We’ve all been through the frustration of finding a parking spot.
But finding a parking spot that we actually want to take can be a whole other obstacle, agreed the “Am I the A**hole?” (AITA) subReddit.
Redditor NeopolitanGuy1 had an old knee injury that made closer parking spots a necessity.
But when a pregnant coworker began to demand his regular parking spot, the Original Poster (OP) wasn’t sure if he was wrong to continue using the spot.
They asked the sub:
“AITA for taking the closest parking space, even though a pregnant coworker asked for it?”
The OP regularly parked in the same parking space.
“We have a parking lot at my workplace, and there are a few prime spots close to the door.”
“Most of them are reserved for managers, etc., but one is unreserved and works on a first-come-first-serve type situation.”
“Most of the time I park there because I have an old knee injury, so the closer, the better, and it’s also more convenient for me.”
“It’s obviously the spot everyone wants, so I always make sure to try to get in the parking lot a bit earlier so I can grab it.”
A pregnant coworker noticed.
“One of my coworkers is pregnant. I don’t have the slightest clue how far along she is, but she’s showing.”
“She has complained about how packed the parking lot gets, which forces her to park a distance from the door.”
“Basically, she’s been going around asking people if they could leave that space open for her.”
“She’s never asked me directly but left a note on my desk a couple of days ago asking the same.”
The OP started to feel the pressure around the office.
“The next day I parked in the spot like always, and she came by my office to ask if I saw her note.”
“I told her I did, but unfortunately, if the spot is open, I’m going to take it.”
“Like, I get it, and I wasn’t going to fight over the spot, but if she wants it, she should just wake up earlier.”
“She tried arguing a bit but eventually left.”
“She lodged an unofficial complaint to the boss, who told me about it but doesn’t want to get involved.”
“I’ve been catching glares and some obvious gossiping murmurs from a couple of coworkers about it, too.”
Fellow Redditors weighed in:
- NTA: Not the A**hole
- YTA: You’re the A**hole
- ESH: Everybody Sucks Here
- NAH: No A**holes Here
Some agreed that the coworker needed to arrive earlier if she wanted the spot.
“NTA. It is an open spot. FIRST COME, FIRST SERVE. She wants it? Then come early enough to get it.”
“Her bump doesn’t give her priority.” – v2den
“I have both been pregnant and had a knee injury that lingers. Both can be painful and impede your movement. I don’t think it’s a matter of not having empathy.”
“OP makes a point to get up early so they can park near the door. If their coworker wants a close spot, she can get up early, too.”
“She’s not just asking for a quick favor, she’s asking for OP to give her pregnancy preference over their knee problem for the foreseeable future.” – Pastawench
“When I was pregnant, I knew I had to get up and come in ten minutes earlier if I wanted a space in the closest car park to work. I certainly didn’t expect special treatment. Some women honestly think they are the first people to ever have a child.” – Dashcamkitty
“I had severe joint problems with two of my pregnancies and was able to get a temporary handicapped placard. Honestly, both people in the OP should talk to their doctors about them.”
“If I were her and I cared that much about the space I’d get to work sooner.” – noteworthybalance
“NTA, but the phrase is ‘first come, first served.'”
“If you left it open, somebody else would take it who’s not aware of this unofficial deal, unless your office has like, three people in it.”
“I also concur with other commenters that management can take care of this if they want to.” – Queueded
“I agree wholeheartedly, but empathy can be considered too. It’s not always fun being pregnant, and I would be mad at my husband if he acted like this, the same would go for an elderly person, etc. It’s just a nice thing to do and can make someone’s day easier.”
“I couldn’t go grocery shopping or had to do short trips with my second kiddo because of pelvic pain (that my doctor said was ‘normal’), I had nice people that helped me out occasionally reach something or let me cut in line. They didn’t have to, but just were being nice and I like to do the same.”
“My husband had to take over shopping after a while. OP does have a point anyways with his old knee injury, but just putting out a different point of view.” – EEJR
“I’m wondering, though. If OP can get to work early enough to get that one close spot, every other non-manager spot in the area ought to be available as well. I’d be very interested in knowing exactly how much of a difference from the prized spot to the second-best spot.”
“As for OP, NTA. Just curious.” – PrivateEyes2020
Others wondered if the OP would qualify for a parking pass for their knee injury.
“OP, NTA, but maybe you should look into getting a sticker if your knee is that bad.” – Patient-Mix-6016
“My coworker had vertigo and it was dangerous for her to climb stairs during an episode. She was given a handicapped space in the garage so she didn’t have to use the garage stairs. It was a game changer.” – MaleficientExtent1777
“As someone who can walk X number of feet ‘on a good day’ unaided, that doesn’t matter. It’s not relevant. If she has days where she CAN’T walk that far, those are the only ones you talk about on that form.”
“If she has a good day where she doesn’t NEED the accommodation, she can always park in general parking and walk. It’s about having the resource when needed, not necessarily needing it every single time.”
“Never talk about ‘good days’ on disability forms. Ever. Go by the worst possible scenario always.”
“Signed, Someone who has been navigating the hell that is disability accommodations for a couple of decades now.” – MaxxFitz76
“NAH, No A**holes Here. ‘Accommodations for pregnancy’ at work are a thing under ADA guidelines (and some state laws), so her talking to the boss about a close parking spot could fall under that umbrella. Sounds like he wasn’t convinced.”
“But you realize that pregnancy is not permanent right? So you could allow her the spot (or really, just not zoom in early every single day to snag it; if someone else does then she has to deal with them) until she goes out on leave.”
“That probably would have left you in better standing all over the office than doing what you’re ‘officially permitted’ to do. It’s nice to be nice.” – RB1327
“Actually, both the OP and pregnant coworker have a legitimate claim to closer spots due to medical issues, and that means managers should give up their spots, not that they should be fighting over the same spot.” – Plantsanddanger
A few also pointed out that a few parking spots for pregnant people would be useful.
“NTA. If HR (Human Resources) wants to create a pregnancy parking spot, they can. And those exist!!” – OddAsk9838
“Some stores in my area have spaces they call ‘pregnant’ spots. These also include a ‘parent with child’ sign as well. The spaces, however, are not legally protected as handicapped spots are.”
“Therefore, it’s just a courtesy to leave them for that purpose and many do not. The store can’t force anyone to move from the spot. Many people ignore that green sign.” – KoolJozeeKatt
“If she needs that spot, HR can make it pregnancy parking. If they don’t, they don’t. Not OP’s problem and OP, NTA.” – Sorry-Independent-98
“Most doctors are very dismissive of problems during pregnancy.”
“Your feet can be swollen to the size of boats making walking extremely painful, yeah, that’s normal. Constant crotch pain to where it hurts to be standing let alone walking and feels like being stabbed while walking. Normal.”
“Every pregnancy SHOULD be considered a disability and should be treated as such. Sorry, not sorry.” – Corduroycat1
While the subReddit could understand that the pregnant coworker also needed a parking space that was close to the building to help with her symptoms, they also agreed that the OP did not have to give up the spot while they also needed it. A prior knee injury was no joke.
It would have made more sense for the company to have more parking spaces available for their employees who might physically be in need of closer parking, perhaps even above the managers who already had set parking spots for every day of the year.