How To Get Your Little One To Pee or Poop on the Potty

Use this one simple tip to help your little one pee or poop on the potty. Make the whole potty training process easier. It is easy and very effective!

Potty Training image

It seems many, if not most, children end up struggling with one aspect or another when potty training. They either have a hard time learning to pee on the potty or learning to poop on the potty.

For my older two children, the struggle was with the pooping on the potty.

The thing that ended up working to get Kaitlyn to poop on the potty was the same thing that worked with Brayden, too.

Brayden and Kaitlyn are two different people, and I learned very quickly after Kaitlyn was born that they are often opposites in every way.

They have always gotten along really well, but what worked for one doesn’t usually work for the other.

Because of that, I hadn’t tried this tip with Kaitlyn even though it worked well with Brayden.

Since it worked so well for both of them, my guess is it would be useful for almost any child.

Read all about my method for potty training here

Get Your Little One To Pee or Poop on the Potty

Ready for this super secret? It is really simple.

Give fair warning.

It goes something like this:

Mom: You are getting to be a big boy/girl now. It is time for you to stop pooping in a diaper and start pooping in a potty.

Child: Oh (or some other response that makes you sure the child isn’t really grasping what you are saying)

Mom: In ____weeks (whatever time you want. I would do 2-4 weeks), you are going to start wearing underwear for _____ (naps, day, night…whatever you are shooting for). That will be after _____(insert event here. With Brayden, I used his birthday. With Kaitlyn, I used Valentines Day).

Read: 5 Things To Do Before You Start Potty Training

Over the next couple of weeks, remind your child often of the upcoming event.

When the day comes, follow through. Put on the underwear.

Stick with it.

There you have it. That is my amazing tip.


It did for my children.


It worked because it gave them time to think about it.

“Okay. I am not going to poop in diapers. I am going to poop in the potty.”

They have time to process that.

They then have time to think about the process when they poop/pee. How does it work? What are the cues?

Of course, your child must be old enough to understand what is going on. for this tip to work.

Brayden was three and Kaitlyn was 2.5. Keep that in mind.

Potty Training Tip Pinnable Image


With Brayden, I was changing his diaper one day in early May and just decided I was done with diapers. I told him when he was three he wasn’t going to wear them anymore.

The morning of his birthday, he woke up, went over to his drawer, and pulled out some underwear.

I was nervous because his birthday party was that day and I didn’t want lots of accidents, but I had laid down the law and he was complying so we ran with it.

He had a couple of accidents in the morning, but then never looked back so far as pee goes. After a couple of weeks, he had pooping down, too.

Read: 5 Tips to Make Potty Training a Little Easier

Kaitlyn was a bit different, of course. She went to pee trained around 18 months old.

She was always great with it, but had a hard time pooping in the potty.

She asked me to teach her how, and try as I might, it just isn’t something you can teach.

Each day, we put her in a diaper for naps and that is where she pooped.

After trying lots of things, I decided to give the fair warning like I did with Brayden. I gave her two weeks warning.

Valentine’s Day came and no more diapers for nap. She did awesome! No accidents and she pooped in the potty!

At nap time, I put her little potty in her room and she called me after she pooped.

By the next Saturday, she went to the bathroom to poop all on her own.

With McKenna, I didn’t give fair warning. I just asked her one day if she wanted to be potty trained, she said yes, and we went for it.

I would say as a third child, she had thought about potty training before I asked her. She always wanted to be just like her siblings. She is also a very even-keeled personality and goes with the flow well. You can read about her potty training process here.

With Brinley, I completely forgot I had a deadline to potty train her, and only gave her a few days of warning before we started and it still worked great for her. You can read more about it here.


This is an excellent tip to help your little one be mentally prepared for potty training.

It doesn’t mean there won’t be accidents. Accidents are normal. There is also a chance you will have set backs in the future. It seems to happen.

But it will help your child out to be able to plan and process the situation before starting it.

How to get your little one to use the potty pinnable image


This post originally appeared on this blog in February 2010