bathroomy confusions: please advise

I have questions about what seem to be opposite ends of the personal sanitation spectrum.
bidets: I have only ever encountered these while traveling in France and was too embarrassed to ask how to use them. My assumption is that you hover over the thing and let it wash away the ick, which sounds pleasant enough…but I have so many questions. Do you drip/air dry? Do you use toilet paper for drying? Are there, perhaps, butt towels? Do you share a butt towel with others? Do you have to take your pants completely off to avoid splashing? This seems like more hassle than it’s worth – especially since there are products like Cottonelle wipes. (I know those are pretty new, but back in the old days, I would just wet toilet paper as needed.)

no toilet paper scenarios: I understand that toilet paper is not customary everywhere, and indeed, that it hasn’t been around for all that long. I get that it’s possible to do without. In such (public) places: how do you redress (pants, zippers, buttons, belts) effectively single-handedly following a clean up? It is safe to assume that hand washing IS possible? If not, how do you clean your hand(s)? Am I making false assumptions about hand(s) use?

Please, do tell.

We had a bidet in our bathroom in Spain. You sit on it like you would a toilet and turn on the tap in the back to wash yourself. I didn’t use it that much because (one doesn’t think of these things but they seem obvious in hindsight) water that comes out of there is cold and you have to run it awhile to let it warm up. You dry off with toilet paper. Splashing isn’t a problem.

In other countries I’ve been too, such as Morocco, there is no toilet paper (and no toilets, usually). You squat on a ridged surface over a hole. There is always a tap and a bucket next to the hole to wash away any, um, leavings. You are supposed to wipe with your left hand and then rinse with water from the tap. Not very sanitary, especially because there weren’t any sinks or soap to wash your hands with. However, in Morocco and I believe most Arab countries, there is a prohibition on touching anyone or anything with your left hand, which I guess can help with prevention of disease.

Heh. ‘Hindsight’.


Ahh…bidets are here again.


Actually my experience with bidets is the opposite of Pypers. I have one in our master bathroom . There are two settings for the water, one that shoots up and another that has water come out the sides of the bowl. There is both hot and cold water so a nice warm mixture is best (for me anyway). I straddle it and use the geyser for washing myself and use the other setting to rinse the bowl. I use my hand for washing and a towel for drying, after which I’ll wash my hands thoroughly. In my experience no amount of toilet paper and water can achieve the same level of freshness and cleanliness. I’ve also found it invaluable to freshen up with when I don’t have time to shower in the morning.
As to not having toilet paper I have no experience in that regard.

stupid question: are bidets for men as well as women?

Yep. It’s for washing off anything you would usually use toilet paper for in the US.

Never had the opportunity to use one myself, but as they seem to be getting more attention in this country I’ll probably run across one sooner or later.

I hate you! Come back here!

You people are so impolite. Here, have a previous thread about the use of different varieties of bidets.

And, in Europe at least, they are not a replacement for TP: one of their multiple uses is as a supplement to TP - not a replacement.

Thanks for defending me Nava. I’m fairly new and didn’t know this was a recurring theme.

Thanks, too, for the link to a previous thread. Very informative!

We have so many recurring themes they have recurring themes :slight_smile: