What happens if you gotta go when you’re out and about with your special needs child? As his mother, I take Audric into the stall. Leaving him on the other side has ended in different outcomes. He’s wander out. He’s opened my stall door on both sides. Others have seen my don’t-touch-anything-squat. It’s my pilates. Seriously, anything’s possible. Here’s my experience.
One time, we’re traveling and I had to go. I decided to carry Audric in a backpack. I thought a stroller would slow us down. I thought about sitting him in my lap as I peed, but it was crowded and I didn’t feel comfortable. My higher self said it was okay to ask someone for help, so I asked this healthy looking mom and her two teenaged daughters. Everything was good, but I’m ashamed to admit I did that.
Another time, we were going to see his dentist. Audric’s older, so I tell him to stay. We practice stay in real time. I wish I had the creative mind to play games like Freeze Tag. I put Audric where I see his feet. Then I don’t. I hear a creaking door. Either he’s left or someone was coming in. Oh snap! He’s on the run. I barely finish and dress when I burst through the door. He’s standing there looking up at me, smiling. It’s hard to not appreciate his sense of humor. But there’s got to be a better way.
Here are 4 tips to try next time you need to go:
- Go before you leave! This is probably the easiest one. I constantly forget for myself and Audric. He doesn’t like sudden changes, so it’s hard when we’re halfway out the door. So get in the habit of going before you leave.
- Find a family restroom. For us, this works if it’s a) vacant, and b) has a lock that can’t be disengaged by pushing on the handle.
- Time your trips. Make your trips within the time you need to go again. It’s not perfect, but it’s one way. Especially if your child wanders, or you don’t feel like going in public.
- Practice. This is the hardest one. Practice stay with your child. Honestly, it freaked me out the first time Audric wandered off. I didn’t try this again. But I eventually did. I don’t go out of my way to practice stay, and it doesn’t have to be a bathroom scenario. Now if you have a runner, don’t trust your child, or not ready, don’t do this. Use your best judgment!
I’m sure there are other ways you can use the bathroom 🚽 comfortably and privately. Do you have another way? Share your way below. 💩