Herein lies a big problem, especially for men - Baby changing facilities. What a delight when you find them. The drop down table with the safety belts, the little pockets and hangers for clean nappies and dirty nappies. The place for the creams, antibacterial wipes, etc. As a man I started off with the "man bag" nappy system. What a total waste of money. After a few outings I realised this was ridiculous. Far better was one of my, many, rucsacs loaded effectively with all the right things. I became efficient. Sadly I also became efficient at kneeling on the ground, in the gents, with my little girl on a mat, on the floor, because....well, a lot of men's toilets do not have baby change facilities. This situation is changing but simply not fast enough.
Do you want to place your most treasured love on the floor of the men's toilets? Have you thought about the lack of respect to your child as they lie naked on the floor of the men's loos? You do start to think of using the cubicles but that is, somehow, worse. Sometimes there is enough space next to a sink to put your child. This is fine when they are 3 months and under. It is around 3-4 months when they do the unexpected...at THE most inconvenient moment. They turn over. "Hurray!" for the clever little wonder! Not so "Hurray!" for the Daddy with baby poo on his hands trying to get everything cleared away whilst keeping their gorgeous little, now very pleased with themselves, child from tumbling into the sink. Now your child has their own poo on their stomach too....and they can now reach it. It doesn't get any better and you do start to think about placing the used nappy on the desk of the facility manager as a protest.
The thrust of this argument is really simple. Men DO change their children. Increasingly, with women pushing successfully up the career ladder, men ARE the main caregivers for a family yet, somehow, this is forgotten in the washroom environment. Often we WILL use a disabled loo as they tend to be cleaner, more spacious and private. Really what we want is a baby change table, some antibacterial gel and a nappy bin (even a nappy vending machine for those really hectic days!). Really, that is it. Nothing more than most ladies' loos have.
I'm not alone with this request. Barack Obama made it law in the US. Yes, LAW! There are numerous famous men who have leant their faces to this campaign. I am not alone. In fact I reckon I can now swing the vote of the other 50% of parenthood. Let's NOT have baby changing tables in the mens loos. Let's not have them in the ladies either. Let's do the right thing....
Let's do the thing that we all REALLY need. Let's create a room (I'm not dreaming this, it exists) specifically for families. It has a changing surface, it has 2 sinks and 2 toilets. 1 sink and toilet are for children. The other is for the adult. My daughter knows where one of these exists and REALLY wants to use it when we're out together. Why? Well, the other choice is that she has to come into the men's loos with me. We're all about openness and honesty in our home so we are happily naked around each other at bath-time, etc. This, however, does not extend to public spaces and our daughter is increasingly aware of the urinals, etc (she knows to look away). It would be nice when out with my daughter to be able to take her to the toilet without dragging her through the men's facilities. This soon will be a moot point as she gets more confident out in public but for now she wants to stay close to me and that is all good by me.
For more great ideas on how to make your baby change facility an integral part of the whole parenting process give Zenith Washroom Solutions a try. We have been on both sides of the equation and can help you find the perfect solution for your users.