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Pregnant and commuting on tube

(31 Posts)
terf Wed 27-Aug-08 15:51:51

Sorry for the rant, but I think I'm at my wits end - I've never been offered a seat on the tube despite being obviously pregnant and its really making me hate my commutes to work. It makes me think badly of fellow Londoners and increases my stress level just at the thought of getting on the tube. The other day a teenager raced with me to grab a seat on the tube then just stared at my pregnant belly and looked off. How do other people deal with it? I havent had the courage to ask for a seat yet - dont know why guess I'm intimidated.

LittleMyDancing Wed 27-Aug-08 15:53:30

poor you! the tube is a nasty, dog eat dog world. the only thing to do is gather up your courage, lean over someone and say 'excuse me, could i possibly have your seat as I'm pregnant and if i carry on standing up I think I'm going to be sick'

see how quick they move.

if they don't, start retching a little....

doesn't the tube have seats marked for people who need them?

thebecster Wed 27-Aug-08 15:54:11

Have you tried one of those TfL badges? Unfortunately they didn't have them when I was pg, but my friend bought one and was usually offered a seat. I found it's best to stand near women in their thirties or Polish builders. Don't stand near teens or men in suits, you'll never get a seat that way.

tokentotty Wed 27-Aug-08 15:56:14

Honestly, you need to just shame them. "Excuse me, but would you mind awfully letting me sit in that designated seat for pregnant women as I'm really not feeling very well"

F*ck it - you're never going to see them again in your life so why not ? If they have the absolute front to say no then I guarantee that someone else sitting nearby will be guilted into immediately offering you their seat.

charitygirl Wed 27-Aug-08 15:56:47

Yes, Eastern European men will try to give you their seat even if you're not pregnant!

To the OP, make eye contact and smile. If no response, then sigh, hold your bump in long suffering way, wipe sweat from brow. USUSALLY works for me!

BlingLovin Wed 27-Aug-08 16:00:02

AArrrrggghhhhhhhh.... this drives me insane. I'm not even pregnant, nor have I ever been pregnant but seeing pregnant women standing on tube drives me crazy and makes ME want to lean over to obnoxious git and shout, "yo, lardarse, get up and give this woman a seat". But I never do. sad And when I am pregnant, I suspect this will be the thing that pushes me over the edge...

Terf - if you can work up the courage, ask people. And sadly, you're probably better off asking a woman.

bossykate Wed 27-Aug-08 16:00:45

ask one of the people sitting in a priority seat to get up. lazy fuckers.

bossykate Wed 27-Aug-08 16:01:41

actually, i have asked people to get up for pg women. lazy fuckers.

SydneyB Wed 27-Aug-08 16:04:33

Really sorry to hear that terf. I've found that people are really good at offering up their seats. Tourists can be a bit crap as they just don't understand but the average Londoner seems to. In the early days when I was less obvious I'd just politely ask if I could have the seat marked priority preg etc and people would always give it up. Is very important to stand right in the middle of the aisle where you can be seen, not by the doors. A lot of the time I think some men are worried you're just fat or people are just so immersed in the ipods/books/papers they just don't look up. Just ask!

melrose Wed 27-Aug-08 16:04:48

Ask someone to move - I did when I was pregnant! I was often offered a seat though, usually by women. I do think it is aften that people do not genuinely notivce you are pg, I don't tewnd to take in those around me on the tuvbe and usually ahve my mose in a book

smallwhitecat Wed 27-Aug-08 16:06:11

Message withdrawn

spicemonster Wed 27-Aug-08 16:06:53

I always asked people in the priority seats to give me their seat. No one ever refused. And now are even less likely to as the stickers above them actually mention pregnant women.

It's the only way I'm afraid. I took great pleasure in asking people to stand up actually blush

Once you've done it once, it's easier to do it again.

spicemonster Wed 27-Aug-08 16:06:58

I always asked people in the priority seats to give me their seat. No one ever refused. And now are even less likely to as the stickers above them actually mention pregnant women.

It's the only way I'm afraid. I took great pleasure in asking people to stand up actually blush

Once you've done it once, it's easier to do it again.

spicemonster Wed 27-Aug-08 16:06:58

I always asked people in the priority seats to give me their seat. No one ever refused. And now are even less likely to as the stickers above them actually mention pregnant women.

It's the only way I'm afraid. I took great pleasure in asking people to stand up actually blush

Once you've done it once, it's easier to do it again.

Miggsie Wed 27-Aug-08 16:11:42

I had to use a walking stick while pregnant and once THREE people offered me a seat at the same time!
And other times I was often offered a seat.
Piccadilly line, they are nice.
Central line? forget it!

terf Wed 27-Aug-08 16:34:24

Guess it depends on your experience Miggsie I was on the Picadilly line when the teenage girl incident occured and I was so aghast I looked around for some support from other commuters - all who happened to be women and a couple of office ladies just looked at me and my belly and continued talking (while seated!). The Hammersmith (my tube line) can be quite bad when packed - I was standing in the middle of the carriage and two women continued a conversation over my bump! I couldnt believe it. However as I was about to get off at my stop one of the two women grabbed me and said 'look I saved you a seat' when one next to her came available. It was too little too late - I just thought couldnt you have got up that whole time I was standing between you and your friend? I've heard from friends that the Tfl badges have made little difference. Guess it depends on your experience - some friends have been lucky and have been consistently offered seats while others like me have been unlucky - one of whom even got poked in the stomach by a businessman's umbrella when she was 8 and a half months pregnant while standing. Now that would've been too much for even me to take! Think I just have to build my courage up to start asking people for seats.

thebecster Wed 27-Aug-08 16:42:54

terf - Oh I had the 'you can have my seat, I'm getting off now' comment once as we were pulling into a station. Gee thanks. He clearly thought he was doing me such a favour. Guess some people just don't get the 'giving up your seat' thing!

hanaflower Wed 27-Aug-08 16:44:50

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Flossish Wed 27-Aug-08 16:51:07

I generally found the exaggerated rubbing of belly helped, a tip I picked up from doing it absent mindedly when there was barely any bump there and a chap rushing to stand up for me!! I was generally mostly offered a seat, although I can remember rush hour commutes home from nights when all the selfish canary wharf arseholes pointedly ignored me and I would nearly be in tears from tiredness!

As others have said, if the bump rubbing doesn't work ask. The tube gets hot and cramped and it really is safer for you to be sat down. smile

elkiedee Wed 27-Aug-08 17:08:19

This is driving me mad as well. I keep wishing I had the courage to just stand on the foot of people who clearly don't need the seats. It also ticks me off that only 4 seats in the carriage are marked "priority" seat - I don't particularly mind not having an end one but I think all 12 such seats should be marked that way. Particularly as I usually end up finding a place to stand which isn't near the designated seats. I don't feel comfortable standing between seats either, as I'm short and often can't find comfortable holding on positions.

pagwatch Wed 27-Aug-08 17:11:59

well my DH always gives up his seat . So go on the waterloo and city line if you can.

When I was going to work during the train strike whilst heavily pregnant with DS1 a guy hit me in the stomach with his briefcase to get on the DLR in front of me. Bad manners and no consideration are not new sadly

MegBusset Wed 27-Aug-08 17:14:00

My friend had a theory based on her experience that a pregnant woman will never get offered a seat by a white man. I actually kept a tally when heavily pg and found that women offered their seat at a ratio of about 4:1 to men. And I found that black/Asian men are much more likely to help (this also seems to be true for getting a buggy up escalators, off trains etc).

This is just my personal experience, before I get accused of rampant generalisations!

greenandpleasant Wed 27-Aug-08 17:14:44

terf, am really shocked that you have not been offered a seat, that's rubbish.

ime standing, sighing, rubbing etc don't work. Just ask, v politely if the person would mind letting you sit down please? and make sure your bump is on show. That ALWAYS worked for me and never any issue with the person being asked. I usually chose young men to ask who were more than happy to get up and clearly weren't going to be pg themselves! Also don't bother with it being hte "priority" seat, any seat will do. I do think that on a crowded tube or bus people really don't notice your bump when it's squashed into the central melee of the aisles or door spaces.

MegBusset Wed 27-Aug-08 17:14:50

My tip is to carry a copy of 'Pregnancy' magazine in your handbag and whip it out on the tube!

poppy34 Wed 27-Aug-08 17:18:17

meg you are so right...was always women or non white males who offered... terf= just ask or look a bit like you are feeling labour twinges/about to be sick -works wonders wink.

and I'm afraid a particular vote for the vacuous young woman reading now not giving up their seat whlst texting on their generally bejewelled mobile phone

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