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August 09, 2008

Mommies Potty Training Boys: How Does This Work?

Pottytraininggraphic My two-year-old son is showing signs that he is ready for potty training.  On the one hand, I am thrilled about this development (a diaper-free life!).  But at the same time, I have lots of trepidation about the whole project. 

I toilet trained my daughter with ease two years ago.  The whole process seemed -- well, natural.  She hung out with me in the bathroom, watched how it was done, mimicked my behavior and viola, she was trained.  Easy.

Potty training a boy seems quite a bit more complicated.   Let me just come out and say it:  how am I supposed to teach him how to use a piece of equipment that I don't have?

There are big differences and small differences in the ways that men and women use the bathroom.  My son has been watching me in the bathroom and now he is imitating my behavior.  So he sits when he pees (although I have learned that you have to be careful or this can end up being a mess).  He wipes with a little bit of toilet paper after he is done so his pants don't get wet.  He washes and then uses some lotion on his hands.  If I look in the mirror to check my make up, he pretends to be doing the same thing.

My husband says that I am setting our son up to be ridiculed in every locker room that he steps foot into. Men stand and they don't wipe after they pee- or use hand lotion for that matter.  He fears that I am confusing our son.

Fine then.  Maybe in an ideal world, Dads should potty train boys.  But  the more I think about it,  the more confident I am that my son is going to be better off with the bathroom habits that I am teaching him.   He sits now, but that's just because he isn't tall enough to stand yet.  That will change as he gets bigger.  And the whole wiping thing -- I think that it is a good idea.  He won't have that little dribble mark on his pants.  The lotion keeps his hands nice and soft - also a nice feature in a man.

So I am going to keep on showing him how to use the bathroom -- my way.  Some day he will thank me (I hope).

Original post to the Chicago Moms Blog.

Caitlin writes about her adventures with her two little ones (mostly non-bathroom-related) at A Hen and Two Chicks and Being Savvy:  Chicago.

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