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Sonoma Family Life Magazine

My Toddler Has Zero Interest in Potty Training. This Is Why I Don’t Care.

By Pam Moore

I’ve told my toddler I’ll buy her whatever kind of underwear she wants when she uses the toilet. I’ve put her on the potty and promised her a vigorous rendition of The Potty Dance, if she eeks out just a few drops. Meanwhile, she has yet to demonstrate any real interest in potty training. And that’s fine with me. Here’s why:

1. I avoid potty talk. My older child, who is now 5, started using the toilet at 2 years old. Over the past three years, I have given hours of my life to the discussion of her bathroom needs: Do you have to go? Are you sure you don’t have to go? Can you hold it till we get home? Do you want me to come in the restroom with you or wait outside? I’m okay with limiting this line of conversation to one family member at a time.

2. Grocery shopping is less complicated. Between lamenting my lack of a CDL when maneuvering the car cart, and hating the sound of my own voice saying “No” (no marshmallows; no sugar cereal, no, not even the one with Dora on the box; no getting out of the moving cart), I lack the reserves to manage two children’s urgent bathroom needs.

3. I’m already carrying a mom bag. Gone are the days when I dashed out with my phone, keys, lip balm, and wallet shoved in my coat pocket. In my bag, you’ll find all that, plus Tic Tacs (a handy, if sugary, bribe); baggies of sliced apples, if I’m on my game, or a bag of beef jerky or applesauce pouches if not; a change of clothes for each kid; and a pinecone someone asked me to hold for a minute. What difference do a couple of diapers and some wipes make?

4. I’m lazy.  I masquerade as laid back and efficient when I am, in fact, uptight (I want my house clean!) and lazy (I don’t want to actually clean it!). These qualities don’t lend themselves to diving headfirst into the labor-intensive, messy endeavor of potty training.

5. I avoid the power struggle. I don’t remember what it’s like to be 2 years old, but I’m guessing it’s pretty disempowering. You’re at eye level with a typical adult’s mid-thigh. You can be scooped up and carried to an undisclosed location without notice or consent. You’re at the mercy of grown-ups 99 percent of the time. I don’t see the point of adding toilet use to the long list of things you can’t control.

6. I get to baby my baby. My toddler is my second and most likely my last child, which makes her my baby forever. I realize it will be just a couple of blinks before I’m putting her on the school bus with her big sister. Diaper changes give me a chance to kiss the velvet skin of her little potbelly, to squeeze her scrumptious thighs, to marvel at her unlined, chubby feet. Also, there’s nothing quite like the sound of her high pitched giggle when I tickle the back of her knee. 

This article was originally published on Motherly.

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