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Unisex Changing Rooms?


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#1 Henny

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Posted 07 December 2009 - 01:35 PM

Discuss whether it would be a good thing or a bad thing. As in, changing rooms for P.E. classes etc.

EDIT: I might add that I use the definition of unisex as "suitable" or "designed" for both genders.
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#2 AVENCakes

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Posted 07 December 2009 - 02:02 PM

In general: I think it's best to include a unisex bathroom/changing room/whatever. If it's a small enough place, they can get away with one facility so long as the room locks, I've seen a few places do that and I dont think anyone complains.
Every place I've been with a unisex toilet, no matter what they had for men/women, had a nice private one-room set-up where the door locks. It's convenient for changing especially if you aren't comfortable getting undressed around other people, probably easier for parents with small children, cuts down a lot of anxiety for anyone who faces discrimination in the restroom for whatever reason, are typically cleaner, etc. But to go into more detail.

I think this is split into a few general categories, based on my own experiences, anyone can feel free to add any I missed:

1. Everyone uses the same changing room
  • -Communal showers, next to no privacy
    I don't like this in general. I would never shower or change in a communal area, I'm just not comfortable with it. I don't care if "we're all guys/girls here", I don't wanna see it.
  • -Each shower is an individual stall with a blocked off changing area
    This is a bit of a vague one. It's a lot easier to justify because you can walk into the changing area fully clothed, close the curtain, undress, get into the shower, dry off and redress in the changing area, and no one can see your naughty bits. However, since a lot of people seem to prefer getting dressed at their locker- I can see this not being an optimal setup. It might work in some places, but I don't see it working everywhere.
  • -It's a small place, so a one-person-only changing room
    If it isn't a communal changing room- I don't see why it matters. Especially if the door locks behind you. I have seen some smaller places with changing areas like this, too.
2. Along with the typical male/female rooms, there's also a unisex one
I can see this being prohibitive in terms of cost, but a lot more places are putting it in. I've already given my reasons for why above.

#3 Sammie

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Posted 07 December 2009 - 02:53 PM

As with toilets: yeah, great! BUT with individual stalls.
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#4 Blerdivor

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Posted 07 December 2009 - 03:02 PM

Usually the disability bathroom is unisex (at my hs it was)
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#5 Pandoren

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Posted 07 December 2009 - 03:52 PM

Urgh, I hated PE at school with the communal showers. Why the hell would I want to stand naked in the showers surrounded by other people? I only went in there once, not for long, and then thanked the deities for my habit of getting verrucas because then I was allowed to go "wash the important bits" in the girl's toilets rather than going in the showers because of contamination.

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#6 Henny

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Posted 07 December 2009 - 04:13 PM

Urgh, I hated PE at school with the communal showers. Why the hell would I want to stand naked in the showers surrounded by other people? I only went in there once, not for long, and then thanked the deities for my habit of getting verrucas because then I was allowed to go "wash the important bits" in the girl's toilets rather than going in the showers because of contamination.

I just change my clothes and go home and shower after P.E. I can't stand public showers.
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#7 AVENCakes

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Posted 07 December 2009 - 04:21 PM

In my first highschool, PE was right after lunch so we didn't have time to shower before our next class- much less go home. Lukcily we didn't get too gross. Anywhere else I always just went home- I don't care how clean it is, I don't trust public showers.

#8 KieranTheWerewolf42

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Posted 07 December 2009 - 04:22 PM

I just change my clothes and go home and shower after P.E. I can't stand public showers.

I did the same thing.

The coolest thing was when I went to Space Camp each shower cubicle had its own changing area you would step in, close the curtain and open another curtain to get to the shower, and when you were done you could i=sit on the bench and change without worry.

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#9 KayleeSaeihr

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Posted 07 December 2009 - 04:22 PM

I never used the showers at my school. Ever. For any reason.
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#10 KayleeSaeihr

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Posted 07 December 2009 - 04:24 PM

Unisex change rooms at school... Might be good, might be bad. School is a time of change, puberty etc, it's perhaps not an ideal situation for the genders to be mixing, despite my wish that there be absolute equality between them.

Unisex change rooms could be added later, age 17 perhaps?
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#11 Doctor FrankenAzo

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Posted 07 December 2009 - 04:29 PM

I can't stand public toilets, let alone public showers and whatnot. Now at school (I was no older than 16) we had the changing rooms for P.E (one for each gender of course) but at least you didn't have to go naked. There was no mixing of genders since about early primary school where we all changed for P.E in one room.

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#12 Pandoren

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Posted 07 December 2009 - 04:41 PM

Urgh, I hated PE at school with the communal showers. Why the hell would I want to stand naked in the showers surrounded by other people? I only went in there once, not for long, and then thanked the deities for my habit of getting verrucas because then I was allowed to go "wash the important bits" in the girl's toilets rather than going in the showers because of contamination.

I just change my clothes and go home and shower after P.E. I can't stand public showers.


We were forced to. We weren't allowed not to wash at all. Even promising to wash later in the day was ignored.

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#13 daveb

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Posted 08 December 2009 - 02:10 AM

When I went to high school (decades ago) there was no choice. You changed and showered in big locker rooms, one for the boys and one for the girls. Not my favorite thing. I have an intense dislike of public restrooms where the men's urinals have little or no separation. I always use stalls. When I was in college living in the dorms the bathrooms (showers, toilets, etc.) were one big room for each gender. Not a whole lot of privacy there either. It was a coed dorm for grad students. Since there wasn't a good place to put your clothes while showering I got used to walking down the hall with nothing but my room key, soap and a towel wrapped around my waist. Didn't really bother me who saw me. Somehow it never seemed sexual. I never got any comments or notice as far as I could tell.

Anyway, back to the OP - if I had my druthers it wouldn't matter if it was unisex because each person would have their privacy, individual shower/locker space with walls or curtains or something that provided sufficient privacy.
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#14 Orion

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Posted 08 December 2009 - 02:47 AM

So long as they aren't changing in there together, it's fine by me. Of course, when I was in high school, I was still really shy about changing in the single-sex locker room. I was required to change, so I just pulled my sweat pants on over my jeans and I usually wore a tee shirt so I just left that on. No one really noticed noticed. In fact, some one else who caught me doing it started doing it too. ;)
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#15 The MoUsY spell-checker

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Posted 08 December 2009 - 01:19 PM

If a bathroom or changing room has stalls with lockable doors, why does it matter if it's unisex?

Usually the disability bathroom is unisex (at my hs it was)

I remember reading some article where a transgendered person who did not feel comfortable using either gendered bathroom pointed out that they are not disabled and would like a better option than having to use the disability bathroom.
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#16 henshin

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Posted 08 December 2009 - 04:58 PM

I feel somewhate divided on this matter. While I'm all in favour of unisex toilets, Im not so keen on changing rooms being unisex. I understand this is hard for trans people, in fact I can't imagine what it would be like to face this discrimination and the fear of harrassment everytime you have to pick a changing room. However I do think that changing rooms are feel like a 'safe space' (for want of a better term), at least from a female perspective.

This isn't because there are no men to find you physically attractive cus, well, lesbians exist, and its not because there's less risk of assault. I think rather its got to do with the non-judgemental nature of adult same sex changing room. For me personally I would feel much more pressure to be physically attractive and feel much more shame over my body if I had to get changed in the presence of men. Obviously this feeling has antecedents in the way women and men are socialised.

I would say this is especially true in the case of adolescents where getting changed in front of anyone can be horrible, let alone a guy who will either try to prove how cool he is by making fun of or trying to touch girls. I would also be worried about the risk of assault if a girl and a group of boys are left alone in the chaging rooms, it happen too frequently in schools. Maybe with a teacher supervising...

Obviously a lot of these problems can be reduced or eliminated with locking cubicles but this takes money and space so will probably never happen in anywhere but the wealthiest sports clubs.

#17 Matt

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Posted 10 December 2009 - 11:26 PM

Wait, people actually have showers after P.E.? Our school only had showers in one of the sets of changing rooms, and those were off limits. I still doubt I'd have used them if they were available though - I never used the ones at the gym I used to go to either.

Yeah, I don't know about unisex changing rooms. I think they'll only work if you have cubicles, although I have seen a set up with a common locker room and then separate changing rooms. (I also think I've used a proper unisex set-up, but I'm not certain. It was a while ago.)

Also I've used a good one at a camp site (I think) whereby you had a cubicle with a shower in. It was within the male toilets, but this was a normal camp site.

For clothes shops, aside from the ones only selling one sex clothing, I have to wonder if it isn't better to have unisex changing anyway. You still have to have cubicles, so just have locking doors and instantly you reduce the need for staffing, although I guess a lot already do. And no, the gender of the staff makes no difference whatsoever, since they don't match the sex of the staff member to that of the customers even when there's only one (or maybe it's just male customers they don't do that for)

I don't really have anything to say, I just wanted to add to all that high school shower stuff.

#18 Yanagi

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Posted 11 December 2009 - 02:50 AM

The coolest thing was when I went to Space Camp each shower cubicle had its own changing area you would step in, close the curtain and open another curtain to get to the shower, and when you were done you could i=sit on the bench and change without worry.


My high school's got showers like that. Everyones' too afraid to change clothes of in the actual changing area. The first thing I learned this year while taking a p.e course is how to put a sports bra over another bra and get the first one off with out strangling yourself. It was a very strange moment in my opinion.
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Posted 12 December 2009 - 05:36 PM

I am all for unise changing rooms.

But theres always that one person who ruins it. That horny rapist who hides round the corner and attacks someone.


#20 M.H.

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Posted 12 December 2009 - 09:36 PM

we didn't shower after gym class at my school...unless it was swimming days, and people showered in their swimsuits then...

as for they unisex changing rooms...all for it as long as there are separate changing stalls or something like that

i never cared for changing in front of people...including family...my aunts and mom have laughed at me for being so diverse to changing in front of them

i'm just a really private person...and i don't care whether it's all the same gender...best friends...family...whatever. I don't like changing in front of other people

so...as long as there are separate, locking stalls...then by all means...what does it really matter -_-




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