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The Bathroom Debate

The last two weeks of March I spent in Japan.  One of the topics in the news just before I left was the bathroom debate.  I really couldn’t believe that bathroom and debate could actually be in the same sentence let alone the same phrase.  So, off I went to Japan and while in Japan I stayed in hostels.  The bathrooms were shared with the other people on the floor and….get ready for this….co-ed.  Oh my, what was a girl to do?  What was I going to see?  How would I pee?  What if I farted and there were people listening?

I wasn’t in the least repulsed by this idea.  The bathrooms were clean.  The stall doors and walls for the toilets and showers were floor to ceiling.  And in Japan there is music that you can play in the toilet room so no one hears you.  The only common area were the sinks where the brushing of teeth and hand and face washing occurred.  I never once wondered if the man I was brushing my teeth beside one night was transgender.  I never once wondered if the woman I helped with the zipper of her dress was a transsexual.  I never once felt uncomfortable.  We were all doing things that all of us need to do and for the more personal of those needs we were given little rooms with floor to ceiling doors and walls.

Have you noticed the way the problem is solved yet?  Hint:  Floor to ceiling doors and walls for the stalls.  It’s not rocket science.

I wonder whether Japan ever had a “bathroom debate”?


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