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Calling pregnant ladies who use the Tube.

(31 Posts)
welshmum Fri 01-Apr-05 11:10:05

You may recall that London Transport announced with quite a fanfare that they were going to give pg ladies 'Baby on Board' badges to help them get a seat on the tube. I'd like to know whether you've managed to get one, what response you've had if you've asked for one or if you've seen anyone wearing one.
I've asked in 3 stations for one and they hadn't even heard of them, let alone got them. I think it's just a pretty tacky publicity stunt taking advantage of us.
I want to have a go at LT but need a few more examples. Thanks

Pamina3 Fri 01-Apr-05 11:18:21

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Azure Fri 01-Apr-05 11:19:02

Pregnant lady who uses the tube here! I read something about this in Metro a few weeks back, but haven't seen anything else about it - I haven't asked. I must admit that I would never use a badge - I would find it embarrassing, and you're still relying on someone giving up their seat. If they're not going to notice or respond to a big bump, I don't think they will a badge. I guess it would be most useful in the earlier states of pregnancy, before there is much tangible evidence. I would be interested to hear if anyone has got hold of one, and what the response was like.

onlineid Fri 01-Apr-05 11:19:20

Message withdrawn

hunkermunker Fri 01-Apr-05 11:23:49

Don't think it's been rolled out yet - the news story I read said they were doing surveys to see if it was a good idea.

Not a publicity stunt, tacky or otherwise - and if you want a seat, ask for one (I did and always got one when I asked...didn't when I didn't quite often, even with 7.5 month very obvious bump).

welshmum Fri 01-Apr-05 11:38:57

I don't think it can be only a survey hunkermunker as I've seen people wearing them (2 - and they were down the bottom of the carriage so I couldn't get there to ask them anything)
Sometimes I don't want to 'ask' people for a seat, I want to be offered one. I'm just appalled by people's lack of consideration for others less able than themselves

hunkermunker Fri 01-Apr-05 11:41:42

Can you email LU and ask them?

TBH, wearing a badge would've made me feel really odd - if my enormous bump wasn't going to get me a seat, why would a badge?

I had one man look right at me, down to my bump, then raise his newspaper to avoid looking at me again - all done very studiously.

I know exactly how you feel about wanting to be offered a seat, but sometimes it's not worth winding yourself up waiting to be offered - I know it did upset me one day (pregnant and hormonal and encountering thoughtless people...not a good combo!).

Hope you get offered a seat each day

welshmum Fri 01-Apr-05 12:00:28

You're probably right about being wound up. I just get so cross with people's crapness - and not just to the pg. I could have a good old rant but that would be too boring for everyone else. Oh well only a few more weeks to go (big sigh)

KoalaBear Fri 01-Apr-05 12:14:07

i remember a guy who wrote into the metro saying that he would not give up his seat for a pregnant woman because it was her choice to get pregnant and her choice to travel on the tube and therefore her fault if she was uncomfortable

i was really angry at this - it doesn't take a lot of brains to understand that its not always about the comfort of the pregnant woman (although that is nice), but protecting the unborn baby from knocks and falls on a crowded, bumpy, jerky train ride

also didn't help that I was 8 months pregnant at the time and my husband was out of work (but desparately trying to get a job), so the "choice" this man was talking about was non existant

not sure the alert buttons would work on jerks like this, but its a thought

edam Fri 01-Apr-05 12:19:40

Funnily enough I had a meeting with London Underground about this earlier this week! It is a pilot but badges are available for any station who requests them - so either get your station to ask head office to supply, or contact the communications directorate at head office, who are behind the campaign. If you CAT me I'll give you the contact details (don't want to post openly as it's one person's name, email and phone no.). They are fairly confident that it will go ahead once the pilot is finished. And are also looking at supplying to people who are planning to visit London via their website.

bossykate Fri 01-Apr-05 12:39:15

hello, i used to target people in the priority seats and ask them if i could sit down, pointing out they were in a priority seat. some did so with a very bad grace but no-one actually refused.

KoalaBear Fri 01-Apr-05 12:43:38

sometimes i wonder at my sanity in bringing children into a world where people can be so horrible to each other, but i guess that's a whole different conversation

juicychops Fri 01-Apr-05 12:59:43

i used to hate travelling on the tube when i was pg. people used to barge me out of the way to get the spare seat, then once they say down they would look up and see me, have a good stare at my big bump, then start reading their magazine. it used to make me fuming!! on the rare occasions that someone gave up their seat it was mostly men who did. you would think that women would understand.

Raindog Fri 01-Apr-05 13:12:24

I'm 36 weeks pregnant, and rarely get offered a seat, and I take a train and two tubes both ways to work and back every day (thank goodness only for another week!) And I've not seen any badges either! If a bump isn't obvious then why would a badge make a difference anyway? I know it is difficult in London because you don't want to make eye contact with anyone, and I expect that in my pre-pregnant days, if I was sat in a seat then I'd probably not look up. It's not always out of rudeness or nastiness, but once you're hugely pregnant it feels like it!

I HATE asking for a seat because it feels like you are admitting to some sort of illness or something, and with pg hormones it makes me feel teary just at the thought of asking (and normally I'm a completely sane and rational person who has asked people to stand up for other people).

The people who sit in the priority seats are invariably the ones with really loud headphones on who close their eyes as soon as they sit down too, so you'd have to physically shake them to attract attention.

As you can tell, I'm a bit jaded with the tube at the moment! Buses are no better though. However, on a positive note, every so often one person will stand up and offer you a seat because they genuinely care, and smile at you. and that makes a MASSIVE difference to your day.

welshmum Fri 01-Apr-05 13:14:11

Edam - thanks ever so - I'll get my local station to ask for some badges and I'll stop having a go at LT for the moment as it's a pilot study
Thanks all for sharing your fury at the general dispostion of the travelling public.
When I wasn't pg I remember complaining to a bus driver that noone would give up their seat for some poor woman who was about to pop 'She shouldn't travel on public transport' was his response.....

welshmum Fri 01-Apr-05 13:16:57

That's exactly it Raindog - you want people to offer, as evidence that strangers can still somehow care about the welfare of others. I think you want this evidence so much more when you're up the duff because you don't want your baby arriving into a cold-harted world.

Pamina3 Fri 01-Apr-05 13:23:47

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

popmum Fri 01-Apr-05 14:04:23

Another point about this is that on my overland line ('one', out of liverpool st), you can request a Mum to Be card (if you are a season ticket holder), which entitles you to sit in 1st class!
Not sure if other lines offer it, but I enjoyed the "luxury" for a month or so a couple of years ago

Pamina3 Fri 01-Apr-05 14:06:05

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

welshmum Fri 01-Apr-05 14:08:54

I've heard rumours that you can sit in first on Virgin trains if you're pregnant - don't know if it's true or what you need to show them though

foxinsocks Fri 01-Apr-05 14:16:58

I used to travel for my job when I was pregnant with both my kids (based in London, but travelling mainly by train around the UK).

Once on a Virgin train, I paid a full standard fare from Milton Keynes to Euston. When I got on, it was absolutely heaving (because it had happened to be a special day saver train £10 from Manchester, but how the hell was I supposed to know!). Now normally, I wouldn't ask for a seat but the heating had got stuck on, it was summer and I was around 30 weeks pregnant and thought I was going to pass out. I went and sat in 1st class and was booted out. I ended up sitting in the loo the whole way back (the only seat left on the train!). I wrote a very snotty letter to them and they sent me one back saying tough luck but they would review their policy (so maybe they have!).

Having said that, I never really had a problem on the tube (Picadilly line) but then I probably felt worse in the first 12-15 weeks than I did at any other stage in my pregnancy.

ark Fri 01-Apr-05 15:07:49

I think these badges are a great idea, there have been so many occasions when I've not been sure whether to offer a seat to somebody because I was not sure if t hey were a) early stages of pregnancy or b) slightly overweight! Having been mortified by the kind offers of a seat by an elderly gentlean myself before now - I would hate to inflict it on others! I am shocked at how few people offer seats and have taken on the job of telling other passangers when I think they should stand up! So if you see someone yelling at selfish passangers on the Northern line that will be me!

Raindog Fri 01-Apr-05 15:29:05

Ark - I think I'll try and get on the same trains as you then! I'll be the one standing up with the big round belly

KoalaBear Fri 01-Apr-05 15:37:50

Ark - are your services for sale? have two hour commute - would love an advocate

hoxtonchick Fri 01-Apr-05 17:00:03

i am shameless about asking people, especially in priority seats. had a bit of a run in with a woman on the central line yesterday who was racing me for the last seat in the carriage. "excuse me, can't you see i'm pregnant" in an icy cold voice did stop her in her tracks, but she wasn't happy about not getting a seat. ha. not sure i'd bother with a badge, but i do positively enjoy embarrasing people into standing up.....

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