My Jedi Mind Potty-Training Tricks (and Other Completely Ineffective Parenting Tips)

Not my daughter, but I can see she takes potty training just as seriously

“Sitting in poop is icky.  Doesn’t it feel nice to have a clean diaper?” I just asked my two-year-old daughter in that encouraging tone us parents use when we’re trying to play Jedi mind tricks on our children.  Potty train, will you?  Although I know Skye would be content to stay in a dirty diaper for weeks on end, I’d hoped my continual gentle nudging would eventually make her sit up and think, “Why, yes, now that you mention it, it WOULD be nice to leave my sh*t in a pot instead of my pants!”

Skye did not miss a beat.

“No!  I like poopy diapers!”

Just as the next fifteen years flashed before my eyes — me, changing Skye’s diaper in kindergarten; me, changing Skye’s diaper at senior prom — my crazy child laughed to let me know she was kidding.

Well, half-kidding.

At least thirty minutes of every day is spent wrestling Skye to the ground to change her dirty diaper.  You would think she would be pleased with my offer to clean her free of charge, but no…!  The second I stick a finger in her pants to verify the presence of the cause of the offending odor, she’s already running in the opposite direction, insisting I’ve made a grave mistake — EVEN THOUGH I HAVE SAID NOTHING YET.  At this point, Drew and the cats grab a tub of popcorn and pull up some chairs, because they know an entertaining high-speed chase is about to ensue:  Skye, pushing tiny strollers and dolls in my path to slow me down, and me running after her with wipes and a new diaper, yelling pointless questions like, “Why would you want to stay in a dirty diaper?!”

And now I know why:  SHE LIKES THEM.  *Sigh*

There have been glimmers of hope…fleeting ones, that is.  After completing a Number One in the potty months ago, a feat celebrated with happy dances, high-fives, M&Ms, stickers, and a round of calls to the family and local news outlets, Skye has shown absolutely no interest in using the potty other than to store her stickers there.  Now, to be fair, Mr. Candy and I haven’t exactly pushed potty training yet, either, other than the typical books and videos and puppet show demonstrations put on by the cats, who are tired of smelling her crap.  Our pediatrician suggested we follow Skye’s cues, saying she’ll let us know when she’s ready, and that’s just fine with us.  As unpleasant and exhausting as it can be to change the diaper of a two-and-a-half-year-old (and, oh my, is it ever), I’m in no particular hurry.  When she’s ready, we’re ready — which, hopefully, will happen before she’s picking out china patterns with her fiancé.

My main concern is my mom’s tongue, which she may have bitten completely in half by the time we finally get our daughter potty-trained.  You see, she apparently had my siblings and I potty-trained by three weeks old, give or take a week, and is not-so-secretly dying over the fact that our child still does her business in Cookie Monster diapers.   Even on the phone, I can hear my mom biting her tongue hard when we discuss the topic, to the point there is the faint sound of crunching.  Being the sensitive daughter I am, I may or may not push her buttons to see if we can get that sucker to split in two:

MOM:  (CAREFULLY)  So… have you gotten Skylar to use the potty again?

ME:  NO!  I LIKE POOPY DIAPERS!

Hmmmm.  Wonder where my daughter gets it from.

Candy Kirby

Candy is the founder of The Mom Beat and a humor columnist whose work as appeared in Redbook, Nickelodeon's NickMom, Disney's BabyZone, HelloGiggles and eHow. She also used to be a staff writer for the soap opera, The Bold and the Beautiful, where she penned many scripts featuring prolonged heated stares and countless “Who’s the Daddy?” story lines. Candy lives in Los Angeles with her husband, two young kids and three rescue Persian cats, the latter of whom are the real brains behind this operation.