This blog originally ran a few years ago. We had an amazing response with comments from readers and thought it was time to run this again. For those who chimed in years ago, maybe your viewpoints have changed! And for those who are reading this for the first time, please comment on as many topics as possible and get the discussion rolling! ~Rachel
My first child was a boy, so since he was born, I have always taken him into the Ladies’ Restroom with me when we are out in public. He just turned six, and I guess I got so used to doing this that it never really crossed my mind that there would come a point when he would need to go into the Men’s Room alone. My family went out for dinner a few months ago, and when I got up to use the restroom my son said he had to go as well, so we trotted off together to the ladies room. When we got back my husband immediately said, “You can’t do that anymore! He is way too old to be in there with you!” For the first time I had to stop and think, “How old is too old?”
When I told Katie I wanted to write about this, her first response was, “I have to tell you the truth … it creeps me out to see six-year-old boys in the women’s bathroom.” But then I told her my reasoning and explained that my fear is sending him in to the Men’s bathroom alone and running into the man who is just sitting there waiting for an innocent little boy to waltz in so the man can expose himself, or worse. She said she’d never thought about that since her son is still small enough to accompany her and no one really notices.
I am pretty far from being an over-protective mom, and sometimes I think I have raised my kids to almost be TOO independent, but this is one situation where I really need help. I am guessing I just need to start standing next to the bathroom door and sending my son in to use the restroom as quickly as possible. I don’t know what other option I have. So please share! When did you start letting your son use the Men’s Restroom without an adult?
Now this leads me to many other questions where I wonder “How old is too old?” I am going to preface this now by saying that some of these questions can get very touchy and I know readers may get very opinionated about them. So please keep your comments respectful. Also keep in mind that children who have special needs may be tackling the milestones below long after others, so those answers may differ as well. After all, some of us really do have justifiable reasons behind why we do things and as our motto always goes, “To each his own!” We hope that your responses will help others who may not have figured out an answer on their own yet and need advice!
How old is too old to …
Bathe with a sibling of the opposite sex?
See their parents nude?
Need help getting dressed?
Be rocked to sleep?
Wear longalls and shortalls?
Wear smocked clothes?
Use a pacifier?
Be walked into their classroom by mom or dad?
Ride in a stroller?
Have their parents cut up their food?
Trick or treat?
Lots of thought provoking questions here, folks! So, weigh in with your answers and let us know!