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I hate the tube(12 Posts)
Apologies in advance for the rant but I am sooooooooo fed up. I am now 24 weeks pregnant and while I have a neat and fairly small bump, it is pretty difficult to confuse it with a pie belly anymore. But does anyone ever offer me a seat on the tube or if a seat becomes available ever think to look around to see if anyone else needs it more. Of course not!
What I see on a regular basis nowadays is young men and women sleeping on the priority seats, applying make up and reading their newspapers with great interest. What pisses me off the most is getting those blank stares when I am starting to fade/go pale/sweat - not exactly inviting you to ask for a seat anyway and I feel a bit angry anyway that I would have to ask for one, what happened to manners??
I nowadays manage only one or two stops on the tube as it is very hot, the air does not circulate and my back kills me when I have to stand on one spot. Then it is getting off time, sitting on the platform until I am late for work or finding a bus. Have tried leaving earlier but it is still busy and I'm not feeling particularly perky after running to the loo half of the night. Already miserable at the thought of going on like this until Christmas holidays...
Horrible, isn't it. A lot of people do switch off when they get on the tube though (me included) so maybe just ask?
Very few people will say no when an obviously pregnant woman asks for a seat - I've had to do it a few times and it's bloody irritating.
Get one of the "Baby on board" Badges TFL will send you one for free.
Then just flash the badge and demand a seat! You have a right to that seat so demand it.
Thats what I do when feeling brave- when not feeling brave i get DH to do it for me. But I have started avoiding travel at peak times.
I did get one woman get very arsy with me- so I just smiled sweetly and told her "Honestly its better than have me vomit or faint on you"
I'm sorry to be blunt but it's not that reasonable to expect people to realise that you're pregnant. When I have a seat, I'm not constantly scanning people getting on to see if anyone looks as if they might be pregnant. If you want to sit down, ask.
Go up to the person sitting in the priority seat and say 'excuse me, I'm pregnant and I need to sit down'. That's what I did and I never ever got refused. Once you do it a few times, it gets much, much easier. Honest
I agree with SCARYspicemonster. Lots of people zone out while commuting and just don't notice people around them. You just need to ask politely if you need to sit down and no one has noticed or offered.
It is bloody annoying I agree. I had to get the bus to work while heavily pregnant (so no excuses for people not realising) and was rarely offered a seat. I just picked someone that looked fairly fit and friendly and asked to use their seat. I was never refused though some people did look grumpy at being asked...
I agree that you need to ask - there was a long conversation about this in my (London) office the other day, and a couple of people had offered seats to people they really thought were pregnant to be shouted at when it turned out they were overweight. Both of them said they wouldn't bother offering again as they'd been so upset/embarassed by the reaction. You only need that to happen once to put people off!
There was also an article in the latest NCT magazine on this - which did sensibly point out that it's actually not actually a legal right - and some pregnant people need the seat more than other. I'm very lucky that at 24 weeks I'm still more than happy standing, but then I haven't felt sick and it's my first so I'm not juggling other kids as well with the resulting exhaustion. There's no way that Joe Bloggs on the tube would be able to tell the difference though. Equally, one of those woman sat down not offering her seat might be 8 weeks pregnant, not showing yet, but focusing completely on keeping her breakfast down!
I travel on the tube most days at peak hour... It's only in the last two weeks (I'm now 35 weeks! ) that I have been offered a seat most times. And I'm small and petite and bump is definitely baby bump! Thank goodness I stop work in 2 days... I was happy most of the time to be standing and very grateful when I go get offered a seat. I think if you really need it (i.e. feel like fainting etc), then I think you should ask. P.S. I never really got the guts to do so...
I must have been lucky, in 3 pgs have generally been offered a seat once I was obviously pg at about 24 weeks. But - whenever I haven't I have always asked. It helps now that there is a picture of a pg woman on the priority seats sign - stand there, and if not offered within a minute ask. People will usually jump up. You might not like doing it but it's better than having to get off before your stop feeling rubbish.
I could never bring myself to wear the badge, though.
I used the tube while pregnant during the summer and it was horrible, but you really do have to ask people nicely if they would mind if you sat down. It's daunting the first time, but I felt strongly that sitting down was preferable to fainting and then causing all sorts of problems for everyone on the tube.
Just smile and say please and I never encountered anyone who was anything other than happy to stand for me.
I still feel awkward about having to ask for a seat, I guess partly because I have never been in a position where having a seat is so important. And I may have been an exception but if I have ever sat on the priority seat when not pregnant I have been practically paranoid looking around to ensure there isn't anyone else who needs it more than I do and when in doubt whether the person is pregnant or just big, I would have gotten up and left the seat available. But that's just me.
While I doubt I can ever make myself ask for a seat, I have agreed with my employer that I can come in an hour later\work from home or maybe take the boat in rather than the tube. I already feel that so much of life has been defined by being pregnant; what I can do, eat, drink that labelling myself with a badge would just be too much... plus the two times I have worn the badge I got ignored anyway, which felt even worse than usual.
On another note, I recently took a lift down 7 floors. The lift was fairly full and on the 3rd floor a young, healthy looking woman with a big handbag got on. As her bag was pressing against my stomach, I asked her to put it down and she then proceeded to complain that there was not enough room in the lift for her and that she was only going down one floor. The whole lift burst out laughing
For the person sitting down, there's always the risk that the woman might not be pregnant and might be HUGELY offended by being offered a seat- imagine the embarassment! So I can see why people might not offer. Unless you're wearing tight fitting clothing (no coat- coats confuse matters) and have a very very obvious bump, there's a risk that you'll make some non poor woman feel like a heifer for the rest of the day and give her a complex!
I agree with those who say you need to ask. I have to say, since being pregnant I have thanked my lucky stars I live outside of London and don't face the tube every day- you have my sympathies.
Do ask - people are often in a world of there own, or can't see down a busy carriage.
Also, have you tried the bus? Someone will be along to contradict me in a moment, but I've always found it easier to get a seat on the bus, and they are a bit airier.
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