The thing about trying to figure out the best way to potty train a toddler is that there is no good way. Almost entirely, your success in this endeavor will be defined by who your kid is, and not what you do, nor what strategies you employ/what kind of candy you use to bribe them. OK, the candy selection has a bigger bearing on your success than other factors, but still, everything about potty training — how long it takes, what setbacks you suffer, what specific parts of it present the biggest challenge, exactly which surfaces you find yourself scrubbing human feces off of — is more or less determined by your child, and the beautiful, unique ways in which they are innately programmed to dissolve your barely-there sanity during your attempts to rid yourself of the task of dealing with their sh*t.
That said, there are certain parts of potty training — or "helping your child achieve bathroom independence" as you might say if you hate sounding like you're training your kid like an animal, or as you might say if you just hate being likable — that are universal. Most of these revolve around a consistent feeling of wanting to throw yourself into the sea and give up on life entirely. Other parts involve rationalizing a life spent changing your child's diapers (you could live in their college dorm with them; it's not a big deal, really). And in the end, when your kid finally succeeds in consistently getting all of their unsightly excretions neatly into their correct porcelain receptacle and you can transfer your diaper budget to your wine budget, you'll end up blocking out how truly terrible it was to get to that point. It's like childbirth: If we actually remembered what a sh*tshow it was, we'd never sleep peacefully again (let alone choose to have more kids).
So in the spirit of ruining your life for a few minutes by thrusting you back into your repressed memories of the darkest moments of potty training, here are 23feelings you will undoubtedly recall: