How badly do you need to hear the bathroom door close?

Friday, September 3rd, 2010

Are you one of those people that badly needs the privacy of a firmly-closed bathroom door, with shared public conveniences proving a trial that make the bladder muscles clench unalterably?

Or are you one of those happy souls that can take a leak, without a care in the world, regardless of who may be in earshot? If the latter, you may be able to cope with the bathroom arrangements profiled this week in American blog Apartment Therapy.

It asked: “Are we needing less privacy?” The question came after a visit to a W Hollywood Hotel bathroom with glass walls and then observation of a trend towards no walls at all. Read the full piece here.

Our feeling is that we restrained Brits would probably find it all a bit much. But, that said, what’s known as shy bladder syndrome can be a real problem to sufferers. The medical term is paruresis – learn more here.

Perhaps we had better hang on to our bathroom doors for a while yet, regardless of interior design trends…

2 responses to “How badly do you need to hear the bathroom door close?”:

  1. Carol Olmert Says:

    September 4th, 2010 at 5:18 pm

    Those of us who suffer from shy bladder syndrome (paruresis) need a lot of privacy. We find it difficult or impossible to urinate in a bathroom when others are around.

    This condition, a type of social anxiety, can create havoc in the lives of its many sufferers.

    While there is no “cure” for it, effective methods, such as the use of cognitive-behavioral techniques, are available.

    Please visit the website of the International Paruresis Association, a nonprofit organization, based in Baltimore, MD at

    Women with shy bladder are encouraged to read the book, “Bathrooms Make Me Nervous”. More information is available at

  2. Site admin Says:

    September 7th, 2010 at 3:50 pm

    Thanks Carol – that’s great information!

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