When is it OK to change your child's diaper in the food court?

@wheel416 (1019)
Canada
December 15, 2008 4:59pm CST
OK, all and you parents out there, let me first say as a slight disclaimer, I have never been a parent and as such can not comprehend exactly how you manage to juggle things and get everything done. My hat goes off to you! I think parenting is one of the most challenging things a person can do and no one gives us an instruction Manual. With that being said, here's my question is it ever OK for you to change your baby's diaper, in a place other than the bathroom or breastfeeding room, where there is a change table? I bring this issue up, not to criticize or blame parents but, I have been sitting eating lunch in a mall food court during peak hours. When, a parent has changed their child's diaper at the next table. Do not get me wrong, I love children, and I have been drooled on, spit up and pooped on, and everything in between. What do you think of a parent changing a diaper on a table where others may eat? Worse yet what if there turns out to be a surprise in there! Or perhaps, mom or dad is not quick enough and little Johnny sprouts an arc of pee in my direction? I love and enjoy children very much but I would prefer that the mall food court did not smell like a diaper pail. Please, share your thoughts and experiences. And by the way I think every person, when they find out they are going to be a parent, should automatically start to grow a few extra hands (I'm picturing an octopus here), to get the job done! What do you think?
5 people like this
25 responses
@ravinskye (8242)
• United States
15 Dec 08
Well I don't think I would change my baby in a food court unless there wasn't a bathroom anywhere near it and it needed to be done right away. Even then, I would never have changed my baby on the table! I would have laid the baby down in the stroller and made sure that I had everything ready to go for a quick change. I usually lay something over the baby in case little johnny would be tempted to arc all over the next table lol. But I usually try to go to a bathroom or off to the side somewhere. I think it is ok to change in a food court, but not on the table. Usually a smelly diaper won't smell up the whole place, but seeing the poop up on the table might make some people sick.
2 people like this
• United States
16 Dec 08
a food court almost always (ive never seen a food court that didnt anyways) have bathrooms somewhere near them. changing a diaper where ppl are eating is beyond gross, inconsiderate and probably breaks a few healthcodes to boot!! not only all the things you mention, but what about the germs and fecal matter being left on the table where someone is going to EAT! we've probably all done the "oh i dropped a french fry on the table, no biggy" and then eaten it! ok...now that i think that some disgusting woman decided the dining table was a good place to change a diaper, i am NEVER eating that french fry again! hmm...for that matter im just going to stand against the wall and eat standing up lol!
1 person likes this
• Israel
20 Dec 08
I never eat anything that falls on the table because I never know about the hygiene of everyone who was there before me. I don't even touch the table with my hands. Everything stays on the paper liner of my tray. Yes I'm germ phobic. At least I almost never get sick because I'm so careful about food and hand hygiene.
@Violette13 (1048)
• United States
16 Dec 08
Ugh, how gross. I have two kids and i would NEVER change them on a table where someone is going to eat. They have changing tables and whatnot for such things. That just seems like bad form to me.. =\
1 person likes this
@wheel416 (1019)
• Canada
16 Dec 08
Good, I'm glad I haven't ticked off all you parents out there! I thought that this was going a wee bit over the top but then again I've never had to cart my other two children with me to go change a 3rd either, so I was just curious.
@EvrWonder (3575)
• Canada
16 Dec 08
To change a babies diaper in a food court is completely disrespectful. Not only to other patrons but to the baby itself. There are mall washrooms and the ladies is usally equipped with a change table for that reason. Although I have no children, my siblings do and agree that when parents know they will be expecting, growing a few extra hands wouldn't be a bad idea at all.
@deebomb (15317)
• United States
16 Dec 08
A food area is definitely not the place to be changing a baby's diaper. There is usually a bathroom close by to change the baby. As you said you never know when there is going to be a water fountain. And the extra gift just isn't sanitary. beside your hands need to be washed before eating any way. I have raised 6 kids and never would have changed any of them in and eating area. I would take them to the car first. It would have been nice to have grown extra hands back then
@Amberina (1541)
• United States
16 Dec 08
There is a place for changing diapers and that is the bathroom and if your at home it can be anyplace you like because it's your home but when your out in public you go to the bathroom to change the diapers. It's way too gross and unsanitary to do it on a table or place where someone has to eat.
1 person likes this
@spalladino (17921)
• United States
15 Dec 08
No, no...never on a table! I raised four kids and this was before bathrooms were baby friendly with changing tables in there. I've changed diapers in the stroller and have changed them on my lap but I would never dream of doing it on a table where someone is going to be eating.
1 person likes this
@808nala (640)
• United States
15 Dec 08
I don't have children either, but I think it's disgusting when I see a diaper change being done in a food court or restaurant. I don't want to see poop while I'm trying to enjoy my food. I also would hate to think that I am sitting in a chair or eating on a table that may have had a dirty diaper on it. Diaper changes should be done in the restroom or somewhere appropriate. I would also like to hope that the parents doing the changing are washing their hands after doing so. I know parents are busy and they have to cut corners when ever possible, but I wish they wouldn't do it for this. They should be considerate of the people around them.
1 person likes this
@laglen (19778)
• United States
16 Dec 08
As a parent, your post does NOT offend me. You have a very legitimate point. I find that disgusting and offensive. At a mall, there are plenty of bathrooms to change your baby. Next time you see this, drop your pants and pee in a nearby plant. It is the same thing!
@jessi0887 (2792)
• United States
16 Dec 08
LOL! That is hilarious.
@kttribal (253)
• United States
24 Dec 08
the whole idea behind this is horible i dont think that anyone should do this if people have common sense they shouldnt do that in front of anyone. if there going to then you should get up and walk to another table. you can also go and complain about it im sure it wont do anything big enough but its worth a try.
@sacmom (14250)
• United States
23 Dec 08
I have 2 kids. I'd have to say it is never okay to change a baby in the food court, especially right up on the tables! That is just gross, not to mention unsanitary. If the baby goes potty, then the parent(s) or guardian(s) should take the baby to the bathroom to change them. We as adults don't change ourselves on the food court tables, even those that need assistance to be changed. Why should babies be any different? Parents that do this need to show consideration to those around them. That and they need to use some common sense.
• United States
23 Dec 08
I have never witnessed this, and I hope I never have to. I do not have children of my own, but I do take care of other's children. I would never change a diaper in a public setting like a food court. There are plenty of places in a mall to change a diaper and a table where people eat is not one of them. Despite their best efforts, the people who sanitize the food court are not able to clean each table before the next group sits down. Sometimes, it is just too busy. I think it is just direspectful for a parent to change a diaper, because they do not know if the table will be cleaned when they are finished. I would not want to eat at a table like that, and I think they should respect others in the same fashion. I also agree with you about the surprise situations. You never know what a baby is going to do, and you should not put others health at risk.
• United States
23 Dec 08
OH MY, I cannot believe anyone would do this. I have 2 kids... And never change them anywhere in public, not even in bathrooms in stores or whatever... I think it is nasty nasty. I will go to my vehicle and change my child before I do anything else. I would have definately said something to this parent, did they not think, a food court is a place you EAT... How gross!! How many people would want to eat their food while looking and smelling a nasty diaper?
@dawnald (84201)
• Shingle Springs, California
19 Dec 08
Not on a table, bleah, not sanitary.
@snuphi (26)
• United States
19 Dec 08
NO WAY!!!! That's why they have restrooms near the food court! I have a 16 mo, and while I have definitely changed simple wet diapers in public (aka, not a restroom), never never never would I change in an eating area. Sure, in a dressing room. Quickly on a couch in a store. But where people are eating?! Gross, dude. Please smack me if I ever attempt it!
• United States
17 Dec 08
I think that it is never good to change a diaper in the food court. That is just nasty when the restroom is right there.
• United States
16 Dec 08
I don't understand why people do this also. I mean almost every public restroom now has one of those fold out changing tables for parents to change their baby on( especially in mall bathrooms) . Personally I would not want to eat my meal on a area where a parent just changed their child at. And if by chance a parent can't find a changing table in the bathroom they could always take the baby to the car and change them . I've done that before and it take very little effort to do.
@mgmagana (3621)
• United States
16 Dec 08
never would i change them around food like that, it's disgusting! i have 3 kids and if there is a restroom or changing station around i would definitely go there, otherwise i will go to an inconspicuous place and change my baby there but try to cover as much as possible.
• United States
16 Dec 08
Changing a diaper on a table where other patrons eat their meals is disgusting and it's a health hazard. I would alert mall management or a security officer (if available) and have the parent(s) talked to. There are bathrooms for a reason. Changing your child's diaper out in public is not only disgusting it's also a health hazard and with all the sickos out there, I woudl NOT want some pervert looking at my 6 month old daughter's good intentions. Go to a bathroom. Go to your car. But for God's sake, don't change a diaper where other people eat their lunches. that's disgusting.
@gemini_rose (16268)
16 Dec 08
I would never change my childs nappy in a food place, to me that is totally a no no. I always use the changing rooms I mean most of these places have the facilities anyway and even if they dont I would just use a toilet cubicle. And yes a few extra hands when it comes to changing a nappy would be absolutely fantastic what a great idea!!