Let the Lesson Begin photo

How To Pee In The Ocean

As a parent, I believe one of my most important jobs is to impart life skills, which allow my children to navigate the success and happiness I hope for them.

Skills such as not having to leave the beach to pee in 10 easy steps.

Let the Lesson Begin photo
Let the lesson begin

1. Once you realize that you have to pee, do not announce: I’M GOING TO PEE IN THE OCEAN.

2. Double-check with yourself: Do I have to pee and poop? If you have to poop, immediately stop this lesson.

3. Choose an uncrowded ocean area so no one asks: What’s up with this warm spot? If that is not possible, feel free to respond back: What IS up with this warm spot?

4. Walk until you are waist deep in the water BEFORE peeing. If there are too many waves, consider sitting in a shallower area. Do not consider peeing down your leg.

5. Relax. Pretend there aren’t 50 people surrounding you wondering what you’re doing.

6. If you still can’t pee, remind yourself that those 50 people peed a few hours early. Do not remind yourself that they might have chosen the same spot.

7. Pee.

8. Do not announce: I’M DONE PEEING.

9. Shake your suit around a bit.

10. Nonchalantly, go back to burying your sister in the sand grateful you’ll never have to do the wet-bathing-suit-peel-off-in-the-beach-bathroom again.

Now that you’re feeling a little freer, catch up on my other life lessons such as How to High Five Yourself and How to Fart in Public. You’re welcome.

Alex Iwashyna

Alex Iwashyna went from a B.A. in philosophy to an M.D. to a SAHM, poet and writer by 30. She spends most of her writing time on LateEnough.com, a humor blog (except when it's serious) about her husband fighting zombies, awkward attempts at friendship, and dancing like everyone is watching. She also has a soft spot for culture, politics, and rude Southern people who offend her Yankee sensibilities. She parents 2 elementary-aged children, 1 foster baby, 3 cats, and 1 puppy, who are all Southern but not rude. Yet.

23 thoughts to “How To Pee In The Ocean”

  1. we have another rule about the ocean around here (besides DON’T TELL ANYONE –including your father–THAT I SAID YOU COULD PEE IN THE OCEAN). when the family we vacation with every year had a child who was doing a lot of experimentation with “inappropriate language,” my mother-in-law (whose mouth was even filthier than mine) declared that you can always swear in the ocean. once you set foot on dry land you have to clean up your act, but on the open water, all bets are off. just in case you ever need to belt out a “GODDAMNIT, WHO JUST PEED IN THE FUCKING OCEAN?”

  2. This is something I learned at an early age from my aunts and have also taught my children, my nieces and nephews and in a few years their children. My aunts would say, “Oooh, if you feel something warm, that’s from me!” Or you would hear someone say, “Warm spot – who just peed?” So much easier than going ALL the way back to a house/hotel for the bathroom! However if it’s time to poop, you must make it back to the house/hotel no matter what. NO pooping in the ocean!

  3. Ah, the essential lessons. I’ll only add that if you are swimming, say in a lake, then the key is to pee and move. Maybe even swirl the water around so the warm spot vanishes. But don’t poop. It will float. Of course, I couldn’t know that from experience. No. No.

  4. This is a very important lesson. Your point about starting waist deep is the most important part in my opinion. I have been duped by too many a wave only then to be left standing there when the tide retreats. Also, good you mentioned about not freaking out when the pee won’t come. Another good reason not to think you can automatically start peeing in a big wave. There is always ocean fright in the beginning. Might I also mention this is another reason why I hate the beach.

  5. Great lesson!

    For adults, I think it’s important to linger a little bit, to seem like you actually went out there to enjoy the water. If you really don’t want to do that but are worried too many people are watching, maybe let yourself be hit and toppled by a wave to give you the excuse to be done with the ocean.

  6. I ridiculously enjoy your “how to” posts.

    Since I grew up on Lake Michigan, I don’t even remember having to LEARN to do this. You just did.

    And on canoe trips, if you stand up river from someone, you can (and should) announce that you are in fact peeing ON them since they are standing down stream from you.

    But perhaps this is because I have brothers and for some reason the idea that we were all just standing in a toliet was hilarious.

    I am guessing we were the only ones who did the sidle up and pee thing.

    “Why are you standing so close to me? Wait…DANG IT! YOU PEED!”

    No one else does this? Just us?

    Well then. Moving on.

  7. As others have added, I have found that you have to be explicit about not pooping in the ocean. My son loved that he could pee in the ocean anytime! So when he came to me and said he tried to get his pants down underwater but couldn’t I got a bad feeling. I asked if he needed to poop and considered myself lucky that he had a hard time with his swimsuit.

  8. Nope. Still not going to be able to do it. But I am always amazed how many times my kids get up from the table to pee during dinner, but they can spend hours upon end at the beach without going. Hmmm. Curious.

  9. Over winter break this year, my almost-15-year-old nephew who lives two miles from the beach announced that he ALWAYS poops in the ocean.


    So guess who is NEVER going to the beach with her nephew again.

    This girl. That’s right.

  10. This is an interesting post. Not one I thought I would come across. That being said, makes me feel better about life. Life isn’t always so serious and sometimes you’ve just gotta pee in the ocean. Not only does this show the proper way to, but your children will remember this “event” and laugh about it later in life. I do agree though, add the swim around a little. It looks a bit obvious standing there squating. Thanks for the laugh!

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