Potty Training, and Parenting, on “Foreign” Soil

We started potty training our son this week. Well, I suppose that is not quite accurate. We started doing diaper changes in the bathroom, and making him sit on the toilet before putting the new diaper on. Much like most things, we do things our special way.

We are finally to the point where the change in routine is almost accepted, though he still is honest about not liking it. His diaper changes up to this point were a personalized service. He wouldn’t have to leave the Xbox, or whatever he was playing with. I imagine this change would be like suddenly being told you have to make your own omelette after having room service bring it to you every morning for almost five years.

Both days this weekend he had extended periods of time at other people’s houses. It was the first time we had done this new routine in new bathrooms. This set back the acceptance a bit. It probably didn’t help that when I said “okay, it’s potty time” in these houses he had no idea where to go. It was cute, if slightly mean, to watch him running around looking for the bathroom.

It was also the first time my husband and I got to hear how the potty ritual went for each other.

My husband has always been the fun parent. The potty time ritual is no exception. They are in there laughing, snarfing, making huge deals out of counting to 10! It’s a party time in there. It made me realize why my husband thinks this change in routine is not big deal.

When we are in there, it’s a somber, almost sad experience from the sounds on the outside of the door. Even our friends noticed that our son screams when he’s in there with me. It made my husband realize why this change of routine has me almost in tears when he comes home at night.

I have made more efforts to be the “fun” parent this morning. I’m just not good at it. It’s hard for me to be excited about counting to “30” every hour or so. But, I’m working on it.

We are debating when to go to the next stage in this game, when we get him pull-ups and start the traditional potty training. I’m sure it’ll be soon. Probably at the end of this box of diapers, which we are about halfway through. Once we hit this stage, and start doing “potty time” every 30 minutes, we will probably actually go potty in the potty for the first that. That, will be exciting!

Overall, it’s been an interesting weekend. I confronting my discomfort about parenting in public both days, with large amounts of success. Our son did very VERY well. He only screamed once during boys night, which made our host happy. I also enjoyed being in a home with a huge fenced back yard for my son to run in.

My best friend set up a blow up water slide for my son while we were there for her party on Thursday. He thoroughly enjoyed that. My son also took turns, waiting in a line, and didn’t hit kids in the head when he was frustrated. These are all huge improvements from last summer. I am very proud.



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