Why are people afraid to discuss toilet issues?

We have all experienced it – you have a stomachache and you want to ask someone what to do. Or you are out with your friends and you need to pee, but you are ashamed and hold back. Why are we afraid to talk about going to the bathroom?

Sanitation is one of seven basic needs of human beings. The rest, sleep, shelter, food, water, sex, are readily discussed with peers and relatives (well, maybe not the last). But why don’t we discuss about bodily elimination?

Generally when we are in a group setting with semi-strangers we are reluctant to admit that we need to go to the bathroom. Add in people of the opposite gender, and the likelihood of mentioning going to the bathroom drops. This is just for peeing, we never ever mention that we are going to do a #2.


Pic Credit: funnyjunk.com

Why are we afraid to let our family/SO/friends hear us pooping? I went to a youth seminar turing my JC days. It was about 3 days in and amongst us there was a girl who let slip that she hadn’t pooped since we had arrived. At one point she quipped “hey girls, tonight don’t come near the (shared) toilets”. Maybe it was more to make us laugh, but she did seem genuinely shy about it.

We often demand the maximum possible privacy when we need to go to the bathroom. Some people drop sheets of toilet roll into the bowl to minimise the ‘splash’ sound, some people leave the shower running, some even banish their S/O to the other side of the house for half an hour. My cousin for many years now, still leaves the shower running when she goes. Perhaps it is ingrained within us that one’s potty habits are akin to their darkest secrets, hence we don’t discuss it.

But still, why are we reluctant to talk about our bathroom habits? We talk about how much/ little we sleep, or even how much/little we ate last week. Do we have a lower threshold for this particular basic need? We can control our hunger, thirst etc for a relatively longer period compared to when we need to use a bathroom. Some people even plan their schedules keeping their bathroom breaks in mind. But when the push comes to shove, we often hurry to find the nearest toilet.


One theory is that us going to the toilet reminds us about our mortality. After all, we are banishing something that was a part of our body during the process. People with certain ailments might feel pain when they go, which serves as yet another indication of their limited time on earth.

Another theory is that pee and poop are essentially unwanted things. We know how smelly they are, how much bacteria they contain etc. That’s why we cover our noses when people fart. And we all inherently recognise this. That’s why we feel that we might offend others if we start talking about the unusual colour of our recent emissions, because we would be literally talking about shit.


Pic Credit: imgur.com


Perhaps that’s why we also prefer to do our poops at home, on the comfort of our own porcelain thrones. The one place we have been doing it for years, and where (almost) no one can hear you (and judge you) for the undignified mess you create regularly.

So where does toilet humour fit into this puzzle? Why do we laugh when we hear a toddler (or even your grandpa) fart? Is it an indication that they ‘cannot control’ their poop properly hence they are weak? Then again in that same vein, why does your dad think it is funny to fart loudly when the entire family is trapped in a lift? Is it because he revels in that temporary moment where he alone had the power to make everyone feel disgusted? We humans can be cruel at times, but we are generally kind to our loved ones.

I guess we all want our private space and this is, in some way the only time some people get privacy. Those who share rooms with their spouses and siblings will know. We don’t have to talk about what we as a society aren’t comfortable about, but we also shouldn’t hesitate when we need to ask for advice.


– Selv


Diapers And Television

Pollution and environmental protection are not new ideas, they have been around for decades. In fact, disposable diapers were identified as a major source of trash that took up considerable landfill space. Toilets and sanitation facilities on the other hand were still switching to environmentally sensitive processing methods as late as the 80’s.

I came across this clip of an old 80’s Canadian TV show called ‘You Can’t Do That On Television’, it is a sit-com of the day that tried to spin the pollution idea with the idea that ‘only babies wear diapers, hence people will laugh if an older kid wearing them’. But it is objectively funny in itself.

Televisions were built to inform, but have been used to entertain for decades. It is when companies create entertainment with a spin of truth, that certain stereotypes form, e.g that diapers are for babies, that you must potty train by 2 etc. And as we move towards being an intelligent society, we must digest our entertainment with a pinch of salt.

You may watch it here.


– Selv

Airy Bottom Half

When my first former roommate withdrew from our shared hostel room, I started feeling an air of loneliness. But it also gave me the unprecedented privacy to wear my diapers 24/7, before school started. Even after school started I had the opportunity to wear my diapers to sleep at night and use them well in the morning before taking them off to go for my classes.

When my current room-mate moved in, that privacy vanished completely. I’ll elaborate the complicated reason in the next post, but you’ll have to take it from me that he was in the room practically 24/7. That put a real bummer on things.

Coincidentally, there is a religious festival coming up this sunday. To have a ‘clean mind’ I was going to stop wearing diapers for three days before and after. No Tumblr. No ADISC. The new room-mate made me extend my stint by one day. Mind you, I was not expecting to see him in my room midweek, 2 weeks into the semester and I had seconds to prepare myself.

On a separate note, is the fourth day since I last wore a diaper. It has been a very weird feeling, sleeping at nights without padding. And there is the fact that I have to share the communal toilets with others. It is lucky that I don’t have ‘withdrawal symptoms’, having gone through much worse stoppages. But I still do feel nervous about doing my thing in the mornings. In any case, my schedule is jam-paced so thankfully, I’m able to get over it very quickly in the mornings thus far.

– Selv

Is It possible To Keep A Child In Diapers? Part 2

Part 2

So, the discussion continues. Pardon me, wasn’t feeling well the past week.

It is obvious that keeping a child in diapers has certain side-effects. Every choice has it’s consequence. In the case of an incontinent child, one could dismiss the resulting inconveniences as something which nothing could be done about. In most cases that is true; even the ‘curable’ forms of incontinence would take years to resolve. There are the physical inconveniences, such as needing to change diapers, finding places to change them, providing for clothes to conceal them etc. Then there are the emotional aspects, such as explaining to and comforting the child, teaching the to tackle situations should they arise, helping them fit it, protecting them from paedophiles, etc. No need to mention the financial cost.

There are horrible parents who still keep their children in diapers way past school-going age. Japan is known for this, the western world is slowly catching up. The YouTube clip below states that 1 in 10 kids in Britain still wear diapers to school. So the number while small, is significant. Poor things, those teachers, they change diapers for pee too? I feel that is too extreme. But that aside, we have a sensing that there are hundreds of kids out there who may be trained for pee, but may still require a diaper for their #2.

What about a child who needs a diaper when he/she needs to poop? Big deal, just give a diaper, you could say. But the thing is, the act of forcing poop out into a disposable garment is the easy part. The parent would have to buy the diapers, would have to put it on to the child. And once she is done, they would have to clean her up, and dispose of the diaper as well. Would any adult want to actually come into contact with fecal matter? How would they deal with their relatives? And how would they answer when their child asks why she is still needing a diaper.

Most likely, a child would need to ‘control’ her poop until he/she has access to a diaper. This most likely would be when they reach home after a long day at school. This could cause problems. The constant urge to go could cause the child to lose their concentration in their lessons and studies. When faeces is retained in the rectum, more liquid than usual is drawn out of it making it harder and firmer. This means that it becomes harder to pass motion, and could result in constipation for the child. Repeat this cycle day-in, day-out for years and you have a recipe for potential bowel problems. Piles, polyps, intense pain when passing. What goes on down there affects what happens up there too.

As we all know, a child’s self-esteem during his/her formative years is very important. Keeping that self-esteem high is in part the parent’s job too, especially in the earlier years. One could be getting good grades, excelling in a sport and getting general praise from friends and family. So imagine the effect it would have on him to have to constantly hide a glaring secret from just about everyone! Think of all the missed sleep-overs, school-camps, overseas trips etc, having to hide his bag from his friends, not inviting them to his house for fear of accidental discovery, having to explain to his girlfriend etc. A parent could aid in covering up and mitigating these fears, but there is a limit to their intervention.

But here are still the child’s own thoughts. Wouldn’t it be embarrassing if others found out? Would they be subject to intense bullying? Would they resent being unable to use the toilet at all?

And then there is the moral aspect. Legally there is no official age to toilet-train a child, though establishments such as swimming pools and day-care centres can turn away children who aren’t. (It wouldn’t really affect children who need diapers only for #2.) None of the world’s religions give a number either. But people argue that allowing a human to continue to soil themselves is an indiscriminate act, even if they choose a diaper over a toilet. That is why you don’t see that many diaper wearers out there.

But seeing that supermarkets are somewhat well stocked speaks for itself – this trend is emerging, there is demand for diapers for older kids. One could blame the parents, for neglecting the child. Or seeking the easy way out. Or wanting to keep babying their grown child. Or protecting their child from unsanitary toilets. But whatever the case, with the ever globalising and modernising world, the number of kids being kept in diapers, particularly just for #2, will keep increasing.

So the parting thought is this: would the kid want to remain wearing diapers if he/she had a choice at the start? I say it is physically possible to do so, yes. But spare a moment and think abut that little human’s feelings first.

– Selv

Is It Possible To Keep A Child In Diapers When He/She Isn’t Incontinent?

Part 1

I am going to take reference from a few ABDL stories which several writers (myself included), have written about.

A girl(or boy), who hasn’t been toilet-trained for passing motion, uses diapers to do her daily business. She is not incontinent, in any way, and is your everyday girl, like any other person her age you’d meet. But is this really possible? Can a child’s parent really allow their child to escape toilet-training beyond a certain age? Is it possible that a normal person living in normal circumstances get away with using diapers, with all their friends and family frowning down on them. And what would be the side-effects of such a situation? It doesn’t have to be a girl, it could also be a boy.

Picture this; an eleven year old girl wakes up in the dead of the night. She is in the middle of her school’s Primary 5 camp, and there are hundreds of girls around her, most in a deep slumber. A terrible, nagging sensation in her butt intensifies, preventing her from concentrating on sleeping, and she decides she can’t take it anymore. As quiet as she could, she opens up her bag and she pulls out a plastic bag. Silently, she remorsefully steps over her sleeping buddy, whom she is supposed to wake if she needed to go to the toilet at night, and makes her way to the very remote top-floor toilets.
There, she locks herself into a cubicle and she undresses, and proceeds to put on a diaper. She then poops, emptying out 2 days worth of processed food into her diaper. She is aware that she is pooping her diaper, right in front of a toilet, and uneasily looks away. At this juncture, something awful happens, say, a fire breaks out and there is a fire-evecuation drill. What would happen to this girl? Does she slowly change out of her poopy diaper and leave the diaper in the cubicle before assembling with the others, leaving her friends to worry and for panicked teachers to search for her? Or does she pull on her pants and run to assemble, and hope that no one notices the crinkle sound and awful smell emanating from her big-padded posterior?

Those two paragraphs of fantasy story highlights everything that a real life diaper-pooping child would have to face outside the comfort zone of her home and room. Would a young child be able to handle such stress?

I have been pondering this question for years, and I have formed a conclusion; only children from extreme family backgrounds would have the remotest chance. Single-parent, middle-income, maybe no love, always attended to by a servant or nanny, no friends or with little contact with people their age. Basically parents who do not bother with their kid. Or parents who love their kids to bits and do not want to hurt them in any way. Even then, a very simple calculation would show that keeping a child in diapers is much more expensive than the water bills for flushing toilets and toilet paper. (For 1 year approx, Baby Diapers = $205, Adult Diapers = $296, Flushwater+TP=$20+28)** That would be the biggest incentive for a parent to wean their kid off diapers even if they don’t emotionally care about the child.

To this end, I’ve come across a few cases of children right here in Singapore who used diapers just to poop. Do they still need diapers to poop, I don’t know. But back in their day, they were hushed up by their parents, who were desperate to train their child. Incidentally, while we all know that boys are harder to toilet train, I’ve only seen girls so far, that escape well beyond primary one. Here’s one Singaporean forum thread that still exists.


So it would take a very unsocial, rarely-sees-extended-family kind of kid with a weak, non-domineering and don’t-want-to hurt-my-kid-at-all kind of parent for this to be even plausible. Given that or society is rather big, and modernisation does create such families I guess it is plausible for such a scenario to play out in creating a child who is not incontinent yet uses a diaper.

So what about the struggles and side-effects on such a child? We shall examine that in Part 2…


** These figures are approximate, and are based on a person passing motion 370 times a year. Prices of Mamy Poko XXL, Giant Store Brand Diapers M, Scott Premium 3-ply Toilet Rolls, and a monthly bill of $8.92/m^3 were assumed, without prevailing promotions. Ok, enough, this was supposed to be an approximation. But the numbers speak volumes.

The Human’s 7 Basic Needs

People are living things. They need things to live. It doesn’t take a person like Abraham Marslow to spell out the most basic things. His famous Hierachy Of Needs spells out what people need in some detail, but the most basic list, at the bare bottom list the following: Food, Drink, Shelter, Warmth(Clothing), Sleep, Sex, Sanitation.

Sanitation. This one word is least interesting, the most overlooked, the most scorned and the most unwilling to be dealt with of the seven. But people still do care, that’s why there are public sanitation programmes all over the world. People like Arunachalam Muruganantham of India (The Sanitary Pad Revolutionary), as well as Jack Sim of Singapore (World Toilet Organisation) are just ordinary men who have taken it upon themselves to provide affordable sanitary facilities to those who need it the most.

But what does sanitation got to do with diapers? Everything, to be exact. I mean, who would people want to invent garments to be wrapped around their infant’s bottoms? Why spend tons of money perfecting disposable diaper technology? They hinder a baby’s walk (causing them to waddle), cause them to be toilet-trained later etc. Heck, even the Adult Diaper market is burgeoning with nearly every supermarket equipped with SEVERAL brands of diapers. Why? Because, human excrement is hazardous, infested with harmful bacteria and germs, and people want to protect the floor and furniture  from human excrement. The reverse-toilet, if you will. You can’t make a person sanitarily dispose of their poop, you sanitise their butt instead…

So, sanitation is a basic need. But can I choose the way I sanitise things? In other words: WHY MUST I USE A TOILET? WHY CANT I JUST USE A DIAPER TO POOP? They both do the same thing; catch my poop. If people can choose governments, life partners, their baby’s gender(indirectly), the way they wish to reach god(aka their religion), why can’t I choose the way I conduct one of life’s basic, everyday needs? I can’t even talk about this to even my own sister, who doesn’t have a clue. That’s how taboo the topic is.

One says that if you poop a diaper, you’d pollute the environment, you’d have to ‘touch’ the mess to clean yourself, you’d make your immediate surrounding unbearably smelly. Let me say this. By pooping in the toilet, you waste tonnes of water flushing the toilet bowl, which has to be industrially cleaned with lots of chemicals. You also ‘touch’ your poop when you wipe your ass with toilet paper. And you make a stink in the bathroom every time you poop. The next user can’t breathe well afterwards.

People are hard to convince. Dad’s are hard to convince. Happy Father’s day, Dad. Tonight I won’t poop in my diaper.



PS: I’m not talking about 24/7 diaper use. I’m just talking about wearing diapers just for poop time, about 5-10 mins at max each day.