Bathroom Bluffing

One phrase: that's all it takes. Four magic words. If you've ever potty-trained a child, you know that no matter what you're doing - or where you are - or how inconvenient it is - this one phrase makes you drop everything and run for the nearest toilet.

The phrase?

I need to poop.

When you're potty-training your kid, there are no more powerful words. If we're, say, shopping at the grocery store and Coby says, "I need to go pee!" I always say, "You can hold it for a few more minutes." Because chances are, he really just wants to go check out the inside of the restroom which is what he wants to do at like every establishment we ever visit, EVER. I can tell when he genuinely needs to go and when he's just wanting a change of scenery.

But with poop? There's no guarantee. If it were the middle of winter, and Coby was decked out in ten layers of clothing and a snowsuit and standing in the midst of a snowdrift, and he said, "I need to poop," I'd be hauling him inside peeling off clothes like my life depended on it. (After maybe like groaning and rolling my eyes, of course.) If we were at a carnival and the only bathrooms were those Porta-Potties that reek from a mile away and look like a science experiment, and Coby said, "I need to poop," I'd take him and my hand sanitizer and hold my breath for a freakishly long time. If Johnny Depp himself were standing in front of us - and y'all know how I love me some Johnny Depp - and Coby said, "I need to poop," I'd... I'd ........

.... I'd probably just let him poop in his pants.

I mean, you know, Johnny Depp.

But that's the exception. Under any other circumstance, even if I'm almost positive he's bluffing, I take Coby to the bathroom every time he utters the dreaded phrase. Because if there's anything more inconvenient than that, it's cleaning up a poopy mess. Can I get an "amen?"

The only thing is, it seems like they always learn to use that phrase to their advantage. Yesterday, at nap time, I had Coby all settled into his bed with a book to look at. I gave him a kiss and turned around to leave the room. And then?

"Mommy, I need to poop."

You know how it is. You hear it, you're 99% sure it isn't true, but ... there's that nagging 1%. That part of your brain that's permanently scarred from memories of scrubbing turd-smeared surfaces. That part screams, "Please don't put me through another disaster like that! For God's sake, take him to the bathroom!"

And because lately I've been dealing with Coby pooping everywhere but the toilet (see here and here, not to mention a handful of other incidents I haven't even blogged about), I let him go. Like three times. Even though, just as I suspected, he only wanted to get out of bed. And today? This very blog post has been interrupted no fewer than four times by the declaration of "I need to poop." Which, you guessed it, never happened. But I swear, as soon as I decide to ignore his request to go to the bathroom, something terrible will happen. That's just my luck. Like this mess on my bathroom floor, from two days ago, which he tried to clean up himself with one of my good towels:

Because it somehow seems less graphic in black and white.

I know that the majority of the time, he really doesn't need to go. And during those moments, most of me wants to kick myself for being manipulated by a toddler.

PS - Don't forget there's a giveaway up! Click on the Giveaways and Reviews tab (or just click here) and enter to win a SWEET voucher from Simply Swim!


  1. Jessica Armstrong LasaJuly 18, 2012 at 10:22 AM

    UGH! Luckily it seems like Maryanna has forgotten about the fun trips to the bathroom in every store we go into. FOR NOW. A month ago it was every single place we went. And thank you, I think black and white was less graphic and thank you again, just the mention of Johnny Depp has made my morning a little sweeter. ;)

  2. Oh wow! haha, hope he gets potty-trained soon!

  3. I'm the same way- pee: hold it. Poop: mad dash for the bathroom.

  4. i was so lucky with my kids, no issues in this department, and Morgan has had the same with Drake.... now, little Miss Tannis, I think this is going to be a different story.... she loves to control and why wouldn't this just be another cool way to do it!


Post a Comment

Commenting makes you big and strong! Okay, maybe just strong. Okay, so it's only your fingers. But still ...

Popular Posts