June 1, 2010 at 6:37 pm

Mom & the Men’s Room

Sometimes being a mom of a brood of children comprised entirely of the opposite gender presents it’s own problems.  Lately our biggest challenge has been public restrooms. 

When I take my guys to the mall, or even Walmart for that matter, we come upon the dreaded bathroom stop.  Well, with four and six year old sons it happens more often than not.  It used to be that I would drag all of them into the ladies room with me.  They would line up and go, usually in a mass pile up in the larger handicap accessible stall.  Then if I would have to go as well I would clear out the stall and go in record time, frantically counting the shoes all of the time.

Now Seth is 10.  Beyond the realm of okay to be hangin in the ladies room.  He uses the men’s room now.  But that has prompted a whole nother battle.  Now that the world of gender specific bathrooms has been opened up, there is no way those boys want to be in a bathroom with Mommy and her “china”.

So I have become the crazy lady in the hall.  With Eli perched on my hip I stand outside the men’s room and talk loudly through the door.

“How’s it going in there?”

“Does Nathan need any help?”

“How much longer?”

“Have you washed your hands yet?”

 I could just stand there and wait quietly.  But I want people to know that I am here, I am listening and I am waiting on the other side of that door.  I don’t care if I sound like a nut job, asking for a play by play from the men’s room.  Truth be told, there are some very scary characters that come in and out of that swinging door as I stand yapping in the hallway.

I think about single dads and how they have them same sort of predicament.  But I don’t care if it’s a stereotyping, I have been known to help a girl get  the soap to wash her hands or pull down a paper towel.  I’ve seen plenty of other women do so as well. 

In the last six months, in numerous venues, I have yet to have a man help the boyz.  Seth has climbed on a counter and gotten the knees of his pants wet with whatever germ infested water is pooled there to get a towel to dry his brothers hands.  I get eye rolls and huffs from men exiting.

 I can vaguely recall one man assuring me that they were doing alright when he left.  Thankfully my sons aren’t running around in there, pulling out toilet paper and flinging water at each other.  They are doing their business and leaving as well behaved young gentlemen.

But what is a mom of all boyz to do?  I am surely not going to spend the next five years at home all day every day waiting for the majority of them to reach an acceptable solo bathroom trekking age.  Instead I will be the obnoxiously loud lady in the hall, doing what I can as my voice echoes off of the tile walls.  Lucky for me, if anything were to happen to my little buggers they are afflicted with the same lack of volume control that I am!


  1. yes, oh yes, this will be me in a couple of years too. what else can we do??? It must be hard for men and their little girls, we don't pee right out there in the middle of the room, it's probably better for a guy to send his daughter in the ladies room than walk her in the men's room with 'silly potties' as my son likes to call the urinals. lol

  2. I can remember having the bathroom issues when the boys were younger. Some places now have what they call “Family Restrooms”. I get the concept, but not sure how I feel about them.

  3. Who cares if you look crazy? You're being a great mom and doing what needs to be done! I have 4 & 6 year old boys, so I know this will be something I will be doing myself soon! I just want to commend you for having the courage to keep that conversation going, no matter who is around and what judgments they are making of you!

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