Confessions of a Non-Germaphobe

I may be outing myself as kind of gross in this post, but you all only know me in Internet Land, and not in Real Life Land, so I’m gonna just go for it. I’m one of the un-germaphobic people you’ll probably ever meet. I’m not sure how I turned out this way; my mom kept a clean house, encouraged us to wash our hands for dinner and all that basic stuff, but was by no means a clean fanatic. My upbringing didn’t have any extremes on which I could blame my current state. So, how did I get this way?

First off, there’s the simple fact that I have an immune system. (I know not everyone’s works properly, but mine does.) In fact, I think of it as a muscle: the more it works, the stronger it gets. This may have only the most tangential scientific basis, but I like to think of it as true. I don’t get sick very often, and I’m not allergic to anything. In other words, I am seeing myself as a nice little case study.

So, what exactly am I talking about when I say I’m a non-germaphobe? Well, I’m never afraid to shake hands with anyone. I don’t squat over toilet sits; I sit on them. I don’t wash my hands a hundred times a day. I keep my apartment clean, though, especially the kitchen and bathroom, although I don’t go overboard with the antibacterial stuff. They never kill 100% of the germs left behind and, if you believe in evolution, that means the few that are left live on and multiply, and create a band of antibacterial-resistant germs. (Goooo science!)

It seems to be somewhat socially acceptable to be a germaphobe, though it may not always be easy. There is a sort of superiority that inherently goes along with it: cleaner than thou, so to speak. But being the opposite is seen as kind of gross, or perhaps seen as laziness. It’s not that. It’s just that I don’t find the natural state of my body or environment to be repulsive.

I don’t get grossed out thinking about the tiny creatures and microorganisms that live all over me and everything I own. Why would I? What an impossible, endless drain on my mental energy. They’ll always be there, no matter what I do. So”¦if you can’t beat “˜em, join “˜em, I say!

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2 replies on “Confessions of a Non-Germaphobe”

I am a non-germaphobe also. I probably border on sort of gross, to be honest. Maybe as a consequence of age, I’ve become less concerned with cleanliness — or at least cleanliness of the obsessive variety — since I’ve gotten older. The squat thing on a public toilet? I’ve never been able to do this without my knees giving out.

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