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Potty Training in Restaurants is a Bad Idea

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By Deanne Katz, Esq. on September 10, 2012 6:54 AM

Potty training is a hard job for any parent but one Utah mom has been publicly scolded for training her twins in a restaurant.

This mom was in the Thanksgiving Point Deli with her twins when she took out their potties and helped the girls undress. At the table. Another diner snapped a photo of one of the little girls with her clothes around her ankles sitting on the potty in the middle of a crowded restaurant.

Diners were shocked but no restaurant staff noticed the incident until it was over. If they had the mom would have had a bigger problem that public shaming.

Staff would have asked the mom to leave had they realized, said spokeswoman Erica Brown. The middle of a restaurant is not the place for potty training.

Not only is it off-putting to customers, it's probably illegal as well.

Restaurant health and safety regulations are designed to keep customers and workers disease free as much as possible. They regulate obvious things like food storage and hand washing but they also dictate what things can't be in the dining room to ensure safety.

Animals aren't allowed inside most restaurants because of the risk that they'll spread disease. If that's not allowed it seems unlikely that letting your children go to the bathroom in the dining room will be overlooked.

Restaurants need to enforce those laws for their own safety since they can be liable if anyone gets hurt or sick from the food they serve or the condition of the building.

That's not to say this mom couldn't continue to potty train her kids outside her house. But keeping it in the bathroom would have probably been less of a problem.

It also seemed weird to diners and readers of the story that at least one girl kept eating her chicken nuggets while sitting on the potty.

The mom in question wasn't identified and she finished her impromptu potty training session before anyone made a fuss. But for future reference, restaurant potty training should still take place in the bathroom, not the dining area.

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