I have a concern that isn’t common. In fact, there’s only one other person I know of who shares my “condition,” and it’s a situation that will undoubtedly result in my child having a complex and/or gastrointestinal disease.
I do not say the “p” word. No, no, not that one – get your head out of the gutter.
I don’t say the toilet-based “p” word. Am I being specific enough? The word that people use in place of the more formal “bowel” or “waste.” The word that sounds like “shoop.” The word apparently everyone else in the world uses all the time to describe any and everything.
I have never understood the fascination with the “p” word. In fact, I find it so reprehensible that I married the only man I ever met who also hates the word. On my “musts” for a mate, “Not saying the ‘p’ word” tops the list with “Loves to exercise” and “Thinks ‘The Three Amigos’ is one of the funniest movies ever.”
My friends and family are all aware of my “condition.” My college friends used to draw pictures of it and leave them for me on my bed. (My friends, dear as they are, are sickening.) My sisters used to shout it at me and giggle as I cringed.
My sister-in-law even guaranteed me that once I had children, I would start saying it.
When there is a dirty diaper, we say, “Oh, it’s a dirty diaper.” I don’t wish to talk to Monster about what’s in the diaper, how the diaper smells, what it looks like. I worry that doing so is just inviting him to play with it. (And we already have enough foot-or-hand-in-diaper calamities as it is.)
I don’t even think my mouth would form the word if I willed it to. I have taught my brain to reject the word entirely.
If I were at any other stage in my life, I think I would be proud of that. Instead, I worry my condition might adversely affect Monster.
What if he’s at school and all the kids are talking about it (because apparently kids talk about it) and he has no idea what the “p” word means? What if he becomes ashamed of going to the bathroom and develops some type of intestinal blockage as a result? What if, in an act of rebellion, he becomes fascinated by it and makes a living off it somehow and calls me to tell me he got a promotion at the “p” word department and I have to feign enthusiasm while he talks to me about his “p” word responsibilities and important “p” word meetings and “p” word reports?
We are all going to screw up our children; that’s a given. I was hoping he’d simply have emotional issues and wind up on a therapist’s couch, or get an inappropriate tattoo. But this – this is too much.
I realize potty humor is an occupational hazard of being a parent; but giving in now seems like years of my hard work … flushed down the toilet.