Lady Etiquette in the Ladies’ Room

Pregnancy cured me of most of it, but I’ve lived my life in fear of public/shared restrooms.  I don’t like sounds, smells, or other evidence attributed to my being there.  I seriously (again, before pregnancy) had never EVER used a work restroom to do anything other than pee.  I KID YOU NOT – I WOULD DRIVE HOME IF NATURE CALLED FOR MORE DETERMINED REASONS.

Well, like I said, pregnancy put a lot of my pride on hold.

But I still am weird about restrooms.  I know this because my family tells me.  Everytime I shoot Bryan the look of We need to go home soon, he will sigh with exasperation because it’s not as easy to pack up two kids just because Momma’s gotta shoo-shoo.  You know?

There are some rules that I believe apply to the use of the public/shared restrooms, and I’m ALWAYS ASTOUNDED that people don’t follow them.

Skip a stall.  If you’re in a restroom that has multiple stalls, and I’m the only one in a stall, DON’T PICK THE ONE NEXT TO ME.  I need breathing room, yo. 

Conversations do not happen while I’m peeing.  I’ll happily talk to you as we stroll in, as we stake our territorial claim, but the minute my pants are removed, can we cut the chit-chat?  I have to focus.

Be a magician: make it all disappear.  I borrowed this from Bryan’s place of work because it so cutely sums up a totally disgusting issue.  FLUSH THE DAMN TOILET.  I have three boys at home and they all HAVE BETTER HOME TRAINING than some of these people.

We all have voicemail for a reason. If your phone rings while we are both using the facilities, hopefully in our well-spaced separate stalls, LET IT GO TO VOICEMAIL.  If you answer it, I will be torn between not flushing the toilet to avoid you the embarrassment of letting your friend know that you’re TALKING TO THEM FROM A TOILET or flushing a gazillion times to SHAME YOU INTO LEARNING BETTER TRAINING.

I don’t know how I feel about toilet seat covers, but you leaving them behind makes me wish you contract horrible STDs or whatever you think you’ll catch on a shared toilet seat.  Seriously, you know what is also gross about shared toilet seats?  When the GERMAPHOBE who used the seat last didn’t care enough to remove their used ass-condom.

I know I can’t be the only person who has thought about this.  What other behavior turns your nose up in a shared restroom?

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12 Responses to Lady Etiquette in the Ladies’ Room

  1. Temerity Jane February 23, 2011 at 3:15 pm #

    I have never, NEVER understood the non-flushing people. I once heard someone justify it by talking about how many germs there were on the handle. So you leave it there for someone ELSE to touch? So self-absorbed! Just use your foot if it’s that awful, geeze.

    I am also a non-seat cover user. I really don’t feel any risk of catching anything through my butt skin. I touch things with my BARE HANDS all day and those hands often end up near my FACE. My butt, I can promise you, is never near my face.

    Unless you have an open butt-wound, it’s okay to sit. Really. And I know, I know, sometimes there are sprinkles! Or it’s otherwise gross! But it wouldn’t be, if PEOPLE SAT.

    Or at least cleaned up their own sprinkles. Seriously, if I raise the type of kid who not only sprinkles, but doesn’t clean up her own sprinkles, I do not KNOW where I would have gone wrong.

  2. elsewise February 23, 2011 at 3:22 pm #

    The splashy-splashy all over the counter. People. Water goes IN the sink. If you make water go outside of the sink, wipe it up.

  3. bessie.viola February 23, 2011 at 3:30 pm #

    Not necessarily bathroom etiquette, but definitely bathroom-RELATED: My coworkers keep a running commentary of who went in, when it smelled… it is DEVASTATINGLY weird and embarrassing to me. Like, people sometimes have to shoo-shoo (LOVE this Sarah!) but we don’t need to DISCUSS it.

    Unless they leave trails, in which case they deserve to be publicly shamed.
    bessie.viola wants you to read ..Baby Bear wasn’t lying after all

  4. Frazzalicious February 23, 2011 at 3:59 pm #

    Most of mine revolve around the hand washing portion of the bathroom trip. I can’t abide when people don’t wash their hands AND THEN TOUCH THE DOOR HANDLE!!! Uber yuck! I also hate when people shake their hands all over the bathroom after washing them, splattering water everywhere. That’s just plain dangerous, as it can cause someone to slip and get hurt. My other peeve is when people make a huge, soapy-watery mess all over the counter and don’t wipe it up! Or when they leave waded up paper towels all over the place because they are too lazy to put it in the conveniently located trash can right next to the exit! Yarrrghhh! I can’t stand those things!
    Oh, and don’t you stand next to the stall and tap your foot at me. I can only do this so quickly, so back off!
    Whew. I needed that little rant. Very cathartic. Thanks, Sarah!

  5. LizzieV February 23, 2011 at 4:13 pm #

    I agree wholeheartedly with everything! I have MADE my husband stop taking my calls in the loo. (Ewww.) I also don’t get how other people can be such slobs? Are these the people that go on to star in horders?

    My current pet-peeve is restroom (not stall) doors that open inward, so I’m forced to TOUCH that door handle after I’ve made the effort to wash my own hands. I either try to pull it open with my pinky or hope there’s a garbage can near by for the paper towel. Which leads to my other peeve; overflowing trash cans or ones with the “flaps” that you have to touch with your CLEAN hand so can throw your used paper towel away.

    Sometimes I just sanitize my hands to get them clean after getting them clean.

  6. Kirsten February 23, 2011 at 5:43 pm #

    People who squat. UGH. The number of times I have accidentally sat in someone else’s sprinklage…it would be greatly reduced if people just sat their fucking BUTTS on the seats. Sorry…I apparently have bathroom related rage problems.

  7. Daddy Brown February 24, 2011 at 8:08 am #

    I must admit I’ve never studied the female rest room and I’m sure all you say is true. However, the men’s restrooms make your concerns trivial. At least women don’t (or shouldn’t) have a problem hitting the target, you’re sitting on it. Men, not so. Best sign over the urinals “Our aim is to keep this area clean, your aim will help”….

  8. TheJBO February 24, 2011 at 9:48 am #

    Funny that dad mentioned not “hitting the target”. Because my pet peeve is dribble on the seat. HOW?! HOW?! IS this there, and why can’t you wipe your own pee up!

    I know mothers with young boys might have a dribble instance, but why would you leave your kid’s pee on a toilet seat for someone else to clean up, or god forbid they should sit in it if they don’t look at the seat first.


  9. Melissa February 24, 2011 at 11:17 am #

    I love this post.

    My husband makes so much fun of me because I am so private about going to the bathroom. Aside from sleep-farting, which doesn’t count, I won’t even fart if he’s within earshot. Even with multiple stalls in the ladies room at work, the women here respect bathroom privacy and will wait to be alone.

    I won’t even get started on how many conversations (among other things) that have been overheard coming from the mensroom. Guys, we can hear what goes on in there… which also means we can hear that you don’t turn on the faucet even after the three flushers! GROSS.

  10. Liz February 24, 2011 at 11:50 am #

    1. Women who leave sprinkles on the seat: You should be shot. There is NO EXCUSE for not cleaning up after yourself. None!

    2. If you wash your hands and then use your wet hands to push the paper towel lever thingymajiggy: Use said paper towel to dry the level. So easy! Two seconds, and there’s no lingering water!

    3. Slightly unrelated to womens restroom etiquette, but: one of the (non) highlights of my career came when I saw a report I had spent three months working on being carried by my company’s Senior Vice President… directly into the men’s room. On the one hand: Yay, the work I did was being read and considered by my company’s leadership! On the other: ewwww

  11. Courtney February 24, 2011 at 12:54 pm #

    Public bathrooms gross me out. I also squat but I ALWAYS clean up after myself. I agree with everyone else that there is no excuse not to wipe up the seat.

    WHY CAN’T PEOPLE FLUSH?!? I don’t understand. We will know exactly what you did in there (you gross person) since you refuse to flush.

    OH and if I don’t see you wash your hands or reach into your purse and pull out hand sanitizer – I judge you. That’s nasty.
    Courtney wants you to read ..Day 2 – Something you love about yourself

  12. Lori February 24, 2011 at 2:54 pm #

    Our senior director (a woman!) doesn’t wash her hands when she leaves the restroom. If she thinks someone is looking, she’ll do the 2 fingers in water with no soap thing. Today I was heading out as she was heading in and she had an opened pack of crackers in her hand! Gross! Butt germs will get on the crackers. I’m appalled, really.

    Then, there’s this other girl who takes her purse in with her and puts it in the floor. There is a hook and a shelf in each stall. How is that ever a good idea?

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