Parents know changing babies in public can be a messy and challenging matter as it is. Now, imagine having to get the whole job done on your LAP, like Florida father Donte Palmer.
“This is a serious post! What’s the deal with not having changing tables in men’s bathroom as if we don’t exist!!” the fired-up dad wrote in an Instagram post. “#FLM#fatherslivesmatter – Clearly we do this often because look how comfortable my son is. It’s routine to him! Let’s fix this problem!”
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This is a serious post!!! What’s the deal with not having changing tables in men’s bathroom as if we don’t exist!! #FLM #fatherslivesmatter clearly we do this often because look how comfortable my son is. It’s routine to him!!!! Let’s fix this problem! I Kaepernick drop a knee to this issue! @theshaderoom let’s show the innovation of fathers!
Donte explains in a post shared by Love What Matters that the reality of the problem hit him one evening when he decided to treat his wife and family to dinner at a nice restaurant.
“This particular day was like any other day,” he wrote. “My family and I gather together in the car to do some much-needed errands throughout town. Wanting to treat my wife to a nice family dinner, because she’s a very hard-working mom, l decided it would be nice if the family ate out this particular night.”
After ordering food, his 12-year-old had to go to the bathroom, so the father of three boys decided to kill two birds with one stone by accompanying him to change his youngest son.
“I’m used to going places and changing my son on my lap, which is why, as you can tell in the picture, my son is comfortable with this routine of ours,” wrote Donte. “The only difference is, my oldest son (who was my helper this time around), was not only handing me wipes and diapers, but he also took some snapshots in the mix of things.”
Upon getting back to the family’s table, the 12-year-old thought it would be hilarious to show mommy ‘how daddy changes his little brother (on his lap).’
Everyone laughed about how comfortable the little boy was just lying on daddy’s lap, but his wife noticed something strange:
“My wife took notice that she’s never had to change him this way. There’s always a changing table when she goes into restrooms. Especially restrooms in restaurants as ‘fancy’ as we were eating in.”
When moms go into a public bathroom, there never seems to be a problem finding a changing table, so why the huge difference for dads?
Because changing his son is pretty normal for him, Donte really didn’t think a thing of it until it was brought to his attention at the restaurant.
“Is our lack of fatherhood that bad in our society where restaurants don’t even bother to put changing tables in men’s restrooms?” he questioned.
He said his intent is not to rally a “Million Man Father’s March” nor protest the need for dad’s equal rights, but Donte does have one hope:
“I just hope this post shows there are good fathers out there who step up to the plate every day. Who don’t mind staying up all night with a crying baby, or changing diapers (even if it’s not the conventional way of doing it).”
All the praise to this attentive father who is willing to go above and beyond for his children, even when the convenience factor is missing. I pray that he’s an inspiration for other dads to do the same.