I went to an event the other day at a space with gender-neutral bathrooms—not single-occupancy toilet rooms, but full-on, multi-stall, chat-at-the-sink bathrooms. I’m, like, a pretty progressive guy, but when Bathroom Break Time arrived I totally froze.
I felt childish, because, intellectually, I know that peeing in the same room as a stranger of the opposite sex is not a big deal—but I’ve never knowingly done it before! What if I had violated an unspoken gender-neutral bathroom rule? Do we have the same stall-choosing customs? What awkward sentence would I say if I bumped into someone on the way in or out? Probably something like, “Oh, hey. Just peeing here.”
I’m pretty confident that this new Bathroom Way is better than what we had before and that I just need to get over it and get used to it. Still, though, I held it until break time was over and could be sure that I wouldn’t run into anyone to say something awkward to.