An Australian Perspective
The ‘out-house down the back yard’ was a practical necessity in Australia’s pioneering past; simply because it kept the smell out of the house. However this meant it was usually impractical to clean with water afterwards. Plumbing was mostly basic, and water itself often scarce. Not surprising paper – in many cases old newspaper – became the ‘norm’ as the socially accepted cleaning method. And hey – as a small boy growing up in a rural Australia – I can still vividly remember the distasteful task of emptying the dunny-can, every time that weekly chore came back around to my turn.
In later years we graduated to a ‘long-drop’ out-house, so at least that onerous task finally got eliminated.
Nevertheless; since the widespread introduction of flushing toilets, Australians – in the majority – have simply continued this tradition of cleaning with only dry tissue paper.
The paper itself has been progressively perfumed, decorated, sterilized and made softer, but remains nevertheless, still just dry paper. Over time this has helped to develop a concept in our minds that: “touching ‘down there’ without paper is definitely disgusting”.
School-yard rhymes like;
“There was a girl from Jamaica,
used to wipe her arse with brown paper;
The paper was thin – and her finger slipped in,
Oh what a mess her finger was in!”
This ditty (and many others like it) served to further strengthen the idea in our young minds as we were growing up; that actually touching ourselves ‘there’ – except briefly in the shower – was unquestionably ‘yucky’, and could perhaps even be sinful!
If you got poo on some ‘other’ part of your body; you wouldn’t just use dry paper – you would want to WASH it off wouldn’t you? And if it is a routine practice to wash our hands after using the toilet, isn’t it just as logical to wash our bottoms? Regardless of these obvious facts; how we clean ourselves after defecating is very much a cultural and traditional thing – we follow pretty much what our parents taught us, and also what we perceive others around us to be doing.
Mention ‘bidets’ to the average Aussie male and if by odd chance he does know what you are talking about, his typical response is likely to be; “Okay for women I suppose, or sissies like the Japanese and French, – but real men wipe don’t they?”
Just quietly – I wouldn’t call a Japanese Samurai ‘sissy’, or for that matter – soldiers of the French Foreign Legion!
Once the stigma attached to anal cleaning, & some deeply ingrained childhood habits are removed, there remains little good reason for continuing the inferior practice of wiping – other than simply our own stubborn resistance to change. This applies equally in America; currently one of the world leaders in the production of bidets; almost all of which are exported away from the very people who believe they lead the world in personal hygiene!
If you’ve ever been annoyed using toilet paper, you’re already aware that cleaning this way is not always that effective – and can be downright painful. We’ve all experienced the times when it feels like we’re using sandpaper down there! Toilet paper manufacturers have tried to fix these shortcomings in recent years – spending millions promoting a brave new concept called wet-wipes – but with limited success. No surprise really; they are expensive, and dry or wet – wiping is still wiping.
Hand held bidets (toilet wash guns) have long been the standard for personal hygiene in most South East Asian countries, while the Roman civilization had flushing toilets (and used water for cleaning afterwards) thousands of years ago. The Western world by comparison, has been slow to recognize the unique benefits of water – an indisputable ‘best practice’ for personal cleansing.
Many people have long wanted something better, but have simply been deprived of both the knowledge and the hardware that promotes better genital hygiene.
We specialize in the supply of quality D.I.Y. integrated bidet kits, specifically adapted for use with modern toilets, high water pressure and ½” plumbing systems. Whether you are looking for the same convenience you have experienced overseas, or just somebody disgruntled with the in-efficiency of dry toilet paper, we can help!