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Pees 5 minutes later: What to do if this is you

Translations of this post: Italian

Pees 5 mins later

Today we’re gonna talk about what to do if your baby pees five minutes after offering the potty, when doing elimination communication.

Have you ever had this happen to you? You offer your baby a pottytunity, your baby doesn't go, but then baby pees five minutes later in the diaper or on the floor.

Probably most of you are nodding your heads, because this is actually really common. Today we're going to talk about a few of the reasons this might happen, and what you can do about it.

You will learn:

  • How to get back on the same page with your baby
  • How to deal with this issue while still in the bathroom
  • Whether to move on the next potty
  • Where your baby’s growth fits into the picture 
  • Whether to potty baby outside during this time (or if that will screw everything up).

The Classic EC Position while Squatting

Download the free Observation Log (as I mentioned in today’s show):

Watch the Video Version

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

Thanks for Listening!

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What will you implement from today's show? Do you have any other ideas that have worked for you? Please leave a comment below!

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 Mandy on September 27, 2019 at 5:44 pm

    Thanks! I especially liked the part about “responsible diaper free time”. My 6 m. old was peeing on the bed a lot (so much laundry!). I started only giving him diaper free time when he has most/all of my attention or is napping and I am nearby. Less laundry now.
    I went through the 5 minutes later pee phase not long ago. His body has changed recently and now he does not need to go to the potty as frequently and I am not taking him at the wrong time very often. Yay for being flexible!

    • Avatar Andrea Olson on October 13, 2019 at 2:20 pm

      That’s great Mandy! Adjusting your diaper free time to make it more useful will be so helpful to your practice. I’m glad you figured it out. xx Andrea

  2. Avatar Joe on May 26, 2020 at 3:56 pm

    This definitely inspired me to do an updated observation on our 15 month old. Before starting EC she had 7 diapers per day which ended up being around 12 separate eliminations, without diapers and has since gone back to around 6-7 times without diapers after training. So she’s definitely retaining more than she used to. She is at a point where she has demonstrated in her over a month of training, that she understands each of the key points and identifies every step individually, from going to wiping to flushing etc… BUT she is at a point where she seems to be holding on as long as she is physically able, until she has an accident, while refusing every attempt to put her down before it happens. Our catch rate has dramatically fallen. Also important to note that ur daughter is the one signaling to the potty each time we attempt putting her onto it, but she is still refusing to sit. It’s as if she’s saying “i feel something, i think i need to go, but i DO NOT WANT to sit on that thing and go” Not sure what to do next but I’m thinking of starting fresh with a new observation log because I refuse to put her back into diapers and I hate feeling useless. Any additional suggestions would be great. She seems confused/uncomfortable about something. Thanks!

    • Avatar Andrea Olson on May 27, 2020 at 4:41 pm

      Hi Joe! It is very normal for kids to play with how long they can hold. You can try changing up the potty. If you are using a tiny potty, try a seat reducer. Then use distractions to keep her happy. Running the water in the sink or giving her a cup of water to drink will help encourage her to go. You can also have her “potty” a toy first. That helps with the transition. xx Andrea

  3. Avatar Jennifer on July 25, 2020 at 4:38 pm

    Hi! This was helpful! Now, how do I figure out which one is it?

    • Avatar Andrea Olson on July 25, 2020 at 5:03 pm

      Observation is always a great place to start!

      • Avatar Natalie on April 23, 2021 at 1:24 pm

        This is a bit off topic, but not sure which blog post to ask it…I have been struggling with my 5 mo peeing as soon as I open his disposable diaper even after I ask him to “wait”. I try not to react, but it’s hard. Usually I say, “Oh…. You’re supposed to go in the potty…” in a frustrated tone. He frequently smiles as of after he does it. Is this him trying out his bladder or is this some sort of reward (my reaction)?
        +Began EC at 4 mo…
        +This has been happening for about a week or week and a half.
        +super Part-time EC..I am the only one doing it (husband doesn’t feel comfortable doing it).

        Not sure how to get back on track. We were doing well with this easy catch…

        • Andrea Olson Andrea Olson on April 26, 2021 at 2:28 am

          Stick with the easy catches, and if you know he pees right when you take off the diaper, try having the potty near by so you can place him off of it. Or you can try taking the diaper off while you have him on the tiny potty.

          Often times the exposure too cold will cause little ones to pee.

          Continue to be patient, usually these things works themselves out with little intervention. 💕

  4. Avatar Mia on June 8, 2021 at 7:04 am

    My 17 week old son. Does the big business in the potty, but he usually pees later on the changing table. What can I do to make him pee in the potty?

    • Andrea Olson Andrea Olson on June 9, 2021 at 3:03 am

      I would take him off the potty after going poop, and then before you lay him onto the changing table, sit him back down on the potty to go pee and cue.

  5. Avatar Tina on November 8, 2021 at 1:35 pm


    Is there an alternate way for me to get my hands on the observation log? Placing my email address to submit a request for it does not work. My EC is going pretty wrong and I’m only able to do it part time right now because the only good time I know to catch is right after waking.

    Also, my son does pee 5 minutes after the potty is put away and he’s placed on the mat for a new diaper– whether or was 5 minutes that I had him on the potty, or 20. So that maturing ability to hold for longer doesn’t seem to apply here. He’s also only 2 months old. What do you suppose the reason for this is?

    • Andrea Olson Andrea Olson on November 8, 2021 at 6:30 pm

      Hey there!

      Send us an email, and we can make sure that you get the observation log. In the meantime, check your spam folder. That is usually where it ends up.

      As far as peeing 5 minutes later. I have a whole post dedicated to that, I will post it here.

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