advice, moms? Thank you in advance!!!


Dont worry… he will use it on his own when he is ready. He just needs to get that control feeling over his bladder first


It will happen when he is ready. I tried and tried with my son and nothing worked. One day he just decided to be a “big boy” all on his own. He was almost 4

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It would help if you, Dad and Daycare could agree to be diligent and work the same way. Common rewards and effort from all.

My older daughter didn’t fully potty train till she was almost 4 and a half. And my youngest is 2 and a half and has no interest yet. It takes a lot of time and patience. He will let you know when he is ready. I pushed to hard with my first and she regressed so bad that I had no choice but to wait till she was ready :disappointed:

Sticker chart. I bribed my kiddo with dum dums. If he peed, he got to put his favorite kind of sticker (minions) on his chart. If he pooped, he got a sticker and a sucker. He was potty trained in a week.


Every child is different. Some kids show interest and are trained earlier then others. My 3 were all trained right before the 4th birthdays because they showed very little interest and refused to use a potty chair.

Give him time and he will get it. But I agree that you, dad and daycare all need to be on the same page so he doesn’t think well if one parent does this then I don’t need to use the potty.

My oldest was just over 4. Best advice I got was he won’t graduate in diapers! I know most schools won’t let them attend if they are in diapers/pullups. He may not be ready yet, we got potty books and read them often before hand. We did a count down to no diapers after we felt he was ready. I actually took a vacation, but after we let him read books and explore the potty seat he was ready and didn’t need the constant reminder. He will get there!

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He may not be fully ready yet. Maybe take a break from trying for a bit and try again later.

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Consistency is key. Try to get the dad to participate in a schedule as far as taking your child to potty etc. Also, no pull ups. While they’re convenient, it takes kids longer when they’re used. Let your child pick out his big boy underwear and talk about keeping new underwear clean and dry. Start a chart where your child can see it. For every hour he keeps them clean, give a sticker on the chart. So many stickers equal reward. This provides your child an incentive to try. Good luck and stay patient


I read up on everything…
My son has had to get familiar with what was happening in his diaper, “Phoo poop” and “Pee Pee” once he got down what he was doing we moved on to a training toilet and underwear. All day Asking if he needed to Potty. Pretty soon he didn’t use pull ups at night and started telling me that he needed to go.
I feel like I had to Normalize it for him… get him out of the routine for diapers changes to Potty in toilets.

Maybe there should be a group. I was put on illegal meds. My son still pees the bed at twelve. But you gotta figure i was on illegal meds thirteen years. I couldnt get my so to use the bathroom either but i stayed home with mine than again i had constant adrenalin rushes that i would shake real bad everytime i got up like dea th was entering my body yeah i was left with my kids alone im no longer on the illegal meds… They would tell everyone i was sick than give me no help or certain babysitting times and it was rare and after the kid was seven. He has a cognitve impairment.
My advice is give it your all mama. And dont hurt nobody in the meantime. Stay independent as possible. And uh keep on doing what your doing. I mean have you ever thought the father was out of bounds by not helping you with potty training.

My second was like that. I started bringing him in the bathroom when I went and telling him I’m going potty, and asking him if he needs to go, watching really helped him understand and now he doesn’t even need diapers except when sleeping

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My boy’s were all slower then my daughter. Both boys stopped when basically they wanted to. About 4. No matter how much I kept at it. They still have to be ready them selfs. So just keep trying so he learns and he will go when he’s ready. Good luck

It will happen when it happens. I struggled tremendously with my older two and with my third I decided I wasn’t even going to try until she wanted to and I am Absolutley thrilled to say she is fully (daytime) potty trained and she turns 2 in November. I can’t even take any credit for it, she completely decided on her own. I think seeing her siblings use the potty made it click sooner.

I think the most important thing is that every kid is different and nobody heads to college in diapers, so try to relax and not worry about other kids.

Potty training will never happen if you don’t stay consistent! Even the most difficult of my children didn’t take more than 3 weeks to fully potty train once I made the decision to actually crack down on it. It’s gonna be tough and trust me I have been lazy with a few of mine telling myself “there not ready” because I was just too exhausted to deal with it yet. Honestly though just commit to it! Your life will be so much easier once he’s trained! And keep in mind that with consistency even the toughest potty trainers only take a few weeks! I’ve had my had mine trained anywhere from 2-3 days to my longest took 3 weeks and the 3 weeks was because we were not as consistent as we should have been :woman_shrugging: Honestly it’ll be tough for a few days but once you start and stay consistent it won’t take as long as you think it will!

Boys are hard :woman_shrugging: I’m in the same boat! My son just turned 3. His preschool is awesome and understanding and hes trying. His dr said that going back and forth to dads is a big part of the delay even if dad is working on it too.

For my 2nd son it was a slow process. It wasn’t interested. He’ll be 4 in Nov. Last month it finally click. We just kept trying and encouraging him to try. Keep it positive
He’ll get there. One day it will just click.

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Yeah consistent just make sure that you ask and enforce even when he says no take him anyways and reward often

My son will be 4 in march. Hes just started being potty trained he doent say he has to go yet i have to put him on the potty every half hour. You are not alone in that.

Yes!!! Make a chart on poster board with the days of the week and two hour intervals from the time your child wakes until bedtime. Have your child take bathroom breaks every two hours and go to the bathroom any time in between if he has to go. Give him a sticker to place on the chart and show him where the sticker goes every time he takes a bathroom break even if he doesn’t actually go potty. Each week do a different style chart with different kinds of stickers. So, like robots and robot stickers one week and vehicles next week with cars and trucks stickers on a road. Be creative. Stickers cost less than diapers, and it will help your child by encouraging bathroom breaks. He will learn that just like you put things where they go on the sticker chart, you put the potty where it goes, in the toilet. lol Remember to wash hands!

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It will come in time.

I was four when I got the hang of being potty trained , my daughter was four to so it’s down to the individual, maybe you need to potty him every two hours , don’t ask just take him .

Stop sweating it.
He feels the pressure you’re putting on yourself.
Just remember he won’t go to school untrained.
Relax and he will follow

I had the same issue with my son when he was around the same age. I finally took him shopping with me to a place that was a hour and a half away. I asked him before we left if he needed to pee. he said no. I reminded him that once we were in the car, we were not stopping til we got home. He still said he didn’t have to go. so, I put him in and buckled him up. 5 minutes into the drive (I hadn’t even gotten on the highway yet), he piped up from the backseat, “Mommy, I peed!” I said “OK?” he said, “You have to change me!” I told him, “No. I said we were not stopping til we got home.” It was a long ride, but that was the very last issue. From then on, he would tell me he had to go pee as often as he possibly could. Sometimes, setting a boundary and sticking to it will help the most. It did with me.

My son will be 4 in January. I am having the same exact issues. His pediatrician said not to force him and he will train when he is ready.

It hard if Dad & your daycare aren’t as committed as you. I would start putting him on the potty more even if he says he does not need to go, just tell him you want him to try anyway. My son was 3 and a few months. Best of luck

You need to have a talk with everyone… you will have remind him. Encourage him to go. Be excited when he does. If he doesn’t go by the 2nd hour I would make him sit on the toliet. I just potty trained my 2 year old niece. So far 1 week of no accidents…

First and foremost… children do their thing in their own time. Dont bash yourself over this. Especially considering you dont have the consistency you need to succeed in this. Continue doing what you are doing… see if the dad can acquiesce as well as the daycare. If not, you did your best. It WILL happen :slightly_smiling_face: best wishes

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Boys are hard. My son pain refused to go potty on the toilet he said he was gonna go in his diaper…I gave him a few more months then took away his diaper straight to undies and he hated being wet so eventually it worked out he’s 15 now and is fine.

Chelsi right. That is how my son trained my grandson.

  1. just because other kids are doesn’t mean yours is ready. He’ll do it when he’s ready. 2) if split custody is relatively new, he could be regressing a bit, which is normal. Sticker charts, rewards. All good things. My daughter has a sweet tooth like I do, so every time she went pee on the potty she got a couple m&ms.

He will when he is ready every child is diffrent…try putting cherrios in the toilet. My 6 grandsons love peeing on them

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My youngest did not potty train till 2 days before his 4th bday. Make a big deal about being a big boy and how awesome it is to be a big boy. If you can afford it let him Pick out BIG Boy underwear. Get them washed up and tell him he can wear them because he is a big boy and big boys don’t need diapers but he can’t go potty in them. Main thing let him decide when it’s time, don’t push but just work with him. That is what we did and that helped my youngest to decide it was time. You will get there and so will your son.

When i was training my sons I had five i would make it fun i threw cheerios in the toilet and told them aim at them. Maybe strange but worked

I gave my grandkids m&m when they pee pee ONLY when they pee pee. They were peeing every time they turned around lol


It’s hard but go cold turkey to underwear thats how I did all my kids