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Pee Pee and Poo Poo

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Call me a freak, but I was actually looking forward to potty training.

Diane Mizota: While pregnant, I read about "elimination communication" in The Diaper-Free Baby and was determined to try it. It's essentially potty training your infant. Other countries have been doing it for ages. (I took a trip to China and wondered why the babies all wore crotchless pants and no diapers.) Cut to new mom rude awakening: sleep always wins out over holding baby over toilet waiting for poo. Always.

boy potty training

Fast-forward 18 months. Friends had told me about "windows" when a toddler is open to potty training. At 19 months, he's going potty before every bath. This is a window, right? My granola hippie heart swelled just thinking of the diapers I could save from landfills, and those polar bears at the North Pole who would benefit from our reduced carbon footprint. We began our journey.

A mom at art class rained on my idealistic parade. "You know, the earlier they start, the more likely they are to regress." Easy there, hater. My son's getting it. 100% poo poo on the potty. 90% pee pee. Take that. He's like a potty rock star.

This lasted all of three weeks.

A guttural scream. "NO LIIIKE POTTY!!!" Damn that art class mom. I coaxed. He wailed, "WANT DIIIAPER!" Really? After all the Elmo underwear, the cheering, the dancing, the one M&M for pee, two for poo, and carrying that damn folding potty everywhere, it goes down like this? What about the landfills and the polar bears?

Our parenting class teacher warned, "You can never wait too long to start potty training." Other mothers nodded smugly in agreement. "We waited until our son was over 3 and he got it in one day. No accidents. Ever." Gee, thanks. Thanks for telling me that NOW, now that I've been scrubbing toddler pee out of my carpet for weeks. Now you tell me?

My son is almost 2, happily reunited with his diapers and our fleeting potty window has shut and kicked us in the ass on the way out. Mommy's overzealous potty karma will probably have him in diapers until high school. Sorry, polar bears. Rookie mistake.

7 comments so far | Post a comment now
Sara May 6, 2009, 9:35 AM

That gave me a good smile. I have a 2 1/2 year old who is not interested at all in consistently going potty and I’ve been kicking myself all the time for missing that “window of opportunity” when she was smaller. This sure made me feel a little better!!!! :)

Anonymous May 6, 2009, 11:19 AM

Let all of us slack potty trainers go plant a tree or do something else for the environment. Then we’ll all feel better about all those landfill diapers. My older two, I just waited until they were ready (2 and 1/2 and 3) and they got it in under a week. Maybe as many accidents as I can count on one hand. So I’m not sweating it with my third child either. Go Diapers!!

Marcia May 6, 2009, 3:14 PM

I think people wait too long to start using a little potty. We started sitting my daughter on one (just for fun) at about 6 months. She’d go. She never got USE TO going in her diaper. I think that’s the key. If you don’t allow them to get use to doing something, they won’t fight you about it. She was completely 100% trained by 14months and she’s 2 1/2 now. We’ve maybe had 2 or 3 accidents from 14months until now (she was sick, we were stuck in a car for 3 hours.. etc..) I think we have to break the habit before they become conscious of it and depend on it.

Anon May 6, 2009, 3:18 PM

WOW. Its amazing how bad most mothers make you feel about not having your child potty trained by 2. Its not something you can force-I tried. My much older cousin always said how her children were potty trained as soon as they could walk (and were both pregnant at 15, incidentally). My two children were 3 when they were potty trained. No accidents since, had it down in less than a week. My son remained trained even through he caught a nasty stomach bug that same week. Indeed- GO DIAPERS!!

Sheryl May 7, 2009, 8:03 AM

Very fun post! :) I EC but it is because I am able to work from home and there is no question that I put up with indignities (getting peed on sometimes) and inconveniences (carrying the damn potty everywhere). We all have to do what works for us and EC can be a tough road.

Vicki May 7, 2009, 9:39 AM

I was just talking to Hubby about this topic a few minutes ago. I am glad someone feels the same way :) Though I am less ambitious - haven’t even tried!

Pharmb365 September 18, 2009, 3:47 AM

Very nice site!

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