A Germaphobe’s Guide to Bathroom Partitions

I could give you a hundred ways to make a germaphobe cry. But none would probably be as devastating as forcing one to use a public restroom. It would probably take a special kind of emergency to make a germaphobe even consider using one. And just when he made his way to the bathroom partition, he’d probably run out screaming before he could do his business. The life of a germaphobe is difficult but with society forcing us to share each other’s utility, there has to be a way to get out of all this madness.

In this article you are going to have to toughen up as we talk about the things that will make your stomach churn.

Somewhere over the Bathroom Partitions

As the most observant of you may already notice, I am a germaphobe myself and these words speak to me more deeply than I how I take my breath before I walk into a crowd of strangers. There are two things you would always find in my bag, if they were not on my hands already and that is a bag of wet wipes and an alcohol spray. There are times that I wished that I could bathe in purell and douse myself in lysol. Except that it would kill me along with all the germs and bacteria but that did not stop me from considering it.

When I was younger, when people were debating which the best romance movie character was or which player was the best, I was busy doing important work. And that was to educate my fellow kids about the dangers that germs pose. For instance, I would talk to them in length about how the ten-second rule is pure bogus. That did not stop Jeremy from eating that baloney sandwich however. That still gives me nightmares to this day. And for that reason, and my qualifications as a lifetime germaphobe crusader, I will teach you how to conquer your public restroom fears. Let us find out what is beyond those bathroom partitions.

Of course, I know that I have science on my side. Not that the smell, sight, sound and everything about the public bathroom are not proof enough, but having the scientists’ backing is a big deal. Research suggests that the public bathrooms ranks among the worst places in terms of diseases that you may catch. So, yes Sheila, the public bathroom will indeed kill me. The worst discovery from that research is that the bacteria that lingers in the bathroom can remain there for months. That is more than 30 days worth of bacteria piling up upon each other in a confined space. Think about how many breaths that you take in while you are there doing your business. The paranoia is real and it is justified.

The Inevitable Bathroom Partition Encounter

Before we dive right into a germaphobe’s survival tactics, let us get one thing straight. Germaphobia is real and having one does not mean you are crazy. The discussion about phobia as a mental disorder is a long trip down a rabbit hole that I am not willing to get into in this article. But, for the sake of argument, let us put all of these aside for a bit.

I have the worst bladder and an even more terrible digestive system. Of course that is false but, really, not by much. Having that condition meant I had to use the bathroom more than the lucky ones. And combine that with being a germaphobe means I have my work cut out for me. Because of this, I have gathered enough experience to devise surefire ways to survive your trip to the public bathroom.

The real lesson here is the public bathroom is inevitable, tiny bladder or not. Everyone has to go at the most inopportune times at some point. Noone is special enough to be exempt from this predicament.

The Best Bathroom Partition

You are probably already convulsing over being made to choose between a wall and a hard place. So let me unstuck you. Not all public restrooms are the same and some can actually be quite decent, for a public restroom that is. As a seasoned veteran of the art of public bathroom sleuthing, I can tell you that it takes time and courage before you can hone your own skills as well. I divided public bathrooms into four categories and you will know each one as we go.

The first type of public bathroom is what I call the hard-pass bathroom. Because you cannot get away fast enough away from that place. You probably already have an idea what kind of public bathroom I am talking about. Think of it like the public bathroom of public bathrooms, like the ones on a New York subway. If you could not drag yourself to use the subway, then there is no chance that you would use their bathroom and that is a fact. Consider crossing off these no-no bathrooms in your public bathroom list. Unless you are absolutely out of options, it would be better for you to just battle on until you find a better public bathroom.

The second type is good enough, but not quite. These ones are what you would rather avoid if you have other choices but it would not make you convulse to be there for a minute or two. If you need to do business taking longer than that, then this bathroom is not for you. Generally, we classify bathrooms of common use but private bathrooms in this category. These include your cafeteria bathrooms, the one in movie theaters, and other similar facilities.

And lastly, the public bathrooms that are worth noting are the fancy ones that take their sanitation seriously. You can be sure that you are entering one by being greeted by a strong chemical smell from the bleach and other cleaning agents. Some people do not like the smell, but if you are a germaphobe like me, then nothing can be as calming as a gentle nasal assault from these chemicals.


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BDC 311 : Dec 2023