How to handle potty training pressure

“Is he still wearing nappies?” cries your Grandmother, aghast that your two and a half year old is not potty trained yet!

In our grandparents and even, to an extent, our parents eras, many child-rearing philosophies were different than today, including the age when a child was expected to be potty trained.

potty training pressure

Today there is an emphasis on “child-led” developmental achievements, which essentially involves children inadvertently letting their parents know when they are ready to tackle a developmental milestone rather than vice-versa.

With this philosophy now being a primary component of modern child rearing, when relatives and friends of the ‘old school’ way of thinking, whilst meaning well and having good intentions, can be a little ‘trying’. If this situation sounds familiar then you may find the following tips on how to handle potty training pressure useful.

Remember there is nothing wrong

Every baby, toddler and child develops at his or her own pace and just because a child may be ‘slower’ it doesn’t mean there is ‘something wrong’.

Remember the story about Albert Einstein, one of the world’s biggest geniuses? Apparently Einstein did not say a word until way past his third birthday and his parents thought that there was something dreadfully wrong. According to the story when Einstein did eventually speak and his parents asked why he had waited so long, he replied, “Because up until now everything was fine.”

Similar to Einstein and his delayed speech, if your child is still wearing nappies and others are of the opinion he should be potty trained, he’s not behind, he’s just progressing in his ‘own time’.

Don’t give in to the pressure

Many experts believe that ‘child-led’ progression is the best way to promote toddler development. Your child will start using the potty or toilet when he is ready and is unlikely to respond that well if forced. By the same token, you should not ‘force’ potty training just because you feel under pressure from others.