Potty Training a Stubborn Child

It seems like you’ve tried everything but your little one still just does not want to cooperate. No matter how hard you try to convince your child that potty training is a good thing for them, they don’t want to participate.

So what do you do? Just throw your hands up and resign yourself to diaper changes for years to come? Of course not! By understanding how to prepare for and bring your child through the process, even stubborn children can be potty trained before you know it.

Read on, and we’ll cover some important tips that will hopefully give you the breakthrough that you and your child need.

potty training a stubborn child

Don’t Start Too Early

Diving into potty training too early can be a battle of wills with any child but with a stubborn toddler, you could end up fighting a losing battle if you try to encourage them into potty training before they’re really ready.

A kid that has a tendency to be stubborn in general is likely to be even worse when it comes to potty training if they aren’t truly in the right place to start the process.

Generally, kids will subtly let you know when the time is right through things like an unnatural interest in other people’s toilet habits, a strong dislike of soiled diapers and being able to hold it for a couple of hours at a time.

If none of this is evident, you might want to hold off a little while longer even if you feel that your child should be ready to start.

Prepare Them

Helping your child to understand what potty training is, and why it’s important, is important for any child. But this becomes even more true if your child is prone to stubbornness.

With stubborn children, it is even more important that they feel involved in the preparations for what they’re about to do, because they absolutely must be “on-board” if they’re going to be receptive to the process.

Your preparations could include things like reading books about potty training (look for ones tailored to girls or boys) or letting them go in the bathroom with you to understand what “big people” do in there.

It also helps to let them choose a training potty and big kid underwear featuring their favorite cartoon or superhero. Personalized things like this will help them feel more invested.

Show Some Patience

It’s frustrating when your stubborn toddler just can’t grasp or won’t even try potty training, but it’s important to keep your cool and remember that these things take time — for all children. Patience is the name of the game, especially with a stubborn child.

If you let it be obvious to your child that you’re getting frustrated with them, you run the risk that they will go into a shell where they will not want to progress or become a “big kid,” and sometimes even regressing.

Obviously, you want progress not a stalemate. Keep your patience and be prepared to accept that you might need to take a break and try again later when you and your little one are ready.

Schedule Regular Potty Stops

If your kid isn’t excited about potty training, you may need to assert a bit of authority when it comes to getting them to try to use the potty. Strong-willed children won’t like being pulled out of their normal routine and will likely not want to cooperate.

You can handle this by letting them know that things aren’t going to always happen on their own terms. Schedule regular trips to the bathroom and make them go sit on the potty.

Make them stay on the potty until they use it or until a certain amount of time has passed (here’s an online timer). This will vary based on your child but 10 to 15 minutes should be appropriate for most.

While they’re on the potty, you can read them a potty training book or even try singing potty training songs together. If they go successfully, you can give them a small reward and mark their progress on a potty training chart.

Soon, they will see that going to the bathroom is something that everyone does on a regular basis. It’s not scary, it’s nothing to be afraid of, and it’s part of becoming a big kid.

Many parents have gone through these same problems with their own child, so don’t fret. A mom named Carol made a guick video full of helpful tips on how she successfully potty trained her own stubborn child. Check it out here if you’re in need of more tips!

BTW, don’t forget to pin this in case you want to check back on it later! Thank you!

potty train stubborn child

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