Opposite sex locker room: age limit? - Mothering Forums
Forum Jump: 
Reply
 
Thread Tools
#1 of 69 Old 08-01-2010, 12:51 AM - Thread Starter
 
VroomieMama's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Posts: 732
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
My family and I went to swimming today and when we were ready to go home. I walked into women's locker room with my children and I saw that a 7 or 8 years old boy naked as he was putting his clothes on but he was facing the wall. I was startled because my dd1 is 7 years old and I was glad that she didn't see or even knew that the boy was there. She was just minding her own business walking through the locker room as we were heading out of the building. If she had turned her head left and she would have saw him.

I told my husband and he wondered about the age limit of going into another sex's locker room. So, I asked the lady at the cashier if there was any age limit and she was speechless and basically said "We don't really have age limit because sometimes one of the parents did not want their child to go into the locker room alone and preferred to have their children with them." I told her that I understand that but the boy was about 7 or 8 years old and he was naked in women's locker room. My daughter is 7 and she could have seen him naked. She looked like she was "stuck" and didn't really know what else to say. I told her, "its ok" and I left. I can understand the feeling of being a single parent (I was a single mother before ) and didn't want my child to be anywhere alone for many reasons.

I have been to several other places before and the age limit tend to be 5 years old.

I'm just wondering whats everyone's opinion of the age limit to go in another sex's locker room?

I heartbeat.gif my  9/22/02  dd who likes to blahblah.gif, 4/29/09 mos old. silly & adventurous girl twins twins.gif ,  11/15/l0 girl baby.gif & my coffee drinking DH!
VroomieMama is offline  
#2 of 69 Old 08-01-2010, 12:59 AM
 
Red Pajama's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: climbing a mountain of laundry
Posts: 1,348
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
My SIL manages a pool at a local university. We take swim lessons there. They have posted signs that no one over 5 can be in opposite sex locker rooms. They have two family Rest rooms. My boys are 5, and the family rest rooms are often busy. I will keep them with me until they turn 6, because I don't really have much choice.

I personally think that 5 is too young to make the limit, but I understand that they feel the need to make a limit somewhere.

Twin boys (2/05) and little sister (10/07)
Red Pajama is offline  
#3 of 69 Old 08-01-2010, 01:00 AM
 
zmom2010's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: Ohio
Posts: 72
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
well, I have no experience in this YET as my DS is 6 months. But, IMO, I think that until a kid is old enough to be home by himself, he's not old enough to go change in a locker room by himself.
I know you are worried about your DS, but in my mind the risk of what could happen to him alone in an adult male locker room is much more serious that a 7yo possibly seeing each other naked. Plus, it sounds as if the mother and the boy were being respectful with him facing the wall and all.

Now, we are in a decent sized city, I suppose if this was in a really small town where everyone knows everyone else, that would be a different story,

I just asked my DH about this though, and he had a totally different opinion!
zmom2010 is offline  
#4 of 69 Old 08-01-2010, 01:02 AM
 
MCatLvrMom2A&X's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: With Vin Diesel ;) YUMMMM
Posts: 14,793
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by zmom2010 View Post
well, I have no experience in this YET as my DS is 6 months. But, IMO, I think that until a kid is old enough to be home by himself, he's not old enough to go change in a locker room by himself.
I know you are worried about your DD, but in my mind the risk of what could happen to him alone in an adult male locker room is much more serious that a 7yo possibly seeing each other naked. Plus, it sounds as if the mother and the boy were being respectful with him facing the wall and all.

Now, we are in a decent sized city, I suppose if this was in a really small town where everyone knows everyone else, that would be a different story,

I just asked my DH about this though, and he had a totally different opinion!
A great big that to the bolded. I honestly wouldnt have a problem with my dd seeing the boy especially from the back but that is just me. I dont know yet when I will be ok with ds going to the bathroom alone in public but he is 5 right now and I am no where near ok with him going alone yet.

 
SAHMlady.gifread.giflovin' trekkie.giffan intactivist.gifwinner.jpg to loveeyes.gifenergy.gifDD 10/00 & superhero.gifmoon.gifDS 10/04 ribbonpb.gifIf your ds is intact, keep him safe, visit the Case Against Circ forumnocirc.gifCirc, a personal choice, Your sonsyes.gifbrokenheart.gif11/98brokenheart.gif6/99ribbonbrown.gifanti-tobaccoribbonyellow.gifThyroid cancer survivor. With cat.gif& goldfish.gif & (Boxer)dog2.gif wishing 4 whale.gif&ribbonwhite.gifsigncirc1.gifselectivevax.gifdelayedvax.gif

MCatLvrMom2A&X is online now  
#5 of 69 Old 08-01-2010, 01:05 AM
 
eclipse's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: Mexico
Posts: 7,867
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I would let my oldest (ten in a few months) go into a locker room by himself, but I wouldn't have when he was 7, and probably not even 8. Aside from it being problematic (for me) to send a little boy in to a room to get naked with grown men (who are also naked), a lot of locker rooms exit to the pool, and though my son couldn't swim at that age, he thought he could and was very impulsive. Also, I doubt he would have come out on his own - too much fun stuff to mess with. I'd rather have my 7 year old daughter see a naked boy (and, honestly, she has brothers and a father, so it's not like it's something she hasn't seen before) than for another mother to have to worry about her son getting molested or drowning or otherwise getting hurt.
eclipse is offline  
#6 of 69 Old 08-01-2010, 01:24 AM
 
carmel23's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Pacific Northwest
Posts: 5,278
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Our pool has a strict age limit; if a child is over 5 the child cannot enter the locker room of the other sex. Even though there are private changing stalls, etc.

But, there is a family changing room-- this is what we use if I have all of my kids with me, frankly it is easier because I can lock the door and there is a shower and a bathroom there.

We see each other changing, but my boys hate going into the ladies room, and no way would they be comfortable changing in the middle of the locker room like that, even if it was the men's room.

I'm surprised they don't have a family changing room. I wouldn't send my boys in the locker room alone to change, but I wouldn't make them change in the middle of the ladies' room either. I would *at least* use a stall.

 hh2.gif  ~~~~~~~~~~hh2.gif
 

carmel23 is offline  
#7 of 69 Old 08-01-2010, 01:40 AM
 
artzy_fartzy68's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Dallas
Posts: 39
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
our ymca has a 4 y/o limit according to a posted , which is INSANE!! My almost 4 y/o can't dress himself AT ALL and I take him to the gym/pool all the time!

I couldn't care less who my kid sees naked. That's not something I worry about, I've got bigger fish to fry. Like having him not run away while *I'M* still naked :
This isn't an issue for me, but it must be for other people or there wouldn't be a sign.

Jacki, old-fashioned, crunchy mama to five, grandmother to one.
artzy_fartzy68 is offline  
#8 of 69 Old 08-01-2010, 01:44 AM
 
Marsupialmom's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: St. Louis MO
Posts: 9,500
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
7-8 year olds can be squirrelly about going in to dressing rooms alone. I have seen the best behavior turn into need to play with showers, wait for a stall when there are empty ones, et.

Also, you don't know if that is a tall 5 year old (btdt).

IMO, you should take the attitude you would have taken if it was a 7-8 year old girl no big deal. Teach your child there are times you don't stare and move on. Seeing another child naked isn't going to do any harm.

We have friends that quit swimming for a while because she could no longer take her child with cerebral palsy through the locker room. Even though she would use the handicap stall and you have to actually stick your head through the curtain. She would warn people before they came through. She had to obtain a lawyer.
Marsupialmom is offline  
#9 of 69 Old 08-01-2010, 01:50 AM
 
greenmansions's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Posts: 1,996
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
The pool where we take swimming lessons has a 5 yo age limit. My DS cannot dress himself - taking off wet swimwear, especially the rash guard tops, is difficult. Plus I do not want him in the men's changing room alone. There is no family changing room at this pool. We no longer walk to lessons, and drive so that I can get him home before he gets cold (we've had a cool summer where we are) or else we change in the car, or right next to the car, in the parking lot.

I feel like under 10 yo should be the requirement for opposite gender changing rooms.
greenmansions is offline  
#10 of 69 Old 08-01-2010, 02:12 AM
 
nextcommercial's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Posts: 4,589
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I don't think it would have bothered me for my own child to see another child of the opposite sex naked. But, I wouldn't have wanted a seven or eight yr old looking at ME naked. That's why I like that our gym has a "nobody under age 12" rule. I don't want to feel uncomfortable in my own gym. Now, if the child was looking the other way.. (they never do.. they always watch me dress) I probably wouldn't care. But, I really don't like undressing in front of kids. Boy or girl.

I also wouldn't want my own child to feel uncomfortable undressing in front of others. Especially if there was even the slightest chance that another kid that might be watching could be in her school. She'd have been mortified.
nextcommercial is offline  
#11 of 69 Old 08-01-2010, 02:22 AM
 
bjorker's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Seattle, WA
Posts: 4,162
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
My dd is 5.5 and I cannot imagine letting her go into a dressing room without me or dp anytime soon. There is just no way. If a pool enforced a rule like that and had no family dressing rooms, we just wouldn't go there (well, assuming i had an opposite sex child, or dp was going to take dd). AND I'd be pretty upset about it. I really doubt I'd think twice about my dd seeing a 7 y/o boy naked in the locker room, whether it be now or when she's that age too, though i can kind of see how it might be an issue if it was somebody she knew from school.

I'm torn, because I'd like to see our culture less scared of the natural body (as opposed to a "sexy" body in the media, etc), but at the same time I can't stand how pool changing rooms don't typically have many private places to change, if at all. dd will still change her clothes in completely public places without a second thought, and it doesn't bother me either. However *I* am a very modest person and don't appreciate being made to be a nudist if I want to go swimming. Anyway, I think that would be a good middle ground in this situation, because then a child of that age could go into the opposite sex's changing room, but have a stall to change in.
Posted via Mobile Device

Weirdo Mama to amazing Aurelia, age 9 & Ember Roslyn, age 3!
bjorker is offline  
#12 of 69 Old 08-01-2010, 03:13 AM
 
LynnS6's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Pacific NW longing for the Midwest
Posts: 12,570
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Our locker room at the local rec center is 5. However, I find 5 far too young. At 5, ds couldn't get himself showered, dried and changed. At 5, he probably looked like he was 7 or 8, by the way. He is tall for his age (his height at 6 was the size of an average 8 year old).

It wasn't an issue for us, because our rec center has family changing rooms. Even now, my kids prefer the family changing rooms to going into one without a parent. Our son is 9, and only in the last year or two would he consider changing alone. I wouldn't have let him before age 8 or so anyway. I still worry about someone molesting him, which is why we do the family changing room. (Well that and the fact that I can keep him on task and make sure he washes his hair.)

Having kids of the opposite sex see my body doesn't bother me. My kids are often in the room when I get dressed. I realize that's not the norm for American culture, but I'd rather have kids (under ~11) in the changing room with their parents.

Lynnteapot2.GIF, academicreading.gif,geek.gif wife, WOHM  to T jog.gif(4/01) and M whistling.gif (5/04)
LynnS6 is offline  
#13 of 69 Old 08-01-2010, 03:31 AM
 
PGTlatte's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: Chicago far NWS
Posts: 1,991
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
At our park district the age limit is six. There is no family changing room, but there are two stalls on the pool deck specifically for dressing kids with special needs, or other kids who are beyond the age limit but still need help dressing so that an opposite-sex parent has a way to assist them.

Our 7.5 yo is just now able to efficiently get his bottom half dried off and pull on sweat pants in under twenty minutes and get past his modesty enough to not spend another ten minutes trying to hide in a locker or find some way to do it all inside a towel. In the summer I just take them home in towel-dried swimsuits. In the winter it's harder.

I understand the need for the age limits - our son does not want to see girls changing any more than he wants them to see him...but IMO family changing areas are an absolute necessity. At 7.5 I do not feel good about sending him into a men's general locker room to change alone. At our park district, there is a small locker room for just the pool (not the gym) and at the time we are there, the pool is only used for kids' swimming lessons, so I am okay with that. But if he had to go into the general gym men's locker room alone - no, no, no way. In that situation I would just towel dry his trunks the best I could, help him put a pair of sweats over them and then snow pants over those, and head home, or go someplace with a women's bathroom I could get him into to put on dry clothes.

DS1 March 2003DS2 Sept 2005,
and 3 , in our happy secular
PGTlatte is offline  
#14 of 69 Old 08-01-2010, 04:31 AM - Thread Starter
 
VroomieMama's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Posts: 732
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by nextcommercial View Post
I don't think it would have bothered me for my own child to see another child of the opposite sex naked. But, I wouldn't have wanted a seven or eight yr old looking at ME naked. That's why I like that our gym has a "nobody under age 12" rule. I don't want to feel uncomfortable in my own gym. Now, if the child was looking the other way.. (they never do.. they always watch me dress) I probably wouldn't care. But, I really don't like undressing in front of kids. Boy or girl.

I also wouldn't want my own child to feel uncomfortable undressing in front of others. Especially if there was even the slightest chance that another kid that might be watching could be in her school. She'd have been mortified.

The bold up above was one of my concern but my main concern is my dd1 was molested by her 11 years old cousin (boy) several years ago. She has been through therapy to learn the boundaries and etc. I didn't want her to be traumatized or to have some of her behaviors triggered again.

I wish the place I went had a family room because I would use that rather than the locker room to "protect" my dd1/children.

My husband even said, if he was alone with my dd1 and he would never take her to men's locker room b/c my dd1 is old enough to go through the women's locker room by herself and meet him at the other end. But he is concerned because he wonders the scenario of having to take our currently 1 yr old twins when they are between the age of 3 to 5 in the men's locker room.

We always put our bathing suit on at home when going to swimming and would shower then change into our clothes at home after swimming.

I heartbeat.gif my  9/22/02  dd who likes to blahblah.gif, 4/29/09 mos old. silly & adventurous girl twins twins.gif ,  11/15/l0 girl baby.gif & my coffee drinking DH!
VroomieMama is offline  
#15 of 69 Old 08-01-2010, 04:48 AM
 
carmel23's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Pacific Northwest
Posts: 5,278
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Wow, I think I would demand a family changing room if our pool didn't have one.

I agree, it is unreasonable to have 6+ children changing by themselves. I would just take my kids home wet or change in the car without family changing rooms.

Because, on the other hand, I think it is fair to have kids know that there won't be an older child of the opposite sex in the room. At our pool there are a lot of girls showering, changing without a parent. It is only fair that they have the safety of knowing that an older boy can not walk in the room! And the showers are all open, and you have to walk past them to get to the pool.

I would demand a family changing room!

 hh2.gif  ~~~~~~~~~~hh2.gif
 

carmel23 is offline  
#16 of 69 Old 08-01-2010, 12:03 PM
 
Mama Mko's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Under the Stars
Posts: 1,519
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I wouldn't have had an issue with it. I don't think nudity is a big deal.

Live and love with your whole being.
Mama Mko is offline  
#17 of 69 Old 08-01-2010, 12:04 PM
 
ShyDaisi's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Choo-Choo Town, TN
Posts: 1,295
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
For some reason I have more of a problem with a girl being in the men's locker room over a certain age that I do with a boy being in the women's locker room over a certain age. As a whole I am more wary of any child being alone in a men's locker room than I am of said child being in the women's locker room. This is probably a side effect from being molested as a child, but I see the majority of women as being mothering and or nurturing type figures that would protect or help a child in need, as opposed to a minority of men. That is not to say that all men are more likely to molest or not help, but I think there is more likely to be a molester within a group of males than a group of female -- as low of a chance there is of either group containing one at all. I, as a single parent, am terrified of the point in time rolling around at which I have to send my son into a bathroom alone. At 3-years-old, that day is, thankfully, at least a couple of years away...

That said, I have had to send my child into a men's restroom...There was a line to Timbuktu for the women's restroom and my just turned 3-year-old really had to go. There wasn't a line at all to the men's restroom. I stood at the door and waited for a father with children walking in and asked if he could just keep an eye on him when he went. He asked if he needed help going (looking really nervous about it...Micah is small for his age so he probably looked just under or just over 2), and I said he could do it, I was just nervous about sending him in alone. He then looked relieved and agreed, which made me feel better. I was extremely nervous the entire time and was prepared to waltz in if my personal time limit was exceeded, but I did what I had to do at the time...

Rebekah , single working mom to Micah (04.12.2007)
ShyDaisi is offline  
#18 of 69 Old 08-01-2010, 12:11 PM
 
4evermom's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: PA
Posts: 8,928
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 4 Post(s)
My ds wouldn't have been ready to go into a men's changing room and change by himself at 7 and 8. I think he's just reaching that point now that he's turning 9.

Mom to unschooling 4everboy since 8/01
4evermom is offline  
#19 of 69 Old 08-01-2010, 12:22 PM
 
Join Date: Sep 2004
Posts: 3,305
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I avoid the whole situation by taking ds into the family restroom to change. It's the women's restroom, but we go into a stall.

They do have kid's locker rooms where we go, but adults use them too. I think I would be able to send ds into the boy's locker room if I could peek in first and see who's in there.

ETA: There are locker rooms for kids because they aren't allowed in the adult locker rooms. I think adults shouldn't be allowed to use the kid's locker room. I don't mean adults with kids - random adults will walk in and use them because they are closer to the pool and the aerobics room.
Hoopin' Mama is offline  
#20 of 69 Old 08-01-2010, 12:39 PM
 
MamaJenese's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Cambridge MA
Posts: 1,651
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
We have a age 5 limit at our ymca. However there 7 family changing rooms. I0
have never had to wait to use one. I use them all the time as it is waaay easier to get the kids and myseff together in one small room then in the gian locker room where they like to wander! I can not imagine having an age limit as young as five with out ample family rooms.

Jenese Mama to Elliot 8/05 and Millie Jane 7/07 and Cecilia Kate 1/11
MamaJenese is offline  
#21 of 69 Old 08-01-2010, 12:40 PM
 
Tigerchild's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: Seattle Eastside
Posts: 5,005
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Our gym has a policy of kids 6 and over must go to the same-sex locker room.

To be honest, I never really thought of it as a big deal that kids see other adults naked--until I realized how many kids from our school go to our gym!! While I could really care less who sees me -- I've had conversations with kids I know from volunteering from school actually, while getting dressed--awkward the first time, but I was enjoying chatting with their moms too and meeting them so it was fine, I am pretty sure that DD would be very shy being undressed in front of some of the boys in her class. I also can think of several kids (all of them boys at this age, but I know it happens with girls too) who might use seeing even her underwear as a teasing thing (not in a sexual way, more like potty humor I guess).

The pool they used to go to had an even younger age limit, so when everyone took lessons I had to allow my twin boys to go in alone when they were 5. I have a hard time imagining 5 year olds who truly *can't* dress themselves (precluding disabilities I guess). Mine often said they couldn't, wanted assistance, needed some help with snaps and button down shirts in particular--but I just put them in easy dress clothing and we practiced them removing wet bathing suits/toweling off/dressing (they thought it was hilarious to wear their bathing suits in the bathtub, BTW). They dawdled the first time (playing with some other boys in the same situation--freedom from mom rushing them!! LOL). But after that I gave them a time limit and if they got out before or at that time limit then they could either play at the little playground for a little while (near the pool's parking lot) or sometimes I'd have a special snack or something. After awhile, it just became routine. Now that we've switched to our new gym they are no-nonsense and often out and waiting for DD and I.
transylvania_mom likes this.
Tigerchild is offline  
#22 of 69 Old 08-01-2010, 12:42 PM
 
russsk's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Baltimore
Posts: 1,017
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Our old gym had a 4-year-old limit, BUT there were two family changing rooms that pretty much never had a line, so I think that's fine. In the absence of family rooms, I would not be sending my 5- or 6- or even 8-year-old into the men's locker room by himself. I don't have a daughter, but I don't think I would be bothered by her seeing a boy change in the women's room. Nudity was a big deal for my family growing up, so I've tried to make sure that my kids see it as a totally normal thing. DS is only 2 right now, so we don't have a problem, and I hope I can keep it that way.

Mama to DS1 (2/08) and DS2 (9/10).
russsk is offline  
#23 of 69 Old 08-01-2010, 12:47 PM
 
lotusdebi's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Facebook
Posts: 6,653
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
My 8 year old son can use the men's locker room at the community center - where there's a low number of people going through and the locker room is made in such a way that it's open - there aren't any hiding places. He tends to play a bit in there sometimes, but he comes out eventually, and doesn't make too much of a mess. And I know the people at the community center, so I can ask them to check on him if necessary. The community center pool doesn't have family changing rooms.

He doesn't change in the men's locker room at the gym pool. For one, it's far too busy. The gym isn't family-oriented like the community center is, so the feeling is very different. I don't have such a feeling of trust and well-being about the gym locker rooms. Also, the showers are separate and curtained, which provides a hiding place where bad things could happen. He does use it when he has to go to the bathroom while at the pool, but that's something that takes a set amount of time, and I know when I can expect him to emerge. Thankfully, my gym has family changing rooms (oversized bathrooms with benches) which we use. If there were no family changing rooms, I'd send him to the underused non-locker-room bathroom to change, and I'd wait outside for him.

You can find me on Facebook. PM for info.
lotusdebi is offline  
#24 of 69 Old 08-01-2010, 01:05 PM
 
spedteacher30's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Posts: 1,065
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
We were just facing this yesterday. The public pool we normally go to has a family changing room, and we use it all the time--unless it is locked and DS really needs to go to the bathroom quickly. In that case, the toilets in the women's locker room are completely out of sightline to the changing area and we zoom in and out without issue.

But, yesterday, we went to the other municipal pool. We were attending a festival at the park, and DS wanted to swim. this pool doesn't have a family change area, and it was just me and DS (who is 4--but looks 6 or 7).

I led him to the curtain-less shower stall, held up a towel to give him privacy, and then brought him into the main change area once the young girl changing had finished and left. By then, he had his underwear on, and so he finished getting dressed while I changed. There was a woman who was still getting dressed, but she had her bra and shorts on by the time he came out of the shower stall. i only took him to the shower stall to give the young girl more privacy--she seemed a little surprised to see him appear in the locker room with her. I wouldn't have bothered if just the woman had been there. She could have advocated for herself, or come up with a solution independently as far as I am concerned.

We usually put our suits on at home and change out of them at home, but yesterday we were going back to the festival after our swim. There are no posted rules, and we aren't ready to let DS go into multi-user restrooms or locker rooms unattended. the gym we used to attend had an age limit of 3, but they also had 5 or 6 assisted change rooms that anyone could use.

I think there is almost always a way that a family can meet their needs while being respectful of the needs of the other users. i can't imagine people around here getting bent out of shape at the situation one previous poster described of a young person with a disability being quickly led in and out of the locker room since the gyms here all have multiple private change areas for people who are that modest or concerned.
spedteacher30 is offline  
#25 of 69 Old 08-01-2010, 04:12 PM
 
One_Girl's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Posts: 4,735
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 35 Post(s)
Our Y has a five year old age limit and they will kick people out of the locker room if you go talk to a staff member about it or if the staff member sees a kid in the locker room. They are also strict about no kids in the adult locker rooms. The have many family locker rooms though so parents who are uncomfortable having their kid go in a locker room alone have other options.
One_Girl is online now  
#26 of 69 Old 08-01-2010, 04:31 PM
 
EdnaMarie's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Posts: 6,148
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I think it should be older than seven, personally. I know a lot of people who don't want their eight, nine, and ten year old boys in the men's locker rooms by themselves. I don't think it's that big of a deal before puberty, provided the children are near their parents and are not allowed to play in a way that would make people uncomfortable.

If I were the parent, I think that if for some reason I was uncomfortable with the locker room, I would try to teach my son the changing-shorts-under-the-towel trick, and keep him nearer a corner so women don't feel uncomfortable, though. Some people don't like it when there are boys, even little boys, around, and I can understand that, but I think parents have the right to keep their kids close.

It's not that the stay-at-home-parent gets to stay home with the kids. The kids get to stay home with a parent. Lucky Mom to DD1 (4 y) and DD2 (18 mo), Wife to Mercenary Dad
EdnaMarie is offline  
#27 of 69 Old 08-02-2010, 02:02 AM
 
VBMama's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Location: Bay Area
Posts: 1,198
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
My boys are in public swim lessons for the first time this year, and wow, this is tough!

My oldest ds is 6.5, and it would be a disaster for me to either have to take him in to the women's locker room or send him in the men's by himself. He would totally be staring at all the women changing because he's never been in a locker room before, it would just be the novelty of a bunch of people all changing clothes right out in the open. I don't feel it is respectful to assume everyone else in the locker room would be comfortable with a 6.5yo boy's presence (plus the stated age is 5). And if I sent him in the men's room, he would never come out because he would be goofing around and enjoying being out of parental/instructor supervision way too much. He is impulsive, highly curious, and always extremely bent on demonstrating his independence - I don't even want to think what he would get up too! Before I found the family change rooms (which we usually have had to wait for), I just made him a "privacy screen" in the bleachers area by holding a large beach towel around him to change under. I am not happy about sending him in a public restroom by himself in other places although I do it if I don't have a choice, but a big locker room is much different than a restroom IMO.

And then this story was in my local newspaper last month and freaked me out. I do not usually spend a lot of time worrying about the rare worst case scenario, but I won't be sending him into the men's locker room by himself for a few years yet.

Thank goodness for family change rooms.

Keeping busy with 2 boys & 1 girl ('04, '06, '08)
VBMama is offline  
#28 of 69 Old 08-02-2010, 03:23 AM
 
TCMoulton's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: Chicago Suburbs
Posts: 4,640
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 8 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by nextcommercial View Post
I also wouldn't want my own child to feel uncomfortable undressing in front of others. Especially if there was even the slightest chance that another kid that might be watching could be in her school. She'd have been mortified.
This happened to my daughter last May and she was absolutely mortified. Our health club has a rule that if your opposite sex child is over 3 you must use the family locker room and generally it is not ever a problem. Until last May. My DD's and I walked into the women's locker room to change and we immediately saw a boy from my older daughter's class in school (8 years old - the end of 2nd grade) standing completely naked in the middle of the locker room waiting for his mom, who was on her cell phone, to get the shower ready for him. My daughter was so uncomfortable and bolted out of the locker room. Thankfully the girls had their suits on under their clothes so we just stayed by the pool and I waited for my husband to join us so that I could go to the adult only locker room to change since I was very uncomfortable changing infront of a boy who I would be interacting with in the classroom just days later. I did report the mom to membership - there was absolutely no reason to her son to have been in the women's locker room when the family locker room was just a few more feet down the hall.
fairejour likes this.
TCMoulton is offline  
#29 of 69 Old 08-02-2010, 03:26 AM
 
TCMoulton's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: Chicago Suburbs
Posts: 4,640
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 8 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mama Mko View Post
I wouldn't have had an issue with it. I don't think nudity is a big deal.
You may not have a problem with nudity but there are people who do and they deserve a palce to change where they feel comfortable and safe. Family locker room really are necessary to prevent this.
TCMoulton is offline  
#30 of 69 Old 08-02-2010, 09:48 AM
 
bobandjess99's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Northern IN
Posts: 5,912
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
We have 4 "family" changing rooms for parents with opposite sex children. Then we have a girls locker room, boys locker room, mens locker room and womens locker room.

CPST
bobandjess99 is offline  
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Drag and Drop File Upload
Drag files here to attach!
Upload Progress: 0
Options

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the Mothering Forums forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.
User Name:
If you do not want to register, fill this field only and the name will be used as user name for your post.
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.
Password:
Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.
Email Address:

Log-in

Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.



User Tag List

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page


Forum Jump: 

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are Off