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Newbie Parents, You Need to Potty Train, Too

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Potty-training experts and advice-givers love to share all their wisdom (and sometimes, their B.S.) with other parents. Night wetting? They’ve got it covered. Training pants? They can rate them according to material, durability and environmental-sanctimoniousness. “Potty-training”? No. It’s call “toilet-learning.” Elimination communication? Say the phrase three times and, just like Beetlejuice, the EC crowd will haunt your waking hours.

All this wisdom and advice, however, is often woefully incomplete. Time and time again, the potty-training experts-that-be fail to give parents the information we actually need to ensure that WE are potty-trained. Or toilet-learned. Or whatever.

It’s time to practice some self-care, people. Just follow these 10 steps and save your babies and toddlers some embarrassment the next time you look at them in public and exclaim, “Uh oh! I have to pee!”

RELATED: The Perfect Potty-Training Soundtrack

Perform multiple squat reps every day, preferably in sets of 1,000. Having toned thighs will help you to hover over public toilet seats while simultaneously unbuttoning your pants, retrieving toilet paper and keeping your child from crawling under the bathroom stall and exclaiming “HEWWO, I SEE YOU!” to your startled neighbor.

Once you’ve mastered the hover, take your workout up a notch. Squat while gripping 30-pound weights that try to squirm out of your grasp as you pee. You can also try this with a cat or dog. Yes, the animal might scratch or bite you. Yes, your child might scratch or bite you as you hover over a public toilet someday too. Cherish every moment!

Now for an advanced-level skill. Learn to unzip and pull down your pants with one hand. While squatting. And wrangling a 30-pound weight or clawing cat. Just think: you’ll be ready to become a rodeo star by the time your child turns 3.

Hone your ability to pee in front of others (or at least your own child). Why? You probably shouldn’t leave your toddler unattended outside of a public bathroom stall. Eventually, they will also try to join you in your home bathroom every chance they get. Obviously, do not attempt to hone this ability in public and/or in front of people who are not in your immediate family.

Practice wearing your baby in a carrier and peeing before you attempt this feat in public. Your squat reps will come in handy here. If your baby is not yet born, set a small watermelon inside your preferred baby carrier. Then practice emptying your bladder with the watermelon and carrier attached to your body. Don’t drop the watermelon. Or the baby. (Note: Unless you are in the market for clown pants, do not attempt to wear your baby while shopping for and trying on jeans. Trust me on this one.)

Learn to poop while someone bangs on the bathroom door demanding that you feed them Cheerios or yelling about how the cat is looking at them funny or losing their shit (figuratively, one hopes) over the fact that “Let it Go” stopped playing for four-and-a-half seconds.

Write your speeches before you make them. Prepare your responses to questions such as, “Why do you have so much hair there?” or “Why do you pee standing up?” or “Why is there blood in the toilet?” or “Where did your penis go, Mom?” If that last question does indeed arise, try reinforcing some body positivity in your child by responding to the last question with something about how you do not lack a penis but instead have a vulva. Consider it your child’s first Women’s Studies course.

You can avoid every single one of these problems if you just pee before you leave the house. In that same vein, consider dehydrating yourself every time you need to make a two-or-more errand run with your child. (Disclaimer: this is not good medical advice. Don’t follow it. Practice steps 1-6 and repeat daily.)

Parent potty-training is for the home too. Learn to poop while someone bangs on the bathroom door demanding that you feed them Cheerios or yelling about how the cat is looking at them funny or losing their shit (figuratively, one hopes) over the fact that “Let it Go” stopped playing for four-and-a-half seconds.

RELATED: 7 Stages of Potty Training

Prepare for the following situation: Your immobile baby is playing happily on the floor, and you don’t want to move them. But you don’t want to leave them alone and you really have to go. Check to make sure that they aren’t anywhere near explosives or pickaxes or other dangerous things like that. QUICK. PEE LIKE A RACEHORSE. OR RACE LIKE A PEEHORSE. Time yourself. See if you can empty your bladder in under 10 seconds. Flush the toilet while in a sprint stance. Run halfway across the house to wash your hands with your baby in view. There. You only left the baby alone for 15 seconds. Whew.

Relax. Stop worrying. You can learn this all at your own pace. I mean, seriously, no one’s kid starts kindergarten without their parents having mastered every single one of these techniques.

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