I am a stay-at-home mom but I like going out with my kids at least three times a week. That includes buying groceries, refilling at the gas station, going to the library, park or wherever my daughter likes, some window shopping for relaxation and just roaming around looking for clearance items. LOL.
The only thing I do not like about going out is the part when my daughter wants to go to the bathroom. Oh yes! She can be very demanding when she's in the bathroom. "Lock the door immediately", "Do not look!", "Put tissue here, here and here!", "Can you give me more wipes, please?", "Can I touch this and that?", "Make sure somebody does not come in". Oh my. I have a baby on one hand but I have to like obey my other daughter's commands in an instant. But what scares me the most is when she says, "I want to sit!".
It's even harder for me because I think I have OCD so I just don't touch anything, and I do not let her do the same! The thought of germs are killing me already. That's why I came up with some tips about using the public restrooms with your kids.
1) Before roaming around the store, be familiar with the amenities. Know where the bathroom is so you won't have to go searching when your kids demand a break.
2) Tell them that they need to say in advance if they feel the urge to go to the bathroom. This maybe hard because sometimes, they just need to go. But there's no harm trying, who knows, you can have 5 minutes to walk and not rush yourself to the bathroom.
3) Bring a lot of wipes! Not just for cleaning the you-know-what. Wipe the knob, the 'seat' and anything they might touch. Better yet, consider getting a potty cover. I got a few samples and I like how it makes me feel that my daughter can safely use the bathroom. It's available at Amazon for about a dollar each. They are individually wrapped to avoid contamination and so it'll be easier to put in a bag. I don't use it every time, just when I am in a hurry and can't really help my kid. As I said, most of the time, I have another baby to look after.
It's not just the germs on her hands that worry me, it's the kind of illnesses like UTI perhaps (though UTI is not really an illness, but you get what I mean, right? Those tips only applies when you're out with your kids, but perhaps not at school. And also, don't worry if you're not as OC when your kids uses public restrooms, I just hope to you bathe them once you get home. :)
How about you, what do you teach your kids when using public restrooms?