Bathroom Boundaries

by Nattalie Gordon about a month ago in humanity

For the ladies who bring their sons to female restrooms, because they have to.

Bathroom Boundaries

By Nattalie Gordon

We live in an age where as humans, we simply cannot trust many other humans. A time when the phrase ‘anything is possible’ has never been truer.

It’s quite possible that your preschooler could get riddled with machine gun bullets while playing with building blocks in a classroom that should’ve been a safe space. It’s quite possible that while you sleep, your entire house could sink into a bottomless abyss if you reside anywhere in Florida. But not before an alligator crashes through your window and lands on your kitchen floor, also if you reside anywhere in Florida.

It’s also quite possible that you could leave your ten-year-old girl or boy to go to the restroom and end up in your own real life version of the movie Taken. Electing to relieve oneself could cause your kid to end up someplace in Central America or the Middle East… where they’re sold to the highest bidder who either wants a youngster with great kidneys or a great-looking face. Not to say that women can’t be involved, but we all know it’s usually a male with big bucks and some unhealthy fetishes.

Recently I observed a lady entering a female restroom as I was exiting; she had in tow a boy who couldn’t be less than ten years old. I’ve seen this before, countless times, and I’ve always wondered why.

The boy seemed unhappy and downright embarrassed to be in there, you could see in his expression that he thought he was doing something wrong by being in a female restroom. You could tell he was reluctant too because his mom dragged him along, parked him in front of a stall before going in and warned him to "stay there and do not move!"

It was a somewhat cringey moment and I felt embarrassed for the poor kid. Women of all shapes, colors and sizes were walking in and out of stalls. Some women choose to redress, adjust bra straps and fish for maxi pads inside bottomless purses outside bathroom stalls instead of inside them. If you’re a prepubescent boy, be warned. You never know what might traumatize you if you waltz into a women’s restroom.

There was so much for that poor boy to see and then try to unsee. Of course I found myself wondering what he was thinking about while he stood there listening to his mommy’s piss hitting the toilet. What about her, what was she thinking? Why did she drag him into the ladies room? Was she afraid someone would try to assault or abduct him, had she parked him outside the door instead of outside her stall door? Is she a paranoid, overprotective woman or is her fear justified?

Kids (and adults) go missing in America everyday. Many of them never to be seen or heard from ever again, having seemingly vanished into thin air.

While I can understand a parent being overly cautious, I was admittedly a tad perturbed. I asked myself, why couldn’t she just leave him just outside the door with an established safe word? Something he could yell in the event that he feels threatened. He looked around ten and had a cellphone I’m sure, why didn’t mommy just call him and stay on the line until she got finished peeing? I felt he was too old to be in a female’s private space, old enough to make other females uncomfortable. There are girls his age who use female restrooms, surely they don’t want a boy standing right where he can see and hear almost everything she’s doing. What if she’s had an accident and is trying to clean up at the sink? There’s a boy who could very well be in her grade observing something she doesn’t want anyone to know about.

What about that girl’s mother? If she’s uncomfortable with the boy standing there, does she have a right to say something to his mother? I don’t know for sure, but it's my suspicion that the mother’s defense would be that she fears for her son’s safety and therefore wanted him close.

Let’s say the gender roles were reversed and it was a father who felt the same way and took his daughter of a similar age to the men’s restroom. Would his action still be as justified as that of the mother? Would it be considered appropriate for a girl just a few dozen days shy of puberty to be in the private space of men, observing them doing something so innocent and necessary, yet so taboo?

Peeing is natural, we all do it. But the way we do it as women differs a great deal from the way men do it. For them, there’s more… exposure if you will. But what if a father argues that his only concern is the safety of his daughter, not the comfort of the men in the men’s room?

It’s sickening that our society has disintegrated so badly that a parent must implement extreme measures to ensure the safety of their child/children. It’s worrisome that parents aren’t acting based on what could happen but based on what has already happened. It’s tragic that a parent isn’t thinking ‘somebody might try to snatch my child and sell him/her to someone who will keep them as a sex slave.’ That parent is thinking that it’s already happened and as a result, she’s ensuring the same fate never befalls her child.

Admittedly, I felt slightly grossed out by the idea of a fidgety, pre-teen boy lurking in the ladies room. But now that I’ve had time to really think about it, I’m more so overwhelmingly disgusted by the fact that there are sick adults who prey on young children daily.

I’m happy for the invention of the family restroom, I believe it’s a much better option for parents who know all too well what could happen if they leave their children unattended for even one minute.

humanity
Nattalie Gordon
Nattalie Gordon
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Nattalie Gordon

I grew up in rural Jamaica. I write screenplays, stage plays, poems, essays, articles etc.

I love horror movies, seafood and almost all sports. Feel free to check me out at  nattaliegordon.weebly.com and follow me on IG @nattaliewithtwoteez 

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