More than half of every household in the United States has two or more bathrooms in them, making it a modern convenience for the entire family. This means that just less than half of all U.S. households are unable to enjoy this luxury. Unfortunately, my mother’s house is one that falls into the minority. My mother, my 10-year old little sister, 5-year old little brother, and I share one bathroom that houses the shower, the toilet, and the sink. One of the biggest issues we all face is the lack of privacy. On a daily basis, while I am taking my shower, trying to relax after a stressful day at school, I am abruptly interrupted with someone needing the bathroom. I find it very disrespectful, so I try to avoid doing it to them at all cost. But, when nature calls, most times it just cannot wait. Being the eldest of my siblings, I have learned that being the last person to bathe is beneficial, but often at times it means very late nights. This can affect performance in school and may have lasting effects. Lastly, I find that when nature is calling the loudest, someone else has already decided that right now is the perfect time to take their shower. The struggles that come with living in a one bathroom household are real, and I have a few suggestions to help ease the burden.
My solution to this issue is to create a schedule where each family member has forty-five minutes of quality, uninterrupted privacy in the evening. The schedule will be is visible to everyone and will remain the same every day to maintain consistency. The expectation is that each person will take care of everything possible during their designated time. All other family members will respect the schedule in order to enjoy their own scheduled time. Of course, there will be times when two or more family members need to use the bathroom at the same time. In this situation, as a family, decide together who will go first. This decision may be based on who will take the least amount of time, the urgency, or the person’s age. In some cases, a family member may need to use the bathroom urgently will someone is in the bathroom. The solution to this problem is that the person states the level of their urgency and it is up to the person in the bathroom to decide whether to let them in our not. This allows for privacy to still be kept because now one is just walking into the bathroom unwelcomed By creating a schedule, each family member will be able to enjoy privacy and quality bathroom time, therefore solving the issue at hand.
With the issue of a one-bathroom household one might find the challenges of lack of privacy and late nights. With the schedule family members will be allowed to see when someone is planning on use the bathroom and plan accordingly so they are not interrupting the other person time. This allows for the members of the family to feel respected. In addition, the schedule family members will feel a sense of privacy because they are allowed time to themselves in the bathroom without the worry of someone needing to come in. Creating a schedule will also prevent to occurs of family members waiting to use the bathroom until very late hours of the night. Taking the time to create and follow a schedule will allow family members to pre-plan, which then allows for more time free from family drama, not to mention being able to get to sleep at a decent hour. Living in a one-bathroom household can be awful, but with some compromise and a willingness to change, one can look forward to a more enjoyable bathroom experience.