To say don't let your young child go to the toilet alone

(326 Posts)
1Veryhungrycaterpillar Mon 24-Jun-13 13:36:39

Today in a fast food restaurant I saw a lady with a child of around 3/4 who wanted to go to the toilets that were situated upstairs she said she didn't want to go (she had no other kids) with her and let him go alone, am I BU to say I wanted to shake some sense into her?? I suppose I'm more aware of it as I've seen cases of assault on young children in public toilets through my line of work but I would've thought most people wouldn't do it, I am ready to be corrected!

HoHoHoNoYouDont Mon 24-Jun-13 13:40:47

Personally, I would never allow a child of that age to go to a public toilet alone but it's her child, her call I supppose.

mrsjay Mon 24-Jun-13 13:41:12

I would never let a 3/4 yr old go that far to the toilet if you can see the door or whatever fine but no I always went with mine why wouldnt you

livinginwonderland Mon 24-Jun-13 13:42:45

I'm pretty sure I was allowed at that age - if I was out with my dad he would stand outside the door and wait for me. I wouldn't have been sent upstairs to find it on my own though.

onetiredmummy Mon 24-Jun-13 13:42:55

Not at 3 or 4 no, I let my 7 year old go alone as he wants to go to the gents not the ladies.

This backfired though when I was on my own with him, we went to a restaurant for a meal & he went to the bathroom & was in there for AGES. Must have been 10 minutes, but he was in the gents so didn't feel as if I could go in. Asked a waiter to pop his head round the door to make sure he was OK & the waiter was more than happy to. DS was having a poo & singing so seemed to be enjoying the experience to the full!

Purpletots Mon 24-Jun-13 13:43:42

I would never let my dd's go on their own and they are 5&7. I can't believe anyone would let such a little one go on their own sad

whoneedssleepanyway Mon 24-Jun-13 13:43:53

3 seems very young to do this, not just because I am not sure my 3 year old would manage on her own, I would want to make sure she could get the loo roll, washed her hands properly etc. That said I do let my 6 year old go to the loo on her own if we are out in pizza express or somewhere like that...

Yonihadtoask Mon 24-Jun-13 13:44:00

YANBU - but only because I could imagine that the handles may be too stiff/high up and they may struggle to get in and out.

CinnabarRed Mon 24-Jun-13 13:44:18

But at what age is it OK to let them go to the toilet alone?

(I'm asking that question to the OP - who was concerned about abuse - rather than to people concerned about DCs getting lost, etc.)

mrsjay Mon 24-Jun-13 13:44:31

I would stand outside toilets I didnt always go in it is a judgement call I think and everybody is different

Tee2072 Mon 24-Jun-13 13:44:56

My son could never read the door and he's tall at 4.

But she knows her child.

wonderingsoul Mon 24-Jun-13 13:44:58

if i can see the door i will allow them to go on their own.
tesco cafe the toielts are next to the cafe but you cant see them, if mine need to go i let ds7 take ds4 with him, but they only use the ladys.

but i wouldnt send them on their own up stairs on their own. it just not worth the risk./

whoneedssleepanyway Mon 24-Jun-13 13:45:07

Purpletots can I ask is that because you are worried something might happen to them or because they might need help washing hands etc

Tee2072 Mon 24-Jun-13 13:45:07

Reach the door, rather!

HoHoHoNoYouDont Mon 24-Jun-13 13:45:48

Like most things I think it depends on how mature the child is. Only a parent can decide that.

Yonihadtoask Mon 24-Jun-13 13:49:35

But older DC can be assaulted in public toilets too. There was a case in my town a few years ago, where a 12 yo boy was sexually assaulted in BHS toilets.

So, where do you draw the line??

"But at what age is it OK to let them go to the toilet alone?"

I suppose when they understand not to allow a stranger to help them dress etc, which protects them from excuses being made why the child has been touched. So they need to be fully independent.

She may know the toilets well, so knows that the child can manage the doors etc, but i think a child under 5, should be supervised, even if from outside the toilet.

Brownowlahi Mon 24-Jun-13 13:51:29

My dc are 7,4 and 2 and I still take the 7 year old to public toilets when she needs to go. This is partly as I don't know who is in there but also as I have a real thing about checking the toilet is clean before use and she doesn't always remember to do this unless I remind her as she goes in.
Tee, she might know her child but its also possible that she is just plain lazy and can't be bothered to get up and take her child to the toilet. I get so fed up of seeing examples of lazy parenting, children deserve better.

WildlingPrincess Mon 24-Jun-13 13:52:14

I let my 6 year old go alone, but only if I can see the doors.

"where a 12 yo boy was sexually assaulted in BHS toilets"

At least the boy can partly process what has happened, to be helped to overcome it and the perpetrator, punished, if caught.

A younger child can be molested and it can easily be passed off that it was by accident.

Young children need a level of care and just because the same thing that we are protecting them from can happen to anyone, of any age, doesn't mean that it is ok to allow too much independence to soon, especially through laziness.

WandaDoff Mon 24-Jun-13 13:54:37

There was a case last year where a 4 yr was assaulted in my local Asda.

So no, definitely not.

Tee2072 Mon 24-Jun-13 13:54:53

I don't disagree that it's lazy parenting.

But there are far more bad parents in the world than good, based on my opinion and observation.

The point being that it's my opinion. Who am I to say anyone, excepting obvious abuse, is a bad parent? Or even lazy?

NonnoMum Mon 24-Jun-13 13:59:07

I do.
My nearly four year old WON'T come into the ladies with me, but insists on going into the gents alone.

I wait outside and yell, "Anyone aducting you?" "Are you OK?-- every two minutes.

Personally can't abide great lolloping ten years olds standing in the queue next to me in the ladies.

People need to stop being so hysterical.

DuelingFanjo Mon 24-Jun-13 14:02:39

It depends why you disagree. I personally think a 3 year old needs to be supervised if only to stop him/her pissing and shitting all over the toilet seat.

Yonihadtoask Mon 24-Jun-13 14:03:59

Good point Dueling I think the public toilets at the caravan park I go to must be solely used by 3 year olds grin

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