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Why Are Kids So Obsessed With Poop?

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  • Tip Bones

Do you remember when you were young - childish enough that everything funny to you had something to do with poop? I don't know about you, but my granddaughter is a poop fanatic. 

It's quite obvious that she is not alone when it comes to spending half the day excitedly chatting all about poop, or drawing varies sizes, shapes, and colors of poop art, describing her current poop emoji friend, sporting her brand-new poop pajamas, and even having me read a book consisting of poop. Yes, they surprisingly have released (probably a bestseller) a poop children's book.

I must confess, I do actually recall joking about poop when I was younger. And come to think of it I seem to also remember "loads" of kids doing the same thing. 

Nevertheless, I certainly don't recollect kids back then, being this obsessed with poop like they are today. It was never as popular. There was certainly no poop book I can remember, anyway. Maybe there was. Who knows. I'm sure if there was, they didn't sell many of them. Not back in those days. 

So, what changed? Why so funny today? Why Are Kids So Obsessed With Poop Jokes? 

Let us hear what a couple of doctors on the issue have to say about it:

  “Often there are uncomfortable feelings there,” Dr. Coleman said. “And getting them to laugh really allows those tensions to dissipate so they feel less compelled to get them out at other times.”

And here’s the best part. When bathroom humor comes up in socially unacceptable situations, this gives parents a place to redirect it.

“I’d say to my daughter, ‘Oops, we need to save that for Butt Talk Time,’” Dr. Coleman said. “We could mark it and pack it away. And it would allow her to deal with that urge.”

Not long ago, we tried it with our kids after breakfast. We set the timer for five minutes, and it went pretty much as you’d expect. Our son trotted out all the grossest words he knew, and we laughed and teased each other. We talked about various animals pooping and took turns making fart noises. And as the five minutes came to an end, he asked us to guess what he was thinking about. “Poop?” No. “Penguin poop?” No. “Butts?”

“No, no, no,” he said, and then paused for effect: “Zombies.”

To sum up, we should all take comfort in the fact that bathroom humor is a healthy part of our young children’s development — and a natural part of their developing sense of humor. 

And the good news is this: It won’t last forever. “Whatever the child is doing now that bothers you,” Dr. Markham said, “don’t worry. Wait a year, and they’ll be doing something else that bothers you.”

It may help to know that the delight your child takes in the grossest potty joke is a window into a bigger, more important truth: If you want to know what’s troubling your children or what’s on their mind, pay attention to what makes them laugh.