radar key-what else was I meant to do???

(72 Posts)
ariane5 Sat 25-May-13 20:48:22

All 4 dcs have disabilities and ds1 has a radar key.

Went out this morning and he needed the toilet so used the key, while we were in there (it is a baby change too) I changed the baby and dd2 and dd1 also used the toilet. We were probably about 10 mins.

Came out to a very annoyed couple who demanded to know why we had been so long. Tried to explain but they were adamant that ALL the dcs shouldn't have used the facilities if only one had a radar key.
Tried to explain that yes its in ds1 name but technically ALL of dcs could have one.

We were as quick as we could have been but they were extremely annoyed.
In the end I told them I wasn't going to justify myself to them anymore and if they had really been that desperate to use the facilities they wouldn't be standing around having a go at me.

WIBU to have let all dcs use the toilet/changing facilities?

OldLadyKnowsNothing Sat 25-May-13 20:50:34


Dannilion Sat 25-May-13 20:51:24

Yandu. Ignore them. Some old people just love to moan.

LuisSuarezTeeth Sat 25-May-13 20:51:44

Of course not. How rude!

brew sounds like a hard day.

BreasticlesNTesticles Sat 25-May-13 20:51:49


ByTheWishingWell Sat 25-May-13 20:52:25

Not at all.

I think they WBVU to have a go at a mum with 4 disabled DCs for letting her DCs use the toilet. Ridiculous.

noblegiraffe Sat 25-May-13 20:55:42

If there's a baby change in there then presumably babies don't have keys and it's for family use?

ariane5 Sat 25-May-13 20:56:17

I really was as quick as I could be, seems like virtually every time we manage to get out something goes wrong sad

It just puts me off, I'm sick of the 'looks' when we use the blue badge and now this as well.

frownyface Sat 25-May-13 20:56:48

ariane, they were BU.

Some people are very rude and not very understanding.

Dont let it worry you smile

frownyface Sat 25-May-13 20:57:56

i get the same re. blue badge-screw them!! please dont let these small minded people upset you

ariane5 Sat 25-May-13 20:58:27

I think if you don't have a key and want to use the changing facilities you have to go to reception and request their key.

I really was trying to be quick. They didn't knock on the door or really give me much of a chance, just pounced when we came out it was a bit much how irate they were, and clearly not that desperate as could argue first!

OryxCrake Sat 25-May-13 20:58:43

You were not being unreasonable at all!

(Um, Danillion, where did the op say they were old? Yes, the waiting couple were in the wrong but there's too much older-people bashing on here...)

ariane5 Sat 25-May-13 21:02:00

I didn't specify their age in my op but yes, they were elderly.

Tbh though I've had comments in equal amounts from both young and old, seems like a lot of people regardless of age are rude!

Sidge Sat 25-May-13 21:02:39


Hell my DD2 is disabled and takes about 10 minutes to toilet, regardless of whether my other children and I use the loo too!

They were very rude; FGS it's a DISABLED toilet, it's not beyond the realms of possibility that the person in it might not be in and out quickly hmm

Kormachameleon Sat 25-May-13 21:03:12

I got someone stage whispering te other day at the supermarket when I used my blue badge

I'm young and physically look very healthy. However I have many health problems and mobility is now a big issue

I offered them the use of my badge as they were obviously jealous. I then offered them my crippling disability

Funnily enough they didn't take it. At least they had the decency to look ashamed

People moaning really piss me off. If they knew what hoops you had to jump through to get a badge or a radar key then they wouldn't question it

Ignore the bastards and hope karma catches up with them

noblegiraffe Sat 25-May-13 21:04:17

Well you had a baby and a key so you had a double right to be in there.

If I had requested a key for the baby change from reception, there's no way I wouldn't have let my other DC have a wee at the same time. They were just being narky at having to wait for a wee.

frownyface Sat 25-May-13 21:07:03

hold your head up high, raising four kids is tough without the added responsibility of looking after children with disabilities.

You are parking in the right place, and you are using the radar key exactly as you should so dont let people get to you smile

ariane5 Sat 25-May-13 21:08:02

I thought I was the expert at quick nappy changes but obviously not quick enough! I think what upset me most was the way they did the 'shouldn't you be ashamed looking us up and down to try and work out what was wrong with dcs look'

We get that a lot when use blue badge as with the younger 2 in a double buggy and ds1 sometimes in pushchair/sometimes walking and dd1 people do stare and it really annoys me.
The m+s car park where we live is the worst place on earth for this-the amount of comments we have had there is horrendous sad Try to avoid it now, even in the shop we would get tutted at if somebody wanted to get past.

Sometimes I feel like the effort put in to go out with dcs just isn't worth it.

OryxCrake Sat 25-May-13 21:20:58

I know it's easier said than done (have a dc with autism) but try not to let the rude, staring, tutting, ignorant sods get you down.

I think people who do this have no idea how undermining it is. Or don't care. They should be ashamed of themselves.

Hang in there - you sound like a lovely mum. I used to be tempted not to go places with my kids as dc1 attracted a lot of negative attention but try to bear in mind that there are loads of people out there who think like the people on this thread.

Both supermarkets where I live have the baby change table in the disabled loo. The normal loos are too small to take a pushchair in. If I need to change DD while I'm there, I use the disabled, I also have to use the disabled if I need the loo as there is nowhere safe to leave my one year old DD while I use the normal loos. I'm not disabled but I have bowel problems so waiting 40 minutes until I have walked home, isn't always possible. No-one has ever said anything nasty to me (yet).

Soupa Sat 25-May-13 21:27:13

Arses, really huge bastards. Don't let it chip away at your confidence, you are marvellous and can take as long as you want in the toilet or anywhere else.

Sounds like you really need a spare pair of hands sometimes, can you get a volunteer from homestRt or similar? You could practise your hard stares on each other before going out. Honestly though they are awful people don't let them keep you in. Am so sorry there is not better support in so many ways.

Iggi101 Sat 25-May-13 21:27:32

Please don't let these attitudes put you off going out with your family. Think about all the "silent" people you also pass by, who aren't saying anything/or looking askance at you. Most of them will have the attitudes of supportive mumsnetters, if only you knew. You could have passed me in a shop a million times and you wouldn't know how brave I think you are and how I'd stand up for you and your dcs in a hearbeat. It's only the ones with an axe to grind who speak out, unfortunately.

ariane5 Sat 25-May-13 21:36:17

Thankyou for so many lovely responses, I feel a bit less defeated now. Earlier in the day I had decided I'd never go out again (a bit like the time I gave up using buses as got fed up of having to justify dcs needing a seat).

Think I just need to forget about todays incident and hopefully next time we manage to go out things will go smoothly.
I rarely venture out just me and dcs it is much easier with dh. I did have a lovely homestart volunteer who helped us get to dd2 nursery/shops etc but our local homestart shut due to losing funding from the council so I only saw her 5 times, such a shame.

Smartiepants79 Sat 25-May-13 21:40:56

YOU know you did nothing you shouldn't have so they can go take a running jump.
You have no need to justify how long it takes your DC to go to the toilet.
Rude, rude, rude.
Keep doing what you're doing.

Sunnywithshowers Sat 25-May-13 21:43:55

YANBU. They were being horrible to you.


Finola1step Sat 25-May-13 21:44:48

Some people are just really unpleasant. Please don't let it spoil your day.

DoubleLifeIsALifeHalved Sat 25-May-13 21:50:53

Oh poor you, I have a radar key too & I'd have looked at you nicely with a 'we re in it togther' look (not in the loo, in the same boat as it were!)

Some people are not very nice, try to let it slide off you

megandraper Sat 25-May-13 21:55:16

Yanbu! i have a key for myself. My small children come in and go to the loo with me. Only a fool would suggest doing otherwise. Keep your chin up.

Holliewantstobehot Sat 25-May-13 22:00:02

They were very rude. If one of my dcs had to use the disabled loo I would take my other dc in with me, I wouldn't let her go in the ladies on her own - that is just ridiculous. My mum was disabled and if I had to help her onto the loo we would all go in and if I or my dcs needed the loo we would all go. Keep strong and ignore the ignorant people.

myonlyfriend Sat 25-May-13 22:08:07

for the love of God, no op yadnbu, we frequently have to use the toilets with the radar keys even if ds does not need to use it! If I need to use the toilet and I have him with me then I have to use the disabled loo, wtf would I do with him sitting in his wheelchair? leave him outside! Madness utter madness, they were being tits don't give them brain space.

Floggingmolly Sat 25-May-13 23:13:44

We're the couple waiting also disabled? confused
If you'd all been in the queue to go in individually, it would have taken the same amount of time, would it not? They were being weird.

ariane5 Sun 26-May-13 09:52:25

I think the lady was disabled, she had a walking stick and did look frail.

It is just getting awkward being 'questioned' or shouted at when we go out, park in bb spaces, dcs need a seat on bus or dd2 is in her buggy and people demand we fold it so they can get on with a baby, I then end up feeling I have to justify myself/give a full medical history as people don't accept a simple "I'm sorry I can't we need this space" etc. That was why I now avoid buses as it got to the point everytime we all went on one somebody said something (people round here are grumpy and its always busy everywhere).

I think unfortunately I just need to put up with these sort of things, keep my cool and not get upset about it.

BodaciousTatas Sun 26-May-13 10:39:40

Yanbu, this used to happen to me all the time when I used my radar key (thankfully I rarely need it these days). I didn't even converse with these people, they were not worth my time.

Sparklymommy Sun 26-May-13 10:46:04

Yanbu. They are. End of story.

Hazeydays Sun 26-May-13 10:47:27

YANBU They were being miserabble. I have a radar key b/c of crohns and I get sick of people thinking that you look "too well"or "too old". You can find grumpy miserable people anywhere- just make sure they dont ruin your day! :-)

Dawndonna Sun 26-May-13 10:51:58

DD plasters on a very sweet smile when people question her use of the lavatory and says: 'I really don't recall having to justify my usage being in the terms and conditions'.
That shuts them up!

FarBetterNow Sun 26-May-13 11:12:54

Ariane: don't let them get you down.

People shouldn't judge - ignore them.

I was extremely embarrassed and practically fell over myself apologising to the lady in a wheel chair waiting outside the downstairs disabled loo that I had used in McDonalds instead of walking my able body upstairs to the other loos.
She was very gracious.

mrsjay Sun 26-May-13 11:17:21

yanbu the oldies were probbaly bursting but hey ho you did nothing wrong and tbh some folk get all uppity when they need to use the disbaled toilet something takes over them , ignore people and smile at them really pisses them off

Holliewantstobehot Sun 26-May-13 15:22:42

I know what you mean about not wanting to give a whole medical history though - my ds is dyspraxic and sometimes gets very frustrated or knocks things over or if we go out to eat does not always manage to eat very well with cutlery/makes a lot of mess. If people stare I have to try and resist the urge to explain him and his condition as it is really none of their business but you do feel like you have to justify yourself sometimes. People should really just be a lot less judgmental, but I suspect will be waiting a long time for that!!!

SoupDragon Sun 26-May-13 15:25:18

Wasn't this the perfect opportunity to use the MN stock phrase "Did you mean to be so rude?"

fuzzypicklehead Sun 26-May-13 17:43:03

Stock answer: "None of your business".

Nobody else has a right to know who in your family is using disabled accessible facilities or why you have a blue badge.

Why would they ask those questions? How did they know your DS1 wasn't the one using the toilet at the time, and how did they know it didn't take him that long to go?

I work with many people who use radar keys and who take a great deal of time in the toilet. It's not uncommon. If you had used a different facility, you would not have been able to keep your other disabled children with you in a safe and secure manner. Their actions don't make sense.

McNewPants2013 Sun 26-May-13 17:52:45

I have a radar key for ds, he has autism and I hand dryers set him off and even though he is only 7 he looks much older and I got sick of women being freaked out by a boy in the women toilet ( god knows why it's not like women toilets don't have cubicles)

When people ask I just tell them I don't tell strangers my son medical history.

foreverondiet Sun 26-May-13 17:57:15

YANBU - even if your other children DIDN'T have disabilities as presumably it would be difficult for you to take your DS1 (not sure how old he is) into the ladies for the others to go. Just shrug and ignore.

AND it had a baby change in it - so presumbly anyone with a baby would use. So doubly YANBU. Plus any toilet outing with a double buggy is a nightmare.

Whilst using the accessible facilities with my son who is in receipt of DLA, I was actually questioned by a moaning Minnie. She was wondering what was the matter with him because he didn't look very disabled...I replied that she didn't look so rude! I have had to develop a thick skin, most people are just quietly supportive of your using the facilities that you are entitled to, a vocal minority are rude, don't let them get you down.

lljkk Sun 26-May-13 18:07:34

Sorry you had a bad day, OP. sad

Walkacrossthesand Sun 26-May-13 18:08:55

I do wonder if some people with mobility issues /disabilities get accustomed to not ever having to wait to use the public loo unlike us lot who have to queue even if we are bursting and start to feel that a vacant loo at all times is somehow their prerogative .. It's not, of course, and, with our ageing population and increasing number of mobility scooters, I wonder whether disputes outside a disabled loo are going to become more common...

youmeatsix Sun 26-May-13 18:13:32

i think you deserve a medal, 3 DCs to the toilet and a baby changed in 10 minutes! they were completely in the wrong. Regardless if one or all of them had a key, one DID, what were you supposed to do? go in with one and leave the rest outside? Dont give this any more thought, you were completely in tHE right IMO

WineNot Sun 26-May-13 18:15:56

Sounds to me like you have the patience of a saint.

I'd have told them to fuck off.

Well done you! flowers

foslady Sun 26-May-13 19:20:07

Definitely NBU! I hate this toddler mentality that some (note the word SOME) of the older generation develop if they perceive that they can't get their own way (I was told 'I could be dead by then and I bet you'd be glad' the other day by one such dear after the bending over backwards and doing something that we wouldn't normally do wasn't going to be done immediately...... )

Please don't let them stop you from living your life to the full

SoupDragon Mon 27-May-13 07:16:39

To be fair. "toddler mentality" has nothing to do with age. There are toddlers of all ages.

BlackholesAndRevelations Mon 27-May-13 07:46:44

Erm, you had a key, therefore you had just as much right to use the toilet as they did. I don't know how people cope with the ignorance of others when it comes to disabled children, really I don't. I used to work with children with disabilities and was horrified enough then when other mums woukd move their dc away from the ones I was looking after, or who would ignore and not give way to wheelchairs... And they weren't even my own dc. As if parents if disabled children haven't got enough to deal with. flowers

lljkk Mon 27-May-13 08:26:08

I have a key, I bought it on Ebay! I have no "right" to it. Just find it useful on rare occasion.

But OP does have a right given her situation, just the oldies didn't like to think so. Lot like drivers who think that 90% of other road users shouldn't exist.

mrsjay Mon 27-May-13 08:35:02

* do wonder if some people with mobility issues /disabilities get accustomed to not ever having to wait to use the public loo*

nah they were just grumpy,

pigletmania Mon 27-May-13 08:59:27

Take no notice of then, you have every right to use that facility for however long. How did they not know your ds needed the toilet for longer? Some people's conditions mean they can be in the loitlet for half an hour. Some people are just moaning minnies

pigletmania Mon 27-May-13 09:14:35

Ignore ignore ignore

ThisWayForCrazy Mon 27-May-13 09:19:00

I wouldn't have told them what I was doing in there. It's none f their business. You have a key and you used it for your DCs. There's nothing more to it.

BlackholesAndRevelations Mon 27-May-13 09:19:15

Lljkk you should be ashamed of yourself if you have no more need for a disabled toilet than the rest of us. And what utter dicks are selling these on eBay?!

ariane5 Mon 27-May-13 09:42:19

I didn't know you could buy them, we got ours from local council when got dcs blue badges.

I really just hate feeling like we have to justify ourselves when using something that is meant to make life a little easier for dcs.

lljkk Mon 27-May-13 10:01:20

I only knew Radar keys were sold on Ebay because it was widely discussed on MN, the disabled-access loos aren't there exclusively for disabled people. I'm trying to remember when I last tried to use my key, probably at the beach when there was a massive queue of shivering people for the regular loos all trying to change out of soaking suits. Nobody queuing for the disabled loo.

noblegiraffe Mon 27-May-13 10:05:55

If disabled access loos aren't for disabled people, then why did you have to buy your key from eBay rather than simply asking the council for one?

SoupDragon Mon 27-May-13 10:06:09

the disabled-access loos aren't there exclusively for disabled people.

If they are locked with a key, yes they are.

Did you mean to sound so entitled?

Iggi101 Mon 27-May-13 10:09:32

I imagine you can buy blue badges as well.

myfirstkitchen Mon 27-May-13 10:47:34

You're not unreasonable

Who made them king and queen of the bog? Once you're in there, as you have a right to be, you don't have a time limit! I'm sure no one wants to spend more time in a public toilet than they want to. Next time don't even answer. You don't have to explain yourself to anyone. Please don't stop doing out because of horrible people.

I'm horrified people sell these keys on eBay though!

MidniteScribbler Mon 27-May-13 12:43:44

I find "oh do kindly fuck off" seems to work best in these situations. It's pretty hard to argue with that one.

That said, I do think there should be more than one disabled bathroom in places, and I don't think the change tables should be in there. I get awfully embarrassed having to use the change tables, always wondering if someone who really needs to use the bathroom is waiting. I usually tend to leave the door unlocked (we don't have keys here) so they can come in and chase me out if needed and I've perfected the one minute nappy change. I can't wait until DS is out of nappies and I can stop going in there.

Calabria Mon 27-May-13 12:52:09

If they'd been waiting for my ex to finish they'd have been waiting a lot longer than 10 minutes.

I hope they wouldn't have a go at him when he emerges in a wheelchair.


Sunnywithshowers Mon 27-May-13 13:45:43

My DH has a key as he has MS. When he doesn't have his stick he is not 'visibly' disabled. If anyone challenged him I'd tell them to fuck right off.

I'm horrified ljikk that you think it's okay to buy a key and use the disabled loo for changing your swimsuit. Disabled loos are provided for disabled people to use (the clue is in the name), not for entitled people who don't want to fucking queue.

pigletmania Mon 27-May-13 18:31:45

Ljikk that is not on. What if whist you are in there, a disabled person really needed to use the toilet and as a result had an accident because you could not wait like everybody else. Different if you are disabled bu you are not!

myonlyfriend Mon 27-May-13 18:45:22

doubt very much that would bother ljikk piglet, perhaps if you lived with a disabled person and had hassle every fucking day you may think different ljikk, that is a selfish and dare I say it entitled attitude. Hopefully you will never genuinely need the disabled facilities in the future. We are all only ever one step away from a massive change in our circumstances.

Iggi101 Mon 27-May-13 18:56:52

There is one for sale on eBay right now. Is that even legal? Not moral anyway, unless it's a disabled person who has lost their key!
Love that the seller mentions being a single parent - oh well that's ok then.

pigletmania Mon 27-May-13 19:14:01

It would be different if say you did not have a radar key, the queue for te loo was long, and the disabled loo was empty and you had an attack of the runs or you were goin to wee yourself.

elliejjtiny Mon 27-May-13 19:40:48

YANBU. I have 2 disabled children, another one with health issues on the way and DS1 who at 6 has a better death stare than me grin.

Do you have barnardos in your area? We used them when homestart closed and they were really good.

I know how awful the looks and comments are, the ones we get make me not want to leave the house with the DC's.

digerd Mon 27-May-13 19:52:55

They didn't say anything while they were waiting for 10 minutes, only when they saw you come out with the DCs. And you were right to tell them that they couldn't have been that desperate as took time to have a go at you instead of dashing in frantically.
I am an older lady and my bladder is not like it was, but I would never had said anything, just smiled at you with relief.

But then I'm a really nice sweet little old lady smile
They were nasty old battleaxes.

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