On Sharing a Bathroom...

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"The secret to a happy marriage is separate bathrooms. That's essential." - Michael Caine
Whether 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!

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