Restroom Accommodations: Things Parents Do to Use It

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A baby wrapped in toilet paper sitting next to a toilet.There are so many things that we as mothers do daily that I never thought I would ever have to do. We function on three hours of sleep, put breast milk in coffee, shave just one leg, and even crazier things.

But of all of these, my favorite funny stories involve using the restroom. I forget what it was like to pee with the door closed in silence.

Before children, as many people do, I used to take my phone into the bathroom. I would often get lost creating a new board on Pinterest. I used to read extensive articles that kept me up to date with important events like the Grammys. I always knew what the Kardashians were up to, even if I didn’t want to. Lately, I’ve had to create accommodations to use the bathroom, as many moms do. Not even alone.

I realized I needed to create a list of accommodations when we moved across the country. We made it out of Florida on our way to NY before my 8-month-old began to show signs of discomfort, and we quickly stopped for a stretch. While my husband took the dog for a walk, I brought my very fussy little girl into the women’s restroom to change her. There were no changing tables, and there was no way I could change her in a car full of bags and boxes.

So, I did my best to change her on the counter, trying to avoid (as best I could) the changing pad getting soaked by the water from the sinks. Then I thought, “How am I going to use the bathroom?” Although my husband was standing outside the restroom with the dog, I thought it was unfair for him to have both responsibilities. So, I brought her into the stall and squatted over the toilet. It is one thing to pee with a child in your arms in the comfort of your own home, sitting on your own toilet, but squatting in a dirty public rest-stop restroom? That’s a whole new ballgame.

Pulling your pants down is doable with one hand while holding a child with the other. But how can you wipe? How do you pull them back up? I did my best to hold my daughter with one arm while attempting to use the bathroom. I tried to sit her in my pants, but she had just started crawling and tried to get out. I tried putting her in my shirt, but she got too fussy and screamed for me to move her. When pulling up my pants, I thought, “maybe if I just sat her on top of the toilet paper, I could balance her and pull them up.” Wrong. I sat her on top and had to press my body against hers not to let her fall or attempt to stand—what a disaster. I got them up as far as I could and ran to wash my hands. Pants unbuttoned. My shirt was still pulled up over my chest to hold my child.

I ran out of the bathroom and tried to get everything situated back in the car. We FINALLY got back on the road when I heard a giant explosion in the back seat. At the next stop, I decided I would never leave the car without my baby carrier. For instances such as this, I have created a list of accommodations needed to make sure I get a bathroom break. 

Restroom Accommodations for Parents

Babywearing 

When I first brought my daughter home, it was hard for me to put her down for many reasons. For one, I love being a mom and was, and still am, obsessed with her. I was so content to snuggle her all day. Also, she cried any time I left her alone. I would put her in the crib and count down the seconds until she screamed for me to pick her up. It became much easier the older she got, but putting her down was not happening as a newborn, especially when she was sleeping. It was suggested to me by a seasoned mom to wear her while she slept. “Wear that baby, and you don’t have to put her down.” This allowed me to use both hands to cook, clean, or even pee! 

Baby in Big Pants

Before babywearing, I remember sitting on the couch, snuggling the baby, thinking, “God, I have to pee.” I often waited for my husband to come to relieve me. When I didn’t have the wrap or was too impatient to use it, I would carry my daughter. The bigger she got, the harder it was for me to hold her while sitting on the toilet. As a new mom, wearing yoga pants and leggings is a way of life. To use the bathroom, I would stick her in my pants facing me, and we would sing, clap, and giggle so that I could go. She still tries to climb in sometimes. 

Breastfeeding

I am happy to say I breastfed my child for an entire year. I often thought I would not make it this far, especially in the early stages of my journey in motherhood. When my child cried, my nipples would begin to leak. On many occasions, to avoid the ache of my breasts, I would take my daughter into the bathroom with me and latch her as peed. It was either that or pee in the glider. I chose the much easier clean-up. 

Toddler Toys

The older my daughter gets, the more independent she becomes. I was excited to think I would be able to put some toys on the floor and go into the bathroom alone to poop. I quickly learned that my newly mobile child would come to find me no matter which bathroom I used in my two-story home. She would either scream until I finished and got her or crawl to where I was and cry that I was not playing with her. So I began to keep toys close to the toilet so when, not if she comes to find me, I can avoid the crying and keep her entertained. 

Timing

Let’s face it, ladies, we’ve all trained ourselves to poop in under two minutes because that is all the time your baby will allow. Keep it quick. 

What are some of the things you’ve done to use the bathroom?

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