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Topic Public restrooms Go to previous topic Go to next topic Go to higher level

By sannph On 2010.06.19 21:49
Hi. I'm new to this website but have been browsing and love what I've found. This is my first time participating in a forum so I'm learning as I go. My husband was diagnosed with PD in 2005 and retired on disability in 2006 at age 50--certainly not what we'd planned! Maybe my question has been discussed already but I didn't find it. I'm not sure what is best to do when we're out in a public place and there is not a family handicap restroom available. My PWP is in a wheelchair and he needs help with transfers. Any suggestions?

By karolinakitty On 2010.06.19 23:00
From formerly working in food service and dealing with public restrooms here is one option:

Have your husband check out the restroom for "company", if there is no one in there open the door and if possible keep it open part way with a trash can or something, just enough so that others may think it is being cleaned. This will give you the opportunity to assist him. If someone should just barge in kindly ask if they could give you a minute please. Most folks won't mind and might even help keep others from coming in until you are done.

By caregivermary On 2010.06.20 11:19
I have had issues lately on this topic. Would it be ok for me to take my husb who is in a wheelchair into the ladies room to use the accessible stall there with my assistance? Do you think females would be upset? My husb said he would be ok with it.

By parkinit On 2010.06.20 21:07
Great topic. I'm on the verge of this myself (needing to assists my spouse with transfers) and have often stationed myself outside the bathroom door worrying about my spouse inside.

I'm interested in helpful responses as well.

By shirley On 2010.06.20 21:24
This is a very good topic and I too am facing this same issue. I have knocked on the door to the men's room and finding it empty, gone in with my husband to assist him. I prop the door open and if anyone comes, I ask if they will give us a few minutes or I come out leaving him in the stall and go back in after the other man leaves. Don't know if this is acceptable or just has to be done. Most people are understanding.

By MJ-Camano On 2010.06.20 21:55
Thank goodness for the areas that have family restrooms that are wheelchair accessible!! We had this problem yesterday - found a wonderful public family restroom. My husband is still walking, but needs assistance with changing depends and if he has an emergency restroom need. This is becoming a bigger problem for us also, as he almost always needs restroom assistance. He is very uncomfortable with this problem.

A few months ago we were at an airport and I needed a place to prepare him for a 5 1/2 hr. flight (he couldn't possible use the airline restrooms.) There were no family restrooms, I asked an employee at the gate what I could do; there were obviously used to this and had a male employee clear the men's restroom and stand by the door so I could assist my husband.

So I would hope in the future to find more people that are sympathetic to this sensitive issue.

By Pearly4 On 2010.06.21 05:50
I was caregiver to a same sex parent -- we obviously didn't have the issue. My husband handled it by asking a female attendent at public restrooms to assist with doors, etc., but no other assistance was needed, only doors and directions.

On the issue of using a ladies room for the gentleman -- even though I'm aware of the issues involved in Parkinson's and assistance needed, I would feel awkward using\exiting\entering while a gentleman was present even with his wife. My problem, not his, but I would think my discomfort would make him just as uncomfortable.

I would use the same method if you find it necessary to use the ladies room - prop the door open or ask someone to post themselves at the door -- warned ahead of time, at least the ladies will have the option of waiting or occupying at the same time.

By susger8 On 2010.06.21 13:17
I had to take my dad to public restrooms several times recently, since he was at the hospital all day for outpatient surgery. In most cases we were able to use a single-toilet handicapped men's room, which was great. But in one area we couldn't find one. So we used the regular men's room. There were no grab bars at the urinals so we used a stall -- but I couldn't really fit in there to help him. It was quite an entertaining sight, I guess. A man started to come in, but I called out and asked if he would wait because I was helping my father, and he said sure.


By sannph On 2010.06.21 16:08
Thanks for the suggestions. I'm glad to see that I'm not the only one dealing with this. I have found a Walmart with a family handicap restroom, and I've been driving out of my way to go shop there even tho there is another Walmart closer to us!

By micjeffers On 2010.06.24 21:51
This is a great topic. I too have gone into men's rooms to help my husband after checking to see if they were empty. At times, other men have come in while I was in the handicapped stall with my husband and I just yelled out that there was a woman in the house. I like to idea of asking staff at the establishment to help guard the door. Since we usually go to restaurants and other places at off times, they are usually empty or almost empty. I have been in more mens rooms than I care to think about.

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