8 Important Signs Your Child Is Not Ready For Potty Training

By Last Updated: January 30th, 2023Categories: Raising

As a loving and caring parent, it is your responsibility to teach your child the basics of having to pee or poop the right way on their own. Yes, but the success of the potty training depends on the readiness of the child.

To force potty-training when they’re not ready will only cause more trouble for you and especially your child. They can develop habits like holding their pee or poo for long periods of time, which is unhealthy. They may also feel ashamed and not let you know they’ve made a mess.

However, there are times when children at the age of 18 months to 3 years show independence. They appear to be ready to take care of their own, but don’t take that at face value. You still need to know the signs your child is not ready for potty training. Read on to know which ones you should look out for.

1. Not Curious about Going to The Toilet

If they are not paying attention and showing interest in going to the comfort room, it’s safe to assume that they are not yet ready for potty training. You can observe this when you try to introduce the use of the toilet and they don’t want to listen or even go to the toilet.

2. Unable to Hold Their Urine or Poo

This one is pretty obvious. You’d know that your child is not ready for potty training when they still pee or poop in their pants from time to time. Sometimes, they are not even aware they’ve accidentally made a mess.

Child Peed Pants

If your child struggles with this, they are still dependent on wearing diapers and you still need to check them regularly. They may not even show any discomfort if they ever pee or poop in their diaper. Your child just simply doesn’t care if they’re wet and dirty down there.

3. Throws Tantrums When Using the Potty

Whenever they want to pee or poo and you want them to use the potty, they cry or throw tantrums at you. They may even try hitting you if they think you are forcing them to do the potty. This is a normal response when a child is not ready for it.

There are even instances where your child might get upset whenever you mention potty or try to introduce the concept to them. One of the reasons for such behavior is that they are afraid as they think they might fall off the toilet or get flushed in. They are also used to being cared for or assisted by their parents

4. Making A Mess without Warning

Besides not being able to control their pee and poo, your child may also show signs that they don’t care if they make a mess in the bed or the crib. They may also show no shame doing it in front of family members and strangers.

Making Mess Child

When this happens, it’s a red flag for you not to train your child to use the potty. They’re not just ready to accept new ideas on how to properly use the toilet.And that’s okay! Be lenient and considerate to your child.

5. Difficulty Taking Off Clothes

Well, if your child can’t even take off their own clothes, that’s going to be a huge challenge for potty training. You need to teach or show them first how to pull down their pants and encourage doing it in private.

And of course, undressing is not the only issue. Your child should be able to put on the clothes after they use the potty. This also depends on the type of clothes they are wearing, whether or not there are buttons and zippers to deal with. Either way, it’s still an indication that they’re not ready to do the potty on their own. Parental guidance is still advised.

6. Keeping their Pee and Poo A Secret

If your child doesn’t tell you they made a mess or want to go to the toilet, it means they’re ready. This only suggests that they still rely on you to find out whether they need to use the potty. They can’t just verbally say it. Perhaps, they’re ashamed or don’t want to trouble you.

Child Shy

However, there are non-verbal clues that can tell you they want to go to the bathroom. They may hold your hand and drag you to the bathroom or they may simply cross their legs trying to hold their pee and poop silently.

7. Can’t Follow Simple Instructions

This one is a huge challenge when you really want to engage your child in potty training. Your child should be able to pick up instructions easily and follow them accordingly without much trouble.

You know, the place and time to pee and poo are not the only things they need to learn in a potty training. Your child should also know how to wash and use a tissue if need be. They also need to be trained about how to flush the toilet and use the restroom in general.

8. Being Stubborn

Sometimes, the reason why your kid is not ready is because they’re stubborn. They simply just don’t want to do things your way. They want everything you do according to their wishes.

Stubborn Child

When this happens, you need to step back and not insist on potty training. Their being stubborn can only get in the way of the process. You may also strain your relationship with them if you force them to use the potty.


You really need to consider your child’s readiness to use the potty. Doing so will make the training more effective and meaningful for them. So, if the signs your child is not ready for potty-training is still evident, you may need to just accept it and wait for a few weeks or months.

Yes! You have to wait until the signs are no longer observed. Only then can you ensure a successful potty training.


No. Bribing your kid to do something like using the potty. is bad parenting. This is especially not advisable for young children. Also, it will encourage them to do things only if there’s a reward.

Typically, the best age to start potty training is at the age of 3 when children show independence and can understand simple instructions. However, it still depends on whether or not they show signs of readiness.