Here's the thing, you know that your son is too old to take to the female toilets with you when he is old enough to shave.... and if you haven't seriously looked at drawing the line quite some time before that, then you may have a few more problems with boundaries than just when to stop taking your child to the toilet with you (mumma's boy anyone?). But, when should you start sending them in on their own??

My issue is that my eldest child who is only 9 is very tall and has been mistaken a number of times for a high school student in the past, (actually that happened once when he was in grade 2 - but the person who assumed that was very short, so maybe she assumed every male without facial hair taller than her was in high school, I don't know). Basically he is  now only about 15cm shorter than me and wears the same size shoes. Anyhoo, we were out at a shopping centre together not so long ago and I took him to the female toilets with me (he actually wanted to go to the men's alone, but I am just so uncomfortable with that) and as he was walking out a little ahead of me, the cleaning lady said "Aren't you a little old to be in the ladies toilets?". Now I missed this exchange but when he told me about it, I wanted to go back and question the cleaning lady about her understanding of when it was appropriate to send little boys into a closed room, on their own with grown men with their penis out?? My son, of course was mortified by the whole thing and would not let me go back to "talk" to the cleaner. 

I know I said he was tall and he is - but that's just on the outside. Inside he is still an easily led, immature, 9 year old boy. So my dear friends, I ask you....at what age do you send your child in on their own to use the men's toilet??? I have a friend who still takes takes her boys into the ladies change rooms to change them after swimming lessons and at 9 and 7, I think they are a little old to be in with naked female strangers who want a little bit of their own privacy. So I get that. There are options. Such as the family change rooms. But there are not usually family toilets - I mean there are the unisex disabled toilets but I don't want to be hogging those ... if that's not illegal anyway, it's definitely frowned on.

So what do you do?? Continue to take them in with you? And then when do you stop?? Or do you just send them into the unknown when they "look big enough" and stand by the door, counting down what you feel are appropriate minutes for a toilet visit (which obviously leads to you having to then discuss what they are planning to do in there, so you can give them enough time to actually get the job done).

Opinions are welcome and are in fact asked for. So what do you think??

Ta Ta,



07/21/2012 9:19pm

Would love to know the answer to this one as well, I also struggle with this. At our swimming school no-one over 7 years is allowed into opposite sex change room. Yet my master 7 refuses to get changed by the pool, which I also understand. Yet no way in hell is he going into change room by his self my solution, not very practical but he gets changed in the car. It's a hard discision but you can't turn back time, if something was to happen.

07/21/2012 9:52pm

It's a hard one.


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