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To think it's not just me who doesn't like being stared at while partially dressed?

(411 Posts)

MNHQ have commented on this thread.

lifeofsiam Sun 14-Aug-16 13:41:11

Dh and I were in what is supposed to be an over-14's only sauna/spa bath area.

A boy who looked significantly younger (about 12) sat on the edge of the jacuzzi steps staring at us the entire time. His mother and elder sibling stayed in the steam room, leaving him outside.

In the changing rooms, I spoke politely to the mother, saying she may not have seen the sign saying it is over -14's only, and also her son had stared at us the entire time, making us feel uncomfortable.

She became angry with me, said the boy was almost 14 and autistic- which is why he was staring.

Ok, we weren't to know that, and she was clearly very stressed.

She then muttered 'there's always one.'

I asked 'always one what ?'

'Always one who is uncomfortable being stared at.'

I didn't respond- I didn't want to argue with or antagonise another mother with a disabled child - but afterwards I thought how it's not just me who would feel uncomfortable and a lot of people, especially women and teenage girls wouldn't feel comfortable in those circumstances, either? And that I'm not 'only one' in that case?

Cheby Sun 14-Aug-16 14:01:08

YANBU OP. I would feel very uncomfortable being stared at in that situation, doesn't matter who was doing the staring. Also, he was under 14 so shouldn't have been there. Plus it doesn't sound like he had the best time himself; he was on the steps on the jacuzzi, not in it, and his family were in the steam room and left him alone. Can't have been much fun for him.

OpenMe Sun 14-Aug-16 14:13:53

Yes if you want to be completely cold about it you were in the right, but all things considered, in terms of difficult afternoons, I reckon she probably wins.

IMO you shouldn't have responded to her mutterings. You've acknowledged she was clearly stressed, why add to it?

If you were in the hot tub he wasn't staring at your nakedness, so being partially dressed isn't relevant. If he does a lot of staring, she probably gets "what's he looking at?" comments a lot, hence "there's always one"

KingJoffreyLikesJaffaCakes Sun 14-Aug-16 14:15:38

I hate being stared at any time.

Apparently you can sense someone staring at you even when you're asleep.

Amelie10 Sun 14-Aug-16 14:16:36

Yanbu, however you should have told that boy directly not to be so rude.

OlennasWimple Sun 14-Aug-16 14:23:24


VladmirsPoutine Sun 14-Aug-16 14:23:29

Message deleted by MNHQ. Here's a link to our Talk Guidelines.

heknowsmysinsheseesmysoul Sun 14-Aug-16 14:24:57

This won't go well.

ayeokthen Sun 14-Aug-16 14:26:26

Our son has autism and if he was staring at someone I'd gently (and quietly) remind him that staring is rude and distract him. No OP, YANBU.

usual Sun 14-Aug-16 14:28:26

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

LaurieFairyCake Sun 14-Aug-16 14:30:07

Unfortunately you're only just technically right since he was almost 14.

Your fundamental question really is 'should parents/carers stop children with disabilities staring at other people in a confined space' - I think that's difficult to answer.

I always tend to think that I as the NT person can leave (I hate being stared at) but the child is being supervised by someone else and the child isn't responsible for where the adults take them.

I think the area was inappropriate for the child as they weren't getting enjoyment out of it (not only because they were too young) - just not a suitable activity for him.

hazeimcgee Sun 14-Aug-16 14:30:51

The question is perhaps why was her 13 yo autistic son left alone in this kind of situation with the mom and sibling were in the steam room.
He could have ended up with some right dick going over and having a go at him and that would have been infinitely worse that thr convo you had with his mom.

YANBU and did the right thing talking politely to his mom. I'd have also responded to the "always one" mutterings

AndNowItsSeven Sun 14-Aug-16 14:34:49

Amelie the boy was t being rude, he has autism , have you not read the op!

AndNowItsSeven Sun 14-Aug-16 14:34:55


museumum Sun 14-Aug-16 14:37:08

I would feel a little uncomfortable. But I'd suck it up. What's to be gained by mentioning it? The mother cannot "cure" her son and deserves to be allowed to enjoy a spa or whatever. He's not doing any harm. It's not like a gang of boys or men staring to be sexually intimidating.

Missgraeme Sun 14-Aug-16 14:37:33

The always one is her!! The mother who thinks rules don't apply to her child! He was under 14!! The mother who left her child unsupervised in generally an adult environment where people were trying to relax.

EverySongbirdSays Sun 14-Aug-16 14:41:44

*Knowing that he has autism and this could happen i.e. has happened before - his mother should not put other patrons of the sauna in such an awkward position.
Bit like that mother that took her baby to a theatre production. The baby shouldn't have been there.*

Are you SERIOUSLY saying that autistic people shouldn't be allowed in leisure facilities in case they make other patrons uncomfortable?


monkeywithacowface Sun 14-Aug-16 14:41:46

A bit disingenuous to call yourself partially dressed in the title OP. You were like everyone else in swimwear in a spa.

practy Sun 14-Aug-16 14:42:21

The issue is that the OP had no idea he had autism and was in a place where women are wearing bikinis and swim suits. If I saw a 14 year old boy staring at me wearing a bikini, I would assume he was being pervy.

TheSilverChair Sun 14-Aug-16 14:42:30

I can understand why you felt uncomfortable, I would have as well.

The boy wasn't aware that his staring was upsetting but his DM should know what he's like and shouldn't have left him unsupervised somewhere like that, especially as it was breaking the rules. She was very unreasonable to have a go at you.

OpenMe Sun 14-Aug-16 14:44:27

How long is it possible to stay in a steam room for. Mother's entitled to a few minutes to herself surely? Boy wasn't actually doing any harm.

EverySongbirdSays Sun 14-Aug-16 14:46:49


1) You know they say about assumptions

2) Again, should autistic men/people be barred from places were women happen to be in swimwear

It's not his fault he stares, and initial discomfort should be assauged by the fact he can't help it and it's not personal

practy Sun 14-Aug-16 14:47:02

He was doing harm. A teenage boy staring at a woman wearing a bikini, is doing her harm. She doesnt know he has autism and is not pervy.

practy Sun 14-Aug-16 14:49:01

Okay woman should just ignore any teenage boy or man behaving in a potentially pervy way, in case he is autistic.
Or just maybe women are allowed to be worried about this.

Amelie10 Sun 14-Aug-16 14:49:08

The op felt uncomfortable, why should she suck it up.

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