To Pee Or Not To Pee?

Parenthood is full of dilemmas. Moments when you have to choose one path over another.

My dilemma today was a big one – TO PEE OR NOT TO PEE?

I’ll explain.

We took a trip to the beach today. The kids and I drove there and I drank a giant cup of tea on the way (you’ll understand this detail in a minute).

The three of us arrived, and schlepped all our beach “stuff” (which is A LOT when you bring kids), and settled ourselves on a perfect spot of the beach. It was then that I realized I needed to go to the bathroom. I blame the big cup of tea!

So I gathered both kids and we walked across the beach to the bathroom.

th-3We were all about to enter the “Women’s Room” when my son suddenly stopped. He read the sign and yelled, “WAIT! I’m a boy with a penis, I am NOT going in the girl’s bathroom. NO, NO, NO!”. “NO – WAY – JOSÉ!” (yep he yelled that!).

First I “sshhhhshh’d him. Because honestly, all I heard was him screaming the word “penis” and I could only imagine what other beach-goers thought he was yelling about.

Then I calmly explained that of course he could come in the women’s room with me like he always does. I said, “Mommy has to use the potty and you have to come in with me and wait”.

th-2Nope. He refused to budge. He kept yelling, “I am not a woman, I’m a MEN, I go to the MEN’S ROOM”.

On the one hand, I understood his complaint… He is getting bigger. He feels like a man who belongs in the “Men’s” Room.

But understand my side… he is a little kid and is not old enough to go into a public restroom alone, or be left outside alone. Either option is just not safe.

It was either Women’s Room, or nothing.

toilet-signs (45)[9]


Now we have a dilemma.

For 10 minutes, we discussed it calmly. We stood in the doorway. Me almost peeing my pants, and he absolutely refusing to come in with me.

I even started doing the potty dance. He still wouldn’t budge.

It was a true dilemma. I couldn’t leave him alone outside at a crowded beach, and I couldn’t drag him in with me.

So what did I do? I decided to bargain with him.

I offered him a lollipop, candy, an ice cream cone? No, not enough.

I offered unlimited iPad usage that evening. Nope. Still wasn’t enough.

“How about a new Thomas train?”, I said. (Please don’t judge… I really had to pee!).

He thought about that one for a minute…  A new train????????

I saw a slight shift in that stubborn face he had been maintaining so well. Finally… He said YES! He agreed he would come in the Women’s Room if I’d get him a new train (trains are definitely the way to my son’s heart).

And of course, I said okay.

Call it what you like… bargaining, using persuasive measures, bribing… Whatever it was, it worked. I got to pee. And he got a train.

Dilemma solved.

In my eyes, it was a win-win. I even felt proud for a moment.

Until… walking away from the bathroom, I realized I now have a new dilemma. How to avoid having to buy my son a new train every time I need to go to the bathroom.

Uh Oh.











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  • Reply Adventures of a Cavemom August 24, 2015 at 7:57 pm

    My big dilemma is always if I have to pee badly enough to stop at a gas station, get both (soon to be three) kids out of their carseats, and lug them all inside to pee. The struggle is real!

    • Reply August 24, 2015 at 9:24 pm

      I know! The car seat struggle is very real!!! My kids have both learned to buckle themselves into their booster seats now, and I can’t tell you what a difference it makes for me! So hang in there – yours will be there soon too!

  • Reply Louise August 24, 2015 at 8:31 pm

    Stories like this that make me very glad I have two daughters. I feel for you! My eldest daughter is five and we’re now working on letting her go to the bathroom in known public places on her own (ie: the gym, McDonalds etc…) sometimes I still have to come in and check on her so I feel your pain here. Hopefully you figure out a way to avoid an impressive train collection!

    • Reply August 24, 2015 at 9:22 pm

      Thanks for sharing! I agree that it’s easier with me to let my daughter go in alone too. Isn’t that sad that it’s scary to let a boy into the men’s room alone?

  • Reply Mommy A to Z August 28, 2015 at 9:57 pm

    Ha! I found myself bribing my son to go to the potty the other day at a fair, because I knew he was about to fall asleep in his stroller and would inevitably pee in it (since he hadn’t gone all morning). I felt terrible doing it but pretty happy when he actually peed on the potty. Sometimes a mom’s gotta do what a mom’s gotta do 🙂 Thanks for linking up at the Manic Mondays blog hop!

    • Reply August 29, 2015 at 10:01 am

      I think we should just start calling them “incentives”, not bribes!!! lol Thanks for visiting!

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