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Warning to moms changing children in public restrooms

Dear Deborah,

As Moms, I believe we need to keep an eye out for each other and I just wanted to share my story with you and ask that you please warn all the moms out there..

On friday, I went to [shopping centre] with my 2 1/2 year old and my 11 month old. My son had a dirty nappy which I went to change in the family toilet. When I came out there was another family in the toilet and four ladies without children.
I was feeling crowded and mentioned that this is a 'family toilet' to which one of the ladies replied that her baby was coming now. I gave her the benefit of the doubt and quickly washed my hands.

Anyway, to cut a long story short, they stole my bag!
I felt so violated and irritated that they would come into the family toilet where you are busy with your children and distract you and take your bag! I just went numb and was in shock! 

The children were unharmed and so was I, and for that I am grateful, but I want all moms out there to be aware of this and to make sure they are on guard at all times - even in the family toilet where you may think you are safe. 

The last thing on my mind was to watch my bag, I was watching my children.

A concerned mom
2 Comments so far:
Sue on 13 September 2010
I wish the centres would "police" this better. I have had single men in the family toilet while I am alone with my 2 sons(15mth and 4mth. I always have to wonder why they are in there. Also the people who frequently park in the moms parking who have no children or grown children.
Dhanas on 17 September 2010
I just wanted to tell you of an incident that happened at Gateway on 12/9/2010 at 2pm. I was at the food court (close to the Ster Kinekor side) having a meal with my husband and daughter when I felt a movement on my chair. I immediately checked for my bag and found it was gone. I told my husband who stood up and shouted at the 2 women who had just moved from behind me. They started to walk away but he persisted and went towards them. One of them dropped my bag and my husband held onto her. The other one ran away. We called security and were whisked to the charge office – the lady we were planning to charge led the way! She ranted and raved all the way as she was drunk. The Durban North police were summoned and we were advised that if we wished to pursue a charge against her that my handbag would be taken in as evidence. Imagine that, I was the victim but in order to pursue any course of justice, I had to give away my personal belongings which included my wallet and cell phone. Naturally we decided not to press charges and write this off as a bad experience. The police said that they would give her a warning and Gateway security advised that she would be banned from entering the premises. How far either of the 2 went, I can’t say except I puzzle over the fact that she led us to the Gateway charge office rather than the security guard who accompanied us – just tells me that she was familiar with the place and obviously has been there before (so much for banning!).

So, be very careful.

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