The Bathroom

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If you have the privilege of living alone before getting married, you know total bathroom freedom. You choose when to go, how long to stay, and what to do when you're in there. Nobody ever needs to just grab something out of a drawer.

That all changes when you live together. I'm not saying it's always a bad thing because there's a certain intimacy between people who share a bathroom. It's just something to be prepared for if you're moving in, and something to manage if you already live together.

For instance, when your partner wants to ask you a "quick question" while you're in the bathroom, beware! It's only quick if you give the right answer.

    "Do you remember we're going to my sister's for dinner tonight?"

    "Yes, 6:30 right?"

    "Right."

That's pretty fast, however, a slight change in the answer produces a very different result.

    "Do you remember we're going to my sister's for dinner tonight?"

    "Really, is that tonight?"

    "Yes. What's the problem? You don't want to go?

    "It's not that.."

    "We already rescheduled from last week..." 

That's a conversation that could go on for a while. If you hope to have any bathroom solitude, all answers must be short, agreeable, and expressed with the requisite amount of enthusiasm, disappointment, or outrage, as dictated by the question.

Sharing a bathroom also means you sometimes have to give up improvising on your bathroom agenda. Living alone you might go in to pee and then start looking at your Instagram. That could easily be an additional 20 minutes as you look at video clips sent by your Dwayne Johnson obsessed friend (Yes, I'm talking about you, Stacy). If you live with a partner and stay too long, you run the risk of getting the "Are you going to be much longer?"

After years of marriage, I've made peace with bathroom-sharing. It helps that my husband and I have different morning schedules. In the evening, I often look forward to us flossing and brushing together and talking about the day in that distorted way people talk when they have a toothbrush in their mouth. But what's helped most of all...multiple bathrooms. If one of us wants to linger, we have options. That's a good thing because Stacy sends A LOT of Dwayne Johnson videos.