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AIBU?

Who is BU? Antenatal waiting room

184 replies

waitingroomangst · 27/07/2017 12:20

NC just in case it's rather outing. I was at the antenatal clinic this morning getting a routine check up at the hospital. The waiting room was PACKED, there were hardly any seats free and we were told to expect long delays in being seen today.

2 seats are currently free so a woman with her two DSs one maybe 4, the other 7-8ish make their way to the seats. The younger child sits on mums lap, the older child takes the free seat next to her.

About 5-10 minutes pass and now there are no seats free in the waiting room and a few women now have to stand while waiting. Woman whose child is in seat doesn't ask child to vacate seat for heavily pregnant women.

AIBU to think that the child should have got off the seat to let a pregnant woman sit down? There was a "kids corner" full of toys and books he could have distracted himself with and played with his brother, additionally I don't know why the mother didn't bring them any books or an iPad or something for her sons while waiting.

This is my first child so please feel free to tell me "I don't understand because I don't yet have kids" or something to that effect.

OP posts:
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CherryChasingDotMuncher · 27/07/2017 19:42

Amanduh that's awful! Yet some people on this thread will put it down to you to ask, as apparently being pregnant incurs no special treatment, even when in labour Hmm

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thatwouldbeanecumenicalmatter · 27/07/2017 19:43

Quite Cherry!

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DioneTheDiabolist · 27/07/2017 20:06

Amanduh, did you not feel "respected" by those men who wear waiting for you to ask them to move? Did you not realise that if they had offered you their seat women in the UK wouldn't get equal pay and women in Saudi would be prevented from driving? Like I know you were in labour and in an antenatal waiting room but men and children need seats there too and, well some pregnant women don't want to sit down sometimes. Why couldn't you be more like one of those ones?Shock

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ChardonnaysPrettySister · 27/07/2017 20:20

Well, fuck that respect.

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GinaFordCortina · 27/07/2017 20:33

It's a fact of life that not every person you approach will be a lovely human and some will be total cunts. Unfortunately occasionally those people are occupying a seat you want. So asking for a seat will get you abuse.

A normal person might assume that in an antenatal ward a decent male would give the seat to the pregnant woman next to him. Even if he has got some physical issues of his own, he is in a space she has to be in so she should be accommodated first.

So she might assume that a man who has chosen to ignore the pregnant woman is probably he sort of asshole who wont politely give up a seat

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coddiwomple · 27/07/2017 20:57

DioneTheDiabolist yes, that's exactly what people have said. Hmm

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DioneTheDiabolist · 27/07/2017 22:42

I know you didn't say it Coddi, you said that pregnant women in antenatal waiting rooms should "get over" themselves. Shock

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Fruitcorner123 · 27/07/2017 23:24

DioneTheDiabolist well said.

The man is far worse than the 7 year old boy or his probably stressed and possibiltity distracted mother. I would have asked my son to move but if my DH was sitting when there were pregnant women standing I would have been horrified!

I am pregnant and on a recent day out in London i had seats given up for me on tubes by men, a woman and a child (prompted by mum whose lap he then sat on) i really needed to sit because i have extra needs at the moment. Does that mean I don't deserve equal pay morphene?

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Morphene · 27/07/2017 23:24

amanduh did you ask people to give you a seat?

And yes, as I've previously said, I would consider it patronising to assume an elderly person needed a seat, but was somehow too childlike and incapable to ask for it.

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Morphene · 27/07/2017 23:27

fruit because you are letting people assume you need help. you are letting people assume you need special treatment.

If you do then that's absolutely fine. Ask for it.

But living contentedly in a society where women, even pregnant women, are assumed to be helpless and need looking after, doesn't lead to equal pay.

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Mumof56 · 27/07/2017 23:32

YANBU The child and men should have got up. It's only manners. If the lady they offered it to was happy standing, maybe the next lady in would have appreciated it. Either way, they should have vacated it.

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DioneTheDiabolist · 27/07/2017 23:40

Morphene, pregnant women in antenatal waiting rooms do need help, that's why they're there. They are there because they need special treatment in a special facility provided for pregnant women with specially trained medical staff who are there to treat them.

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Morphene · 27/07/2017 23:52

They don't necessarily need to sit down though do they?

I would have needed a seat from 8 weeks to around 26 weeks, and then wouldn't have again until about 36 weeks when the SPD kicked in.

If I needed a seat at any clinic I would ask for one. I would resent the assumption being made on my behalf.

I don't disagree that there should be fewer people who don't need to be there cluttering the place up, but asking that all men and children rise from their seats any time they chance to see a woman they think is pregnant, is utter BS...and often hugely embarrassing and humiliating. I admit your chance of a positive hit is much higher at an antenatal clinic...but still....it simpler for everyone if people who actually DO need a sit ask for one, then nobody needs to be making assumptions about anyone at all.

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HeteronormativeHaybales · 27/07/2017 23:56

I wasn't keen on people offering me their seats when I was pregnant, though I was obviously kind and polite about the offers i got. I'm the same now with offers of help with my buggy (esp when they pick it up without asking first and lift up their end too high for shortarse me).

FWIW, one of the reasons why I love London is that on more than one visit, multiple people offered my dc - aged 8 and 6ish, so not unable to stand - seats on the tube, without us asking or looking helpless. (And one very lovely TfL worker saw me with a heavy bag and a baby in a sling and carried the bag all the way down a massive escalator for me, out of his way).

In the OP's situation I would have asked my kids to move and possibly stood myself if I had felt they both needed to sit down. But tbh I can't get hugely worked up about a child taking up a seat. Male partners, on the other hand Hmm

To go back to my first point, I always felt i would (and should) ask if I did feel I needed a seat. I've possibly been in Germany too long, but I do think it should be fine for a pregnant woman to say 'would you mind letting me have that seat, I need it'.

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BlackStars · 28/07/2017 00:01

Whist I think people should have left seats for pregnant women I disagree that all pregnant women need seats, are exhausted, can't stand etc - I find it insulting to women that the fact they are pregnant should be treated as some kind of life debilitating condition - some cope just fine and are active etc throughout pregnancy. Who even knows which women in there are actually pregnant - I've sat there for an hour awaiting a miscarriage scan - I've also put on very little weight in pregnancies so didn't even show til gone 25 weeks or so so would never have been offered. If you really need to sit in a chair I think you need to ask to sit in a chair. In this scenario I would have just sat on the floor as I have done on trains while pregnant.

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DioneTheDiabolist · 28/07/2017 00:05

Since none of the non pregnant people in an antenatal waiting room are privy to the circumstances of every pregnant woman there then they should vacate their seat so the pregnant women there can choose to sit if and when they need to.

Any man who finds it hugely embarrassing and humiliating to vacate his seat in an antenatal waiting room to free it up for patients shouldn't be there.

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CherryChasingDotMuncher · 28/07/2017 00:19

I'm going to assume Morphene has never been in labour because you can't speak let alone ask people in a waiting room for pregnant women to give up a seat!!


Are you seriously telling me Morphene that if you were in an antenatal clinic, not as a patient, and a woman was in labour, you wouldn't give up your seat - even though you suspect she needed it - because she didn't ask? By god you sound like hard work.

I'm gonna say it again, I'll try to make it as simple as possible:

  • in an antenatal clinic, only pregnant women are patients. Everyone else is a visitor.
  • this means that any seat going should be given to a patient, aka a pregnant woman
  • if you are not a pregnant woman then you are a visitor and not a patient
  • this means the patient's right to a seat trumps yours
  • this means you give it up for them. I don't care if you can't be arsed. I don't care if you think they should ask first. I don't care if you have brought your Nice Nigel along who can't possibly be half a foot away from his sweedums. It's not your seat. The pregnant woman doesn't need a reason to sit down. She is the patient


If you don't abide by the above, or make patients 'work' for your seat, I'm going to assume that you're a tremendous cunt.
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CherryChasingDotMuncher · 28/07/2017 00:20

But living contentedly in a society where women, even pregnant women, are assumed to be helpless and need looking after, doesn't lead to equal pay

So, suffering while pregnant does??

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CherryChasingDotMuncher · 28/07/2017 00:23

Also I don't believe you actually think being offered a seat is 'humiliating', yet asking a stranger to give their seat up is a doddle.

I've never met anyone who'd be furious about being offered a seat when pregnant.

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DioneTheDiabolist · 28/07/2017 00:45

Blackstar, that hour wait for your miscarriage scan can't have been easy for you. Thanks You may have chosen to sit on the floor of a train, but no pregnant woman should ever have to sit on the floor of an antenatal waiting room because non pregnant people are taking up chairs.

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Migraleve · 28/07/2017 01:02

Far too judgemental.

I have a 7yo and if I had to take her plus another child to an appointment I would struggle as she has autism. Going to strange places seriously stresses her and if I managed to get her to sit by me I would doing fucking well. I would not make her sit on the pissing floor; that would set her off and cause me extreme problems in managing her, the other child and my appointment.

Seriously people need to be slightly less offended and annoyed at shit they know NOTHING about.

It was not this mums fault that clinic was busy, running late or lacking in seats.

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theymademejoin · 28/07/2017 08:46

Not all pregnant women need seats. However, some do and offering a seat to a pregnant woman is not saying you think she is incapable. It is showing manners in the same way offering a cup of tea to a visitor is showing manners. I don't put my visitors in a situation where they have to ask for a cup of tea. I offer and they accept or decline. Same with a seat - it should be offered to someone who may potentially need it and they can accept our decline. It's not demeaning or insulting to them unless you do a Mrs. Doyle on it.

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Amanduh · 28/07/2017 08:46

No, I didn't ask any of the men playing on their phones mainly if I could have their seat, because I could barely open my eyes whilst the midwives told me it was very busy and there were seats outside, in full earshot of the entire room. I'd let anybody 'assume I need special treatment' when I'm in labour. Funnily enough I did need looking after!

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Crumbs1 · 28/07/2017 08:55

You are right. The child should offer the adult (pregnant or not) a seat. It's just good manners and they should know this by 7 years old. Parents do their children no favours allowing them to grow up inconsiderate or thinking their wishes are 'needs'.

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Mulledwine1 · 28/07/2017 09:05

Scans are usually carried out at 12 and 20 weeks aren't they?

Do you actually need someone to give you a seat then? If I felt sick or eg had backache and needed to sit down I'd have asked. Otherwise I'd have been fine standing up at that stage of the pregnancy. I realise it depends on the individual but I don't think you need a seat as a matter of course.

It's different if you're having a late scan at say 37 weeks and have a massive bump.

However, as a general rule, I would expect kids to sit on the floor or stand up, and give their seat up for an adult, pregnant or not.

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