Sunday, September 28, 2008

Potty Follies - What Would You Do?

So, Mary Grace has been potty trained since her birthday (August 10). We still use diapers overnight and at nap time, but she's doing great otherwise.

Until today.

We were a little under the weather yesterday, which caused us to miss a birthday party (boo!!), but today the girls were ready to roll, and stir crazy from spending a whole day in the house. We took off for the Feast of the Hunter's Moon with Grandma Susan.

The girls were so good, they were just delightful and had a really good time (so did Grandma Susan and I!). Except for the potty...

The latrine.

I had the port-a-potty in the car, and before we walked from the parking lot to the festival grounds I asked MG if she needed to use it, but she was too excited to get to the festival (she'd been talking about it all day yesterday) so we didn't. We had only been there for half an hour or so when she said, "Mommy, I need to go potty."

The nearest potty was a latrine. It was a commode over a hole, basically, and it was filthy. And it reeked. And I knew my fastidious little girl, who has loved to wash her hands since she was tiny, who hates being sticky, who wouldn't even go in sand until after her second birthday because it felt dirty, was NOT going to handle it well. I just knew.

Instead of having her sit on the seat (ACK!) I tried holding her in my arms, with one arm behind her back and one under her knees, and holding her over the commode, but that didn't work. She couldn't relax. She was screaming, "No Mommy, it's filthy! It's yucky! I don't want to pee!!!" In desperation, I tried letting her sit on the seat (there is not enough Lysol in the universe...) but she leaped off of it like it was on fire.

I couldn't stand the odor anymore, myself, and there were other families with young children waiting, so we bailed on the latrine. I saw some Port-A-Potties (the big blue ones, not like the little potty chair in my car) but I knew that wouldn't work any better. I could've left Claire (who was asleep in the stroller) with Grandma Susan, and tried to run back to the car, but I knew she wouldn't make it. We were too far away from the car.

There were too many people to pull up a bush.

So, I did the only thing I could think of at the time. I put one of Claire's diapers on her. I told her that it was a special circumstance, and that it was ok to pee in Claire's diaper. She wouldn't, at first, but eventually desperation took over and she did.

My poor kid.

What should I have done differently? Forced her to use the latrine? Should I have taken her back to the car? Should I have carried her potty chair with us? I don't want to have to skip this sort of thing until the kids are old enough to hold their breath and pee, but this is the first outdoor festival we've tried since we potty trained her. Would you have put a diaper on her, too, if you'd been me?


dieMutti said...

We went to Germany when my daughter had been potty-trained for about 3 months. Why we even took the kids with us is the first question. But anyway, yeah, I had the same experience and plus at most places to pee in Germany, you have to PAY, and they can be hard to find (and we were walking EVERYWHERE).

Long story a little shorter, when she was screaming about needing to go, we threw on one of her brother's diapers over her undies. She complained, but finally gave in and went, and it didn't affect her potty-going overall at all. In fact, a couple of days later, she held it long enough and decided to actually attempt the Toilette!

I'm glad I'm not the only one to make the throw-on-the-diaper decision!

Anonymous said...

I would have done the same thing. (we are just starting potty training ourselves so we're not even there yet) If the time comes I will not hesitate to do the same thing. It's great how you explained to her that its a special ciurcumstance. I don't think it will take her back to wanting diapers again.

Kathryn said...

We wage the "make sure" potty stop before we head out anywhere war with Ian to this day. When he was first potty trained I would not leave until he did a make sure pee because I knew he couldn't hold it long enough. As he has gotten older I suggest the make sure and if he chooses not to then he has to wait - it has been a good lesson. I might has not taken off for the festival until she pottied, but the diaper was a great idea. It is so much easier with boys!!

Heather said...

Amelia thinks that port-a-potties are cool, so she tells us she needs to go when really she just wants to play with the hand sanitizer dispenser.

My kid is weird, what can I say?

But we were at the feast the entire day, so she had no real choice about the port-a-potties, and we were lucky and managed to avoid the latrine, so I dunno what her experience would have been. We did bring along a couple pull-ups, just in case. And I *know* I would have done the same thing you did, because I've considered it on long road trips when I haven't been within eyesight of a decent rest stop.

strwberrryjoy said...

great idea. intp my mom file.