'I can't pee in public' FAQs
What is it?
Paruresis is a social anxiety disorder which makes the individual physically incapable of passing urine in certain situations.
It is usually about a lack of a certain level of privacy. The individual has no voluntary control over the matter; it is the nervous system that cuts off the ability to urinate.
Also known as 'shy bladder syndrome' paruresis affects many men.
But why can't I pee?
There are probably three types of blokes with paruresis (let us know if you're any different):
- those who can't piss in a urinal but can use a cubicle
- those who have difficulty in a cubicle, but are usually OK at home
- those who have difficulty even at home when other people are around.
Is there a cure?
There are also workshops which although do not cure can offer a good starting point to overcoming the problem. You can find workshops and discussion boards with guys with the same problem on the UK Paruresis Trust website.
Read Ian and David's personal stories
- 'For 35 years I couldn't pee in a urinal'
- 'Shy bladder syndrome must be one of the most secretive afflictions going'
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Date of last review 02/04/14
Date of next review 02/04/17
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Men appear more likely to get Covid-19 and far, far more likely to die from it. The Men's Health Forum are working hard pushing for more action on this from government, from health professionals and from all of us. Why are men more affected and what can we do about it? We need the data. We need the research. We need the action. Currently we're the only UK charity doing this - please help us.
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