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2 year old won’t poop on the potty

potty for 2-year-old

We just started potty training our 27 month old son 3 days ago and he has caught on rather quickly going # 1. He had one accident the first day and then one during bed time but other than that he is running to the big toilet on his own and doing his thing very happily. The first day we did no diapers he went #2 on the big toilet (we have a toddler seat that sits on the big toilet) but he asked us to leave so we did. He didn't fuss or seem uncomfortable about it just adamant that he did not want us in there with him. He has yet to use the toilet for #2 since then and if we try to put him on the toilet he FREAKS out and ends up going on the floor or somewhere in between. He has been joining us in the restroom the last few months so that he could see what to expect and we have offered rewards (hot wheel cars, stickers, flushing the toilet, and/or potty dance), left him alone with Disney Junior on the Ipad but he jumps off and ends up going on the floor. I know we just started and that it all wont happen over night but was hoping you could share some ideas on how to make it more comfortable for him so that we don't end up discouraging him from going. We were trying to stay away from purchasing an actual toddler toilet since he will have to use a big toilet out in public but also wondered if that might make the business of #2 easier for him.

I’m impressed your 27-month-old son is doing well potty training. Potty training and especially potty training boys has been a difficult task in our home. We usually start potty training our boys around 2 1/2 years old. Our boys have been officially “potty trained” anywhere from 2 years 6 months to 3 years 7 months. (My definition of potty trained - pees, poops, wipes and washes hands by self)

Not everyone needs a small plastic potty to potty train. While we have a plastic potty often our toddlers prefer to use the “big” toilet. However, a small potty may really help your son. He may be more comfortable sitting on a lower seat and it is easier to poop when your feet touch the floor. I’d try a plastic potty - it may be the key. It is common that children are pee-trained while struggling with popping. Often children request a diaper or pull-up to poop in. Try offering a diaper when he needs to go.

I realize that purchasing a plastic potty and offering diaper feels like you are prolonging the pain of potty training. Allowing him to poop in a manner that lets him be comfortable will help expedite the potty training process. Often when parents are not “flexible” and force this issue children end up stressed and constipated. The children hold their stool in way too long. Their stools gradually become harder and larger. Pooping becomes painful and even more stressful. Children that develop “withholding” constipation often take months or even years to treat.

Try a potty seat, offer a diaper for stools and be patient. Given time and patience he we eventually be potty trained.


Written June 2014 by
Gregory Gordon MD, Orlando Pediatrician






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