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March 18, 2013


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A ten year old boy?! Unthinkable, and how rude to him to announce his handicap as excuse. When she said no for that reason, it's manager time. You are paying for a service you can't partake of because of her impeding you. Gah. And how does she know how her son feels about seeing naked women. It may already be arousing to him, and the situation is not under his control. Unthinkable that she won't take him to the family room or get somebody else to take him to the mens room. I bristle!!!!

I have never been anything but crushed and humiliated by strangers telling me I've made a mistake about public/organizational behavior. I truly believe at least 1/4th (OK, maybe 1/5th) of those people were acting from a charitable place, but in every single case, it makes me want to sink into the floor and never return to that place again. So, knowing how impossible it is for me to hear correction/admonishment from strangers, I basically just never correct or admonish others. It's not a coherent policy or a thoughtful meditation on my behavior. It's entirely emotional.

I've also noticed that the more people engage in flagrantly bad behavior, the more they seem not to want to listen to anyone telling them they should stop what they're doing. If I saw someone texting in church, or even talking on the phone: ack. I wouldn't dare say anything for fear of the nasty thing she might say back to me.

I am judgy too...but I find I'm less judgy when I've experienced a similar situation. For me, empathy is key as to whether I judge or not. (Which I realize is unfair...)

I am absolutely with you on the kids-of-opposite-gender thing. There is certainly room for some flexibility on the cutoff (up to age six or so seems ok to me) but ten is way too big and if disability is an issue I would be surprised if there were not accessible changing rooms somewhere even for adults who need an attendant.

Is it possible that the problem is unclear signage? I for one don't like the signage in our Y very much - "Family Locker Rooms" is kind of unclear, for instance. In our Y the "family" locker rooms are cramped and crowded, with only four changing rooms, in part because people do not realize they are meant for parents with kids of the opposite gender -- some people think adults are not allowed in the locker rooms labeled "Boys" and "Girls" and so you get, for example, mothers with daughters waiting in line for the four private changing rooms when the "Girls" locker room is standing empty. Really wish they would label the "Family" locker room "The Parents With Kids of the Other Gender Over Age Six Changing Room" and the Boys room "Males of All Ages Plus Female Toddlers With Their DadsAre Ok" changing room and so forth.

My sisters would tell you I'm a goody-goody and follow every rule. The CFO of a rehab company (for whom I did brief contractual work) told me in an exasperated voice, "Marcie - you and your rules!" Interestingly, I was only making her aware of Medicare guidelines for billing Part A.

On the other hand, the teachers where I work consider me to be bold and actually fear for me as I dare to question district bureaucracy. And I sometimes find creative ways to bypass red tape.

If there is a family changing room, I would use it. I have a big problem with our facility (not a Y, but a university gym). There isn't a family changing area or restroom. I've managed by having Robbie wait a second while I look inside and make sure everyone is decent - and then I rush him into the handicapped stall to deal with everything we have to deal with. (as in using a bathroom! - no individual rooms for that either...). He's 9 and I worry that he won't be independent enough ever for the men's room by himself. In the summer, we just go home and shower there, but what about bathrooms? (obviously I've been fretting about this one... we need to talk with the manager, I think...)

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