Toddler Will Not Initiate in Potty

Hi Narmin,

I got the doll, thank you. My daughter is 25 months old and she just gave up her night bottle last month. I was hesitant to introduce the doll, as it had a bottle. But when my daughter tried it out, she immediately focused on how to make the doll pee rather than it going potty, she was only interested in squeezing her leg!!!

Anyway, she is doing great with potty training but I gave up the doll after she only focused on squeezing her leg. She goes potty all the time but she does not initiate it, I keep trying the "practice" but half the time during the 9 practice times, by the time we get to the third or fourth time she sits down on the potty and "has to pee".

I am not sure what to do about that.

I have two suggestions for the doll:

  1. Perhaps she should have a sippy cup vs. bottle.

  2. I found the bottle leaks a lot, so that made the doll wet vs. her "peeing" in her pants.

Thanks again,


Hello Janice,

I am just curious - did you do the whole "Potty Train in One Day" method with the "Big Day" and all that goes with it?

Basically, if she is not initiating, then she has not connected all the dots. She has not made the connection between the feeling of having to go potty and then going to the potty.

Are you doing the practice runs after she has had an accident? If so, does she have a small accident, and then finishes on the potty? I guess I don't quite understand what is happening with her when you make her do the practice runs and when she goes on the potty after the 3rd or 4th time.

Based on my understanding from reading your email, is that your daughter has not made the connection between the feeling of wanting to go and going, so you have to help her make this connection. The sphincter muscle develops at the average age of 18 months, so most likely she already has the control. You can help her make the connection by talking with her and then also doing the practice runs after an accident, so hopefully, she realizes that she had a accident because she needed to go, but did not and should go in the potty instead of in the underwear.

I hope this is helpful. Let me know if this helps and if it doesn't, let me know what is going on and we can try and figure out what to do next.

Take care and have a great day. Please let me know how the suggestions work for you.


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