My 3 year old nephew is fully potty trained. However, he is poop shy and refuses to let anyone watch him go poop. Going pee is fine, he practically drags us to the bathroom to watch that show.

He doesn't have a problem with holding poop in or anything, he goes just fine all by himself. The problem is he won't tell anyone that he went poop, and then walks around with a dirty bum.

How can we encourage him to tell us he went to the bathroom?

  • 1
    I asked my daughter to tell me otherwise her bum gets very dirty and that poop gets stuck on it. I showed her the dirty panties. After that, she consistently told me....
    – Swati
    Commented Sep 19, 2013 at 14:15

1 Answer 1


We just had the exact same problem (the first we'd know was some brown marks on rug in the bathroom). For us, we were able resolve it with

  • a reward chart with a star whenever he told us he'd been and, importantly, told us before he sat down somewhere! Once he'd managed five in a row he got a small treat.
  • Lots of praise when he did tell us and didn't sit down

Also, we have a small-ish house, so if he did go to the bathroom we could hear and when he didn't tell us anything, we could ask him. He wouldn't get the star then, but it'd give me an opportunity to explain about the stars again!

  • thanks, the reward chart has worked for other things, but we didn't even think of trying it for this.
    – Bobo
    Commented Oct 2, 2013 at 19:31

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