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Knocking on Restroom Door Draws Angry Response

DEAR ABBY: My husband and I were recently at an upscale restaurant. I needed to use the restroom. When I approached the ladies' room door, it was closed. I knocked twice and heard a grumbling from inside. A minute later a lady exited. She asked me if I had knocked, and I replied that I had. She then admonished me in a stern voice as if I were a child, saying, "Don't do that!"

Was I wrong to knock on a restroom door that was closed? Are we to assume that someone is in there? I always close the restroom door when I leave because I assume that people do not want a view of the restroom while enjoying dinner. -- CONFUSED DINER

DEAR CONFUSED: Some people turn the door handle to see if the restroom is occupied. Others knock, particularly if it has been occupied for an unusually long time. The woman you encountered may have been in a bad mood, or felt that because you knocked you had rushed her. You did nothing wrong, and I hope you didn't let it ruin your evening.

Read more in: Etiquette & Ethics

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