My 17-Year-Old Has Been Taking Too Long in the Bathroom: Advice?

This question was submitted to our community via our Facebook page and/or our Answers forum. Responses are also taken from the community. If you have your own parenting or relationship question you would like answers to, submit on Facebook or Answers.


"My 17 year old son is driving me crazy with the amount of time he’s in the bathroom. We are a family of 5 and I am pregnant, but there’s only 1 bathroom. My son sits on the toilet for up to 45 minutes while playing on his phone, which creates a huge line outside the bathroom. I nearly peed my pants this morning waiting after we told him to hurry many times. He made things worse by getting into the shower without telling anyone after he was done on the toilet. We eventually went in, his privacy be damned. Shower curtain was closed anyways. Three of us needed to go! Hubby and I are fed up so we told him that he can no longer take his phone into the bathroom with him. He’s pissed off at us and refuses to recognize that his bathroom habits are quite selfish. Hubby has been talking about charging him rent once he’s 18 because we both don’t think he’d manage to afford an apartment alone but any room mates he could get would probably kick him out due to this and many other bad habits he has. How do I get him to realize he needs to be more considerate of others?"

RELATED: Whitney Port Admits She Uses Her Gorgeous Bathroom as a Hides Out Spot From 3-Year-Old Son


The following top answers have been selected by a moderator from hundreds of responses to the original question.

"At that age he's gonna be a while. I would make a new rule, if u plan on being longer than 3 minutes make sure no one else has to go first. Growing up we were only a fam of 4 but one bathroom. Anytime we showered or were gonna be a while we had to ask if anyone needed it first"

"So he doesn’t feel targeted cause teens get moody that way. give everyone a time limit and maybe yourself gets a little longer? It saves hot water as well. maybe just say holding in pee can cause problems."

"In our home there’s 6 of us with one bathroom, all boys except me lol. If any of us plan on being a while in the bathroom, we ask if anyone else needs to use it , then head on in. It’s a respect thing all around. Even big boys with “needs” should be considerate of other peoples time."

"I understand where you’re coming from, but teenagers take awhile in the bathroom. I would give him a time limit in the mornings. Set a timer if you have to… and when it goes off, he gets out for the next person. And in the mornings, he doesn’t take his phone in. As for the rest of the day, he has to ask if anyone needs the bathroom before he goes in. Set a time limit for then too. He should only have extended time in the bathroom when everyone else is in bed."

"We are a family of 5 with 1 bathroom. If someone is going to be on the toilet awhile they ask if anyone needs to go first (if they are having stomach pains and don’t know how long they will be in there). If we are in the shower door stays unlocked and they poke their heads in and ask to go (just to make sure the person in the shower won’t be opening the curtain). We do relatively well with this unless someone is on the toilet a really long time which does happen time to time due to people having gi issues. I personally don’t see charging rent helping matters at all with this situation. Good luck!"

"Does he have any privacy outside of the bathroom? Like his own bedroom?"

"Make him leave the phone out of the bathroom. My brother used to do this with his game boy back in the day. And we only had one bathroom. If he was in the shower, I’d go and flip the water heater"

"While everyone seems to be judging you on your amount of bathrooms, I’ll give you this advice. Give everyone in the house the same rules, no cell phones in the bathroom. Limit shower times. Get the bathroom schedules under control so that this doesn’t continue happening with the others in the household."

"No phones in the bathroom and make times limits. Only 5 minutes per person for the potty and only 20 minutes for a shower/bath"

"Um… some people can’t poop in like 5 minutes though. Are you sure he’s not having a heath issue? Maybe he has chronic constipation"

Have a response to this question? Leave it below to help a mama out! Or leave your own question and get responses from real moms!