The Problem with the Potty

By | March 9, 2014

I have a problem, and it’s the potty. No matter how often or how recently my 4-year-old daughter has visited the bathroom whenever we are in public, she will have to go. When my wife is with us this isn’t a big deal. I tell her to tell Mommy and my job is done. But being a stay at home dad, many times my wife isn’t there. It is just my daughter and me, and she has to go.
Now when there is a family restroom we have no problem. We go in, she does her business we leave. But when there isn’t a family room we are left with only one option: The Men’s room. This is one of the most harrowing experiences I have ever lived through.
Women don’t have this when they bring a young boy into the restroom. Other women do not react the same way men react to a young girl in the men’s room. There is none of the fear and disgust. I believe that if I took my daughter to a bar, sat at a bar, and ordered her a beer, I would get fewer dirty looks then you get bringing a young girl into the men’s room.
Let me walk you through a visit. First when she tells me she has to go and I do every thing I can to talk her out of it. When that fails the search for a family restroom starts. When that fails I am left with only one option, the men’s room.
We enter and everyone looks at us. I hurry my daughter past the urinals (special sinks for boys) to the stall I pray is empty, doing my best to hide her eyes from anything she could see. Once in there I do my best to hurry her and get this over with. She helps me by taking her time, doing things herself, sometimes singing, sometimes seeing how many things she can possibly touch. This of course, horrifies me because public men’s room are disgusting. I don’t care how recently they were cleaned, they are disgusting.
[tweetthis]I’m a stay at home dad and sometimes, she has to go #potty[/tweetthis]
When she is done 3 -30 minutes later, we move on to washing her hands. I talk her out of using one of the special sinks for boys and we wash her hands in a sink again, with a full audience. We move to the dryers where if she is lucky, I give her 5 whole seconds to dry her hands before I am moving her out the door.
As we exit relived that the ordeal is over, I pray that she doesn’t ask any questions. I do not want to have to get into an anatomical discussion about the difference between boys and girls in the middle of Home Depot.
We are now able to finish our shopping We leave the store and move on to complete the next errand when she tells me she has to go potty. I think I am going to stop giving her things to drink.

Photo From – Mike Mozart – Flickr.com – CC

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