When it comes to reaching developmental milestones, walking and talking are impressive, but it seems that somewhere along the way, potty training became the holy grail of milestones. When my daughter was inching toward potty-using age, the question, "Oh, is she potty trained yet?" came up at playdates with increasing frequency. The pressure was on, so we went for it, but my girl had no interest. It was exhausting for both of us, so I decided to just wait. Everyone kept talking about how much easier potty training was compared to changing diapers, so even though we weren't quite there, I was eagerly looking forward to the convenience that was sure to come.
And then it happened... or rather, it didn't happen. What I mean is, when my daughter decided she was into this potty training business she figured it out with nary an accident. So, yay! Potty training happened! The thing that didn't happen was that entire part about convenience.
Having a toddler who uses the potty instead of a diaper to do their business is pretty much a giant pain in the ass. There is very little about it that is convenient—aside from the fact that I don't have to buy diapers anymore. While I am thankful that my daughter figured it out and I know it'll get easier, I definitely miss some things about the diaper days.
So, here you go...for all you parents who are feeling the pressure to potty train your littles, here are a few reasons to stop stressing and just enjoy the diapers while they last!
1. Wiping butts with baby wipes is infinitely better than wiping with toilet paper.
Believe me, things aren't getting as squeaky clean anymore. I'll take wipes over 2-ply any day. Don't get even get me started on what happens when it's a 1-ply situation.
2. Cleaning a potty seat is kind of gross.
Dumping out a potty seat with pee, no biggie. Cleaning out a potty seat with poop? Not the most fun of your life.
3. You get to sleep in.
When my child was still using diapers, she often slept in until 9:00 AM and sometimes even 10:00! Most of the time she would wake up early, look at a book or two, and then fall back asleep. Now, she wakes us up at the crack of dawn every morning to take her potty. See ya later sleep!
Stop, drop and pee is the name of the game now.
4. The bathroom isn't your new hangout spot.
I spend SO much time in the bathroom that being on potty duty has pretty much become my second job. I should probably just set up a work station in there, because my daughter absolutely CANNOT go without me there. Enjoy the fact that you don't have to hang out in the germiest place in the house for ridiculous amounts of time every day.
5. You don't have to scout out restrooms every time you're in public.
I never realized how important it was to know where a bathroom is when you're out in public, but it is, it really is. If you make the mistake of not knowing and having to waste time to hunt one down in the midst of a potty emergency, you may end up paying the price. Clean up on aisle seven!
6. Speaking of which... two words: public restrooms.
I literally get chills just thinking about the disgustingness that is taking a toddler to use a public restroom. They want to touch ALL THE THINGS and if you can make it out of there without contracting a disease, you're doing pretty stellar.
7. You don't have to leave your cart of groceries to take a potty break.
I can't even count the number of times I've had to leave carts of stuff to take a potty break. Gone are the days of waiting until after you checkout to go deal with a diaper. Stop, drop and pee is the name of the game now.
8. You don't have to deal with weird toddler toileting idiosyncrasies.
Toddlers can have some pretty quirky ideas surrounding their potty usage. Some are terrified of pooping for an assortment of reasons, which is another situation completely, but some just have weird/inconvenient/time-consuming rituals. For us it was that my daughter absolutely had to completely undress before using the potty. This wasn't quite so bad when we were at home, but when we were out and about in public it was a nightmare.
Once kids learn that they are in control of their potty usage, you're in for it. Toddlers don't have very many bargaining chips in their arsenal, so they've gotta use what they've got. My daughter learned very quickly that she could hold her pee hostage in order to attempt to get me to meet her demands. This is particularly apparent at bed time. Half the time she completely refuses to go, knowing that she can't go to sleep until she does (or at least she can't go without it being a punishment to me in the form of an accident.) Enjoy this time while your toddler has less to bargain with while it lasts.
10. You have so much more free time that isn't being spent on toileting activities.
Changing diapers sucks, but at least you're in and out relatively quickly. This is definitely not the case with potty training. I literally spend at least an hour of each day dealing with toileting activities that are not my own. In between finding a bathroom, helping her dress/undress, wipe, etc., it's a real time suck. Try to soak up that little bit of extra free time you've still got going for you.
And if this isn't particularly encouraging to you, just remember that most college kids are toilet trained, so it'll happen eventually.