I was in town today when my 8 year old son needed a wee. As usual when this happens I took him to the Ladies toilets with me only to be stopped by the cleaner and told we couldn’t go in there and must use the baby change toilet. Apparently “some women aren’t comfortable having boys in the ladies toilets”. I asked who cos clearly these women aren’t mums, Mum’s know that when your little boy has to go this is what you do. You can’t send them in to the gents by themselves and, once out of nappies using the baby change inconveniences parents who do need it to change their babies. The cleaner couldn’t really give an answer and made me feel like my son, who is tall for his age and has ASD, had been singled out for this complaint. This further baffled me cos when we go in there he goes in to the cubicle, has a wee and we leave (we use anti bac gel once outside again cos he hates hand dryers) so it can’t be his behaviour. I don’t know any other mums this has happened to…or any mums who would find this acceptable. What else am I supposed to do when my son needs a wee? If we use the baby change parents who need to change nappies get cross cos he’s not a baby and if we use the disabled then people get cross cos neither of us is visibly disabled (unless I have my walking stick with me but I prefer not to!) Surely we have the right to use the toilets, don’t we?! If little boys aren’t allowed in the Ladies loo with their mums, and we don’t want to tie up facilities for those with specific needs, where are our boys supposed to go for a wee?!
And, yes, I am aware this is similar to the problems single dad’s with young daughters must have so feel free to add your voices cos that must be quite a pickle!!
Spoke to the mall general manager and she was horrified both professionally and as a mum and would never expect a young child, especially one with additional needs, to be sent into adult toilets alone. She said they would also NEVER say this because anyone had said the were “uncomfortable” with male children being in the toilets with their mums and that if anyone had a problem she would rather have them shut the whole ladies toilets for 2 minutes so a mum and son could use it rather than tell anyone they couldn’t go in. It turns out this cleaner was lying and seems to have a personal vendetta against myself and my son using those toilets.