To ask for seats on public transport at 26 weeks pregnantt

(111 Posts)
Babysealion Thu 24-Oct-13 08:24:11

Or am I not far enough along yet? confused
I commute to and from work on the train everyday. Fair enough it's only a 25 minute journey but the majority of the time the train is packed and there's hardly any seats. Last week I asked one guy to move his bag so I could sit down and said I'm pregnant and he said 'where am I supposed to put it?' And I didn't want to make a scene so I just left it but no one else offered me their seat either despite the entire carriage over hearing our exchange.
So this week I've been too worried to ask for seats but this morning a very nice man offered me his. I have a fairly big bump so it's obvious I am pregnant and have been referred to physio as I have quite a bit of pelvic and hip pain and discomfort going on.
My question is AIBU to ask/want a seat on public transport or is this only for heavily pregnant ladies?

ZillionChocolate Thu 24-Oct-13 08:28:00

If you feel you need it, I think you should ask for it. It's a shame you didn't have more confidence to stand up to bag man, what an arse!

KirjavaTheCorpse Thu 24-Oct-13 08:29:26

"On your fucking lap, perhaps?" What an arsehole. Unless his bag was made out of rice paper I'm sure it would have survived twenty minutes on his lap, or the floor.

Yanbu. There isn't a special time in pregnancy where it's all of a sudden reasonable to ask to be treated with some consideration. With SPD, 25 minutes can be agony.

Depending where you're commuting, some people would rather impale themselves onto their seats than give them up for someone elderly or disabled, or pregnant.

BadgerB Thu 24-Oct-13 08:31:33

I'm amazed that no one offered you a seat! Must be London. And as for people who take a seat for their bag - no excuse. Where he's supposed to put could give rise to a few uncouth suggestions, BUT it's not your problem. Has he paid for a seat for his bag??

CoffeeTea103 Thu 24-Oct-13 08:31:47

Yanbu, some people have no manners these days.

Jolleigh Thu 24-Oct-13 08:33:05

Can I ask where you live?? I'm in Manchester and have honestly only ever seen this problem in the south, though I'm assured it does happen elsewhere!

Back to the point though-

I'd give you the seat. And I think it's a matter of common decency that others should too.

As to what your response to the bag bloke should have been...

'Does you bag have an arse? No? Then I can assure you that it goes UNDER the seat rather than ON it.'

flowerpotgirl12 Thu 24-Oct-13 08:33:28

UANBU, However people just don't generally care about others in commute time, I was on a packed train for over an hour yesterday and am quite clearly heavily pregnant and not one person offered a seat which didn't really annoy me until people were leaving and seats were becoming free, people were actually pushing me out the way to get to them, that's what pissed me off, one woman who must have been about 50 pushed quite hard and I said to her excuse me but you just shoved me and taken the seat and you can see I'm pregnant, her response was well I'm older than you, so why should I stand.

Kemmo Thu 24-Oct-13 08:34:07

Some train companies allow pregnant women to sit in first class shen the train is full.

Babysealion Thu 24-Oct-13 08:39:00

I live in rural Yorkshire and commute to York everyday <outs self>

It's northern rail (unfortunately) so no first class carriage Kemmo.

I wish I'd have stood up to bag man but I was just a bit taken aback really!

GillyBillyWilly Thu 24-Oct-13 08:39:24

I had to ask someone for a seat the other day and I'm only 8 weeks!!! grin
However I've had the most horrendous morning sickness and I was feeling really dizzy and thought I was going to either pass out/be sick everywhere unless I sat down.

I don't think I would ever ask for a seat unless I really felt like I had to sit down. And I'm the kind of person who would probably say no if someone offered me a seat... Unless I really felt I needed it!

So no... YANBU. If you feel you need to sit down, ask for a seat smile

Xmasbaby11 Thu 24-Oct-13 08:39:38

YANBU. That's so rude of that man. It's an absolute disgrace that he thinks his bag deserves a seat while you stand up. I have not seen this here (North) but it doesn't surprise me in London.

There is no magic time when you are 'pregnant enough' to demand a seat. IMO once you are visibly pregnant, you should be offered a seat. I really feel for you because I wouldn't want the confrontation of asking and never had to do so myself - normally just stroking the bump and looking a bit pained is enough of a hint.

I really hope you are treated with more consideration soon. xxx

TinyTear Thu 24-Oct-13 08:40:09

A bag??? a Bag??? did the bag buy a ticket??

I would have said tough, put it on your lap!

no you are not unreasonable!

Babysealion Thu 24-Oct-13 08:42:48

Gilly oh god I really feel for you, I know exactly how you feel sad I had horrendous sickness and dizziness up until 16 weeks and can very clearly remember that awful feeling of standing and knowing unless you sit down you're going to vomit everywhere. Luckily I lived on a different train route then and so could always sit down on the way to work.

Inertia Thu 24-Oct-13 08:42:57


I would have moved the bag myself.

SatinSandals Thu 24-Oct-13 08:44:06

I would have made him move the bag even though I am not pregnant and would have said 'That is your problem to work out'.

nicelyneurotic Thu 24-Oct-13 08:44:15

Yanbu, not once during my whole pregnancy did I get offered a seat on London transport. I didn't really expect to though as I knew it was like that. You also don't know who on the train has a back or foot problem, is feeling ill, etc. so I didn't like to ask.

Instead I changed my work hours so I could come in later when public transport was less busy. I also worked from home one day a week.

Trapper Thu 24-Oct-13 08:44:49

You should LTB.

AuntyEntropy Thu 24-Oct-13 08:50:11

YANBU to ask. You've come across one complete tosser, but unless the people of Yorkshire are significantly more selfish than Londoners, most people are fine about giving a seat when asked. However many people never will take a risk of assuming you're pregnant, and others are simply looking straight through you while they plan their shopping list.

Be a teeny bit more assertive, and ask a Londoner to post you a TfL Baby on Board badge.

NotYoMomma Thu 24-Oct-13 08:54:53

we get special consideration parking spaces at my office once you hit 26 weeks.

I got it earlier in my first pregnancy due to issoos.

I would. im 40 weeks this week and have given up trying to go anywhere lol

VerySmallSqueak Thu 24-Oct-13 08:58:42

I would have farted while standing right next to the bag man.
He'd soon move wink

Or start heaving in his direction like you're going to puke.

There's more than one way to skin a bunny.....

Echocave Thu 24-Oct-13 09:01:02

Don't feel bad for asking, just go ahead. I'm in the South and can honestly say that people have been offering me a seat every time I get on the packed train. I have been pleasantly surprised I must say.

But if nobody offered, I'd definitely ask, especially with the level of discomfort you must be feeling.
Hope your physio starts to help soon.

eurochick Thu 24-Oct-13 09:02:10

Typical anti London sentiment on here even when told this happened in the north! I've seen plenty of pregnant women offered seats on London transport.

BurberryFucker Thu 24-Oct-13 09:04:52

you have to ask IME.....people are miles away usually, (whether northerners or Londoners or whatever).
as for the man with the bag you should have told him to stick it where the sun don't shine.
Dont wait to be offered, and be a martyr, just tell people you need to sit down.

BurberryFucker Thu 24-Oct-13 09:06:20

I know the automatic London bashing was amazing!
even after OP said she was in Yorkshire.
I am from London and had no problem at all getting a seat on the tube when pregnant!

Hattie23 Thu 24-Oct-13 09:07:44

When i came across an idiot who thought his bag needed a seat i commented that it looked quite squishy and went to sit on it. He moved it pretty quickly. Try that if it happens again.

TinyTear Thu 24-Oct-13 09:08:29

For reference in my pregnancy in London - communting until 37 weeks, I got offered a seat about 90% of the times. ok, mostly women and teenage boys as some of the men just found the papers really interesting.

BTW I loved my baby on board badge, no doubt about fat or pregnant then

womma Thu 24-Oct-13 09:08:38

I have to say I've never had a problem getting a seat in L

pigletmania Thu 24-Oct-13 09:09:52

Yanbu at all. You sound like you need it with your added health problems. As for bag man I would have told him to stick it where the sun don't shine.

pigletmania Thu 24-Oct-13 09:10:39

Yes get a baby on board badge too

womma Thu 24-Oct-13 09:11:38

I have to say I've never had a problem getting a seat on tubes and trains in London.

OP, I'm going to get a baby on board badge today, shall I get an extra one for you?

And of course you can ask (or indeed tell people) to give you a seat. Even if you have to ham it up a bit by clutching your stomach and doing some huffing and puffing!

ifyourehoppyandyouknowit Thu 24-Oct-13 09:14:09

You should move a bag for anyone on a busy train. Unless your bag bought a bloody ticket. Seats are for people, not luggage.

YANBU at all.

lottieandmia Thu 24-Oct-13 09:15:00

YANBU to ask in your situation I think. However, you should never let someone get away with taking up a seat with a bag angry that is absolutely not on whether you're pregnant or not. I have seen it myself and it was always rightly challenged. In fact, when I used to travel a lot by train there would be an announcement that passengers were not to take up seats with bags.

I agree - two pregnancies while commuting in London and no probs at all. I did have to ask for the priority seat occasionally but that's more because people tend to zone out on the tube.

OP - keep asking. And have your "back-up" response ready if someone is difficult. Mine was "well, unfortunately you're sitting in a priority seat and as you can see from the sign I have priority - so can you please move". I never had to use it - but having it up my sleeve gave me confidence

cantreachmytoes Thu 24-Oct-13 09:22:43

A bag?! Did his bag have a ticket?

It wasn't just one rude man, it was a carriage of people, because nobody else offered and nobody else challenged him about his bag.

I'm loving all of the suggestions!

After experiencing things like this in my pregnancies, I vowed to make sure my children learned about giving up their seats - or offering - to those who need them more. It won't get better for us when we're old and decrepit, if we don't teach our kids!

Binkybix Thu 24-Oct-13 09:25:46

Defo not unreasonable to ask! Another Londoner here who always got offered a seat. I found people to be exceedingly helpful on public transport.

Bag man and the others who didn't help were tossers.

Thingymajigs Thu 24-Oct-13 09:35:47

This isn't just an issue in London. In a village in the East Midlands I've been refused a seat by a grown man wanting a seat for his bag. I've also seen grown men push and shove very small children who were holding on to bars to get to a suddenly free seat.
This is a particularly bad bus journey as all the secondary school kids and workers are pilled up into double deckers but I still assumed basic human decency counted in this situation. I was wrong.
I am 25 weeks pregnant and have never been offered a seat even when the teens stared at my bump as I held on to the bar for dear life. I also have SPD so I've had to change my son's school as I can no longer do this journey 4 times a day and definitely not with a newborn. It's too dangerous and I know no one would give up a seat to a woman with a baby in a sling.
It's sad but it has spurred me on to inform my kids that they should give up their seat for certain people.

juniper9 Thu 24-Oct-13 09:37:41

I got on the bus when I was 2 days overdue and no-one offered me their seat. They all just avoided my eye. I gave birth 12 hours later!

Jolleigh Thu 24-Oct-13 09:57:17

For the record, I'm not London-bashing. In fact, I didn't mention London specifically. I said I've seen the issue first hand only in the south.

OP - some great back up responses for any future bag men from posters here. I'm only 18 weeks myself and suffering already from SPD. I'm lucky though because I drive to work and have been allocated an on-site parking space for the remainder of my pregnancy. Very glad that's the case though as I'm not yet obviously pregnant.

BurberryFucker Thu 24-Oct-13 10:01:28

not you Jolliegh, it was 'xmasbaby' - honestly if people from London or the south East were as rude about the north as northerners are about them........

Faithless12 Thu 24-Oct-13 10:09:17

BadgerB - With a newborn baby in Sussex no one offered me a seat, with a sleeping toddler strapped to me same story.
In London, I've sat the toddler on a seat and several people have jumped up to offer me a seat even though we don't both need a seat as he can sit on my lap. Londoners are far better at offering their seats up, which possibly explains why Southern trains need a priority card...

Jolleigh Thu 24-Oct-13 10:10:24

hmm tackling a sweeping statement about London with a sweeping statement about northerners makes no sense to me.

Had missed that someone had mentioned London specifically though, so ta.

kali110 Thu 24-Oct-13 10:16:19

You poor thing. How selfish of him.
Some people do have problems though that may not be obvious. I get worried on public transport as i couldnt stand the hour to get home. I have back n knee damage but you wouldnt think it. I think i wouldnt be able to say anything to someone and would get bullied out of my seat :-(

Do think that guy was being a complete arsewipe though!!!

DidoTheDodo Thu 24-Oct-13 10:20:11

Of course YANBU for asking for a seat. (and bag man certainly needs a reality check, pregnant or non pregnant person trumps a bag any day)

But you can never be sure that the person you are asking might need the seat more than you do, so a refusal should not be taken as a sleight.

Annonynon Thu 24-Oct-13 10:26:21

I was just about to post something similar to Kali

YANBU to ask, and that man was clearly a twat but if you do ask please bear in mind that not everyone will be able to stand for you and some might need the seat just as much as you do

mouldyironingboard Thu 24-Oct-13 10:27:53

Next time just sit on the bag. Hopefully you would be squashing his sandwiches over some important work documents!

chocoluvva Thu 24-Oct-13 10:36:47

What a selfish man! Had he paid for 2 seats? I'd think a rail official would have asked him to remove his bag if you'd pointed it out to him.

I would just move his bag.

Beccagain Thu 24-Oct-13 11:29:15

Yep: really can't believe that you didn't tell him exactly where he could put his bag. I would NOT have missed that opportunity, but then I am a mouthy caaah.

Also, do you think Tfl would send me a Baby on Board sticker. I am nudging 60 and hugely overweight, so would love to wear one grin

Just kidding...(not about the age and weight though, alas!) I always offer my seat to pregnant women/people with disabilities, but then I am a Londoner and we Londoners do that

AuntyEntropy Thu 24-Oct-13 11:29:40

My tactic was always to address a group of four youngish people in a general sort of way "could anyone please give me a seat..?" The chances of all four of them having invisible disabilities was pretty small.

mycatlikestwiglets Thu 24-Oct-13 11:32:08

It may be that no one else offered a seat because there was clearly one available with the rude man's bag on it. I'd have either told him where to put it or sat on it - be more assertive OP!

Spirael Thu 24-Oct-13 11:37:12

It's not all bad in Yorkshire... I was on the bus the other day and an elderly man with a stick got on. At least four people shot out of their seats as if they'd been stung and the nearest offered him an arm.

In your situation OP, I'd have told the man to move the bag to his lap or I'd be sitting on his bag, then carry out the threat if he still refused to budge.

Beccagain Thu 24-Oct-13 11:38:14

Just going off on a nostalgic tangent, I fondly remember the time in 1981 when I was actually pregnant and got on a full bus and stood in the gangway, strap hanging, (single decker, not in London) and the bus driver waited a bit and then yelled 'This bus is going NOWHERE until someone lets that lady sit down'

How I love being the centre of attention blushed! blush

OP I am 18 weeks and have had to start being a bit more assertive, I use London transport and have a baby on board badge and the amount of voluntary blindness that suddenly occurs when I get on to a train carriage is astounding, a medical marvel really hmm.

However, as I have started to feel more and more faint on the tube as my pregnancy has progressed, I know if I don't get a seat, I will faint, the only way to prevent it is to sit down, so I have had to over come my natural instinct to not make a fuss and be quite brazen about requesting a seat if I am not offered one. You need to take this attitude too, for your own safety and your baby's.

Only once has someone tried to tell me 'no', to which my response was, 'fair enough, but when I faint at your feet within the next three minutes and the whole train has to stop and will be delayed, I will make sure to point you out loud and clear when I do come round and the whole carriage is pissed off because they are late for work'. They soon moved grin

Coupon Thu 24-Oct-13 12:10:00


CinammonGirl Thu 24-Oct-13 12:18:00


I suffered pain in my hips and pelvis when pregnant and have asked for a seat on public transport. People can be gits though. My car broke down on my way to work while I was obviously heavily pregnant and I was stood at the side of the road in the dark, on my own, in the pouring rain in slow moving rush hour traffic and not one person stopped to ask if I needed help. Not one!

mummytime Thu 24-Oct-13 12:34:57

I would have told him to remove his bag, and sat there. He paid for a seat for himself not his bag! You don't have to be pregnant to ask for a seat.

BTW in London, during the Olympics, my DH felt really ill, and people happily gave up their seat for him. London isn't that bad really!

BlackbeltinBS Thu 24-Oct-13 12:38:55

I'd offer to sit on Bagman's lap or bag, and he can choose which. What a rude man.

chipshop Thu 24-Oct-13 12:41:32

Wow, that bag man would have given me the rage. What a selfish twat.

Willemdefoeismine Thu 24-Oct-13 12:52:34

When I was pregnant with DC1 I found that middle-aged men were by far the greatest offenders at not giving up their seats. In fact young men were every bit as helpful as women in that respect. But because most of the seats seemed to be inhabited by unchivalrous men of a certain age, it was nigh on impossible to ever get a seat even when heavily pregnant. For that reason I started using the bus although the journey could take me up to two hours on a bad day...

2tiredtoScare Thu 24-Oct-13 12:58:11

I've spent 3 pregnancies commuting and never been offered a seat but if you need it you should ask, I would've told bag man to put it up his arse

Andcake Thu 24-Oct-13 12:58:33

I was pregnant in London and mostly someone always noticed the badge.
Very frustrating about the man and his bag - but saying that the worse response I had to asking a favor due to pregnancy was in York. I was desperate for the loo - asked a cafe owner if i could use their customer loo who shouted at me saying I was cheeky and should buy something. i left a bit teary and DP nearly ran into cafe and had a go back. The a pub landlord cleaning up from the night before let me into his closed pub to use the loo - it was on a Sunday morning ;-(

Mummyoftheyear Thu 24-Oct-13 13:01:07

Tell the next rude person that you're happy to stand but tend to be sick if you do so.

2tiredtoScare Thu 24-Oct-13 13:01:25

Saying that though I used to dread Elderly, infirm or Pregnant people getting on the train/bus after a long day at work as I could never sit there and watch them struggle but sometimes you'd love to stay sitting!

bigbuttons Thu 24-Oct-13 13:05:21

Actually most people in London are brilliant at giving up seats. I have seen more consideration and kindness there than elsewhere.

2tiredtoScare Thu 24-Oct-13 13:08:52

I used to get the overground into London, now that was hell

MrTumblesKnickers Thu 24-Oct-13 13:11:20

"Typical anti London sentiment on here even when told this happened in the north! I've seen plenty of pregnant women offered seats on London transport."

I commuted on London transport until after my due date and was always, always offered a seat. Without fail.

specialsubject Thu 24-Oct-13 13:15:04

I would have thrown the bag out of the carriage! Anyone gets a seat over an inanimate object.

I agree that it is always dangerous to assume a woman is pregnant unless she has reached the point where it could be nothing else. Also pregnancy isn't an illness.

can you change your hours/ work from home etc etc?

Beccagain Thu 24-Oct-13 13:16:20

I commuted on London transport until after my due date and was always, always offered a seat. Without fail.

Possibly because no-one had ever seen a pregnant man before MrTumbleknickers grin

(But I agree with you about the friendliness/helpfulness of Londoners. Second to nowehere)

FromagePlease Thu 24-Oct-13 13:19:32

To add another London perspective, I commute daily on the tube and am 28 weeks. I've very rarely had to stand, and am usually offered seats (I wear the badge) unless I'm so hidden in the crowd that the people in seats can't see me.

I have now started asking. I quietly ask someone in a priority seat if they particularly need it (and they might, which is fair enough) or would they mind if I sat down. So far I've not had a bad reaction, but my heart does race every time.

You just need to as. What's the worst that could happen?

juniper9 Thu 24-Oct-13 14:16:12

When I was 6 months pregnant my DP and I tried to get the last tube home. It turned out one of the other lines was closed, and so there were twice as many people gettinug my tube, and everyone was panicky because it was the last one. I managed to get on but it was so busy that people were pushing themselves on by using their feet against the door way. I ended up expressing my concern screaming like a banshee that they were going to knock me over. No-one offered me a seat, although one bloke did ask me if I was ok (I was on the verge of tears as I tried to avoid my bump being bashed around).

I had hit and miss experiences in London. Some people would jump out of their seats and declare me pregnant to the whole carriage, but mostly I was blanked. I didn't commute though- just out in the evenings.

HoldMeCloserTonyDanza Thu 24-Oct-13 14:49:18

I am not a native Londoner but I have never, ever had a problem being offered a seat in the Underground when I needed one.

There was a Newsnight bit on this last week and their journalist was offered a seat on every journey she took.

SourSweets Thu 24-Oct-13 17:13:28

Before I was pregnant I didn't understand why you'd need a seat unless you were about to burst.

But I quickly realised. The tiredness, dizzy spells, nausea, muscle aches, headaches, weird claustrophobic feeling, clicky hips, palpitations, I could go on.

Get a seat if you need one, or ask if the sitter would prefer to continue sitting while covered in vomit.

bubalou Thu 24-Oct-13 17:54:07

Bag man had no fucking excuse - twat!

Just bare I mind some people might not want to offer - not out of being rude but fear!

About 3 years ago I offered my seat on the train to a woman who looked very obviously pregnant - she wasn't fat at all but had a large pregnant looking tummy.

Yes you guessed it - she wasn't pregnant! I've never had the opportunity to give up my seat to a pregnant woman since but I've always been terrified of asking people about their bumps unless I'm 100% sure! shock

Mim78 Thu 24-Oct-13 18:00:25

Oh my god he thought the bag needed a seat more than you! That is terrible! He should have stood up for you if needs be, never mind moving his bag.

Of course you need a seat at 26 weeks pregnant. It is not just for heavily pregnant women - on all the signs it just says pregnant, never mind that common sense clearly dictates you should have one. Or some signs just say "less able to stand" which you clearly are from the outset of pregnancy.

In the very early stages you will be feeling v sick and tired so should be able to ask for a seat then, provided you are willing to "out" yourself as pregnant.

I am 23 weeks and have been asking for seats for ages. I live in London. I have a tfl "baby on board" badge - you must get one of those as has been stated above. You do need to be assertive unfortunately. Even with the badge (I don't show very much it's true) no one offers me a seat, I have to ask. But that is mostly because they are determinedly not looking up in case a pregnant or elderly person or someone of crutches gets on!

But a BAG!!! Now I've heard everything.

Mim78 Thu 24-Oct-13 18:01:35

PS - I travel on overground trains from South London and not the tube.

thebody Thu 24-Oct-13 18:05:49

agree with bubalo. bag man was rude and definatly needed telling.

not sure if I would personally want to assume a woman was pregnant as could just be fat.

also don't assume just because you can't see a bad back/knee that it's not there and tbh not every pregnant person is in some sort of agony are they.

I was a lot fitter in my 4 pregnancies than I am now with back problems.

Babysealion Thu 24-Oct-13 18:11:22

Nice to know I'm not BU smile
I am quite reluctant to ask for seats as I always do think 'what if this person does have back/knee/health problems and does genuinely need this seat more than me?' but from now on I think I'll be asking the people in the priority seats if they need them, and if they don't please could I have it as I'm 26 weeks pregnant.
Changing my hours or working from home isn't an option either.

Rushyswife Thu 24-Oct-13 18:36:20

I think in response to his 'where shall I put my bag?' I would have said 'preferably over your head to prevent you saying anything else so stupid' but I am an arsey cow!

Definitely ask people, people are generally a million miles away/half asleep/ listening to music/reading so don't pick up on things in the way they should.

Hope you get seats from now on!

kiwiscantfly Thu 24-Oct-13 19:20:34

I used to take the train (25 min journey) into Paddington and occasionally I wouldn't get a seat in the morning and no one ever offered and I always made sure my coat was unbuttoned so you could see my bump. I never minded asking on the tube but since the trains cost so much for some reason I felt bad. From 30 weeks I sat in first class on the way home (you cane even get a pass, but I didn't blush) It's funny how oblivious some people can be?

HopeS01 Thu 24-Oct-13 19:44:15

Another London commuter here ... If no one offers I always ask smile Don't be shy!
It's not just about feeling uncomfortable/faint/achey, pregnant women are entitled to sit down because it would be very dangerous if the train suddenly stopped and they fell over or someone fell into the bump.

Please ask for a seat and never feel ashamed about that, you're protecting your baby.

MesM Thu 24-Oct-13 19:51:44

Getting a baby on board badge would be a good call. Have had mine 4 weeks and have been offered a seat on the tube in that London every day. People have even been friendly and chatty.

Was in Paris for work this week and despite the metro always being a nasty, cramped, pushing, shoving free for all someone still offered me a seat. Such is the power of baby on board!

happyfrogger Thu 24-Oct-13 19:58:16

If you felt you needed it, then YANBY to ask. YABU to expect, because many people feel totally fine at that stage. its really a chivalry thing IMHO. I was at least 7 months before it was obvious when dressed. I didn't expect anyone to automatically offer - you never know who is in need of a seat for whatever reason. And many people may not like to ask for a seat when others can't see why, for fear of looking like a wally or having eyes rolled.

I needed to sit down far more in the first trimester because I felt sick. I didn't like to announce my brand new pregnancy to the whole tube, but if I didn't say why some people give you attitude, which is unpleasant unfortunately.

Bottom line, if you need, accept that you should ask. But I wouldn't assume to 'play the pregnancy card' just because you can, and expect - you may be turfing someone out their seat who really is suffering more!!

PaperPomPom Thu 24-Oct-13 20:15:30

You shouldn't feel bad asking. My train into London stops so many times that I don't look up at every stop from my reading, but always feel awful if I haven't moved for someone who needs a seat. I'm not pregnant, but I was astonished by how kind people were when I had a funny turn on the train a few weeks ago; jumping out of seats to stop me falling on the floor and giving me water. It made me feel better about commuting if I become pregnant.

sporktacular Thu 24-Oct-13 20:18:15

People are much less likely to speak up or offer to help when they're in a crowd. Studied this in Psychology although I can't now remember what the phenomenon is called, I think something to do with conformity.

Basically try asking one specific person on the bus if they would mind giving up their seat for you. This is much more likely to work than asking the whole bus full of people in general - when we do this for some reason everyone hopes that someone else will react. When you ask one specific person, that person will either give you their seat (highly likely) or explain that they have a bad back too or whatever, in which case the person next to them is probably fairly likely to offer their seat instead.

Choosing one person to ask makes it impossible for them to ignore you and actually puts quite a bit of social pressure on them to help you, whereas asking a crowd of people in general creates the social pressure on them all not to single themselves out.

HopeS01 Thu 24-Oct-13 20:21:50

I disagree with you, Happyfrogger, it is safer for a pregnant person to sit, whether you are feeling okay or not. sad
People should offer if they notice that you are pregnant, because that is good manners, just as they should for the elderly or less able to stand.

sporktacular Thu 24-Oct-13 20:28:25

Sorry, train, not bus, in your case.

I tend to just move things myself if people stupidly put them in the way and are very slow to move them, e.g. other people's trollies in supermarkets, suitcases in train aisles...

Can't believe the guy actually not moving his bag for you though. If it really needed to go on a seat then he should have stood and offered you the seat he was sitting in.

Most trains and buses have specially marked "priority" seats, BTW, for elderly, disabled and pregnant people to use. Anyone can sit there but if they are needed by someone "less able to stand" then they have to be given up.

Check if your train has a priority seat, and ask the person sitting in that seat to let you sit there.

PaperPomPom Thu 24-Oct-13 20:28:55

Ooh spork I saw something about that on the television a few weeks ago. They were talking about emergencies, that rather than saying "someone help!" Generally singling someone out is better, for example, "you in the blue jumper! I need help!" as it is harder to ignore and assume someone else is helping.

birdsnotbees Thu 24-Oct-13 20:37:08

I live ooop north and when pregnant never had a problem - and in fact one very kind man offered me a seat this morning. I'm not pregnant but I worked until 1am last night (it was 8am the following day) so he must have seen how unbelievably knackered I was. I could have kissed him.

I did visit London when massively pregnant and it was ace. I waddled onto a full tube, hung off one of the poles, panting, and said "can anyone give a very pregnant woman a seat please?" Three men shot up out of their seats, and one even gave my mum a seat too. I also was allowed to jump the queue on the London Eye. Tbf, I was about to pop...

Really can't believe Bag Man, nor the fact that no one else said 'WTAF?" to him. I would have, on your behalf!

LadyMedea Thu 24-Oct-13 20:43:59

On the worry of asking someone to give up their seat if they have an invisible disability (which I do) just ask those in the priority seats 'are you able to stand?' If someone asked me this I can just say 'sorry I can't' but I don't then have to explain myself to a stranger.

Coupon Thu 24-Oct-13 20:44:59

YANBU to expect a seat if you needed one. Other people can't judge how you are feeling so should give you the benefit of the doubt and take your word for it.

Mintyy Thu 24-Oct-13 20:46:59

Hmmm. Really don't believe he said "where am I supposed to put it?" when you asked him to move his bag. Just don't believe that at all.

Babysealion Thu 24-Oct-13 21:41:00

Why don't you believe it Mintyy? confused
The train was packed, he had his bag on the seat next to him and by the looks of it didn't want to inconvenience himself by having to put it in the overhead luggage space as it was a fairly large bag. Still don't know why that means that I should have had to stand up and in hindsight I should have stood up for myself.

Mintyy Thu 24-Oct-13 22:06:22

Why don't I believe it? Because it just seems so completely unlikely of course!

The train was packed and people were standing and you asked if he could move his bag so you could sit down and he said "where else am I supposed to put it?"

I am veteran of 30ish years of using overcrowded public transport in London but have never witnessed such an exchange, or heard of similar from anyone I know, so that is what makes me find it unbelievable.

persimmon Thu 24-Oct-13 22:10:00

I lived in London for years and was always amazed at how quickly and politely people gave up their seats for the elderly, pregnant, blind, etc. I also saw no end of people help others with pushchairs on escalators, etc. It's usually people who've never lived in London who have these misconceptions.
However, OP, ask for a seat if you need one. And the man with the bag was an utter twat.

lifehasafunnywayofhelpinguout Thu 24-Oct-13 22:12:05

Where is he supposed to put it ? I was brought up too much of lady to say where, but let's just say where the sun doesn't shine!!!! Rude obnoixious man. xx

ColderThanAWitchsTitty Thu 24-Oct-13 22:16:10

where am I supposed to put it?'

I am sorry.. he said whaaat?

Sit on it next time. Or throw it. The wank stain

ColderThanAWitchsTitty Thu 24-Oct-13 22:17:20

But first say,

Well you could try holding it you lazy fucker.

Then throw it.

ColderThanAWitchsTitty Thu 24-Oct-13 22:23:40

The joys of public transport!

I remeber bein on the tube bumping dd down every stair in her pram.. while being pushed past no one stopping to offer and no one slowing down enough to be asked.

An American woman and her partner walks past me and she turns to him and says, "seriously? You aren't going to offer help her down the stairs?" grin He looked suitable shamed!

Notanotherusername Thu 24-Oct-13 23:04:02

Say: Sorry, can I have a seat please? I am pregnant and I feel I am about to vomit (make appropriate sound) try to do this to whoever is sitting in the disabled/pregnant/older people/woman and child sign if they do not give up their seat and they are not any of those mentioned, you can legally ask them to move. But usually they will give up their seat and/or other people will.
Be assertive. I did this on the underground because I fainted twice for being 'brave' and no one cares. My blood pressure was always very low.

EugenesAxe Thu 24-Oct-13 23:11:29

YANBU and actually, like notanother I often felt most in need of a seat in the invisible months, when very nauseous and prone to swoons.

The point is, every pregnancy is different and whether the world is aware of complications such as hip pain or not, if you want a seat you should bloody get it at ANY stage.

TondelayoSchwarzkopf Thu 24-Oct-13 23:14:18

I came here to defend London Underground but see that almost EVERYONE has piled on as well. So here goes...commuted on the tube every day until 38 weeks, travelled regularly on LT until 41 weeks, always offered a seat - usually by young men or women rather than middle-aged men. Almost always offered a hand with the pram onto buses and up stairs. DS is usually offered a seat as well.

My mum came down for a weekend recently and got offered a seat on every tube journey. She was a bit dismayed to be honest, she's only 67!

he said 'where am I supposed to put it?'

"In the space where your brain should be?"


LisasCat Fri 25-Oct-13 00:11:47

My London Underground experience when clearly pregnant involved a carriage full of people who ignored me until an American woman, mid-twenties, walked half the length of the carriage to offer me her seat (while glaring at everyone else). Bless her. At least a couple had the decency to look embarrassed.

howrudeforme Fri 25-Oct-13 00:20:03

Oh I get this.

On tube I found that people were so far into their earphones and music (this was pre kindle which is worse) so they didn't notice.

But I've found fathers to be the bloody worst. I had an huge pregnacy and one day on the tube I got on with a mum, dad, and three kids who were determined to get a seat. They all got one and I got one too except the father decided that his laptop case would go down my side of the seat and it was a real squeeze. I made faces and noise that the entire carriage could get but not him.It got to point it was more comfortable to stand up. I did so - he then asked me if I was OK - my response was yeah fine but his bag was clearly more tired and entitled than I was and needed it's own seat - he actually acknowledged this as the truth - the carriage burst out laughing.

When I'm on the tube I listen and read to stuff but at each stop I do look to see if there's a person who needs the seat more than me.

Some of it sheer crappiness and some of it is that people are very engrossed in their techology and not aware.

magicberry Fri 25-Oct-13 00:21:08

definitely ask - I usually focus on the seats labelled for the purpose (disabled/elderly/pg/with young children). Obviously not if someone with greater need is sitting in it though!

ColderThanAWitchsTitty Fri 25-Oct-13 01:42:50

I really hate the phrase "pregnancy isn't an illness". Only people who haven't had children or are massive knobs use it.

NO it isn't an illness but it does completely fuck up your balance and if a woman was standing there holding a baby in her arms and possibly at risk of falling over on it... I'd damn well move. Same goes to a woman with a bump surely? f she falls on it it is dangerous for her and the baby.

Some women haven't eaten properly for ages due to nausea. And likely to be dizzy.

Haven't slept properly for weeks

Have SPD

Have fainting spells.

Have super sensitive bumps and find it very painful when bashed in to repeatedly.

Oh and some actually die from it.. so yes, it frequently causes complications that very much make you feel ill

I know some women claim to feel like Superwoman while pregnant but the truth is the vast fucking majority feel like shit. So just be nice and help out.

coldwater1 Fri 25-Oct-13 06:00:17

YANBU I am 34 weeks pregnant, very anemic and suffering badly from dizzy/fainting spells, not to mention the fact my bump is now quite heavy.

I have to travel two hours across London to get to uni and if the bus or tram are packed i have to stand, i've had ONE person offer me a seat in this whole pregnancy! People just have no manners. I've had to get off the tram a couple of times because i get hot and dizzy and feel sick, sit at the tram stop to recover and catch the next one. Its not ideal but i don't feel confident enough to ask for a seat.

Luna13 Fri 25-Oct-13 06:19:24

I'm 24wp (look quite big), and yesterday was offered a seat for the first time on overground. Actually twice, both by very young women. Pleasantly surprised :-) Just not sure if it happened because I am pg or because I was with 2yo in the pram and seats were next to parked pram wink But I commute every day to work, an hour each way, LU, and people put LOADS of effort not to see me... Not brave enough to ask.

Turquoisehat Fri 25-Oct-13 06:31:20

That bag man is an ass. Ask for a seat if you feel you need it. as a pp said, there js no magic date in pregnancy when it is uncomfortable.

I had to do a 45 minute train journey with four day old dd. she was in a sling and I asked a woman to move her bags so we could sit. She refused and in my post birth fog, I asked her how many tickets she bought and couldn't she see I had a tiny baby with me? A man jumped up and gave me his seat (lovely man) so I let it go. But if had seen that exchange I would have moved the woman's bags myself. Selfish bitch.

SomethingLovely Fri 25-Oct-13 07:04:10

YANBU... Bag man is an idiot. I was never brave enough to ask for a seat, got a mixed bag on London Underground - sometimes I'd see people right in front of me hurriedly look at their feet, their newspaper, pretend to be asleep etc - anything to avoid seeing my huge bump right in front if their faces (and the "baby on board" badge too), even had a middle aged man practically elbow me out of the way to get to the one remaining seat. Other times someone would leap up to offer their seat straight away. No rhyme nor reason to it... And you can feel shit at 4 weeks or 34 weeks, you don't need to be massive to need to sit down!

jellyandcake Fri 25-Oct-13 07:20:45

I'm 14 weeks and just had a month signed off work due to illness - because of pregnancy. For many women pregnancy actually IS an illness. The phrase 'playing the pregnancy card' makes me want to pound the ignoramus saying it into the ground. Yes, there are many other illnesses as well but that doesn't diminish the fact that pregnancy can be very debilitating as well.

Hope you get a seat this morning, OP.

ImpOfDarkness Fri 25-Oct-13 08:28:30

I made faces and noise that the entire carriage could get but not him

See I don't get the point of PA huffing and puffing or standing there with a martyred look. Why not just ask the guy to move his bag?

Fwiw I always ask for a seat as soon as I get on the bus (due this week!) only once has someone said no, and about three other young guys sprang out of their seats while he got a right earful from the West Indian granny sitting opposite him grin

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