"The secret to a happy marriage is separate bathrooms. That's essential." - Michael CaineWhether or not the original Alfie is right (although, he has been married for thirty-five years...and in the entertainment industry, that's a pretty impressive achievement), it's safe to say that good percentage of us probably share a bathroom, be it with a significant other, sibling, roommate, etc. When a bathroom qualifies as a shared space, it's also safe to assume that certain guidelines need to be put in place... For example: In college, I lived in a house with five other girls, and four of us shared on small bathroom. Among the many issues that can arise from a house full of estrogen, there are a few lessons worth noting: • Always, always throw out empty bottles and cans...or nearly empty bottles. There were many times when someone would come back from a trip to Target armed with new toiletries only to have to spend an hour yelling, "WHOSE BOTTLE OF SHAMPOO IS THIS? CAN I THROW IT OUT?! IT'S BEEN HERE FOREVER!" • This one's more for roommates: If you have nice products that cost a pretty penny, keep them in your room unless you don't mind sharing. • Clean the drain after you're done showering (especially if you've got long hair). Wipe any toothpaste splatters and loose hairs from the sink/mirror area (especially if you're a guy who uses an electric shaver. As one friend put it, "Clean up the effing man beard clippings!") With that in mind, it may be a good idea to get a plastic cover for your toothbrush. • Set up a cleaning schedule so that the bathroom gets cleaned once a week. That way, it never gets too awful...unless your roommate or significant other is a bit lax on the cleaning. In that case, consider the option of hiring a cleaning service to do the dirty work (and splitting the cost). • Limit your bathroom time, especially in the morning when everyone has to go to work and/or school. Probably not the best time to sit on the can and finish Tolstoy. • Replace the roll. Got your own tips on surviving a shared bathroom? Post it in the comments!