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Why you shouldn’t use ADA standards to build a bathroom

I have to wear special sunglasses for my kind of “disability”.

Yes, I’m Asian.

I have a wide face and no nose bridge to allow me to wear those free sunglasses you get at sporting events. 

When I’m forced to wear one-size-fits-all sunglasses, I get a massive headache because of the facial muscles I need to use just to keep them from sliding off on my face.

95% of the time, I wear the sunglasses that work best for me.

But when I forget to pack them, I have to hope I can find something close that will work for me, even if it’s not perfect.

Many people last week commented that they really disliked tall toilets.  

I completely agree that 22” is likely too tall for the average homeowner without a disability but it sure makes life easier for a wheelchair user doing a lateral transfer when the height of the toilet and the chair are level. 

The discussion provided such a great illustration of the differences between commercial ADA and residential accessibility.

The reality is that ADA has a hard job  — designing a space that makes everyone happy is an impossible task. If it’s perfect for one person, it will surely be less than ideal for another.  

Public bathrooms have to accommodate everyone from 5 ft nothing to 6 ft and over.

Our homes can fit our needs perfectly and support our preferred way of living. 

Public bathrooms need to accommodate thousands of people with different challenges year after year. 

Our homes only need to accommodate a handful of people who are likely physically able to adapt to different environments.

I completely understand that if you’re short, it can be hard on your back if your feet dangle.

Luckily, 99% of the time, you will get to use your height of choice at your personal residence.

And when you do have to use a public bathroom, maybe that inconvenience can just be reframed as humans being kind, flexible and inclusive of each other.

Every person deserves to have the best chance of success.

If I can save a fellow human from the embarrassment of having to call out for help to total strangers when their pants are down, it’s 100% worth it in my mind