Raising Peas

11 Signs It’s Time To Potty Train

As they get older, parenting styles are refreshed, revised and rerouted. It’s not always so obvious to spot the perfect timing for change due to the growth and development of your child. And everything is new territory when you’re a first time muva.

You’re feeling like you don’t know what to look for and you don’t want to feel like an incompetent parent. Relax and Breathe. As we’ve walked the road of mothering, we’ve all been there, going from parental rookie to seasoned expert. If you’re looking at this article, your child may exhibit a few of these traits that are signs it’s time to potty train.


1. They Walk It Like They Talk It

They’re talking and walking! This is the most common sign it’s time to start potty training. Create key words for your little one. Potty, pot, go, poo are some good starter key terms to get them familiar with, as this will make things increasingly easier on you in the process towards successful potty habits at the end of the tunnel. Why? Well they can notify you when they have to go which is crucial for potty success in reasonable time and even more crucial once you swipe out the diapers for big kid undies.

If they can walk, which is a vital component in their success to toilet train, then you should have a set destination for their potty in the bathroom (my recommendation) or elsewhere, where they can bet their last cookie on their potty being where they remembered it last. Pick one spot and do not stray from its destination spot to avoid them becoming confused or ready to quit.

2. Initial Reaction is Positive and Playful

When you introduce the potty to them their first reaction is their most genuine feelings. If they are playful and positive, they’re probably thinking, “What took you so long?” Sitting on their potty, smiling, lifting the seat, looking inside the potty and not crying and fussing even if they’re quiet are all positive feedback and it means you have them curious enough that they may be willing to participate.


3. Be Flattered By The Little Imitators

As they say imitation is the highest form of flattery. They see you, dad, big brother or sister using the toilet and they want to use it too. This is their curiosity kicking in, giving you heads up it may be time to potty train. Are they curious every time you enter the bathroom and sit on the toilet? This is an indication of their eagerness and excitement fueled by their curiosity. They may be telling you through imitation that they are ready to train.

4. They Can Follow Simple Directions

With their ability to understand and say more words, you can direct their actions of any kind. Potty Training has found to be no exception to the rules. The only way to see if they can follow instructions as directed is to TEST IT! I gave my oldest baby daughter a sock and instructed her to throw the sock in the dirty clothes. For best results it should be a call to action you are participating in. I was in the mist of washing clothes and my oldest son, Logan, was cleaning. We gave lil nini (pronounced nene) a sock and we asked her to throw it in the dirty clothes. (Simple call to action) She was able to repeatedly act on the instructions given which told me she understood and could fully act upon my request.

5. They Can Pull Their Clothes Off

Another vital capability to use the toilet is to be able to take their clothes off. I don’t expect an 11 month to 1½ year old to know how to unbutton or unzip their pants but if they’re some how finding a way to pull off their shirt, pants, socks, shoes then take it as a sign of their capabilities to toilet train effectively. That strength it took just to get those still buttoned pants off or the shirt that’s still around their neck when you enter the room is an indication that they are willing to take themselves out of discomfort if need be. Direct that same energy into toilet training. They’ll get it.


6. All Diapers Are Off

Like their clothes, If they are pulling off their diapers which obviously can cause discomfort when its time to be changed, is a clear indicator of potty training capabilities. They recognize that they feel discomfort so they can also be conditioned to recognize the discomfort of the call of nature.


7. Touching Their Privates When Diaper is On.

The Body disposition is off and discomfort is written all over their faces.  They’re scratching, moving in irritation,  crying or moody. They recognize this discomfort; it’s not going unnoticed as with any dirty diaper. If you notice these symptoms while their pamper has only been slightly used maybe its time to transition to Pull-Ups and the big kid potty seat.


8. Did You Hear The Drip?

Don’t nothing preach “I’m ready to potty train” like a loud stream coming from a little kid just sitting fully clothed. Has this ever happened to you? You’re having a normal day and suddenly the loud flow of urine interrupts your thoughts and stops you in your tracks? Need I say more?


9. Is Dry For Over An Hour

Going over an hour with a dry diaper is a good sign to potty ready these babies. They can be out in public with you and stay dry longer. They wake up with a dry diaper sometimes or a lightly used diaper after 8 hours of sleeping or a good nap. This ability to stay dry for over an hour is good if you plan to transition to Pull-Ups while out and about. That, peered with the key words you’ll assign to them to reference their need to go are really good co parent teaching methods to achieve the goal to potty.

10. The Walk Of Pooping Shame

You’ve witnessed them slowly separate themselves from the pack and off to the nearest corner. They know they need privacy during these very unappealing matters and don’t want to be played with, kissed on, bothered by any means. Create that private space associated with the potty. While this may be a sign of the delayed training it may be welcomed with open arms at this point.


11. Failed Attempts

Don’t get it confused because failed attempts are better than no attempts at all. No attempts at all means they aren’t interested and will more than likely be willing to give you a run for your money. They’re ok with standing in the corner in “peace” or continuing with their diapers. Sometimes this is the case. But you make the rules and you supply the supplies. Don’t you let that little person run your life with diapers and wipes.

On another note, if your child is showing signs of willingness to get it but they’re just not, as in they’ll miss right before they get to the toilet or they forget sometimes to tell you when you’re out, etc. These things are apart of the process and should be viewed as expected in the transition. Be Hopeful because with practice and consistency comes yielded results.



  • Remind them of their key words before exiting the house. Speak to them not lecture, they remember better.
  • Have more than 1 pair of extra clothes 2 should be a minimum. Pack outfits and not random pieces because you just may need some extra socks too if he goes on himself.
  • Routinely ask if they have to go to the bathroom (when home and out of the home) to avoid inconsistency and avoid them maintaining tolerance to go in their diapers.  Always ask at least 15 mins after meals.
  • Notify all family and friends who will have your child for an extended period of time that you are potty training to keep a steady potty routine for the little one.
  • Invest in a potty seat for travel purposes.
  • All potty success stories should be met with exaggerated excitement to encourage the successful behavior permanently.
  • Give her rewards in any form when she goes successfully.
  • Stay consistent
  • Potty training requires you to pay attention. Paying attention to the time. What they ate and when. How much they can drink before you reach your destination. How far your destination is compared to their capabilities. These are all things to consider until the objective has been executed successfully. The Most Important thing is that you
  • Don’t Give Up. Prepare for the work ahead mentally and make it as fun as you can for everybody.




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