Learn From My First-Time Mom Mistake, Teach Your Kid To Wipe His Own Butt!


Between sleep-training and potty-training, it's a wonder parents make it out of the toddler phase with any of their marbles. I'm constantly thinking, This is it! I'm really going lose my shit! 

Amazingly, I don't.

Well, in an ugly twist, I am positive this latest development in potty-training is definitely going to do me in.

The Good News: My kid is so self sufficient, he goes to the potty by himself. The only time I have to prompt him to go, is when we are leaving the house. Pretty much, the only time he ever asks for help, is when he needs me to wipe his butt.

The Bad News: He's no longer calling me to wipe his butt. Which, sounds like a good thing, but without a butt wiping protocol already in place, things got messy, fast.

Truthfully, at just three years old, I haven't bothered to teach him to do it himself. He sucks at cleaning up spills, how on earth will he be able to wipe his own ass? Plus, the thought of him being tasked to do it without even my supervision kind of scares me.

So, when he calls me to wipe his butt, I happily do it.

Well, my fears were realized a few days ago when I found Ollie in the bathroom with half a roll of toilet paper stuck to his butt and the toilet.

Me: BUDDY! What are you doing?

The kid: The paper is stuck to my butt.

Me: Why didn't you call me?

The kid: I can do it myself.

Clearly, this was not the case.


I cleaned him up, explained that I needed to help him until he was a little bigger, and to call me next time.

So much for our little talk,  I found him in another sticky predicament the next day.

Same conversation ensued.

It dawned on me on day three the kid is determined to wipe his own ass, whether I like it or not. There must be some inner need driving him.

So, the last two days have been a mission to teach the kid to do it himself.

While I can't say it's been the most hygienic experience, I can say that he is finding a HUGE boost in his independence doing it. So it's worth it. I just hope he gets the hang of it sooner than later.

Lessons learned teaching my kid to wipe his own butt:

1. Insist on him using flushable butt wipes. This is not only a much cleaner method, it stops paper from getting stuck in his butt.

                The little hanging contraption that comes with Bob's Butt Wipes is super handy!

2. Me militant about hand washing. To the point where every time I hear the toilet flush I run in to make sure he washes his hands. I'm hoping, eventually, he will start doing it automatically.

3. Like every other potty-training milestone, it's a process. A long, gross process. Consistency is key.

What the professionals are saying: 5 Tips To Help Toddlers Learn To Wipe.

1. Explain why we wipe.
2. Demonstrate the correct technique
3. Talk about toilet paper, how to use it and the appropriate amount to use
4. Flushable wet wipes work wonders during training
5. Giv e praise and incentives

Do you have any advice for 
teaching a toddler to wipe his own butt ?

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April is an award-winning writer and blogger. Her work has been published in over ten countries and four languages. From books to newspapers, to print/online magazines and everything in between, you can find her work. For more on April, Visit AprilMcCormick.com