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Boys in the womens room - Page 2

post #21 of 75
My five year old daughter often uses restrooms alone, but I have no problem with opposite sex children (or adults, for that matter) in the bathroom with me. She also likes to go to the men's room given the option, so when we are in crowded places as a family, she usually goes with him. I think she's used the men's a few times on her own, too (and she can read the signs just fine)!
post #22 of 75
I just ran into this today for the first time. We were at the town pool and I had my 5 1/2 yo and almost 3 yo with us. When we walked in a young girl said "Oh! Boys in the changing room!" Her friend said - don't worry they are babies with their mom.

I actually thought "hey, I'll post about this on mothering and see what other people do" and here is a whole thread. I mothering

I hate that there is no family option here. And I don't want him to be uncomfortable. Oh well. Rather someone get a little uncomfortable than have him in a situation that he is not ready for.
post #23 of 75
I really don't understand why women get all worked up about little boys being in the restroom with them? What do they see? Ladies washing their hands? *GASP* the HORROR!
5 is way too young IMO to go into the mens room on their own. So is 6.
I heard somewhere that 7 was the cut off. Still seems young to me.
I'm sorry you had to deal with an opinionated busy body. I would have gone off on her.
(((HUGS)))
post #24 of 75
I'm really relieved that all of you guys are on the same page about this as I am. I don't have a son, yet, but if I did you can bet he'd be in the rest room with me and the girls if DH wasn't around.
What's more...if DH ever took the girls out (this is all theoretical since NOT once has he left the house with either of them, and they are not yet PT) he'd have to take them in the Men's Room with him if they needed to potty! I don't trust the strangers anywhere, male or female. I love our family bathroom at the mall!
post #25 of 75
I'd tell the woman he belongs with you and ignore her.

I would not let a 5 year old go into the men's room alone. If you are in a place with a family restroom I'd use that, but I think it's no problem for a boy to go in the women's restroom as long as there are private stalls for everyone.
post #26 of 75
IDK puberty? When they ask?
post #27 of 75
Nope, if I had a son until I felt he could look after himself in the men's room, he would be in a stall with me. 5 is too young to send him in the men's room on his own.
post #28 of 75
I think we encountered this once with my 4.5yo ds. I choose to ignore it since he's not ready to go on his own. He's not comfortable around strangers w/out me, and his hormones aren't raging.

With all the publicity about missing children, I think this should be a non-issue.
My ds isn't looking under stall walls, he's going to the bathroom and washing his hands.

News flash: Our bathroom at home is co-ed!
post #29 of 75
Dd stopped letting dh take her into the men's room about six months ago, about when she turned 4. She prefers to have him stand outside the woman's room and wait for her.

It's probably child dependent. Men's bathrooms are certainly more treachorous than woman's rooms, since male child molesters are multiples more common than female.

I think it works both ways. If you bring an older boy into the locker room you can't really expect other women to alter their behavior. So I probably would still drop my towel and change like always rather than packing up my stuff to take it into a bathroom stall somewhere. If your 5, 6, 7 year old is okay with viewing adult women strangers naked, then so be it, I guess.

I wonder about communitites in which people know each other? For instance, I have friends with young boys who frequent the same gym we do. Are they okay with their 6 yo boy who lives down the street and plays at our house seeing me nude?
post #30 of 75
I would never send my 5 and a half year old into a mens restroom alone. I don't know when I'd feel comfortable with it. Ten maybe?
post #31 of 75
my son is 4 and goes to the restroom with me. if my dh is with us, he'll take him of course...but otherwise, he goes in the ladie's room. i don't see this as changing anytime soon. and i honestly triple dog dare someone to make a comment to me or give me a funny look....i' will give them an earful about child safety.
post #32 of 75
I have three girls so I don't have this issue. I don't mind moms bringing their boys in to the women's bathroom as long as they aren't peeking under the stalls (but heck, that goes for girls too! I don't want anyone peeking under my stall!) I do have a problem with some women who bring their boys in the changing rooms, though. One of our Y's doesn't have a family changing room, so moms bring their boys in to the women's changing room. Even though there are stalls to change in, most of them just change right out there in the open. Nothing like going in the locker room with your 7 yo and 3 yo and getting full frontal nudity from 9-10 yo boys! I think some moms forget that not everyone comes from a home with children of both sexes and that some kids aren't used to co-ed changing. I don't mind it at all if they are respectful enough to use a stall, though.
post #33 of 75
i'm wondering when one of the european mamas is going to chime in with the "what's wrong with co-ed bathrooms for everybody?"

we really get way hung up on this stuff here.

goodness gracious...
post #34 of 75
Gendered bathrooms are dumb. I present as a male a lot of the time, and I'm SO sick of "are you in the right bathroom?" upon first glance.
post #35 of 75
My oldest just turned 6 and I wouldn't send him into a men's room alone. He and my three year old all cram in the stall and he's not bothering anyone else so I can't see what the issue would be.
post #36 of 75
Quote:
Originally Posted by wednesday View Post
My son is almost 5 and we have started to encounter this. I think there are women in the locker room at the Y who are uncomfortable with it but I don't know what they expect a mama to do. He's way too young to send into the men's room on his own. I actually don't change him in the locker room for this reason, we come and go with him already in his suit, but if he needs to use the toilet the only place to take him is the women's locker room..
I have been worrying about this for a while now because at my gym (where we go swimming), there is a sign that says something to the effect of only boys 5 and under allowed in the womens locker room. Ds just turned 5, so I guess we have another year, but I am so not comfortable sending him alone into the mens locker room. No one in the locker room has ever appeared uncomfortable with it, but I don't want to go there. And, ds just isn't mature enough for it. So, I guess that bringing him in his swimsuit will be the only option after he turns six. That will entail us all going in our swimsuits, too, though, because I don't want to leave him (and he won't be willing to be left) running around the lobby while dd and I go change. So frustrating. If they are uncomfortable with stuff like that, why don't they make a family changing room???
post #37 of 75
Ask some adult men about the harrowing stories of the things they got to see in the men's public bathroom when they were children.

My son will be coming in with me until he feels otherwise.
post #38 of 75
Quote:
Originally Posted by peace_momma View Post
My oldest just turned 6 and I wouldn't send him into a men's room alone. He and my three year old all cram in the stall and he's not bothering anyone else so I can't see what the issue would be.
At that point *I* would be uncomfortable -- I don't even like my 5 YO daughter in the stall with me when I'm using the restroom. I would be completely uncomfortable with my DS there, and have been since he was about 5 or so. I don't want an audience when I use the toilet and I was so glad when we left toddlerhood behind and I didn't have to deal with them wanting to be with me every blessed minute of the day! If it works for you, great, but it doesn't work for everyone.

I think in the end it varies a lot by circumstances, family comfort levels, and the child's needs/wants. I don't have any problem with boys up to about 10 (after that I think you have puberty issues) in the ladies room with mom, but I don't want to feel like I need to follow what others say, in either direction. I want to be able to do what works for our family without comment either way.
post #39 of 75
Quote:
Originally Posted by Demeter9 View Post
Ask some adult men about the harrowing stories of the things they got to see in the men's public bathroom when they were children.

My son will be coming in with me until he feels otherwise.
I guess my husband and my brother must both just be really, really lucky because they don't seem to have any horror stories at all. Now I'm intrigued what this is supposed to mean.
post #40 of 75
Quote:
Originally Posted by gini1313 View Post
If they are uncomfortable with stuff like that, why don't they make a family changing room???
I asked this question at our Y when they put the rule for 7 and up having to go to appropriate gender locker room. The thinking was that a family changing room had to have some sort of stalls for most people's comfort (and I would agree -- I don't want to see some strange guy and I don't want a stranger father looking at me!) That meant that there were now hidden spaces where you would expect to see more than one person at a time, making it *easier* for someone to do something inappropriate without people taking notice. And I guess it makes sense -- man takes boy into changing stall or family changing room. Boy cries/shouts/screams. Is he being punished, doesn't like having his hair brushed, having a temper tantrum or being molested? Most people would probably assume it was dad and son (even if it wasn't) and not get involved. In the existing locker room setup there would be less privacy and thus if it were something icky someone would be more likely to notice.

Now, I'm not sure that applies to restrooms, but I can see the logic on locker rooms. I think there aren't any really good solutions so people patch together what works for them. For me, by 7 my son was ready to use the men's changing area comfortably and we are OK with the rules. For moms that aren't there are single-sex, single-stall restrooms on the pool deck where boys can change with mom standing outside the door and on-deck showers where boy could rinse (no soap, swimsuit on) off.
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