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Since all my kids are potty trained now, I decided to write a few of my thoughts and experiences about potty training. If I had written any earlier on the opinionated topic, I was sure my own beliefs would backfire on me. That is how parenting goes — just when you think you have something figured out, the next kid comes along. I am old enough to know never to get too cocky as a parent.

So back to the dark black hole of potty training – can I really call her “potty trained” with it comes with the following caveats: won’t poop on the potty, needs them for naps and night-time and I wouldn’t dream of sending her to the pool without a diaper. I mean, am I kidding myself when I proudly tell myself that both my kids are potty trained? But I know I’m not alone.

Potty Training Tips: How and When to Toilet Train Your Child

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My two oldest kids were potty trained fairly easy. My oldest was just under two-and-a-half when I had him completely in underwear. Even overnight. My second son took slightly longer, but was still under three years old when he was fully accident-free. I thought I was a total pro at kids! Everyone told me that boys were the hardest but I had no problems with the first two at all. Then came kid number three – Mayhem, as we call him – and he told me he wants to wear diapers forever.

Clearly I have been stuck in the slippery, sliding, deflating, frustrating, demoralizing slope of potty training for a while now, with my 2.5 year old. Am I obsessed? Maybe. But I’m obsessed more with how we label it and how, in reality, it’s actually a continuous process. Sure, we’ve all heard of those miracle kids who potty train themselves and never have any accidents and poop on the potty right away and none of it required any work for their parents.