Potty Training Boys: Is It Harder?

A mom's expert tips for potty training boys.

Girls often complete potty training at a younger age than boys, which leads parents and caregivers to assume that boys are harder to potty train than girls. While this maybe true for some children, potty training boys isn’t necessarily more difficult.

As a mother of two boys, I felt that they just weren’t interested for a long time, there was too much else going on and they wanted to be off doing it not worrying about stuff like using the potty. Once they got interested then we started training in earnest but up until then I was happy to let them be.

It is futile to push them into training before they are ready because you either set yourself up a battle of wills or a string of disappointments when they don’t make it in time. They will train eventually so until then enjoy your time together rather than spend the time being frustrated.

What then? So now you’ve waited until your son has shown some interest in ditching the diapers, what do you do from here?

  • Provide lots of encouragement and support.
  • Help with getting his clothes sorted. While your daughter may have had no problem negotiating her clothing your son is likely to need help getting his clothes off and back on.
  • Work out what motivates him and use that to encourage him to keep trying. There are a range of potty training aids that can help.
  • Let him see his father or other male family members using the toilet and explain that this is what grown up boys do.
  • To encourage him to focus on what he is doing, you can use floatable targets for him to aim at. You can try using Cheerios or torn up scraps of toilet paper.
  • Lots of praise for whenever he gets it right.
  • Try using a timer to remind both of you when he needs to go. He maybe so busy playing that his own bodily needs are the last thing he thinks of.
  • Have the bathroom set up to make it easy for him to go on his own if you’re not available at the moment he needs to go.
  • Keep a spray bottle of water in the bathroom and teach him how to clean up if there are any spills.

Potty training boys doesn’t have to be difficult. Just make sure that you let him set the pace and before you know it, you’ll have him successfully potty trained.

Reprinted with permission.

A mom's expert tips for potty training boys.

Like these tips? You might like Potty Training: 5 Tips that Stick!

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