Oh Crap Potty Training: Comprehensive Guide to Toilet Training (2024)

Are you ready to start potty training your little one, but feeling overwhelmed and unsure of where to begin? Don’t worry, you’re not alone! Potty training can be a daunting task for any parent, but with the right guidance and approach, it doesn’t have to be. That’s where the “Oh Crap!” method comes in – a popular and effective approach that has helped countless parents successfully navigate the challenges of potty training. In this comprehensive guide, we’ll break down the steps of the Oh Crap! method and provide helpful tips for choosing the right potty training method for your child. So let’s dive in and get started on this exciting new chapter!

Oh Crap Potty Training Method

The Oh Crap! method emphasizes teaching your child to recognize their body’s cues for when they need to go, rather than relying on external reminders such as rewards or punishment. The first step is what Glowacki calls the “naked phase,” where you allow your child to be without pants or diapers in order for them to become more aware of their bodily functions.

The next step involves introducing underwear and gradually transitioning away from diapers altogether. Throughout the process, it’s important to remain calm and patient with your child, even if accidents occur. Additionally, praising your child for success can also help build confidence and reinforce positive behaviors.

While every child is different and there may be setbacks along the way, following the Oh Crap! method can provide a solid framework for successful potty training. Remember that consistency and positivity are key ingredients in any approach you choose – so stick with it and celebrate each milestone along the way!

Oh Crap Potty Training Cliff Notes

If you’re a busy parent, it can be tough to find the time to read an entire book about potty training. That’s where “Oh Crap Potty Training Cliff Notes” come in handy. These notes give you a quick overview of the Oh Crap method so that you can get started with confidence.

The cliff notes cover all six stages of the Oh Crap approach, from naked observation to going public with underwear. They also include tips for handling common challenges like accidents and nighttime training.

One key takeaway from the cliff notes is that consistency is crucial for success. You’ll need to commit fully to following the steps outlined in order to see progress.

Another important aspect covered in these notes is that every child is different when it comes to potty training readiness and pace. The Oh Crap method emphasizes paying attention to your child’s cues rather than relying on strict timelines or schedules.

If you want a quick introduction and reference guide for using the Oh Crap potty training method, these cliff notes are definitely worth checking out.

Oh Crap Potty Training Steps

Oh Crap Potty Training: Comprehensive Guide to Toilet Training (2)

Oh Crap Potty Training is a method that breaks down potty training into several stages or steps. These steps help parents and caregivers navigate the process of toilet training without overwhelming their child.

The first step in Oh Crap Potty Training is to ditch the diapers completely, even during naps and nighttime. This helps children understand that they are no longer wearing a diaper and need to use the potty instead.

During this stage, it’s important for parents to keep close tabs on their child’s behavior and schedule. They should look out for signs that indicate when their child might need to go – such as squirming or grabbing at themselves.

Once kids start getting comfortable with using the potty, it’s time to move onto the second stage: commando mode. This means letting them run around without pants or underwear so they can feel when they have an accident.

The third step involves introducing clothing back into the equation – but not just any clothing! Kids should wear loose-fitting pants (no jeans!) with no underwear underneath. Parents should also make sure there is easy access to the potty at all times.

Once children have mastered using the potty while wearing clothes, it’s time for them to graduate from Oh Crap Potty Training! They are now ready to wear regular clothes again and can confidently use public restrooms without accidents.

Following these simple steps can be incredibly effective in helping your child become independent in regards to toileting needs.

Understanding the Basics of Potty Training

When to Start Potty Training

Oh Crap Potty Training: Comprehensive Guide to Toilet Training (3)

One of the most common questions parents have about potty training is when to start. There is no one-size-fits-all answer, as each child develops at their own pace. However, there are some signs that can indicate your child may be ready for potty training.

First and foremost, it’s important to remember that every child is different. Some children may show readiness signs as early as 18 months old while others may not be ready until closer to age three. It’s crucial to wait until your child shows interest in using the toilet before starting the process.

Another sign of readiness is if your child has developed a regular routine for bowel movements. This means they typically go around the same time each day or every other day and tend to have a consistent pattern.

If your child starts showing an awareness of their bodily functions such as pulling on their diaper after soiling it or announcing when they need a change then this could also be an indication that they’re ready for potty training.

Keep in mind that forcing potty training too early could lead to frustration and setbacks for both you and your child. Be patient and follow their cues on when they’re truly ready!

Signs of Readiness in Your Child

Potty training can be a challenging time for parents and children alike. Knowing when your child is ready to start this process can help make the transition easier. Here are some signs that your child may be ready to start potty training:

1. They show an interest in the bathroom: If your child is curious about what happens in the bathroom or follows you into the bathroom, it may be a sign that they are ready to learn.

2. They have bowel movements at regular times: If your child has predictable bowel movements, it may be easier for them to learn when to use the potty.

3. They stay dry for longer periods of time: If your child’s diaper stays dry for several hours, it could mean that their bladder control is improving and they are able to hold in urine.

4. They communicate their needs: Your child may start telling you when they need a diaper change or show other signs of discomfort after going potty.

5. They want more independence: As children grow older, they often express a desire for more independence and control over their own bodies.

Remember that every child develops at their own pace, so don’t feel pressure to begin potty training before your little one is truly ready!

Choosing the Right Potty Training Method

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Potty training can be a daunting task, but with the right approach and mindset, it doesn’t have to be. The Oh Crap! Potty Training method provides a comprehensive guide that can help parents navigate through the challenges of toilet training.

By following the steps outlined in this method and recognizing signs of readiness in your child, you can make potty training a positive experience for both you and your little one.

Remember that every child is different, so choosing the right potty training method may take some trial and error. But by staying patient, consistent, and encouraging throughout the process, you’ll set your child up for success in achieving this important milestone.

So go ahead – embrace the journey of potty training with confidence using these tips from Oh Crap! Potty Training. Before long, you’ll be celebrating your child’s newfound independence and feeling proud of their accomplishments.


Congratulations! You’ve reached the end of our potty training guide, equipped with valuable insights and strategies to navigate this important stage in your child’s life. Remember, potty training is a unique journey for every child, and it may take time for them to fully grasp this new skill. Stay patient, consistent, and positive throughout the process, providing continuous support and encouragement.

Remember that accidents happen, setbacks are normal, and each step forward is a significant achievement. By creating a nurturing environment and employing the tips shared in this guide, you’ll be well on your way to potty training success. So, let the journey begin, and may your little one master the art of using the potty with confidence and pride!


  1. What is the best age to start potty training?
  2. How long does potty training typically take?
  3. How can I handle resistance from my child?
  4. What should I do if my child refuses to use the toilet?
  5. Is it normal for accidents to happen during potty training?
  6. Should I use rewards or incentives during potty training?
  7. How do I handle potty training while traveling?
Oh Crap Potty Training: Comprehensive Guide to Toilet Training (2024)


What is the oh crap potty training solution? ›

The "Oh Crap" potty training approach teaches toddlers to recognize their body's cues, briefly hold it, and move to a potty when they need to go. To use this method, parents take diapers away once and for all and spend a few days at home with a naked toddler.

How long does it take to do oh crap potty training? ›

Probably the newest potty training method on the scene, the book Oh Crap! Potty Training outlines a five-block—not a five-day—mastery of the toilet. Every child will progress through the blocks at a unique pace, but this method usually takes around three weeks to complete.

What is the hardest part of potty training? ›

In fact, refusal is the biggest challenge facing parents who potty train. Does it mean you shouldn't do it (NO!). The truth is, refusal happens because most children start in the toddler years when this way of being is a la mode. Toddlerhood is the breeding ground of refusal, but don't let this put you off.

What day of potty training is the hardest? ›

For some, the first day is the hardest and the rest of the process is easy peasy. For others, the first few days are pretty easy and then the newness of potty training wears off and children take a few steps backward in their progress.

What is the 3 day potty training trick? ›

The three-day potty training method is a toilet training process that calls for your child to go diaper- and pants-free for three days in the house as he gets used to going to the potty regularly. The idea is that, by keeping your toddler naked from the waist down, he'll learn to be more in tune with his bodily cues.

Why is the 3 day potty method not working? ›

They're not ready.

If potty training isn't working, your child may not be developmentally ready yet and you may need to revisit it at another time. Fellom says, “if your child is among the approximately 7 percent who can't manage it yet, just wait six to eight weeks and try it again for a weekend.

Is day 2 of potty training the hardest? ›

Truth: the first three days are the hardest

But then it gets a lot easier. My best advice: power through the first three days. Hunker down. Potty train with all your might and with total fidelity, and don't give up.

Does potty training get easier? ›

Potty training doesn't usually come easily or without bumps. While the prospect of ditching the diapers is exciting, getting there can try your parenting patience. But don't lose hope. Potty training your toddler might seem daunting, but sooner or later your little one will get the hang of it and outgrow diapers.

What is the easiest age to potty train? ›

Is it time? Potty training success hinges on physical, developmental and behavioral milestones, not age. Many children show signs of being ready for potty training between ages 18 and 24 months. However, others might not be ready until they're 3 years old.

Is it normal for a 4 year old not to be potty trained? ›

If you feel as though your 3-year-old is the last kid in her class to master the potty, you're not alone. While many kids start to show an interest in the potty at 2 years old, recent research indicates that only 40 to 60 percent of children are fully toilet trained by 36 months.

What is the most successful way to potty train? ›

Child-oriented potty training

First introduced by pediatrician T. Berry Brazelton in 1962, the concept of following a child's readiness signs for each step of the toilet training process is supported by the American Academy of Pediatrics. Research from 2003 suggests that this method is among the most successful.

How many accidents are normal on day 1 of potty training? ›

Lots of wee accidents

All children have accidents when potty training and it's very much part of the process. On that first day when you take off the nappies: over a third of children (31%) have 3-4 accidents. 12% have 5-7 accidents.

How many accidents a day are normal for potty training? ›

You can still expect about one or two accidents a day, even weeks after you've started potty training.

Can I leave the house when potty training? ›

How do you leave the house with your tot without risking messes or regressing back to diapers? Not to worry: Toilet training doesn't mean your family has to stay sequestered until the process is done. By training your toddler on the go, you teach her to adapt to all kinds of different situations.

How do you potty train a 3 year old that refuses? ›

Tips For When Your Child Refuses to Potty Train
  1. Be patient with accidents and negative behavior. ...
  2. Remain neutral: Never use punishments or threats. ...
  3. Consider your words and tone: It's not just what we say but how we say it that matters when speaking to our children.
Mar 22, 2023

How do you potty train ASAP? ›

Direct your child to the bathroom first thing in the morning, before and after naps, after meals, and before bedtime. Between these routine trips to the bathroom, ask your child if they need to pee or poop regularly and remind them to listen to their body.

How long should toddler sit on potty to poop? ›

We recommend 3-5 minute sits, as this gives children enough time to sense urgency, but is not so long that it makes sitting something they want to avoid.

Is it OK to wait until 3 to potty train? ›

While there's no right age to potty train, Cesa recommends parents wait until their child is between 2 1/2 and 3 1/2 years old. “That's when most children have enough brain and bladder development to potty train successfully,” she says.

What should you avoid during potty training? ›

Avoid these once-common tactics:
  • making your child sit on the toilet against their will.
  • punishing your child for not using the toilet.
  • treating accidents or bedwetting like bad behavior.
Oct 13, 2021

How many accidents are there on day 3 of potty training? ›

That means when they need to use the potty, they may not tell you until afterward. Your toddler might have 5-8 accidents this day with 1-2 times on the actual potty.

How do you know when potty training isn't working? ›

  1. 6 signs your child is not ready for potty training. ...
  2. Your child doesn't mind dirty diapers. ...
  3. Your child is wet all the time. ...
  4. Your child has no awareness or interest in using the potty. ...
  5. Your child can't undress himself. ...
  6. Your child won't sit on the potty. ...
  7. Your child resists the potty.
Sep 6, 2021

Is it harder to pee or poop when potty training? ›

Learning to poop on the potty is often more challenging than learning to pee. Asking for a diaper to poop or hiding to poop are indications that your child has the bodily awareness and control to be potty trained, but perhaps isn't emotionally ready.

What happens if you never potty train? ›

Late potty training can not only hinder their development, it can cause them to be ashamed. “When a child is not completely potty trained by the age of four, he becomes an 'exception' and may suffer personal and social embarrassment and disappointments,” warns Dr.

How do you get toddler to tell you when they need to potty? ›

Here are a couple of tips to help practice identifying that feeling:
  1. Set a potty timer. Every 30 minutes, help your child get in the habit of going to the bathroom. ...
  2. Talk about the feeling of when you have to go. ...
  3. Talk about the feeling when you are going on the potty. ...
  4. Use potty training products that fade when wet.
Jan 18, 2023

Is 2 too old for diapers? ›

Most children will complete toilet training and be ready to stop using diapers between 18 and 30 months of age,1 but this certainly isn't the case for all kids. Some children are not fully out of diapers until after the age of 4.

What age should a boy stand to pee? ›

A boy can sit on the potty to go pee, but you may eventually want to teach him how to stand and aim. There's no specific age where this needs to happen, and many young boys go sitting down. Otherwise, a small urinal can be helpful because it's the right size.

What percentage of 4 year olds aren t potty trained? ›

Only 60 percent of children have achieved mastery of the toilet by 36 months, the study found, and 2 percent remain untrained at the age of 4 years.

What happens if my child is not potty trained by kindergarten? ›

Under current guidelines from the State Education Department, “children who are not toilet trained cannot be excluded from either Pre-K or kindergarten enrollment”. NYSED recommends districts work with families to develop a toilet training plan. You can read more about the guidelines here.

Is it normal for a 5 year old not to be potty trained? ›

Generally, if a child is 5 and still not potty trained, the child needs to be seen by a doctor, McCarthy said.

What happens on day 4 of potty training? ›

Day 4 is all about staying consistent and challenging her to ask for the potty. Everything is the same as day 3 with regards to my expectations. I am telling her it is time to go before events such as eating, napping, or leaving the house.

Should I punish my child for potty accidents? ›

In other words, parents want to know if spanking is an effective potty training tool, and if punishing a child for wetting or soiling him or herself will prevent future accidents. According to pediatricians, the answer to this question is simply, "no."

What happens on day 2 of potty training? ›

Day 2 goes on like day 1, except with pants (assuming you had success with the naked phase). Again, lots of fluids. Having fun. Going to the potty every 20-30 minutes, or however frequently you feel is right for your child.

Do pull ups hinder potty training? ›

Many professionals recommend skipping pull-ups for daytime potty training. Instead, go straight to underwear so your baby understands how it feels when they pee. Pull-ups have similar absorbency to diapers, so it may confuse your child to have pull-ups on during potty training.

Why you shouldn't potty train before 2? ›

Training a child too early can lead to toilet accidents because the bladder may not be strong enough. It may also lead to constipation, kidney damage and even urinary tract infections, said Hodges, mainly because children are holding in their bowel movements longer than they should, said Hodges.

What are the stages of oh crap? ›

Block One: Peeping and pooping while naked, either with prompting or without. Block Two: Peeing and pooping with clothes on, commando, with prompting or without. Block Three: Peeing and pooping in different situations, with prompting or without. Block Four: Peeing and pooping with underpants, with prompting or without.

What is the most popular potty training method? ›

3-day potty training:

This train-in-days method has roots in a 1974 book by psychologists Nathan Azrin and Richard Foxx. Research from 2003 suggests that this method, along with child-oriented methods, are among the most successful.

What is the commando method for potty training? ›

Commando is dressing your child in pants with no underwear underneath. This is effective because your child is again clothed but does not have underwear acting as a barrier for their pee and poop to go down their legs. I recommend trying this between 5-10 days before putting your child into underwear.

What is the misty method of potty training? ›

The Misty Method is for the breeders home only, from 3 to 9 weeks. It teaches the dog that there is a designated spot to potty making it easier for the new owner to potty train their new puppy. Contrary to some beliefs, potty training a puppy should start with the breeder very early in life.

How often should you prompt potty training? ›

Once you take off the diaper, set a timer and plan to take your child to the bathroom every 20 or 30 minutes. One of the main causes of potty training accidents is because the child is having too much fun or is too engrossed in play to listen to their body and make it to the bathroom in time.

When should I start potty training Montessori? ›

According to Montessorians, children usually enter a sensitive period for potty training between 18 to 24 months. So introduce a child-size potty chair just before this window, and then watch for your child to show signs of interest. Guide and encourage children when they show interest, but don't force the issue.

How many stages of potty training are there? ›

Remind them of each step • Pants down • Sit on toilet • Wee/poo on toilet • Wipe • Pull up pants • Flush toilet • Wash hands. You may find it useful to use pictures to remind them of what to do.

How should the first day of potty training go? ›

Set the timer every 10 minutes for the first two hours of day one. When it goes off, it's time to sit on the potty. Sit for a few minutes. For the rest of the day, we set the timer for every 20 minutes and went on the potty.

Do potty training boys sit or stand to pee? ›

Boys do not need to urinate standing up. During toilet training, boys, like girls, should learn to pee sitting down. Essentially all toilet training experts agree about this. There are many reasons to teach boys to urinate sitting: • Most people urinate when they have a bowel movement, immediately before, or .

Does the 3 day potty training method work? ›

A lot of parents swear by the three-day method. It is definitely effective for some families, but many paediatricians recommend using caution with accelerated approaches to potty training and suggest tweaking the programs with a gentler, more child-led approach.

How do you potty train every 15 minutes? ›

On Day 1, set the timer for 15 minutes. Every 15 minutes, take them to go pee. If they go, restart the timer for 15 minutes. If not, set it for 5 minutes and take them every 5 minutes until they pee.

What is the difference between toilet training and potty training? ›

Contrary to potty training, which insinuates an adult leading the child, toilet learning places emphasis on independence and is more child directed.


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