30 answers

At What Age Should Boys Go to a Public Men's Room Alone?

Just wondering when it is appropriate to send my sons to the restroom alone when we are out and my husband is not with me? My oldest is 5 1/2 and I feel a little inappropriate taking him into the ladies' room with me, but still feel like he is young to venture into the men's room alone! Thanks!

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I think 5 1/2 is too young. My son is five and he still goes into the ladies room with me. I do send him into the stall by himself so I know he is able to go on his own. But I wouldn't want him in a restroom and not know who else is in there with him. He is not that aware yet of strangers versus good adults. I have never had another lady tell me anything or even give me a strange look.

1 mom found this helpful

I allow my almost seven year to go to the mens room by hisself, but the almost 4 year old only goes if his brother or Dad can help him.

The only time I take the seven year in whith me is when it is just me and the boys out shopping and all three of us need to go potty.

I've found that ladies don't gennerally mind having small boys in in the bathroom as long as they are polite. However, when my boys reached the first grade, they understood that boys should use the boys bathroom. At that point I started allowing them to use the boys bathroom on their own while hovering outside the door. This made the boys more comfortable and they knew that I was listening for them, and my obvious presence outside the bathroom door acts as a deterent at least. I also make use of the family bathrooms when available.

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There are several posts here, but I'll throw my two cents worth in... I have a six year old boy. He goes into the restroom by himself with mom close by. We have taught what is appropriate and what is not. I cannot physically be there to protect him all the time, but I can give him the tools necessary to protect himself. He knows that nobody should approach or touch him in his "no-no" areas period. This applies in public, at school, everywhere. I love that even our doctor will explain to him that only mom, dad, or doctor should touch, and that doctor can only touch with mom or dad in the room. I think you have to do what you feel comfortable with, but I also think education is important.

1 mom found this helpful

My oldest son was 10 when I started to let him use the men's room without me. I still hang around outside. My youngest son is 8 and he still goes with me if his brother isn't around. I much rather be safe than sorry. You also have to consider if your child will play while in the bathroom. Most kids that age without a parent around will play and touch everything in sight in there and I'm sure you don't want that.

1 mom found this helpful

Ok, so I totally disagree with most of the answers here. I say it totally depends on your son. I was the same way with my daughter, but by 7 or 8 she was allowed to go by herself, with me close by. By the time she was 9, she is allowed to walk to the restroom by herself, while I continue to shop. It made me a nervous wreck the first several times, but I finally realized that she was growing up and had to learn to do stuff on her own. Now if she's gone too long, I still go check on her. She is very mature for her age and very aware of the people around her. But she proved that she could handle it herself and we've never had any problems.

1 mom found this helpful

I think 5 1/2 is too young. My son is five and he still goes into the ladies room with me. I do send him into the stall by himself so I know he is able to go on his own. But I wouldn't want him in a restroom and not know who else is in there with him. He is not that aware yet of strangers versus good adults. I have never had another lady tell me anything or even give me a strange look.

1 mom found this helpful

I have two sons that are 10 and 4, with my first son, he was 9yrs old, lol, and I still stand outside the door waiting if we are at for example a truck stop, out of town, on the road, I give him a time frame and then call his name and if no answer I WILL GO IN READY!!!...LOL and it will be the same age for my 4yr old unless he goes with his big brother, tooooo much is happening to kids these days so you have to take that extra measure of security dealing with your kids they will get over it ....

I think he is old enough to go by himself. If I were you I would just stand nearby to keep him safe. If anyone else goes in I would knock on the door and call out to your son to see what's taking so long and that will let the other person know someone is keeping an eye on him and that you are right there to raise an alarm if needed.

I also think women begin to get uncomfortable with an older boy in the restroom too. If the places you are going have a family restroom that might solve all your problems.

If your son is aware of strangers and the possible dangers of this situation then he should be fine.

You will be hearing from lots of moms like me who took them in the ladies restroom until they were definitely older than your son. I bet our son was 7 or 8 and he hated it, but it was not worth the risk. For the 1st year or two, I would stand guard very closely at the door and I wasn't concerned with what other men may think. If they were a father, they knew exactly what I was doing .. child security! We live in an upper scale area of town and about 2 months ago, an arrest was made at a local movie theater where a man was molesting boys in one of the restrooms. It happened a few times and they finally caught him. This just reinforces that security need by parents. You are doing the right thing by continuing to guard the door and/or share a stall.

I allow my almost seven year to go to the mens room by hisself, but the almost 4 year old only goes if his brother or Dad can help him.

The only time I take the seven year in whith me is when it is just me and the boys out shopping and all three of us need to go potty.

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