Wednesday 2 November 2016

Wonderful Wednesday: Ever decided to hold it? #phantomloos

drawing of people needing the loo

Ever looked at a public loo and thought..nah I can hold it? Or perhaps you've tiptoed your way across a rather suspect looking floor? Could you have encountered a #phantomloo? Well, possibly, but whereas you or I could makeshift a set of stepping stones out of the last few paper towels, some of my friends can't. And that's why my wonderful Wednesday share this week is a hashtag - #phantomloos

You are in a supermarket and... need to go.  Maybe you're a lady in her third trimester and baby has been bouncing on your bladder for the last five minutes or maybe you had one too many teas before heading out.  When you arrive at the place signed 'toilets', it's one of those disabled/woman loos so you head on in (if you are a woman, gents please just bear with me).  Lucky you have found a clean one.. but it's no desirable place to be.

tea being poured

While the tea drinker hops over and tries not to get tangled in that emergency string that somehow always looks wet, the preggers lady glances over at the changing table on the wall with a sigh.  Well, at last baby can be changed on that once he's popped out. Because, despite looking clean, you wouldn't really want to change baby on the floor of the loo would you?  Even Jamie Dornan* didn't want to get involved in that.

Except of course, either of these people (gents included) may find that is exactly what happens to their family in the future. Isn't it baffling that in today's day and age, nearly a quarter of a million people in the UK can't use this loo.  They may have developed difficulties or conditions such as multiple sclerosis or motor neurone disease.  Perhaps it's a child who has been born a bit different, or perhaps it's just because they have got older and need support going to the toilet.

This quarter of a million people need something called a Changing Place.  A room that comes with an adult size bench and a hoist. So they don't have to changed on the floor, or pulled and pushed about by a carer to get them to the loo. I can only imagine how difficult this is in the disabled toilets that are really just that big cubicle at the end of a long line of loos in some places.

On Monday, SEND Bloggers joined together to share posts about these #phantomloos. The scary ones that you don't want to tip-toe through and certainly don't want to lie down in. People should have access to a toilet and therefore a changing place so they can continue with their life without having to worry about being home before they use the toilet or having to be changed on a toilet floor.

And this is a wonderful, nay essential thing to share again this Wednesday.  Please search #phantomloos and check out the Storify here for more posts.

*Beware, brilliant spoof post

My children are perfectly able bodied, but we still use disabled loos.  
You can read about that here.


  1. Oh, the things that able-bodied people take from granted in this life! I too get very frustrated when I deem that a public toilet is too gross to use but I cannot even imagine having an infirmity that would *prevent* me from using *any* public restroom. Thank you for offering your perspective. #bestandworst

  2. This is something I am utterly passionate about. My own son can use the toilet but he can't get out of his wheelchair without a hoist. With a Changing Places toilet I can safely lift him to the toilet and he has his dignity. Without these facilities he will often choose not to go out at all.

  3. I shudder at the thought of having to walk across some of those floors with shoes on, let alone thinking I would have to lay down on them.
    Thanks for linking up to #BloggerClubUK


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