Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Sisterhood of the potty-training pants

I have 4 little boys; 3 of which are potty trained. But I have one more kiddo to help venture through this right of passage into big boy-dom. After teaching 3 little dudes to "push it down" and how to aim (that's still a work in progress), I dare to say I am anything but a novice in this area.

My walls have been assaulted by the feared, yet unfortunately common, rogue weenie-whacker, the likes of which lurk around every corner in my house. The all-too-familiar squish of my sock in a yellow puddle hiding around the base of my toilet has left me more than a little suspicious when entering my bathroom. And I have learned that I must always investigate the toilet seat before placing my "delicates" upon its surface.

My boys, you see, are at a disadvantage when introduced to this scary proposition of "potty-training". It is no mystery; I pee sitting down, and my anatomy is vastly different from that of my boys. Yet, I am the one who was tasked to lead my boys on this journey which I fear I am "unequipped", you might say, to proceed as the authority on this subject. Nonetheless, I'm the man. I admit, I have referred to this "expedition" if you will,  as if it were a scary bedtime story, the horrors of which no mom should be subjected. Discoveries of poo-patties in uder-roos and the dreaded detection of little brown smears and deposits left innocently along my toilet seat have left me traumatized and more than a little apprehensive.

I have dreaded potty-training with each of my dudes. It has been a struggle, a battle of wills you might say to which the defeated go the spoils. Forcing, ordering, demanding, bartering, begging-all of which have deemed my efforts unrewarding. There is nothing I have not tried- plastic training pants, pull-ups, the "weekend plan", even naked days. None seemed to breed success. Many others have offered their own personal insight and expertise in this area, but I have determined that the secret lies in the child.

To the chagrin of grandmas, aunts and friends, I left the decision "to train or not to train" up to my child. I had fought the battle twice before and learned a few things down that messy path. Whether you start "training" at two or three or even four, it is the parent that is being "trained". Racing the said child down the hall, hurdling whoever or whatever is in the way, in hopes to reach the target in time or setting a timer and making the child attend "toilet time" on a schedule is all part of the curriculum of "potty training". And those trials and tribulations have left many a mother scarred for life.

So with our third son I decided to go against peer pressure and common ritual. No forcing or demanding. No begging or pleading. No poo-poo patties or peeling off of saturated training pants. I let my child decide when, how and where. It was his battle to be fought; his decision to be made; his joy to share...................and the victory belongs to the child.


Mommying On The Fly said...

I totally agree with you... I tell everyone with training concerns the same thing.. are YOU ready.. bwahahhahahaha.. My gremlins are 2 1/2 and we introduced a potty chair at 18 months.. just so they'd see it there, and know what it was for.. no forcing, no nothing.. by 25 months though we stopped buying diapers but still dealt with pull ups for night time.. never forced them to go no timers nothing.. just one day figured we'd try big girl panties, and never looked back.. lol

Emy said...

Wow, I'm excited but at the same time dreading having having to potty train my boy. He just turned 18 months, so maybe I should do the same thing that Mommying on the fly did.

I'm having a business card giveaway and the entries are low.

Carin said...

I am dreading this time, but already decided that I am waiting till she shows to be ready b/c I agree with your training the parent comment. My daughter is super strong-willed and she will need to decide for herself...until then we continue in cloth diapers :)

Ange said...

My middle son JUST last month mastered putting the seat up before peeing... Still working with him on putting it back down after though.

Following you back.

supremevision said...

I am your newest follower :) I know I was suppose to comment on the Follower post but this one brought back some memories...My boys, now 16 and 11, still don't know how to aim LOL!! I still hope, but until that day comes they have officially been deemed the "bathroom cleaner-uppers" in my house!! Thanks for the walk down memory lane :)Happy Tuesday!!

ZanyMominTX said...

Thanks for the follow, I'm at http://zanymomintx.blogspot.com.

sara said...

Hahahaha! Okay, I absolutely LOVE this!! I had four boys in a row also! I started my first one at 2, because that's what the grandma's told me! Ha! I too have learned they will train in their own time. Why is it so hard for them to hit that VERY large target anyway? I tell my husband all the time, we would use less toilet paper if I didn't have to wipe off the seat before I sat down EVERYTIME!! Thanks for telling me about this post, it's great. I have cleaned up more pee and poop than any person should, it's so wrong:)