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Inconsistency in Potty Training!

meganator26 may 22, 2019

Your toddler goes to the toilet willingly today, but pees his pants all day tomorrow. He tells you when he needs to go pee all week, and the following week...nothing.

What gives with all the potty training inconsistency?!

If YOU are experiencing inconsistency in potty training your toddler, have no fear. There is both a reason for this AND a fix for it!

Today we’ll cover why toddlers (and parents) become inconsistent during potty training AND what we can do about it.

You will hear:

  • The first step to fixing inconsistency (it’s both hard and simple!)
  • What inconsistency will derail
  • How to become consistent, even if you use a daycare
  • WHY children are all over the place with potty training
  • What lack of interest and inconsistent cooperation REALLY means
  • The fix for this issue
  • Two bonus suggestions that will get you consistent in EVERY area of parenting, from today forward!

Links and other resources mentioned today:

Download the Transcript

If you can't listen to this episode right now (um, sleeping baby!?) and read the transcript here:

Transcript download: Dealing with Inconsistency in Elimination Communication

Watch the Video Version (new!)

If you want to watch me record today’s podcast episode, you can do that on my youtube version right here:

Thanks for Listening!

To help out the show and help more parents find out about EC:

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  • Share your thoughts by leaving a note in the comments section below!

Are you having inconsistencies with potty training? If so, what step will you take today to solve it? Please leave a comment below with your thoughts!

I look forward to chatting with you in the comments.

xx Andrea

Andrea Olson

About Andrea Olson

I'm Andrea and I spend most of my time with my 6 children (all under 12 yo) and the rest of my time teaching other new parents how to do Elimination Communication with their 0-18 month babies. I love what I do and try to make a difference in one baby or parent's life every single day. (And I love, love, love, mango gelato.)


  1. Avatar Kirsten on November 9, 2021 at 12:28 pm

    I have an 18 mo old that has been ECed since 3 months. I am on the first week of potty training per your book. I know she can do all the steps because I’ve seen it. She does better naked than commando. She’s never seemed to consolidate pees when doing diaper free time. Always 15 mins. We’ve had good a good day yesterday where she held it on an outing for 3! hours but then today is going every 15 mins. She knows how to sign to potty but we have safe spaces and has somehow decided that saying she has to go pee is a way out of whatever room she’s in. So. I’ve put the mini potty back in the living room, and some books in all areas. If I give her privacy she gets off the toilet. If I read to her she signs to get a book read on the potty but isn’t going. Otherwise she starts going in her pants and then signs mid stream. We are dealing with a lot of back and forth. Can you help? Do I ignore that asl potty sign? Do I take her every time eventhough I know it’s for something else? She’s so dang smart.

    • Andrea Olson Andrea Olson on November 19, 2021 at 12:30 pm

      Generally in the learning phase we want to honor the request to go. She is excited about her new found talent, and that excitement will wear off in time.

      Every 15 minutes sounds like she isn’t fully releasing while on the potty. Try encouraging her to “push, push, push, the rest of her pee out.”

      Also, it seems like you are giving her more attention while she is on the potty… which is natural, but make sure you give her more while she is off the potty, so she goes and does her business when she is on the potty.

  2. Avatar Carla on November 9, 2021 at 3:46 pm

    Yes, lots of inconsistencies, including not wanting to poop on the potty. It seems to be part power struggle and part dislike for pooping in a seated position. While doing EC, almost all poops were in the toilet. When I started potty training, still most poops were in the toilet. Now it can be weeks between poop making it in the toilet. It is so frustrating.

    • Avatar Saioa on November 9, 2021 at 4:18 pm

      Yes, we have more or less the same situation here. He was happily sitting in the potty from 4th to 8th month and when he realized about what was happening, now he only pee and poo diaper free in an stand up position, hope this is a phase… learning processes are not lineal so… patience, i can not think about other tip

      • Andrea Olson Andrea Olson on November 19, 2021 at 12:37 pm

        Yes! Learning is non-linear and it is great to hear you say that.

        Keep offering and trying, eventually they will get there. Sometimes it is a matter of moving the potty to a different location where they will happily sit long enough to relax and go.

    • Andrea Olson Andrea Olson on November 19, 2021 at 12:32 pm

      Try offering privacy while your kiddo is on the potty trying to poop. Just tell your little one that you will be right back, that way they get a little privacy.

      You can also try stacking books under a floor potty or getting a kids squatty potty for the toilet.

  3. Avatar Phoebe Brown on November 29, 2021 at 11:47 pm

    My two year old son is doing great with wees but does a poo every nap time in his cot and rarely in the toilet. Any advice?

    • Andrea Olson Andrea Olson on December 3, 2021 at 8:12 pm

      Try offering him privacy before nap to see if he will poop then.

      Often times pooping during nap is a way of asking for some privacy.

  4. Avatar Whitney on December 11, 2021 at 2:42 pm

    My 20 month old and I are stuck in naked phase! When things clicked for her it was so exciting to see her always stop what she was doing and go potty. However, the moment we do comando or the tiny trainers, she doesn’t signal (only after she’s gone). All of her physical signals are gone as well. Ive read your book and Im not sure what to do. It is very tempting to pull the diapers back out (ngl) , but we’re so close. We’ve EC’ed in the past but met a giant resistance phase and she even resists simple prompts. It’s like the word “pee”, “poop” or “potty” can trigger a tantrum.

    • Avatar Whitney on December 11, 2021 at 3:24 pm

      I spent all afternoon scouring the book (something I rarely have time for) and found “Pee Issues”! Will start from here and hopefully make some progress!

      • Andrea Olson Andrea Olson on January 14, 2022 at 6:44 pm

        If you can’t find what you are looking for, don’t forget to hop on over to Mighty Networks and post your question there. It is free for book owners :)

    • Andrea Olson Andrea Olson on January 14, 2022 at 6:43 pm

      Often times the resistances at that age is because they are about to wrap up. You can try backing off and teaching her more independence around the potty.

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