View Full Version : Scared of Public Restrooms?

02-01-2005, 04:20 PM
My daughter is almost 21 months old and has been regularly using the potty at home (both poop and pee) for a couple months now, but I'm not sure what my next step should be. I haven't even attempted to get her out of diapers, primarily because she is afraid to use a public restroom and I'm not sure what to do when we go out. Has anyone else had any experience with this? So far, I haven't been pushing the issue since she is still very young, but I wonder if I am doing her a diservice since she is very enthusiastic about using the potty otherwise.

02-01-2005, 07:24 PM
Have you tried to take her to a public potty? I put on a paper cover for my DD and then I (used to) hold her (under the armpits) while she goes about her business. I didn't treat it differently from any other potty (except for the paper cover) and she was fine.

She was initially a bit scared of the toilets that have automatic flushing, but eventually got over that too.


02-02-2005, 05:14 PM
We have a small fold up potty that we take in the minivan. When she was smaller we used it all the time. This is good for longer trips, uncertain cleanliness, or for noisy bathrooms (my daughter still covers her ears the entire time we are in a large public bathroom).

This is the one we used http://www.potette.com/ I bought it at our Base Exchange. They didn't have refills for it so I just got a roll of small bags to use with it.

Jen in Okinawa
Mom to a wonderful preschooler,
who just turned three, Noelle!

02-02-2005, 07:43 PM
My DD was also afraid of public toilets. I found a folding potty seat with Dora on it. After that, she was very eager to use her "Dora seat". We only needed it for about a month, and after that she was fine.

Here's the one I had:

They had other characters too.


02-06-2005, 01:27 AM
You're DD is a young trainer so that's probably one of the reasons. They tend to get more comfortable as they age! While my oldest doesn't have a big fear of public restrooms, she's by no means thrilled with them. And she would rather hold it most of the time than use one. The first time I pulled out the fold up potty seat and tried to sit her on it, it fell on the ground and freaked her out. So that was a waste because she would never go near it again. She also doesn't like being held over paper. So I put her potty chair in the back of the car and now she uses it in the car whenever possible. Sounds funny but it works. And I don't have to deal with the whole germ issue which makes it really nice, quick, and easy.

When we are store hopping, it's easier to just pull her out the car seat at our next stop and sit her in the back. Then I just throw a bunch of tp over it and wrap the insert in a plastic shopping bag and put it back into the chair for stability. If she has to use a public restroom, I now end up having to clean the whole seat and bowl with Clorox Wipes before putting a seat cover on it simply because she's thin and I can never seem to get her on the pot without some part of her body touching the seat. GROSS! And that goes to my whole public restroom phobia which has become a very real thing for me since as recently as one month ago, several of my friend's DDs developed Type A Strep on their bottoms.

If you drive a van, SUV, or wagon, keeping the chair in the back works well. I don't think my DD will fear public restrooms forever because of this. I just think that auto toilets, dirty restrooms, and unfamiliarity are tough to tackle when they are young.

02-06-2005, 09:32 AM
This is a great idea, but my DD was totally FREAKED at the idea of using the potty in the van. She would rather pee in a rest area bathroom than in the van!

02-06-2005, 03:28 PM
Did the Dora seat fit everywhere you tried to use it? I almost bought a plain one online somewhere but remember reading reviews that because it was round it didn't fit on most public toilets, which are oblong...? It looks like such a good idea though so maybe that review was incorrect.



02-07-2005, 09:40 AM
I wouldn't panic about it because your daughter is very young. But if she likes Dora, I'd reccommend not the folding seat, but the Toilet Toppers seats. (By the co that makes Table Toppers) they are available at Babies R Us and I've seen them at Target. They have Dora & Spongebob prints and they are FANTASTIC. They are large, thick, soft on one side, plastic on the other and the tape fastens them to the seat... I even use them myself now (have you SEEN some public toilets?) My daughter is much more comfortable using a potty out of the house with these covers.

02-07-2005, 10:25 AM
It fit most places fine. In some places it was not necessarily secure, but then I held the seat while she was on it so that it did not slide around. It would be a pain as a long term solution, but for the month that we needed it, it was great. And I liked that it folded up so that it fit in my diaper bag.

02-08-2005, 09:43 AM
Perhaps it only works if used from the beginning. When Charlotte first began to train, I brought it everywhere so she's more comfortable sitting in the car than anywhere else. Sometimes I think she's more comfortable in the car than at home! She's not a pot-sitter at home but in the car, she sings and takes her sweet old time.