Exhibitionist potty training: the pros and cons

Posted on August 15, 2012


Potty training brilliance

Welcome to this week’s instalment of WTF Wednesday, where we answer the questions you always wanted to ask a real expert but didn’t because they had no anonymous option.

Today’s question comes via Twitter and was submitted by Brandon, A.K.A @therookiedad. He also blogs over at The Rookie Dad. He asks:

Dear Barmy,

When potty training is it appropriate to have your child watch you go to the bathroom?

This is one of those tough questions that really depends on who you ask. For example, your wife might not be thrilled with some of the things your child might learn by watching you, insisting that your son actually learn to put the seat down when finished. You, on the other hand, want your son to grow up knowing the important dynamics of the “Honey, for the last time, put the damn seat down when you finish” aspect of healthy relationships. After all, you know that without that one little issue, your wife might think you’re perfect–an expectation no man wants to have to live up to. The toilet seat is your one ace in the hole, so to speak.

But you asked me and not your wife so let’s look at the pros and cons of exhibitionist potty training.

First, I’m going to assume you’re not considering allowing your daughter to watch. There are two reasons you do not want to attempt it with your daughter: 1) you love her, and 2) you have no idea what women do in the bathroom.

So, regarding your son watching, here are the pros:

Your son will learn how to properly wipe the pee off the toilet seat. As you know, this is an important skill for those days when pissing your wife off one last time might just send her over the edge. Rather than risk forgetting to put the seat down, you just never put it up in the first place, making cleanup pretty important.

Also, by watching you, your son will learn the more advanced procedures such as stealth peeing. This, of course, is where the stream is directed toward the side of the bowl, decreasing the unmistakable 100 decibel sound of a guy peeing down to the quiet whisper of pee splattering partly in the water and partly onto your pant legs.

As for the stuff you do when sitting, one time locked in the bathroom with daddy might not teach your child much but it will sear the inside of his nostrils, permanently limiting his ability to smell and taste. This will make him far more likely to eat your cooking and lead to more peaceful household dynamics at mealtime.

On the negative side, I really can’t say much except maybe you’ll want to start saving up now for the years of therapy your son will require just to get the image of daddy in the bathroom out of his head.

Problem solved! You’re welcome.


Got a question for the experts? Sorry, can’t help, but you can ask me instead if you want. Just drop it into the comments.