Please Curb Your Child
By robs on Nov 10, 2007
From what I understand, a typical Westerner's reaction to seeing a child in split-pants is something like:
- Delight in seeing cute little butt-cheeks as the child walked away from them.
- Dismay when they saw that the fronts of the babies were likewise uncovered.
- Disgust if they happened to see the babies making use of said pants.
In China, it is not atypical for children to be potty-trained by the age of one. That is, to have enough control of their bowels and bladders that they're not peeing and pooping uncontrollably.
When compared to the US standard of around 36 months, this is quite amazing. I mean, think of the tons of disposable diapers that aren't thrown in the landfills each year. (I've often joked that we've developed a "diapers to depends" attitude in the states.)
Now, little bowels and bladders just cannot hold as much waste as those in adults. And, sometimes there are stretches around where there aren't toilets. So, well, as the saying goes, "if you gotta go, you've gotta go".
Honestly, I'm not at all offended, disgusted, or otherwise put-off by this. Functions of life and death... and defecating is certainly key to living... are more obvious here. In the states, folks are removed from most of the unpleasantness of life... so much so that many dishes made from animals are often processed beyond recognition, and people are housed away in "retirement homes" when having them around becomes either too bothersome or too painful for a once dependent child to bear.
That said, I have only one request...