When Sam was much younger, and we were out together ( either Lana, Sam and myself or just me and Sam ), there was frequent need for stops at the bathroom for some butt changing. No problem, part of the deal. I was amazed at two things:
1) The lack of changing stations in Men's bathrooms.
2) The fact that I had never noticed it before.
To take Sam in to a public bathroom as an infant and find that there is nowhere to change her comfortably was, at first, an inconvenience, but then started to draw my ire as time went on. When out with Mommy, I could at least have her take Sam in to the Women's Room where there is ALWAYS a changing station...but that brings with it a great deal of unfairness. Still, doable. When out with just Sam, I am forced to balance my little Princess on one knee while trying to clean her, stay clean myself and wrap things up in a timely manner...all while trying to keep us both off of the terrible public bathroom floors ( which I will get to later ).
To think that whoever designed a lot of these Men's Rooms thought that Dads didn't need them bothers me for a few reasons:
1) Did the designers think that Men didn't want to take care of their children's needs?
2) Did they think that those needs were always to be passed on to Mom?
3) Did they think us incapable?
4) Did they believe we just didn't care?
5) Did they forget that there are a lot of single Dads out there that might need the use of what is a staple of every Women's Room across America?
I am appalled that they feel like Dads couldn't possibly need the same basic amenities as the Moms do. We change butts, too!!!
Now, about the bathrooms...
( For the record, I am not worried so much about the germs...as the world is really one giant ball of filth. This is about the lack of common courtesy and how low a priority maintenance and upkeep seem to be on the individual stores' lists. )
Let me start by saying, I have been in some nice ones...some I am envious of, actually:
The bathroom at Picazzos in Phoenix. Almost too nice to pee in.
However, a majority of them I would rate lower than a port-o-potty or an outhouse. Seriously. I admit, I never really cared before Sam...probably because I stand up to go and never really needed a stall, but now I am almost willing to take her all the way home to use the potty rather than have her deal with the mess of what should be kept up on regularly. Some public restrooms end up like this after an hour of going unchecked:
The other day at Target, I needed to bring Sam in to the bathroom and had to wait for the only stall, which was a handicapped stall. A guy in a wheelchair was occupying it...and he had a helper with him. They left the bathroom stall such a mess I was close to tipping his chair when I saw him a few minutes later. Toilet paper everywhere, feces left on the toilet, piss on the floor and seat. Being in a chair does NOT, in any way, preclude you from basic decency...especially when you have a helper! If you are that incapable of going to the bathroom, go in a bag so my Daughter can use the toilet in a sanitary area without a clean up crew coming in first.
While I am talking about bathrooms, I will leave you with an image of my ideal toilet:
Yeah, I could die here...