Babysitter Wonders "Is It Weird for a 6-Year-Old to Still Be in Diapers?"

A babysitter wonders if the 6-year-old child she watches should still be diapers. And boy do people have some very strong opinions on the matter!

Melissa Willets - Author

Jul. 5 2023, Published 12:46 p.m. ET

A child who is smiling on a sofa
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In a "No Stupid Questions" subreddit, a babysitter who posts using the handle @parebe ended up asking a question that really got people talking: "Is it weird for a 6-year-old to still be in diapers?"

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Before you judge right off the bat, there's a bit more to the story than that. Read on for details of the situation as well as what folks had to say about the divisive post.

The babysitter shares the full story about the 6-year-old child who's still in diapers.

A child sitting on their feet
Source: Getty Images

"I babysit three kids," the original poster shared with the subreddit, adding, "One of them is a 6-year-old boy and he’s still not potty trained. He has nothing wrong with him that’s preventing him from being potty trained."

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The babysitter elaborated, "He’s used the potty a few times, but his mom said he prefers diapers, and that she won’t force him to give them up until he’s ready."

Finally, the poster claimed, "I thought this was odd, but most of the other parents I’ve talked to about it say that it’s normal and that you can’t force a kid to be ready for potty training."

The poster later took to the comments section and shared a few more details about the child.

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The sitter informed the group that the boy is homeschooled and added, "He has a meltdown if anyone tries to put underwear on him."

At that point, Redditors were ready with their opinions on a 6-year-old child in diapers.

Reddit has a resounding response for the babysitter's query.

A child putting plastic wrap on a toilet
Source: Getty Images

The overwhelming consensus from Reddit was that most 6-year-old children are potty trained, especially if they are in school, where being toilet trained is required. But others shared tales of commiseration.

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As one parent admitted, "I’ve been trying to potty train my daughter since she was 2.5 (she’s 4 now). She pees in the potty just fine and wears undies daily, except for sometimes nap and bedtime."

The frustrated parent then confessed that her daughter refuses to poop in the potty. "She knows how, she’s done it a few times before — she just refuses."

And it's not for lack of trying on the parents' end.

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"We’ve tried potty charts, rewards, putting her on the potty every X amount of time, having her help clean up. I’ve even offered to pay her money for her piggy bank," the parent detailed, adding, "She just refuses and I really don’t know what else I can do except wait for her to decide she wants to do it because she’s so stubborn."

But many commenters weren't swayed, with one going so far as to declare about the subject of the original question, "I’d call that child abuse."

Others wondered how wearing diapers later in childhood might affect the boy down the line.

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Here's what pediatricians have to say on the matter of a 6-year-old child in diapers.

A young boy shaking a doctor's hand
Source: Getty Images

According to, the average age for a child to be potty trained is between 2 and 3 years old. Sometimes a child will not develop bladder and bowel control until age 4.

There are factors that might warrant putting toilet training on hold, such as an illness in the family or expecting a new family member. But in general, the advice is to seek the help of a pediatrician if your kiddo isn't taking to potty training by the time they are 3 or 4 years old.

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It's important to note that all kids develop differently, and we definitely don't know the full scope of what the dynamics in the family are, or what factors may be at play with the child preferring to pee and poop in a Pull-Up.

But if Reddit is to be considered the ultimate authority on child rearing (and it so isn't), then it seems the babysitter got a clear answer to the question, and it's weird for a 6-year-old to still be in diapers.

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