Monday, September 26, 2016

The Closet Situation

Our closet is one large source of marital discord in our household.  

We have a walk-in closet in our bedroom. However, the only way to get inside is through the bathroom. So if one of us is in the bathroom, and the other one wants to get dressed, they have to knock and make a big thing of it. I certainly don't mind if my husband comes inside the bathroom if I am showering or brushing my teeth, but I don't really want him coming in while I am on the toilet. Fortunately, I'm not one of those people who spends more than a minute or two on the toilet, so it's not a big deal.

Unfortunately, my husband is more like Al Bundy, in that he goes into that bathroom for the long-haul. It can be an hour easily. And he doesn't want anyone coming into the bathroom while he is on the toilet, which I suppose is understandable.  (We do have a second bathroom.)

However, sometimes I need something from the closet. Like the other day, my kids wanted to go outside and he was on the toilet, so I had to come in to get my sweater and some socks.  He was not pleased. I told him that if he let me know when he was going in, I could get out what I needed, but he says he shouldn't have to and that I should already have out everything I need before he goes in. But I don't think that every time I leave the closet, I should have to grab everything that I could possibly need from it?

The laundry also causes problems, because sometimes I'm in the middle of doing it and he goes into the toilet. There was one occasion when I was in the middle of putting away clothes. I went to the closet, put away some shirts and pants, then went back to the dryer to get the second armful of clothing. And in that 30 second window, he had run into the bathroom and was in there for the duration. It was so frustrating!  He tells me to just dump the clothing on the bed and put it away later, but when I'm doing laundry, I want to put everything away when I'm doing it. I don't want to have to come back later and start putting away clothing again.


I know this sounds like a really stupid problem, but sometimes really stupid problems can get you really aggravated. Any suggestions? And most importantly, who is right??

28 comments:

  1. Could a um...prolonged visit not take place in the second bathroom? X

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  2. The answer is more dietary fibre.

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  3. A reciprocating saw - able to cut right through drywall and many other inconvenient (ahem) blockages on your way to installing a door on the other side of the closet.

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  4. Yep, agree with Laura, he needs to poo in the 2nd bathroom.

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    1. So, you think he should use #2 to #2?

      Seriously, I'm glad to see someone else say this very thing. I am mostly a minute or two, whereas the other three each would take 30 minutes if the need arises. (and, we only have one bathroom)

      MBee

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  5. I suppose it does ruin the romance to see your lover on the porcelain throne, but so does flatulence, or leaving a less than desirable aroma in the bathroom; but hey, I've yet to meet a married couple that doesn't get to know their partner's more organic side. Since you have two bathrooms, the solution is elegantly simple (as others have pointed out) - the second bathroom is your husband's domain when nature calls. He has priority one boarding for that commode. If it's an emergency and he has to use the bathroom by the walk-in closet, then he forfeits his demand for privacy (give him a blindfold while you access the closet and tell him if he can't see you then you can't see him [not that you want to for that matter]). Some more fiber in his diet is probably a good idea too.

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  6. He doesn't like the second bathroom bc the door doesn't lock so the kids could burst in. It's less private. Not as conducive to dumps.

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    1. Sliding door latch at Home Depot less than five bucks. Problem solved.

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    2. Yeah that's a pretty easy one to solve.

      Or for a slightly more skill set (easily acquired on you tube) you can change out the door knobs so it locks from the inside but can be opened with a paperclip from the outside if a child gets locked in there.

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  7. Am I the only one wondering why you blocked an entrance to the bedroom closet from the bedroom?

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  8. There is no right.

    However, there are some potential solutions:

    Solution 1: Change out the doorknob on the 2nd bathroom so that it does lock (and put the key to it on the top of the doorframe so that you can get in if your kids accidentally lock themselves in).

    Solution 2:
    You keep a "go bag" that includes a sweater, jacket, socks, change of pants, etc. elsewhere in the house so that you don't have to go in there while he's using the restroom.

    AND if he comes out of the restroom and sees a pile of laundry on the bed because you couldn't get in to put it away, then HE has to put it away before he leaves the room. Even if it isn't all his stuff. (I say this because my own husband believes he is responsible only for his own stuff if he's doing something. This is a chat my own marriage needs to have.)

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    1. Yes but I absolutely do not trust him to put my laundry away correctly. There have been incidents...

      Also, we rent not own. So that limits the options.

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    2. No landlord will care or notice you switched out the door knob assembly. It's actually an improvement.

      If you go the simpler route of the sliding door latch, it's only a couple small holes in the door and frame. These are easily filled with wood filler if the land lord wants you to remove them. Literally takes less than a minute to fill those in.

      Also I think it's a reasonable request to have the landlord install a locking door nob assembly on a bathroom.

      Any of the above is far less stress than dealing with this ongoing problem assuming he had to poop every day.

      Why live with the aggravation when the problem is so easy to solve?

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  9. have you been talking to my wife? did she tell you to write this?

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  10. Things like this are what the police call "motive" after being married > 10 years.

    Sorry, if he is going to take that long, longer than 5 minutes or so, get over it. Someone can walk in. Or get off the throne, get what you need, take it to you and then get back on. He isn't doing to the bathroom, he's just goofing around.

    He needs to be shown the recommendations on more dietary fiber and more water. He also needs to reconsider hemorrhoids because sitting like that can help to cause them or make them worse.

    If he isn't willing to learn how to fold them right, then he has to or else you come in. Sorry but seriously ...

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  11. How about suggesting he use the other bathroom when he plans to set up camp for the long haul? The problem would be solved, sort of!

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  12. My husband was sad his "time" was significantly shortened with this:
    https://www.amazon.com/Squatty-Potty-Original-Bathroom-Toilet/dp/B007BISCT0

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  13. I agree. He needs to use bathroom No.2
    The Medic Mind

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  14. I would put a lock on the second bathroom ... problem solved. (I have rented forever - never had a problem making these kinds of changes). Then if he still chooses to use the closet bathroom, it's on him. ... I have never understood anyone taking more than 3 minutes in the bathroom. Like maybe I'm just impatient. If I am a bit constipated I finish up and come back later when the urge next strikes. But men in general are slower on the pot. Don't know why. Maybe get a squatty potty!! ... Anyway ... this is clearly poor design but your husband already sounds pretty inflexible from other posts. I would respond with the lock on the other door and the ultimatum. That bathroom or expect visitors.

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  15. I agree with the poster above. You definitely need to get that man a squatty potty! Show him the video and he will be charmed https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KlEovr29KBU. I also take just minutes on the toilet but I still love my squatty potty! 5/5 stars and all your friends will be jealous. I have had multiple friends ask if they can come over for their next poo to test mine out.

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  16. Make him use the other bathroom and call it his. Putting up with inconvenience is what a marriage is all about, anyway.

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  17. We had this issue (wardrobe and laundry are both in the bathroom). Anyway, I said we could get one of those room dividers so he could protect himself from my gaze (like I want to look anyway!), or he can deal with it.
    Eventually he learnt to deal with it. It did take about two years of me using the bathroom area (to grab my clothes or put on the laundry) as I saw fit. He takes multiple long trips to the bathroom each day, I am not spending 30minutes waiting before I can move the washing into the dryer, or grab a jacket. If he was an occasional or quick bathroom user I would be more accommodating, but, he isn't.
    So, room divider he can "protect" himself with, or he can learn to deal.

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  18. Are my husband and I weird? We regularly walk into the bathroom to grab something while the other is sitting on the toilet. Surely we aren't the only couple who feels comfortable doing so?

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    1. Not at all! I agree with you! Out of politeness we kind of avert our eyes in what is a private moment but goodness, if you can't be comfortable around your spouse what's next, showering in underwear so you don't see yourself naked?

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  19. My house has the same unfortunate design, so I can sympathize. Although my hubby doesn't take quite as long as yours, he does take the newspaper along and set up camp. Apparently toilet seats are designed by and for men. I know no woman who thinks those seats are comfortable enough to spend any more time on than absolutely necessary. Our solutions to the access dilemma:

    1) Only hanging clothes are in the walk-in closet. Dressers are in the bedroom for the remainder of our clothes, which makes more clothes accessible when the other person is blocking access to the closet.

    2&3) More laundry baskets - one per person. Also, a hanging rod in the laundry room.
    I put clothes into each person's basket, and hang clothes that need to be hung. Everyone is responsible for retrieving and putting away their own clean clothes.

    4) Shoes stay in the garage.

    5) Respect one another's preferences. My dh grew up in a family that used the bathroom farthest from family activity for lengthy bathroom trips, so he honestly thinks he's being kind to the rest of the family by taking that smell far away. I'm unlikely to change that thinking so I accept that he's trying to be kind. I have asked that he recognize that there are times I need into the closet, so if he's going to block access, please check with me to make sure I have everything I need. That took some training; knock on the door - ask if he'll be a while - ask if he told me that he'd be blocking access to the closet. Or you could take the passive-aggressive approach and keep track of the approximate times he tends to disappear, then go in there just before that and deep-clean the bathroom so he can't come in; next time thoroughly clean the closet, dust all the corners, vacuum the floor; another time (if your bathroom has a linen closet) you could clean out the linen closet. A few different days of this can get the point across that you have things to do in that part of the house, too, and coordinating schedules would be nice.

    6) If you only have two bathrooms, unless you want the kids using your bathroom, he probably shouldn't tie up the kids' bathroom for a lengthy amount of time.

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  20. We have the same set up, http://www.squattypotty.com significantly reduces bathroom times

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  21. That's really odd. Why is the sight of a spouse sitting on the toilet so offensive? Granted it's nice to have privacy, and I wouldn't perch on the vanity and have a deep and meaningful conversation with my husband - but just passing through the room? Is it an American thing? It's quite cute how delicate your sensibilities seem to be as a country :)
    (I mean that nicely, it's funny - and you would probably be horrified in turn by how relaxed some other countries are so each to their own :)

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