Are commuters rude or afraid of offending when they don’t get up for a pregnant lady?
She’s 30 weeks pregnant, but Mathilda Grist is often forced to stand during her 30-minute train trip to work while everyone else sits around.
Grist, 29 years old, took to Facebook to vent her frustrations:
“How can an obviously pregnant woman get on a train with no spare seats and not be offered one by any of the passengers? The people sitting down around me would have clearly seen me. As my pregnancy showed I didn’t think it would be an issue getting a seat but I’m shocked and the people I talk to at work are surprised.’’
Sadly, she was not alone in her experience with other mums responding:
“This happened to me a lot when pregnant.”
“[Commuters] have no manners.”
One mum said she ended up “sitting on the floor on a 38 degree day [because I was] too wimpy [to ask seated passengers to move]”.
So what on earth is going on that people aren't leaping from their seats to offer pregnant women a seat?
Social analyst David Chalke told News Corp, "Too often these days you open a door for a lady and get a mouthful so people are giving up. And if you get up and offer your seat people would think you are a weirdo because that behaviour is so strange and people don’t want to stand out in a crowd."
This is what I like to call an excuse. A terrible one.
Which is what got us talking in the office (and what annoys me every morning I catch the bus and see no one getting up for pregnant women or the elderly).
To those who say men are confused about whether or not it's offensive to offer a woman their seat: let me tell you that when you are pregnant and someone offers you their seat, you aren't thinking of equality amongst the sexes. What you are thinking is: "You are the most amazing person in the whole world." And you would be right. Because it seems like no-one gets up for pregnant ladies any more. Particularly men (yes, men I am taking a swipe at you...particularly the ones who get on my bus and don't get up.)