(Closed) Children and public bathrooms – rant/poll

posted 5 years ago in The Lounge
  • poll: When is a child too old to be taken into a opposite sex bathroom?
    Age 5-6 : (22 votes)
    19 %
    Age 7-8 : (35 votes)
    30 %
    Age 9-10 : (10 votes)
    9 %
    If it helps the parent, the child is never too old. : (25 votes)
    22 %
    Age is irrelevant, if the child can independently toilet he/she should use the correct bathroom : (23 votes)
    20 %
  • Post # 2
    6292 posts
    Bee Keeper
    • Wedding: August 2014

    Kelly6871:  it really doesn’t bother me, but then, unisex toilets don’t bother me either. I mean, there are cubicles, it isn’t like you’re getting naked in front of people, so what’s the big deal? 

    Post # 3
    910 posts
    Busy bee

    I would never let my child at a vulnerable age into a toilet without me. Some children are tall and look older. They are still defenseless against weirdos. 

    Post # 4
    3244 posts
    Sugar bee
    • Wedding: May 2014

    Honestly, I think parents have the right to take moderately older children into the toilets with them. Men’s bathrooms can be disgusting and scary to younger children (and ten and eleven year olds are hardly capable of looking after themselves without supervision) I support mothers and fathers to make a judgement call that suits them and their situation. Some children mature slower and some faster. I know my brother had a tendency to wander off all by himself if left alone so he had to be more closely supervised than I did. You don’t know the mothers or child’s history or behaviours. And its likely women such as yourself were making the boy self conscious and embarrassed by giving him accusatory and uncomfortable stares.

    • This reply was modified 4 years, 6 months ago by  Yipeebee.
    Post # 5
    547 posts
    Busy bee
    • Wedding: July 2012

    I think it’s a little weird that he was in the cubicle with his mom. I’m female and I wouldn’t have gone right in with my mom at that age. I think at 7ish they are old enough to wait outside the door while the parent goes. And by age 4 or 5, they can wait in the bathroom, but outside the cubicle. I have a son, and that’s what I’d do. 

    Post # 6
    14963 posts
    Honey Beekeeper
    • Wedding: June 2011

    For a boy in a female restroom, while I think it’s odd, I woudn’t care as much.  It’s just stalls.  But if he was uncomfortable, then he thought it was off and should have just went to the mens room.  As for a girl into mens bathroom, I feel like that’s a little different since they use urinals and are more ‘exposed’.  I wouldn’t want a girl any older than 7-8 going in the mens unless absolutely necessary.  Most the time there are family restrooms everywhere so I can’t even really see it being an issue.

    Post # 7
    4238 posts
    Honey bee


    A 10yo boy who is the size of a petite woman? I’m surprised that they both fit into the stall. Yeah, basic logisitics become an issue at that age/size.


    • This reply was modified 4 years, 6 months ago by  NFLwidow.
    Post # 8
    297 posts
    Helper bee

    My son is 6 and there is noooooooooooooooooo way in hell I would ever let him into a grown man’s washroom where they all have their peepee’s out. I will be that mother that everyone judges. No way in hell, this world is too weird and statistically there are way too many men that are attracted to young boys. I would say 12 maybe and even then, depends on where this bathroom is located.

    • This reply was modified 4 years, 6 months ago by  SugaryKiss.
    Post # 9
    1624 posts
    Bumble bee

    Kelly6871:  Maybe the boy has special needs while using the bathroom or was previously mistreated in a men’s room by himself? Unless he’s peeking under the stalls or behaving inappropriately, this would not bother me. 

    Post # 10
    329 posts
    Helper bee
    • Wedding: October 2012

    I generally don’t mind as long as the kid isn’t old enough to have hit puberty, provided, of course, that the kid also isn’t sticking his head under stalls and all that nonsense.  I have more than once been mid-stream when some obnoxious kid’s head popped under the stall door and was like HELLO.  I mean, thank goodness I was JUST mid-stream and not doing something else women sometimes need to do in public restrooms.  I get it; you’re a mom alone in the mall with your 8 year old son, maybe it’s an old mall with no family bathroom, fine, but it’s your responsibility as a parent to make sure your kid (of any age or gender) doesn’t go disturbing other people who just want to use the restroom in peace too.

    That said, I think it’s very, very different for single dads with daughters.  My dad NEVER would’ve brought me near a men’s room when I was a little kid.  He had my vindictive mom to deal with; all he needed was for the court to hear he took me into a men’s room or walked into a ladies’ room himself, regardless of the circumstances.  I remember a few times he’d walk me into stores with female clerks and ask to use their bathrooms, and usually they took pity on him (or maybe they liked him, I don’t know) and let me use the back room bathrooms, but there were also days I just had to hold it.

    At least now in most places there’s at least one bigger family bathroom; that does help.

    Post # 11
    2922 posts
    Sugar bee
    • Wedding: March 1996

    I think trying to come up with rules for this situation is pointless. Too many variables. Child could be developmentally disabled, child could be afraid to go into bathroom by him/her self, child could have history of having been assaulted, child could be transgender. You can’t tell by looking. And it’s possible this particular child looked uncomfortable because you were staring/giving judgmental look. If you personally have issues with who is in the bathroom with you, go use a “family”/gender neutral bathroom so you don’t have to share. If there isn’t a family/gender neutral bathroom available, that’s probably while the child was in the women’s room with their parent/guardian.

    Post # 12
    4513 posts
    Honey bee
    • Wedding: September 2012

    I’m a big supporter of family bathrooms to prevent this in general, but when the option doesn’t exist, I think it depends on the setting. In a small, safe area, the kid can probably wait outside the bathroom. In large, busy public places, the kid should probably be inside with the parent. That said, if the kid is old enough to legitamately be embarrassed, it’s probably time to leave him outside.

    Post # 13
    71 posts
    Worker bee
    • Wedding: July 2015

    I think some of the PPs have hit the nail on the head. It is not about the boy in the women’s bathroom, it is about the boy NOT being ALONE in the men’s bathroom with strangers.

    Post # 14
    139 posts
    Blushing bee
    • Wedding: September 2015

    molokoa:  I was just about to post something very similar to this.  I work with kids and used to care for special needs boy who was 11.  If there were no family/unisex bathrooms (at many playgrounds there are not), I would take him into the women’s room with me.  I definitely got stares and rude looks often, but I always figured it was no one’s busniess and he never acted inappropriately when we were in there so I didn’t care.  I think we all forget sometimes that we can’t get all the information about something in a 45 second interaction with someone.  If his mother was bringing him in there, I would just assume there was a good reason why.

    Post # 15
    562 posts
    Busy bee
    • Wedding: May 2013

    Only the parent knows if the child is capable/mature/responsible enough to be left on their own while using the restroom or while the parent uses the restroom. I don’t think it’s anyone else’s place to judge.

    The topic ‘Children and public bathrooms – rant/poll’ is closed to new replies.

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