Potty Time

Right after my oldest boy finished the potty-training ordeal, I remember thinking, “This isn’t as bad as everyone says it will be. Little boys aren’t that messy in the bathroom!” Five years later and I now know that I was completely WRONG!

I didn’t realize that being an extra foot taller exponentially raises the splash factor, or that after a few years of thinking it’s “so cool” to finally be tall enough to pee standing up, my boys would quit paying attention and have more spills than we ever had during potty training. (Why can’t they just sit down? Why?) Really, is it that hard to focus for just thirty seconds??? I guess they could argue that I don’t know what it’s like, girls don’t have to aim.

My husband and boys are even in charge of bathroom cleaning (except when I step in for the occasional deep cleaning), but apparently the gross factor of that isn’t high enough to change their bad habits.

So, is it any wonder that now, on my third go-round, I have a boy well past three who STILL. WEARS. DIAPERS. Because I’ve decided my walls don’t need any more yellow at the moment.

I have to admit, there’s another reason my 3-year-old is still in diapers–I am lazy!! Disposable diapers are just SO much easier than training pants, accidents, remembering to send the kid to the pot once an hour, and public restrooms (on my list of top 10 gross-outs!). I’m not sure if I should admit this, but some days we get by with just two or three diaper changes–and it’s not all my fault. Buzz runs away when he sees me getting a diaper ready. It interrupts the flow of his day, and he just can’t be bothered like that. Pampers has pampered me a bit too much.

Maybe that’s part of why my fourth boy is the first to experience cloth diapers. Because after a few years of washing those out, I think I will be much more anxious to get the little guy doing his business on the pot. It will add a little motivation for him too–no stay-dry lining or weird little super-absorbent polymer beads, just good old-fashioned wet cloth. (Really, there are some other benefits too. I tried cloth diapers due to a combination of curiosity and a vague sense of guilt, and I’ve really come to love them!)

Now I need some public shaming to motivate me. I should have ditched the diapers long before boy #4 came along. With a new baby, then some family medical problems, then the holidays, then flu season, I keep finding excuses. Help me out here–what words of wisdom do you have? (Or is your little boy pushing the limits of the size 6 diaper stretch tabs too?)

I’m off to Costco to buy more diapers in bulk.

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11 Responses to Potty Time

  1. Brittany says:

    I so feel you on the mess! If it makes you feel better, Lily sprays the seat also when she sits down, I just can’t win either. You could be stuck in trying to train him and him wanting to be a baby and that whole power struggle. Don’t doubt yourself your a great mommy, as long as he is trained by Kindergarten then who cares, your the one who has to change him 😉 Good Luck.

  2. Megan Hochstrasser says:

    Your son doesn’t sound ready to potty train. If he doesn’t tell you and doesn’t want his diaper changed, then you would just be training yourself to take him to the bathroom every half an hour. 🙂 I like your writing style, and your two posts were fun to read.

    • Christy says:

      Thanks Megan. I do kind of prefer to wait until they’re definitely ready for the potty. That said, I think Zeke is almost there, if I gave him a little more encouragement. But, I’m not too stressed about it!

  3. Deanne says:

    What a great idea! You are a fantastic writer and I am so excited to muse with you about our crazy boys. You know that I wouldn’t change what we have for anything! I am so glad we have each other in this quest. See you Friday. I think a night out at a public resturaunt with our 8 boys will be a worthy post to write about… don’t you?

    • Christy says:

      Oh, Deanne, are you bringing your boys after all? Wow, yes, it will be a zoo. Kent will think twice next time he invites our entourage to go out in public with him!

  4. Bruce says:

    Good post… But give the hubby a little more credit for *his* good aim and bathroom habits, what hey?

  5. Sharon says:

    Oh Christy…I feel your pain. Or whatever you might call it. I could have written an identical post, cloth diapering and all. I go back an forth and have just had to come to grips with it all. Oh yeah and our 3 1/2 year old just barely ditched the diapers! Yay! We’re still working out some of the kinks in the process, but no more diapers for him. So I just have the 1 year old and of course the one on the way. I keep saying to myself that if there’s any chance it’s a girl I will totally cloth diaper her. I think it would be so much fun to CD a girl since you don’t have to worry about bigger pants all the time to fit over the bulk. Cute skirts and leggings would be fun, don’t you think? The ultrasound is on Valentine’s Day, so we’ll see. I can’t imagine seeing anything else but a boy on there, but you never know! Good luck, you’re doing great!

  6. Jennifer Smith says:

    My boys were both too skinny to require the stretch tabs, and they have such tiny little bums (genetics from the other side of the family!) that we never had to succumb to size 6, but I must say I did not potty train either boy until they were at least 3 1/2 years old. AND, I felt completely justified in my decision! They have completely opposite personalities, but both potty trained in a week tops – with very few accidents. My key rule was that ALL boys in the house have to be sitters. NO standing. In fact, they like it better that way. My husband was the only boy among 4 girls and didn’t have an option sitting vs. standing either. It has worked really well and our bathrooms are rather clean. And I am afraid that I got my mothers’ genetics when it comes to being a clean freak. The apple didn’t fall far . . .

    If Zeke is close, let him gear up for it. Set a date a few weeks away, then on the appointed day take away the diapers. (We didn’t do any pull-ups either.) It was all or nothing. I’ve watched too many friends try to potty train before a baby comes or before the holidays or a move or another big event . . . it honestly sets the child up for failure and regression. You did the right thing waiting until after the baby was born!

    It’s been fun reading your blog. I am so excited to catch up through through our lives with boys. You look exactly like I remember your mother looking when I was young. I love seeing your pictures! Thanks for sharing.

    Jen

  7. Mindy Tippetts says:

    Um…………
    My first boy was potty-trained at 3
    My second boy was potty-trained at 3 1/2
    My third boy was potty-trained at 4
    (do we see a pattern here?)
    I say just don’t stress about it — as long as they’re potty trained before kindergarten, it’s all good 🙂

    (By the way — I love your blog!)

    • Christy says:

      Thanks Mindy. It’s so great to hear that I’m not the only one with an older boy still in diapers. It’s those moms who are done with diapers by age 2 that get me feeling a little insecure…

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