A Treasury of Child-Rearing Advice

公益財団法人仙台観光国際協会 Sendai Tourism, Convention and International Association.

Material Compilation: Sendai City Ayashi Nursery, Ochiai Nursery, Kumagane Nursery
Material Provision: Nursery Section, Children’s Future Bureau, City of Sendai
Editing and Translation: Sendai International Relations Association


HOME Age 3 > "Holding it" and Wetting (3 years)

Age 3

"Holding it" and Wetting (3 years)

Around three years, children become able to control their bladders.
They may “hold it” or wet themselves due to an immature bladder or individual differences.
These actions are common in early childhood but will gradually disappear as your child gets older.

Your child may feel . . .

  • The last time I wet myself, Mama yelled at me.
  • This game is fun. I don`t want to go to the potty now.
    I can hold it a little longer.
  • I don’t want to go to the potty; it’s too cold!
  • I`m happy that we have a new baby, but Mama is always with the baby.
    I’m a little lonely.
  • I have to go but I can’t say it because it’s embarrassing.

What to do

  • Oops, you wet yourself. Let’s get you changed.
  • You had an accident, didn’t you. That’s too bad.
  • It’s no fun being wet, is it.
    Don’t clean underpants feel nice?
  • When your child wets their self, don`t scold them, but talk to them kindly while changing them.
  • Help your child become aware that being clean feels good without making them feel inferior for wetting their self.
  • Don’t instill negative feelings in your child by forcing them to go to the potty or scolding them when they have an accident.
  • Accept your child’s feelings of loneliness and spend time with them (physical contact such as hugs and piggyback rides, listening to what they have to say, etc.).

※ Start teaching your child how to clean their self when they poops, too. Teach them to wipe from front to back.