Potty Training on the Circle

The Circle of Security teaches parents how to adjust our lens to focus on attachment needs.  This was brand new territory for me at first: seeing attachment.  I definitely get frustrated with this learning curve at times. What I realize is that being frustrated with the Circle means I am aware of the Circle, and that’s something.

It is hard to parent what is Hidden in Plain Sight when there are so many things we are supposed to be helping our children to learn.  In uncertain moments it would be damn good to have someone tell me what specifically to do.  But then, all the well-intended comments new parents hear from other parents who have “made it” freak us out! (Or freak me out anyhow).

There have been so many times I have felt like I needed to get big and strong over a developmental milestone for my kids, because it feels like somewhere some other parent is getting their kid to line up more accurately with some developmental chart.  But the Circle teaches us to first/most Follow Our Child’s Need, and then, Whenever Necessary, Take Charge.

This has been brutally hard for me with potty training.  My daughter just turned three and has only just started learning to use the potty.  I felt such shame and anxiety for the past year.  I had tried to find ways to make potty training happen: Peppa Pig panties, potty books, potty cartoons, pull ups, songs, stories, and gentle pleas for her to take interest.  

She wasn’t interested because she wasn’t ready yet.  And, I did not understand that until I witnessed that she was ready.  Over the past year, my Shark Music and my parental shame robbed me from seeing what was Hidden in Plain Sight  – that she was slowly preparing to take this next step, and how the materials and conversation about the potty helped her to build confidence that I would be there for her.  I realize now I followed her need when I organized her feelings until she was ready.

Potty training can be a scary thing for parents.  I am glad I managed my impulse to Take Charge, and gave her enough room to decide when she was ready to explore this brand new experience. I endured my own anxiety just enough to give her space to find her way.  And I love our potty training Circle story, I can only imagine it feels better than if I had let my Shark Music take over completely for us.

There are so many things that are going to be hard for me.  Part of managing Shark Music is allowing myself to know that my child’s Circle will move at her own pace. I can imagine this will be hard for me with future developmental milestones, and so I’ll use the Circle to help keep an eye on this.

COSP Facilitator, Canada

I invite you to share with me your comments, reflections, Circle stories and experiences with Circle of Security Parenting. Your submissions may be used in future blog posts, with all identifying information excluded, unless you specifically request to be identified. Contact me at brooke[at]circleofsecurityinternational[dot]com