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Overcoming paruresis in corporate restrooms. Adam Gianforcaro, Faculty of Urodynamic Studies, PPP, National Health Services, Washington, D.C.


Abstract. This study aims to show the benefits of meditation, verbal acknowledgement, and audible hissing, respectively, for males overcoming situational paruresis (colloquially: pee-shyness, shy bladder, public piss syndrome). Human subjects were monitored during efforts to urinate in public restrooms in each subject’s place of employment. Out of 22 urination attempts per subject, on average, in a five-day period, 81.9 percent of said attempts were hindered by paruresis. Techniques to mentally disconnect and distract in the presence of others were proven effective in expediting urination based on observations from these experiments.


Background. Approximately one out of every ten men suffers from paruresis. Paruresis can lead to depression, anxiety, and bacteria growth in and stretching of the bladder. In extreme cases, homicide and death by infection or suicide. A study of ten pee-shy men in public restrooms, each in his respective place of employment, is reported here.


Results. Out of the ten male subjects, one suffered from social anxiety; one had a history of kidney stones; one male subject was embarrassed by his penis size. The remaining men were clear of conditions that may have affected public urination. Subjects wore heart monitors and urine flow monitors throughout the testing period. Overall, ability to urinate increased dramatically for subjects in closed-off restroom stalls or while sinks were running. Test results showed: a) 1.8 percent of urination attempts, with others present of course, were successful within 45 seconds by continually reading the words circling the top of the urinal (whatever that circle thing is called); b) 4.5 percent of attempts were successful by imagining themselves graffitiing on the restroom wall (mostly obscenities); 7.2 percent of attempts were successful by meditating, e.g. going to his respective “happy place” (waterfalls and beds most popular); 7.2 percent (again) while playing Bejeweled on a cell phone; 8.1 percent of attempts were successful by verbally acknowledging one’s own pee-shyness to other restroom users; and 13.6 percent of attempts (best yet!) were successful by hissing like a snake and imitating the sound of a urine stream hitting the urinal’s porcelain wall. Subjects noticed that neighboring urinators either had delayed urination or “trickled off” after subjects acknowledged their own shyness and, more so, while subjects were hissing. Other remedies tested by one or more subjects with less than 1 percent satisfaction involved coughing, cracking knuckles and other body parts, and filing fingernails on the rough part of the wall in between the small tiles in Subject A’s preferred restroom.


Conclusions. Men with paruresis expedited urination by an average of 7 percent when among others by meditating, telling others in the restroom about their condition, and/or hissing like a snake. Men suffering from paruresis can transfer their urination delays by imagining themselves as, say, Kaa from “Jungle Book” or Nagini from “Harry Potter” (those are the snakes the subjects chose to identify as). “It’s like catching someone’s yawn,” documented Subject A in his observations. “Better to make others suffer.”


Parting Thoughts. Given that a snake’s hiss can aid in paruresis by 13.6 percent, is The Lizardman immune to paruresis? What about other “performers”? The Illustrated Lady? Zombie Boy? Further testing has been scheduled.

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