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Potty Training

September 8, 2009
Times Observer

I had planned on writing an article on technology. But in recent days the discussions I have held with teachers, staff and parents has made me aware of how interesting the world of potty training has become. It use to be, “Start as soon as your child can communicate”. Which really seemed a natural way to approach it. The idea was to teach them before they get to the NO stage which occurs between ages 2 and 3 ½. At that age their favorite word is no, so it isn’t that they just don’t want to do it. It is their first true effort to assert themselves and be independent. So without any stress we beat them to the punch by introducing it before the no stage. At that time when your child began speaking and communicating you began potty language. This began the first showdown with the toilet. Now that the child can talk he understands that that is the toilet. He sees what it is used for so let’s synchronize the bodily event. Unfortunately, potty training has turned into a career path for some parents. Beleaguered and not knowing what to do next. It has surprised me to find that some toddlers are almost four before they are potty trained. I was pretty amazed. With all the technology and advancement we are making as human beings how in the world is this digressing? It seems strange. Then one of our staff said, “Pull-Ups. The discussion began there and it seemed to get pretty heated but I will admit there were those who stayed pretty calm about it. It seems that the diaper industry in order to help parents out has made diaper underwear. It is suppose to be less like a diaper but more like a panty. The child can still wet themselves but not ruin their clothes. This is certainly very helpful to mom and dad or whom ever is watching the little darling. This, however, may not be the lesson the little one needs. Staying dry and getting a little damp just doesn’t make the impact. I will say it was interesting to do some research online and find all kinds of reasons why children can wait until their latter ages to be potty trained. I also found that those sites had a Pampers or Pull-Ups ad tagged to the page. You have to always remember dear parents you are the most marketable group. Always look to the advertisers to see who is sponsoring the ad on the computer or on the pamphlet in the Dr. Office. Therefore, this may sound unpleasant but remove the Pull-Ups and let it happen. There is nothing like soaked, good old down to your socks dripping wet soaked. Shoes in a puddle soaked. Pants so wet you can hardly get them off the little tiger soaked. Uncomfortable enough he may not want to have that happen too often. It really is just a week long of being on your toes. One week of lots of laundry to a successful tot running to the potty with lots of clapping and happy faces. It beats not being able to sign up for activities for your child because you do not have a potty trained 3 year old.

Kimberly Slocum is a native of Warren, a wife and mother of three beautiful children, Nick, Cory and Blair. She recently moved from the city of Warren to the rural area of starbrick. A professional national artist, as well as a preschool teacher and art instructor at the Warren YMCA.

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