To ask your opinion on this? If you'd arrived half an hour early to grab a good seat for a school show, would you then give up your seat to someone claiming to have back problems?

(126 Posts)
MumfordandDaughter Wed 27-Mar-13 08:44:04

Lengthy title, but i'd like opinions on this please.

Your 5yo's school show is due to start at 2pm.

You arrive at 1.30pm to grab a good seat because you know the school hall fills up quickly.

By 1.45pm, all the seats are taken. New arrivals have to stand at the side.

At 1.55pm, a man arrives with his wife, asking if you'd mind giving up your seat for him because he has back problems. Your seat is located near the side, next to an empty spot where his wife could stand against the wall beside him.

You refuse, because you've picked a really good spot in the second row where your child will be able to see you from the stage.

The man seems okay with this and walks off.

A minute later, he and his wife return with the janitor. The janitor has a spare chair and sits it directly in front of you.

The man sits down and now your view of the stage is blocked.

You ask if he'd mind swapping, explaining why. His wife politely declines because he's just sat down, and it might hurt him.

Opinions on who was right/wrong?

NotTreadingGrapes Wed 27-Mar-13 09:17:39

(oh yes, and all parties need to get a grip, obviously)

MumfordandDaughter Wed 27-Mar-13 09:20:28

Not sure what reverse AIBU means, sorry. blush
I'm friends with the woman, and the couple are my parents. They were going to see dd's show on my behalf as i was working. It all came to light last night (while they were all ranting to me about what happened) that i knew everyone involved. So now I'm being made to take sides.

My mum thinks she was a very 'rude' young lady, and my friend thinks my dad's a 'faker' and was just wanting her chair.

My dad says he preferred that seat because there was a small space next to it where my mum could stand beside him, to help him up if he needed help. Otherwise, he would have had to stand at the back. The place was bursting full.

My friend says she's never been able to get a good seat at previous shows and her child always gets upset, so this time was determined to get there early.

Floristneedsaname Wed 27-Mar-13 09:20:53

Well, I think the bad back person could have been there earlier or sat anywhere there was a chair really.

I hate school play seating. At our last nativity two women in the front row held up their I-pads to record their DC's performance. All the people behind could see were airborne I-pads with images of these mums DC on them.

A curse was summoned.

ChippingInIsEggceptional Wed 27-Mar-13 09:22:18

I probably would have let him have the seat, more out of 'surprise' than anything. I would have been annoyed though - why didn't he get there early enough to get a seat? and given that he's a grown up hmm he didn't need his wife to stand next to him, so why didn't he ask someone at the back?

Bathsheba Wed 27-Mar-13 09:22:50

I think your Dad should have approached a member of the school staff first and requested that a chair be made available - at the end of t row or off to the side etc - however if he needed a chair he should have been there earlier than he was (presuming you had prewarned hoim that it would be very busy).

His mistake was really asking someone already seated to move.

I agree with your friend. If she is sad keen enough to get there half an hour early to get a decent seat I don't see why she should have to give it up because your dad preferred that seat.

However, it's done now - they are all being very childish if they are going to carry on getting their knickers in a twist about it now.

ChippingInIsEggceptional Wed 27-Mar-13 09:24:31

I'm sure you Dad wouldn't have needed to get up before the end of the performance and so your Mum could have helped him up no matter where your Dad was sitting hmm

Why didn't your parents get there earlier?

I think your parents are the rude ones tbh.

MumfordandDaughter Wed 27-Mar-13 09:25:22

Yes, i agree my they should have gotten there earlier. They apparently left in plenty of time, but the traffic was bad. My friend lives five minutes' walking distance from school.

There was no other seats available in the hall. There was barely any standing room left either as there are four fire doors, and all had to be left clear. This is why my dad went and asked the janitor for a seat. He said to me that he'd told the janitor he didn't mind where he sat, so long as there was room for my mum to stand beside him such as 'over there' (and he pointed to the place my friend was sitting, supposedly just to give an example).

Timetoask Wed 27-Mar-13 09:26:34

I haven't read all the replies but I think the man with back problems is in the wrong and was extremely cheeky asking for the seat in the first

MrsSpagBol Wed 27-Mar-13 09:27:34

If your dad has such strong requirements (has to sit because of a bad back) and preferences (wants your mum to be close to him at the side) then he really should have made the necessary advance arrangements ie ask the school for a reserved seat / get there a lot earlier etc etc

We all have preferences - your friend's preference was to ensure she got a good seat and a clear view, and she took the necessary steps to ensure this (got there early).

It's sort of cheeky to have all these requirements and preferences and then just expect everyone else to put aside theirs to accommodate yours at the last minute.

CloudsAndTrees Wed 27-Mar-13 09:27:41

Your parents were out of order. They should have got there earlier if they knew they needed to get a seat, and as they didn't, they should have had to use seats at the side without a good view. It was awful of them to allow the rude janitor to put a seat in front of someone else.

The fact that they didn't just take any seat when it was needed, and instead allowed someone else's view to be ruined, shows they were being selfish. Apart from anything else, they are grandparents, and in ten pecking order of who gets to see a child's show, parents trump grandparents.

I would have complained just as loudly about the janitor being so rude as your parents did. I'd be ashamed of them if I were you.

ENormaSnob Wed 27-Mar-13 09:28:47

I agree with your friend.

If his back is that bad he should've got there early enough to get a premium seat.

My mobility is massively reduced at the moment and I wouldn't expect to rock up 5 minutes before the performance and get a seat.

My gran is physically disabled and arrives 30 minutes prior to the dc shows at school so she can sit. There's no way she'd do what your dad did.

Footface Wed 27-Mar-13 09:28:55

I think your dad could have swapped chairs to make everyone happy

Emilythornesbff Wed 27-Mar-13 09:29:13

Not sure why being seated in the front row After arriving by the skin of your teeth would give anyone cause to complain.

I would just "mmmmm" not commitally when anyone brings it up.

Timetoask Wed 27-Mar-13 09:29:42

I haven't read all the replies but I think the man with back problems is in the wrong and was extremely cheeky asking for the seat in the first place.
1. If you have back problems and need a seat then make sure you arrive early
2. If you don't make it early, then by all means ask the janitor for a chair but then don't expect it to be placed in front of everybody else
3. He sould gave sat at the back

Icelollycraving Wed 27-Mar-13 09:31:44

If an older man asked for my seat because he had a bad back I would get up,no question. I would be pissed off,no question!
Tbh your mum & dad should have got there earlier. Your friend was rude asking to swap & then to call him a faker. You don't say rude things about your friends parents to their face anyway.

Emilythornesbff Wed 27-Mar-13 09:32:48

Your mum was rude in her " polite" comment about your dad not being able to move. Sorry.

Emilythornesbff Wed 27-Mar-13 09:33:27

True icelolly

StuntGirl Wed 27-Mar-13 09:34:26

Your dad was being cheeky and behaved rudely. As did your mum if she backed him up over this.

There was no harm in asking but should have accepted your friends answer. To then plonk himself in front of her and refuse to move was spiteful and a bit childish.

CloudsAndTrees Wed 27-Mar-13 09:34:45

I don't think the friend was rude when she asked to swap seats. She shouldn't have been put in the position where she needed to ask in the first place.

LadyBeagleEyes Wed 27-Mar-13 09:35:06

You'r dad should have had the same forward thinking as your friend and got there half an hour early too.

Chandon Wed 27-Mar-13 09:35:10

I think the friend was BU, and precious and dramatic (her child getting upset if mummy did not have a good seat? really?)

Also, they are all taking this way too seriously.

arriving half an hour early, really? This would have never occurred to me! I would arrive 5 minutes before, and wonder why it is packed already grin.

cocolocopoco Wed 27-Mar-13 09:36:12

Is this the first time your parents have been to a school show, op? If so, that could explain why your dad didn't think to get there very early to ensure a seat.

Bathsheba Wed 27-Mar-13 09:37:25

You Dad also sat in the car to get to the school, walked in, walked away to get the janitor, walked in again and sat down.

Now obviously people with bad backs can and do move around in your friend's defence it may well have looked like he was a bit of a chancer who arrived late and wanted a seat...

BuggedByJake Wed 27-Mar-13 09:37:59

I think the man should have either got there earlier or asked a member of staff for a chair before asking someone to move.no idea why the janitor couldn't just put him at the back so he didn't block the veiw of anyone who was already seated.
I can see why the woman was upset but if it's anything like our school plays you can't see a thing unless you get on the front row anyway.
After 8yrs of school plays I have learnt to just enjoying listening & if I actually get to see my child that's a bonus.My ds just likes to know I'm there.
Far too much fuss being made about nothing really, she should be glad she actually got to go, plenty of mums can't get time off work for such things.

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