Public Handicap toilet stalls

    • Anonymous
      November 8, 2007 at 11:04 am

      Hi everyone,

      Does it bug anyone else that so many handicapped toilet stalls have a standard size toilet seat instead of the higher one? My knees have never returned to the capability of getting up from the lower seat and my arms are not strong enough to pull up with the grab bars. Some angles just are no help at all. I must park my power chair up close to my knees to brace against and use both full arms to then pull myself up by holding onto the arms of the W/C. From the higher seats this is easier for me but from the low seats I can barely make it.


    • Anonymous
      November 8, 2007 at 7:57 pm

      yes this is a “Pet peeve” of mine also. I always evaluate the situation before I attempt to use the bathroom as I had to have my hubby come in an rescue me before and that is not always possible in public bathrooms. It seems like there should be a standard they all must adhere too. Even some of the bathrooms in hospitals aren’t the higher ones. I find this interesting because of all places you think they would be more conscious of patients needs. OK I’ll get off the soap box now but I know exactly what you are saying!
      Take Care,

    • Anonymous
      November 8, 2007 at 11:36 pm

      Hi Jan

      I, too, have to size up the situation beforehand. A couple days ago I had to go to the ER and I also was surprised that the seats there are low also. I felt the same way you do about that. I was chilled and with that and the nerves acting on my bladder I had to pee every hour requiring someone to help me down and also back up. This was my first trip to the ER (with high B/P.) Believe it or not I was there 8 hours! Just laying on a gurney. They explained later a bad car accident took over the ER so they had whisked me into a closet full of crutches and shut the door. No call light. I had to yell help til someone heard me through the thick door. The Paramedics who had taken me in were not familiar with GBS. Which is why I have a paper typed out with all my necessary info that I keep with me.

      Back to the toilet problem. I have started to go on the bus trips arranged in this high rise building I’m in. Can’t believe how unhandicap accessable some of the so called handicapped toilets are! Some you can’t get the W/C into and shut the door. Some of the store entrances say its accessable and the threshhold is over 3 inches high. You would think there would be some regulations on this kind of thing. I feel so grateful when there is someone also who can hold that big heavy door open for me! Do they really need a castle door on the restroom?


    • Anonymous
      November 9, 2007 at 10:38 am

      I was in a public restroom once and the door of the stall just would not open (I didn’t have enough strength) – I had to wait until someone came in and call out for help. It was embarassing.:eek: Some places are now installing “family restrooms” so my husband can go in with me and help.
      GBS-MFv 1993 and 2004

    • Anonymous
      November 9, 2007 at 12:32 pm

      The family restroom sounds like an excellent solution. I will watch for those. But I sure have to watch out for older establishments that haven’t updated their equipment for many years.

      My daughter works at a Farm & Fleet store in women’s clothing. Many elderly women were coming in to buy a particular brand of clothes they wanted to try on first. However they had difficulty getting up from the changing bench so would have to take the clothes home and make a second trip to return them if they didn’t work out. My daughter brought the problem up to management that grab bars would help. She tried hard as this was a big sale issue for her department. They refused saying it would require reinforcement in the walls to attach the bars. I guess sometimes things seem more simple than they are.


    • Anonymous
      November 9, 2007 at 1:56 pm

      I have the exact opposite problem I can not use the higher seats because of the lenght of my legs. I had a terrible problem at the hospital with the higher seats and now when I come to a restroom with them in a store I have to go to another stall or store. I wonder if in other countries their are other standard size toilets? I agree there should be a standard size for a stall, so you don’t have to straddle the toilet to get the door shut. But those kind are good if you are not able to lock the door on the stall. You can just hold it shut with your knees! 😮 I have seen ramps there were so steep that a person trying to go up them with no strenght could not make it and others that had the strenght had troubles too and actually have seen a few people tilt backwards on them trying hard to get up them. Now when I am at that place and see someone in a WC I ask if they want help. Pushing them up actually helps me climb up the ramp! Wonder where the standards are for these things?

    • Anonymous
      November 9, 2007 at 7:55 pm

      I can’t even straddle. I wear AFOs. I’m 67 and my usual companions are in their 80’s so not much help in giving me a boost. These people have a lot of serious medical problems. Makes me feel I’m not in too bad a shape for the shape I’m in.

      I agree those toilet doors are a hassle. The magnets seldom hold. Hmmm. Maybe I should add a roll of duct tape to my bag of 101 things I drag along with me for difficult times. At least someone wouldn’t have to crawl under the door if I had to be rescued!


    • Anonymous
      November 13, 2007 at 6:53 pm

      I sympathize with any dilemma caused by being in public. I don’t know how it is in bigger cities, but I live in a small town and the “handicap access” is mostly lip-service. Just because there is a handicap parking space doesn’t mean the sidewalk or path to where you are going is all that accessible. Sometimes the spaces are on a slant. There are very few spaces atthe local movie theatres.And so on. And so on. Quite a lesson really.

      Luckily our favorite restaurant has a handicap bathroom with grab bars, and although I was concerned about the low toilet, I could get down to it and up from it. My sympathies whatever your and our difficulties are “out there”.


    • Anonymous
      December 15, 2007 at 11:38 pm

      Hello everyone,

      I too have difficulty when the handicap stall has a regular height toilet.
      I have an elevated one at home and have become acustomed to it. I also find myself waiting to get into a handicap stall, when a restroom is busy. Many times mothers with small children use the handicap stall because of the room limitations in the regular ones. I also find the toilet paper sometimes placed below the grab bar difficut to reach. I did bring this to the attention to the manager at a local grocery and found it had been moved to above the grab bar the next time I was in the store!! Small adjustments make the little things in life not so difficult. Would it be too much to ask for some grab bars in the regular toilet stalls also?
      I also hesitate to try on clothing. A couple of the stores I go to have “handicap” dressing rooms, but even so. I feel exhausted just trying on clothing. I too sometimes buy items, check the return policy and try them on at home and return later if needed.
      So many things can hinder my few good hours in a day. An long phone call, unexpected company, a somewhat sleepless night. These and others and zap my energy. The holidays have been difficult, shopping, cleaning, decorating, entertaining. I have scaled back on all these. Many weeks I only accomplish in a week what I could do in one day. I have had to learn to accept this is the way it is, but I don’t always like it.
      Take care.

    • Anonymous
      December 16, 2007 at 3:50 pm

      For me it not only is the height but also another pet peeve is when they supposedly make these wheelchair accesable stalls too small to even get your wheelchair into. You can’t even close the door let alone access the toilet because the door blocks the toilet. Then the ones that are big enough the grab bars are not at a right place to use them. I am 5’10” and this always makes things a hassle. The other matter is getting into the bathrooms the doors tend to be heavy and hard to deal with especially if you are alone and in a wheelchair. It means you have to wait for someone able bodied to come along to help. So whats with wheelchair accessable bathrooms they should all have a button to push that automatically opens the bathroom. I find hospitals the number 1 offender in this department as they do not conform to this situation at all. As I am currently in one and Even though currently I cqannot uwe one right now I have many friends in wheelchairs and see how hard they have it. I would be in the same spot if I were more mobille and this whole fact sickens me. There should be universal regulations put in place for these situations.


    • Anonymous
      April 14, 2010 at 10:17 am

      I recently had to have tests done at the hospital. What a pleasant surprise when I had to use the bathroom to find a toilet riser available in there. It was sitting on the floor, no sign of having been used. So I used it. Not sure how this is kept sanitary but my thought is it would be nice to have available some antibacterial wipes placed nearby. Maybe that isn’t allowed so guess I’ll add that to my travel bag.

    • Anonymous
      April 14, 2010 at 11:17 am

      How long have the laws been in the books? It has been awhile or long enough for changes to be done! Damage to the bars and TP missing and some one took the soap and the hand wipes. There are alot of reasons why things are done slowly, maybe budget? But these places have had plenty of time to conform to the lays. I bet if we started to sue they would get them done faster. Maybe not! There is someone sitting at a desk figuring out if it would be cheaper to pay the fines or fees than to make the changes that cost more space and money. I bet there is a website some where that someone has made to report these places to the world rather than let them be covered up! Some of these managers or CEO or owners have to take it apon themself to have some common courtesy to see how it is. They need to be able to consider that the handicap is just not those in a wheel chair. Laws should be followed but how about more common sense and courtesy to people. Every read the list on the door of times that room was cleaned and the dates are missing for a year? Do they have another system they are using for employes to initial that this facility has been cleans or checked or they have a list in the office that says when it has been cleaned and the old one was just left there. Oh and the handicapped parking spaces! I see some that are so far away from the door and you have to cross over two lanes of parking and a parking zone to get to the door. How about the one over there on the side of the building that I used that is not handicapped parking but it is flat and right next to the door. Who assigned these places hanicapped and what are the rules for their locations? I don’t see where we have made any improvements over the last decade!

    • Anonymous
      April 14, 2010 at 2:26 pm

      That nice flat one next to the building is probably for the able -bodied president of the buisness. 😀

    • April 14, 2010 at 5:47 pm

      It’s a shame that laws have to made just to implement “Do Unto Others…”
      Then to get the laws enforced is another matter.
      There is no cure for stupidity and I’ve noticed that many businesses that had regard for the handicapped even before the ADA Laws were passed have good business heads and are quite successful. At lot of the other dudheads complied when it became law and those dudheads are no longer there. Not enough of them though.
      The laws made were made mainly for public places and not necessarily for apartment complexes but some not all complexes were ahead of the game and now handicapped friends can come and visit there.
      If only everyone could understand that sometimes you can’t afford not to spend the money for handicapped accesibility.
      As for low toilet seats we need designers with elevated thinking, I guess.
      I almost fell off the seat trying to manuever the toilet paper out of one of those evil measured paper contraptions. BYOT

      businesses and complexes that have regard for the handicapped prior to the ADA laws have good business heads and are successful