Thursday, July 14, 2011

"Pretend you're playing Angry Birds" (How ECing is different for boys vs girls)

I'd like to say that it isn't really different for boys vs girls.  The communication is similar.  Their elimination needs are similar.

But the reality is that there are some technical details that are different.  Most people seem to get that.  In fact, when Elaine was born and we were excited about ECing, all our friends basically said, "Well, that's nice but I have a boy.  You can't do that with boys."

Well, you can.  And thanks you my friends who have boys who told me that because it motivated me to get Francis to the potty sooner.  :)  There are some things to watch out for though.

(Warning: This is going to get a little bit graphic.  If you don't want to think about boy parts and girl parts, then stop reading!)

With a girl, you aren't likely to end up with a face full of pee if you stop paying attention for a minute.  You can basically just hold a girl over the receptacle and  you'll probably have good luck.  (Realize that girls can have a range too.  Don't put her facing you wearing your good suit and figure she can't make it that far.)  With a boy... well, do you aim?

I searched around on the Internet for descriptions and the best I found was to sneak an arm under baby boy's leg and use a finger to help aim.  So the first time I took Francis to the potty, I pointed him downward and my husband freaked out.  "That's like pinching off a hose!"  Well, what do I know?  So I just let him be and he peed all over the bathroom.  (Duh, right?)

So after much discussion, my husband came up with the following suggestion for when I took Francis to the bathroom, "Pretend you're playing Angry Birds."

For those who might not be familiar with this popular game, Angry Birds is a game on the iPhone (and other similar devices) where you launch ball-shaped birds via slingshot at some structures in an attempt to destroy them and their ball-shaped pig occupants.

We'd just gotten an ipod touch and my daughter immediately insisted on Angry Birds because a friend had shown it to her.   Our family was all playing in no time.  Anyway, my husband's signature move is to launch a bird high into the air so it drops into the structure nearly vertically.  Apparently, that was my  husband's suggestion for successfully getting pee in the toilet.

Are you laughing yet?  Yeah, I realize this is a bit silly.

This method was only mildly successful.  I was able to "successfully play that level" a few times but there were other times that I ended up using my hands (or, um, my kid's feet) to deflect the flow.  I don't really think this method works for me.  (Meanwhile, my husband uses an entirely different hold because he has ridiculously long arms so he apparently holds baby's feet and used some leg readjusting method like a joystick to change the flow direction.  Probably all the while laughing at me trying to "play angry birds" when I take our son to the bathroom.)

So after a few failed attempts, I abandoned that method.  I started watching carefully and when he started peeing, I'd quickly use a finger to point his penis downward just enough to get it in the potty without "clamping off the hose" and that seems to work fine.  In fact, he seems to naturally point more downward now so it's not an issue a lot of the time anymore.  After that first week of trying to figure it out, I think I've missed the potty 3-4 times.  Given that he used it over 80 times, that's not too bad a miss-rate.  Heck, I've heard from friends that their husbands have a higher miss-rate.  :)  And for those of you who also use our bathroom, don't worry.  We keep that Costco-sized bin of lysol wipes there for just those occasions.

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