To expect my local coffee shop to let me in with a pram?

(237 Posts)
Shockingundercrackers Fri 30-Aug-13 12:01:43

Will try to keep this brief. My local coffee shop owner has just refused me entry with a pram (not a massive silver cross call the midwife one, just a bugaboo style thing). He said he was busy (he wasn't, and although its a small place there were only two other customers inside) and that buggies had to be parked outside. I can see the logic of this, but a pram with a 5 week old sleeping baby in it isn't really a buggy is it? Or is it?

I should have remonstrated with the grumpy fecker of course, but it had taken me so long to get said infant out of the house and I was so hungry and tired I thought I might embarrass myself and start blubbing. I beat a hasty retreat.

I've been fuming ever since of course. AIBU?

QisforQuestion Sat 31-Aug-13 17:31:35

Boffin, I so very much agree with your posts on this thread! Thank you for describing it so well [flower].

BoffinMum Sat 31-Aug-13 15:23:26

I appreciate they may have got that way because of overwork, btw, but I think it is linked to an expectation women can and should always 'man up'. The sort of attitude that expects pg women to stand on trains and so on.

BoffinMum Sat 31-Aug-13 15:21:28

In the cases I saw the mws couldn't be arsed. They lacked compassion (with one exception). They were offhand with the women and told them off for being needy. I was shock

SilverApples Sat 31-Aug-13 15:17:50

Wow Boffin, is that the flipside of feminism? I thought inadequate care on labour and maternity wards was the result of lack of funds, understaffing and excessive paperwork.
But it's really that nurses and their bosses think women should STFU and be tough?

candycoatedwaterdrops Sat 31-Aug-13 15:15:05

No one said the man was rude to the OP, just that he refused entry which he has every right to do. Yes, it's annoying but not discriminatory!

Mouseface Sat 31-Aug-13 14:59:22

DS uses a 'Snazzi' wheelchair which weighs 25kg but it's rather slim, tall but slim.

I can't fold or lift it (I'm disabled too) so taking him to a cafe like that would be a no go for us, plus I wouldn't want to leave it outside, even locked up because it was 'made' for him and on prescription IYSWIM? It's not ours to replace.

Now you know how this cafe works, use a sling, or find a way to have a nice, hot coffee safely, and add in a cake, take a friend so they can hold baby for you or find somewhere else.

It sounds as though you just wanted to sit down whilst baby was finally asleep, have some food and a hot drink, five minutes peace...... we've all been there.

BoffinMum Sat 31-Aug-13 14:56:37

This is the flip side of the feminist movement, the expectation that every pregnant woman and new mother will be able to take it all in her stride without batting an eyelid, otherwise she is somehow inadequate, or 'not trying hard enough' or 'not organised enough'. The argument that pregnancy and the postpartum period do not constitute an 'exalted state'. It's linked to leaving women alone without partners behind curtains on a shared ward moaning in distress in early labour (like I saw at Addenbrookes), leaving women who have had sections un-nursed and covered in blood, leaving women wide eyed without sleep to cope a long way away from their extended families, and tutting if women are finding it a struggle to cope on top of all the hormonal changes and so on. Show a bit of compassion, you rotten lot. It may be normal but it is certainly not easy, and if you have found it easy, then you were bloody lucky.

QisforQuestion Sat 31-Aug-13 13:25:40

Haha thisisyoursong, quite right, all sorts of minefields to navigate for unsuspecting mums and babies.

Fwiw, and ime as a grumpy old bat pedestrian, cafe goer, car driver, dog walker etc. most people act in an entitled way not just mums with prams. People rarely watch out thereby pushing other people off the pavement, swearing insults at other car drivers, letting kids run riot at the restaurant or cinema letting their dog jump on tiny toddlers, not giving way to elderly people etc. etc.

Maybe we should all try and look a bit beyond our own transient needs and capabilities because most of us will at one point or other in our lives feel vulnerable or less mobile and then someone else's generosity rather than righteousness will make all the difference.

Sorry to sound like a preaching twat, but still!

Pobblewhohasnotoes Sat 31-Aug-13 13:25:06

Actually I think it can be hard enough getting out with a 5 week old. I think if it was me I would have disappeared home again in a hormonal mess.

OP I have a bugaboo too (it's a Bee) and its not any bigger than lots of strollers out there. Go find a different cafe, one where you are welcome. Maybe try a sling? I used to have to lock my Bee outside the GP surgery and even then I worried that it would be nicked.

FrigginRexManningDay Sat 31-Aug-13 13:01:26

Buy a bike lock. If you get a maxi cosi and adapters all you need to leave outside is a chassis.

They still do those buggys where the car seat clicks onto it for fairly cheap. You wouldn't need the pram with you if you were feeding,breast or bottle.

BeauNatt Sat 31-Aug-13 12:56:13

And still people are saying leave the pram outside! Where do you live where that would be an option? Seriously? These things are very valuable and get nicked all the time. Just what you need when out on your own with a 5 week old hmm

ThisIsYourSong Sat 31-Aug-13 12:38:43

Who would seriously wake a sleeping 5 week old? I certainly wouldn't.

Plus it opens the cafe owner up to the risk of the even more alarming (whispers) breastfeeding shock

Bowlersarm Sat 31-Aug-13 12:31:03

grin @ ridiculous strawman

I still don't know why OP couldn't have parked buggy outside, and carried baby inside.

slightlysoupstained Sat 31-Aug-13 12:17:18

candycoated That's a ridiculous strawman.

The owner could perfectly well have been kind and explained problems. Being able to say no without making the other person feel like shit is a) prerequisite for being decent human being and B) prerequisite for being good at that "customer service" thing.

nennypops Sat 31-Aug-13 11:59:32

If it's a small shop, it's perfectly reasonable for the owner to ask you to leave the pram outside.

candycoatedwaterdrops Sat 31-Aug-13 11:54:42

So, a shop owner should let a pram in the shop even if breaches fire regs just be kind?!

candycoatedwaterdrops Sat 31-Aug-13 11:53:48

I don't think that expecting to be able to take a pram into a coffee shop is entitled but it most certainly is not discrimination. hmm

DontmindifIdo Sat 31-Aug-13 11:34:01

Lazyjaney - why do you presume the mothers will still go and leave their buggies outside, rather than just going somewhere else altogether?

slightlysoupstained Sat 31-Aug-13 11:29:51

Lazyjaney Why is simple human kindness = being treated as an exalted being?

FFS, kindness should be default behaviour in a civilised society, not some extra special option only for special people.

Lazyjaney Sat 31-Aug-13 11:25:45

Ultimately whatever the legal rights and wrongs of this, the cafe owner was behaving in a pretty shit way to a new mother with a young baby

A new baby is not an entry ticket to an exalted state of being.

Our local one is tiny too, all the Mummies go there after dropping kids off at local school, its an obstacle course with various prams, buggies and whatnot, and itbalso means people just can't sit down - so everyone else avoids it like the plague, I suspect their takings are much lower than if they made everyone leave their gubbins outside.

Go to another coffee shop.

teacherwith2kids Sat 31-Aug-13 11:23:22


I'm not saying that the coffee shop owner couldn't have behaved better, just that collapsing a pushchair is possible. Perhaps if all the people who came into his coffee shop had been courteous and conscious of the needs of all his customers in the past, he would be much more understanding of OP's particular circumstances? He may have had a long series of unfortunate incidents that have led to him making a blanket ban....

QisforQuestion Sat 31-Aug-13 11:06:13

Teacher, I can see your point. My own pram is so easily collapsible, it's a dream grin but when I am out and about the shopping basket at the bottom is loaded with shit nappy bag, water bottle, jackets, wet wipes and the odd bit of shopping; there is no way I would/could collapse it just to have a quick coffee. Also, a five week old baby is likely to be asleep, not a great time to drag them out of the pram, sort of defeats the purpose of a much needed coffee break. How about mums who have had a c-section and aren't quite as mobile yet but want to get out of the house so not to loose their mind been there done that.

I just don't understand the mum and baby/toddler bashing that seems to enter some conversations. I have always given way to mums with prams or slings, given up my seat to pregnant ladies, always asked if they needed help on public transport way before I had kids myself. It just seems to be a kind and normal thing to do. Yes, being pregnant or having small kids is perhaps nothing out of the ordinary, you don't get a badge I know, but it's still a bloody tough thing to do sometimes. So someone being kind and welcoming to a mum with a newborn can make a world of difference.

rant over

teacherwith2kids Sat 31-Aug-13 10:15:20

Q, I am just surprised how QUICKLY these things evolve, that is all (my oldest is 12, and my youngest 10, so 'my time' is really very recent in the general scheme of things).

The pushchair that I had, though, is still on the market, so it is perhaps attitudes that change rather than products? Or maybe that attitudes vary within and across different groups (ie like-minded mums tend to congregate together) so 'norms' will vary very widely even at the same point in time? There are others here who do - at the moment - what I did 'in my time' and see it as 'normal'.

QisforQuestion Sat 31-Aug-13 09:56:55

Teacherwith2kids, i am so tired of the "oh in my time we had it so much harder and we coped, aren't I great?" lamentations. Times change, context changes, attitudes to inclusivenesd and discrimination evolve, and yes, products (i.e. prams) change. But well done for folding your pram all those years. grin

QisforQuestion Sat 31-Aug-13 09:31:11

Boffin, well said!

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