Talking Shit

When Aitch was about 18 months old, I was sure she’d be potty trained by the time she turned two. When she soiled her diaper, she’d run and get a new one and demand to be changed. I thought this would keep her motivated, and we made sure to enthusiastically praise her for taking the initiative. Eventually she stopped getting a diaper. She stopped telling us she had pooped. She downright refused to even sit on the potty chair. Even her unholy love of anything Hello Kitty in the form of stickers could not convince her to just try! I thought I was onto something a couple weeks ago when she had a full-on meltdown while in a department store when I unwittingly parked the stroller next to the little girl’s brief display and right at eye level was a package of Minnie Mouse undies that she begged for while I refused, explaining that she had to use the potty first.

I did eventually get a package, which I washed and placed in her drawer, within easy access and a visible reminder. But she still refuses to use the potty. She has tried a couple times at daycare (they use tootsie rolls as incentives), but she’s even been able to resist candy just to avoid trying. The thing is, she knows EXACTLY what she’s supposed to do.

Just a few days ago I was rocking with her and looking through her word book, a picture book with dozens of photos of daily items, including clothing. On the clothing page, there was a picture of a pair of tiny underwear, which she was able to easily identify but I thought I would take it a bit further.

“Aitch, what do you do with underwear?”

“I get to wear underwear when I sit on the potty. But I don’t use the potty so I can’t wear Mickey Mouse.”

“Do you want to wear Mickey Mouse?”

“No. I don’t want to use the potty.”

Oh, she gets it alright. I just know she does!

Everyone has a goal to potty-train their kids, the sooner the better in most cases. So they think. However, I’ve walked that stinky, dirty road and I like that her bodily functions do not inhibit my errand running. I don’t worry about getting half-way to town, a four mile drive, and hearing, “I have to go potty! Now!” I don’t have to worry about teaching her to “hover” when we stop at a gas station with a unisex toilet. I don’t have to try to wipe her butt with dry, useless toilet paper, or godforbid! Clean up the mess made by her attempting to do it herself! I change her diaper based on my schedule, not hers. I’m selfish. I don’t have to wash my hands AND hers. I don’t have to worry yet about stashing an extra pair of tiny underwear in my purse for the inevitable accident. I don’t have to worry about when there is an accident and she has to go commando because there’s no way in hell I’m going to stuff a shitty pair of underwear in my bag! Not potty training is way more convenient. And more sanitary.

Potty training? I’m content waiting it out. Sure, it’d be cheaper but my sanity and the keeping of it is worth every quarter she poops or pees on.

11 thoughts on “Talking Shit”

  1. Timmy decided on Monday that he wanted to wear underwear. so I said sure. We did okay at home, he peed right before we went to the playground so I thought we were golden – then peed himself as soon as we got there. And twice more while we were there (also peed on bushes three times). A couple of times he said, “mommy I need to pee” – AFTER the fact. When we got home he asked for a diaper, and I was *more* than happy to put him back in one. He clearly doesn’t have the bladder capacity just yet! (I do not have it in me to try and get him to sit on the potty every 15 minutes!)

  2. Same here; just letting it slide … right into the diaper.

    K is two weeks younger than H and seems to be at about the same stage. She knows how but just isn’t all that interested. And neither are we, except for weekend mornings when she plays half-nekkid and uses her little toilet from time to time.

    My mother, who raised four of us in the 1970s, said we all decided on our own when we were ready, and that was sometime around age 3. Apparently earlier potty training these days is motivated (understandably) by most kids being in daycare.

    Totally with you on the errand-running. So much easier without the pit-stops.

  3. So many people told me that one day your kid just sort of decides that they are on board for potty training. I didn’t believe it, thought well my kid is smart, she gets it, we’ll just get her with the program. Uh, nope. The ped told us food and potty training are two things not to get into battles over and it’s so true. Right around the time she turned 3 was when it clicked for Ellie. And by clicked I mean, she finally decided she wanted to – she knew what to do for long before that but just chose not to. And honestly those first months of potty training were worse than diapers – planning outings to be close to bathrooms and dealing with a urine soaked car seat cover were a pain. it’s just yet another things that’s so frustrating when you are in the midst of it then barely a year later you can’t believe they weren’t always potty trained because it seems so long ago.

  4. I’m just letting her do her thing. Some of the kids in her class are starting to potty train. I’m just waiting on her to show some interest. I should probably help that along with books and videos but we haven’t done much of that.

    She is stubborn so I know me pushing it will only make it an issue…

  5. Our ped told us this was one battle it’s not worth fighting so we didn’t – I agree with you that it’s entirely more convenient for me for him to be in diapers. He finally “ran out of diapers” on a 4-day weekend and we’ve been nearly accident free since.

  6. I have mixed feelings about potty training. Sabrina was pretty easy. I know Tessa won’t be. She isn’t easy about anything. I don’t enjoy being held hostage by little bladders…but I also don’t enjoy changing diapers. I’ve decided to let her take the lead. The preschool she will attend 2 days a week next year doesn’t require potty training (yipee!) – they even offer to assist with potty training (bonus!). So maybe they’ll have a magic trick and I can just ignore the entire issue?

  7. Aitch and O are in the same place. We tried the pullups and underwear route and it backfired a bit, so we’re back in diapers. He KNOWS what the potty is for. He refuses to even try. And I’m not going to push it.

    And don’t think I haven’t thought about all the benefits of having him in diapers. I’m right there with you.


  8. I’m following the same philosophy with Geran. Though sometimes we have naked days. And wouldn’t you know it, he runs to the potty chair every time he has to pee. He SOOOO gets it. But I’m not going to push it for the convenience factor alone. And I wish people would stop telling me I have to.

  9. I could send you Marjorie’s cloth diapers that are just collecting dust in my attic since I can’t seem to sell the darn things on Craigslist. πŸ˜‰ There is a 3 year old at Marjorie’s daycare who refuses to use the potty too. She will sit there and do nothing then get off the pot and crap or pee her diaper full. Glad I am not the babysitter. πŸ˜‰

  10. I don’t find changing diapers that much of a hassle. TK rarely has any horrible messes to clean up, even when it comes to poopy diapers. And even though he is now telling me that he needs to have a poop and then he does, he refuses to do it on a potty. So, I don’t push him, just ask him every once in awhile whether he wants to use the potty or not.

    Plus, I would rather deal with a poopy diaper than a poopy potty! I’ve also read that the later you PT the faster it goes. I’m hoping he will learn to go straight into the toilet so I never have to clean a potty!

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