Thursday, 10 June 2010

Random thoughts

No rambling though. It's about pregnant woman. Now, don't get any funny ideas, I'm not pregnant!! But something happened to me at the weekend and I've just read this article on the BBC (http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/magazine/8730106.stm) and I thought I'd mentioned what happened. The article is all about people being unsure about giving up their seat on the tube/ bus/ train for a pregnant lady, in case she just happens to be fat. Now, I'd always give up my seat if I saw someone who was obviously pregnant, no doubt about it. The article also mentions that perhaps men should just give up their seats for women, pregnant or not. I remember one of the first times my mum came back home with me on my evening commute and she was really surprised men  weren't giving up their seats to the very few ladies who were indeed standing. Now, this may seem rather old fashioned, but what do you think about it? We've fought for equality, so should we still expect men to behave as gentlemen?

Anyway, back to the pregnant thing. Let me tell you about what happened on Saturday night. We went to see Frankie Boyle in London and were waiting inside the venue for the doors to open. We were sat in a little two person booth and Boyfriend had just gone to the loo. This brash woman arrives and in the rudest voice ever, asks if she can sit down. She was wearing a black floaty dress (the 'fashionable' maxi dress type) and was probably generally plump to start with. I said that no, sorry, but my boyfriend would be coming back. She then went on to basically shout at me that she was pregnant. My reaction? I just looked at her and shrugged. She then went on to ask the person who was sat in the booth next to us if she could sit because she was pregnant (see the different approach here? she told them she was pregnant right at the start) and the person promptly gave up their seat. She then went on moaning at her friends who'd just arrived and called me various names. Not being in the mood for having an argument, I just took my stuff and left. Now, what do you make of this? I know a lot of bloggy ladies out there have children of their own, so they must have quite a different perspective, but honestly, is it any harder to ask politely? And was I meant to guess she was pregnant?! So there, I might have felt different if I'd been through a pregnancy myself, but I don't feel bad at all not having given up my seat for that stupid rude woman. She obviously was well enough to go to a busy gig in central London.

ps Frankie Boyle was brilliant. That is, if you have a sense of humour, get that he is indeed joking, and don't get offended easily - it was hilarious - and I'm so glad we weren't sat in the front row, those people got totally destroyed!

14 comments:

ana said...

Oooh, sounds like a big fat attitude problem there. I wouldn't have given her my seat if she'd been that rude to me. Good for you for sticking your ground. Pregnancy is no excuse for bad manners!

Jill said...

That woman was just plain old rude. Unfortunately there are alot of them about. Just shrug this off, don't take it personally.

When I was very, very pregnant and on an extremely crowded train from York into Leeds, not one person offered up their seat for me - I'm far to stubborn and pig headed to flaunt the 'pregnancy' card. Anyway, in the end, I passed out at Leeds station. And, would you believe it, but not one person came to my aid. I eventually came round, walked the rest of the way to work and carried on the rest of my day as normal. I never caught a rush hour train again.

Anonymous said...

Sounds like a rude person who happened to be pregnant!

Heather

little pink room said...

She sounds awful! I've been pregnant twice and never ever felt the need to desperately sit down on public transport. When I did feel uncomfortable I avoided places where I'd have to stand for hours, rather than expecting other people to accommodate my condition. I think you were in the right. I bet her friends were bored to tears hearing about her pregnancy related woes. A x

The Girl said...

Yeah she was just a bitch.

I hate the not knowing if someone's pregnant thing. I would give up my seat only if I was absolutely 100% certain that that was a baby bump I was seeing. I know of a hilarious story - my music teacher had given birth but was left with a bit of a tummy on her, ages afterwards we had parent's evening and my friend's Mum walked in to see her and said "oooh when is it due then?!". Cue majorly awkward silence.

Regards men giving up their seat for me - I'm ok with them not doing it. I find that older men and men from other cultures are more likely to offer you their seat. Myself, I'll get up if someone is old (which can have embarassment issues if they just haven't aged well!), have kids, are pregnant or have loads of bags.

Sue said...

Pregnancy is a funny old thing, but as far as I know, and I've been pregnant three times, it doesn't make you downright rude. Some people eh?

Rachel said...

Pregnant or not, there is no excuse for rudeness. Like Jill, I once stood for 50 mins on a crowded commuter train into London at about 8 months pregnant and no-one offered a seat, which I would have appreciated hugely. However, other times I have been offered seats on the tube (when quite obviously not pregnant)so it goes both ways.

Melanie said...

Never got offered a seat when I was pregnant - and never asked for one.

This woman was downright rude.

Debbie said...

I live in the USA, I had to travel from time to time while obviously pregnant in and around Boston, Mass and never asked or received a seat. The woman sounded like she thought she was entitled and I doubt that attitude comes from just being pregnant. You made the right call and don't give her one more cell of your brain.

Ali said...

Honestly? Once she told me she was pregnant, I would have let her sit down. But then I would have treated her to a little lecture of my own about asking politely if you need something.

Bad manners are never excusable. Though pregnancy did make me rather loopy and occasionally earn me the nickname 'angry pregnant woman'!

I also nearly fainted on a train (after legging it to catch it when highly pregnant). You should have seen the bloke I was standing next to - he couldn't have lept up and given me his seat any faster - sweet man. But the older bloke opposite kept looking at me for the duration of the journey as if I were a ticking timebomb!

Taz said...

I can pretty much guarantee that that woman is going to have a spoilt child who demands attention and thinks it's their birth right to have everything their own way - well Mummy dearest is a fine example!
You did nothing wrong, unfortunately you just experienced how rude some people are.

Can't remember if I got offered seats during my pregnancies but that may be due to the fact that several brain cells died after/during labour :D

Jennifer said...

I do think it is sad that a lot of men don't seem to have many chivalrous manners nowadays. I teach my boys (7 & 9) to hold doors and give up their seats to those who need it. They love feeling helpful and polite by holding doors open etc. and most people are polite enough to thank them for it. When I was heavily pregnant I was never offered any kind of seat and my most frustrating moment was when I had a five week old baby travelling by plane to go to my grandfather's funeral. At the airport we had to put everything up on the belt, including my shoes and the carseat, so I was juggling this newborn and trying to deal with all of this stuff with one hand and was surrounded by middle aged men and not one offered to help with anything, they just stood there and gave me nasty looks as I was taking too long.

I don't think there is anything wrong with men being polite and offering help, I think that is the way it should be.

As far as that woman is concerned, pregnancy is no excuse for bad manners.

Heather said...

My boss at work asked me if I had a bun in my oven yesterday. Which I don't. I was so embarrassed - who ASKS that, seriously?

I forwarded her the link to that article today.

Jo said...

She was plain rude!
When I was 7 months pregnant on a jam-packed train from London, everyone pretended not to see me have to wrestle my suitcase from the pile obstructing the aisle, push it over the pile onto the other side (there was a worse blockage at other door) and then climb over it myself in a rather undignified fashion. I then sat on my suitcase with my head between my legs to prevent fainting, very embarrassing. Some help with that would've been nice but a general entitlement to special treatment isn't part of the pregnancy package.