Having a stoma means toilets play a big part in our lives, especially the condition of said toilets. I have used some really lovely clean ones, but also some dreadful ones that I really didn’t want to use but had no choice.
I sit further back on the seat to empty my pouch. I once used a toilet with an over-sensitive automatic flush, which was behind me, and so I kept setting it off! Other toilets have dirty wet seats, which you have to clean up before you dare go anywhere near there with your bottom.
One of my pet hates are the toilets that don’t flush very well, or are not at all powerful. It takes an age to get rid of your output. Wonky seats are another issue especially if they have a crack in it, ouch. And the worst thing has got to be wet floors where you aren’t absolutely sure what is the cause. Yuk.
The toilets at my place of work are pretty grim at times (at least I don’t have to worry about my stoma making a smell). We have cubicles with varying degrees of flush power, and no shelf or basin in the cubicles. There is no disabled toilet, except in another department not associated with us. My manager did request permission for me to use if needed and they agreed. He did mention he thought there was a dodgy disabled toilet in our basement (I might add it is like something out of a horror movie down there, so even if there was one I wouldn’t have the nerve to use it).
The strangest toilet I have ever used was in a well-known pub chain, and all was well until you needed the toilet roll, which believe it or not was about 6ft above your head on the wall.
(Photo credit: Clare Mee)
The most surprising toilets that have turned out to be amazing are the ones in Spanish airports and shopping malls. They are amazing, large cubicles, sparkly clean and with all the things you need in each one.
The Japanese have some excellent ones too that actually have stoma signs on them. They have large basins with warm water hoses to clean your pouch or to clean clothes etc and all things that stoma owners need. They are making a difference to ostomates needs in Japan and it would be lovely to think other countries could follow suit.
(Photo credit: Twitter @SeguraJuanJ 2017)
It really is a gamble knowing what kind of toilets you will face when you are out and about. Some of your stories made me laugh- we've all been there!