My son is 2 years old and is learning about his private parts by taking off his nappy and touching them. I know this is a natural thing and I’m not worried. I also know this is a sign of wanting to be potty trained, but I have a 4-month-old who needs me right now, so I just don’t have the time to teach him how to use the potty. My husband has been trying to explain to him not to do it by washing his hands. Any recommendations?
Touching his private parts signals other things as well as a readiness to be toilet trained. It feels good, and almost every child will touch himself or herself from time to time. As is true of all types of behaviour, some children seem more prone to want to do this than others.
Judging from the fact that your husband washes your son’s hands when he does this, I am assuming that he is not bowel trained. Take advantage of his signal and put him on the potty, even if he has already filled his nappy. Ask him, “Do you need to go some more?” He might just produce a little bonus for you. If there is any regularity to his movements, it should not require too much of your time to anticipate his need to go. Put him on the potty and sit with him for a few minutes, complimenting him for being a big boy. Bring your 4-month-old along to join the crowd in the bathroom!
Our parenting advice is given as suggestions only. We recommend you also consult your healthcare provider, and urge you to contact them immediately if your question is urgent or about a medical condition.