Forgive me for blogging about a vernacular unrelated to MoneySaving, but while it may look like a light hearted blog, this is actually a genuine social issue and as I’m not sure it’s been covered elsewhere (and am worried what’ll happen when googling it), I thought I’d blog.
In a break between meetings, the other day, I was working in a coffee bar; my back to a group of four women. Unintentionally eavesdropping, I heard as they started discussing how they never used the toilet at work to poo.
One of them admitted she often feels ill during the day because she forces herself to wait until she gets home to do a number two. The others admitted to similar feelings ranging from “I wait until no one else is in there” to “I find another loo not near where I work”.
I found this a complete shock. After all our bodies need to evacuate, so while there may be a bit of noise, surely it’s nothing to be too concerned about, we all do it?
It’s more widespread than that
I mentioned this discovery to a few people, and it seems this isn’t an isolated incident, it’s been confirmed again and again and again (the only ‘regular’ thing about this) – always by women, though I’ve no doubt some men feel the same too.
The Japanese factor
The coffee break conversation wasn’t the first time I was made aware of this problem. When I was in Tokyo, the toilets there, as well as having heating seats and a remote control panel for various accoutrements, start making a flushing sound as soon as you sit on them.
At first I thought the loo was broken, then later I found there was a button on the remote control to turn this off and on. When I asked about it I found out it was developed as Japanese women used to continually flush the toilets when on it to disguise the noise. It was such a waste of water that in the end they developed a button to replicate the sound.
A stigma that should be exposed?
It’s easy to snigger about this, yet while I’m not a doctor, it can’t be mentally or physically healthy that some people wait hours after their body’s request.
I mentioned the problem at GMTV the other day and suggested they should do a story on it (though obviously more for Dr. Hilary than for me) as with any problem that has a social stigma, exposing it makes it easier for everyone.
After all there was once a time where people were scared to buy or mention condoms and the desensitising of that has doubtless stopped many STIs and unwanted pregnancy.
So in the meantime at least maybe this blog will start it off for a few people.