One of the struggles of being pregnant that most people aren’t talking about is getting around, from using public transportation to getting in and out of cars to walking slower than usual.
But some people aren’t understanding of a pregnant person’s needs, pointed out the “Am I the A**hole?” (AITA) subReddit.
Redditor Tiredthriwaway55654 had an argument when a man on public transportation who refused to let her sit in the seat next to him that was empty.
When her husband criticized her after, the Original Poster (OP) wondered if she was wrong for how she reacted to the guy.
She asked the sub:
“AITA for sitting on a man’s hand after he refused to remove it from the empty bus seat?”
The OP generally was comfortable using public transportation while pregnant.
“Pretty sure I was an a**hole here, but we’ll see.”
“So, I (30 female) am 8 months pregnant. I take public transport to work daily. I’m always exhausted because I have to work extra time to be able to afford basic necessities.”
“I take the bus to work every day, and oftentimes it’s packed, but I get lucky enough when decent folks volunteer their seats for me.”
“Now I should mention that I don’t use my pregnancy as an excuse to get what I want, but people just offer me their places by themselves, which is kind and sweet.”
But recently, there was an exception.
“On Wednesday, I got on the bus like usual, but this time there was one empty seat.”
“I went to sit down, but I found a guy in his business attire sitting there with his hand on the empty seat (sort of like resting it?).”
“I said, ‘Excuse me,’ and asked him to remove his hand so I could sit.”
“He told me the seat was ‘taken.'”
“I asked by who and he said his hand.”
“NGL (not gonna lie), I laughed a little but wasn’t feeling well, so I asked him to remove it, so I could sit, but he refused again.”
“Folks started staring. I told him I’m tired and needed to sit, and he replied, saying my pregnancy isn’t his problem.”
“I had enough at this point, my legs were burning and my back was hurting, so I went ahead and sat on his hand.”
“He freaked out and tried to remove it quickly while shouting at me.”
“He then started arguing about how disrespectful I was to do this inappropriate thing, and in public no less.”
“I argue back, not going to lie, but then he got off after saying I was being inappropriate and disrespectful.”
“Everyone stared at me, and I just sat there, feeling a bit of shame about what happened.”
The OP had mixed feelings after, especially after talking to her husband.
“As I said earlier, I do get offered seats from others, so I’m being treated well most of the time, but unfortunately run into some people who don’t do that. This guy seemed to be upset about something, and then the argument probably made it worse.”
“I could’ve de-escalated by maybe talking to the driver?”
“However, I’m pretty sure he didn’t pay for the seat just to put his hand on it (who does that?).”
“Also, most of the passengers were younger folks that day. I normally would get offered a seat from older folks.”
“I then told my husband about this incident and he what-the-f**ked the entire time.”
“He then said that I did indeed act inappropriately and shouldn’t have made this guy uncomfortable by sitting on his hand like that.”
“He told me I f**ked up and this was totally inappropriate, despite me saying I was so tired of standing and was in desperate need to sit down.”
Fellow Redditors weighed inby declaring:
- NTA: Not the A**hole
- YTA: You’re the A**hole
- ESH: Everybody Sucks Here
- NAH: No A**holes Here
Some said it was a good idea for the OP to have a seat for safety reasons.
“I hope you told your husband how dangerous it is to stand on the bus when you’re pregnant. That dude was being a jerk and I would hope your husband realizes he should be backing you up.”
“Your balance, endurance, and center of gravity are all severely impaired by pregnancy, and if the bus stops suddenly due to traffic and you fall, it could do serious damage to you and your child.” – Barelyaberry
“I have only ever been on a bus a few times in my life and I remember the time I had to stand, I was tossed around and fell into the person in front of me several times.”
“I can only imagine being 7 months pregnant. Not only would you get tossed around more but it’s dangerous for you and your child to be falling into people, doors, walls, etc.” – MissLyss29
“NTA. I’ve been 8 months pregnant on public transportation and I 100% would have done exactly as you did.”
“Seriously, what did he expect? I’d love to see the AITA post for him… ‘AITA for not moving my hand, causing a pregnant lady to sit on it?’…” – MechanicMel84
“NTA. The man was, as is your husband. Women have to put up with so much crap, especially in transit. Manspreading, being felt up, etc. That guy was being a massive AH taking up a space – and almost every country I’ve been in has priority seating for pregnant women.”
“So f**k him and any person who thinks what you did was wrong. What else were you supposed to do after you gas asked him several times to move his damn hand? Would your husband rather you have done nothing and potentially fallen when the bus made a quick stop?” – Canning-mama-1998
“In my area, all public transit has seats that are designated for disabled, and pregnancy is considered a disability. Bus drivers will usually step up and order able-bodied people out of their seats when they refuse to move.”
“It’s not perfect. And it’s harder on trains to get help, but it should be this way everywhere.”
“Oh, tell your husband you didn’t embarrass the man. The man just had to deal with the consequences of his self-centered bulls**t.” – AerOuAntG3alach
Others thought the husband should have stood up for the OP.
“I hate to break it to you, but your husband has his priorities mixed up. He should be backing you up this, not siding against you.”
“The fact that he thinks that that guy’s hand gets a seat to itself is seriously messed up.”
“Not saying you should call your husband out over this if you don’t want to, but I’d stick to your guns if it comes up again.” – atg4096
“Honestly, this screams patriarchy so loudly.”
“Don’t make a man feel uncomfortable just because you need to sit. Poor man.” – Personality4Hire
“Nah man, this guy is insecure that another man’s hand was on his wife’s butt. Given the circumstances, its ridiculous and he’s obviously in the wrong, but I’d bet a lot of money that’s why he’s not on her side.” – SongsAboutGhosts
“Many years ago, I was eight months pregnant and riding the subway. Another pregnant person walked into the car. Fortunately, I already had a seat, but nobody offered their own. I looked into the eyes of the finance bro sitting next to me and told him to give up his seat.”
“‘Yes, you. Are you going to ask ME to give up my seat?'”
“Being pregnant stiffened up my spine, and taught me that I didn’t have to give zero f**ks after all.” – VioletSampaquita
“I mean, even if OP wasn’t pregnant, there’s nothing worse than someone who takes up extra space on public transport for no reason. For example, the people who put their bag on the seat next to them when there’s a ton of people standing.”
“The fact that OP is super pregnant makes it even more justifiable.” – Motherofbeansthecat
“NTA. Your husband is wrong.”
“When I was in my 20s, 30s, and 40s, I used the public bus system every day and I know this kind of rider.”
“Sometimes they are snobs whose car is in the shop and they are horrified that they have to deal with a, gasp, STRANGER sitting next to them. Or they are touch-phobic. Or they think, ‘I call dibs on two seats,’ should be honored on a crowded bus.”
“Good on you for sitting right down and not letting him get away with hogging two seats! Everybody on that bus was on your side!” – NoxWild
“NTA. You are so far along in your pregnancy, ma’am I am at 7 months and I KNOW the burn you speak of. It would’ve been either to sit on this obnoxious man’s hand or collapse on the bus floor if you stayed up any longer.”
“He wouldn’t have been in an inappropriate situation if he had a shred of empathy. Pregnancy not his problem? Well then his discomfort isn’t your problem either.” – Irmigard
“NTA. Not only are bus seats not for hands but pregnant women get priority over the seats, just like people with reduced mobility. So he was twice TA.”
“And your husband deserves a kick in the butt for not having your back. Tell him this comes from a guy who always had the back of his pregnant wife, as all guys should.” – rickard_mormont
“He told you that your pregnancy wasn’t his problem. Wow. I hate this rotten attitude.”
“We all came into the world the same way – it’s not like there are any other options! I’m sure certain types will argue equal rights and all that, but having children is NOT EQUAL.”
“It it hard work, and heavily pregnant women do need a seat, we’re exhausted, our balance is off, and if we fall, it will injure our unborn baby – or worse. Yet so many people don’t want to give up a seat!”
“Funnily enough, it was older women who would give me their seat – they’d been there and remembered what it’s like.”
“But this guy takes the biscuit. You didn’t ask him for his seat, you asked him to move his hand off the empty seat.”
“You had every right to sit down, more so as you actually needed a seat. He had time to pull his hand away as you sat down. Dunno how he’s going to spin that one so he doesn’t look like an A!”
“Your husband is an A too for that response. He should have your (sore!) back, not taking this idiot’s side.”
“NTA OP, I wish you all the best.” – hi_hola_salut
“Judging by his ‘your pregnancy is not my problem’ quip, he seems like one of those AHs who despises pregnant women (stemming from a hatred toward women in general) and I’m willing to bet he wouldn’t have been such an AH if you weren’t pregnant, and certainly not if you were a man.”
“I could be wrong, he could just be one of those touch-phobic people that’s weird about personal space and happens to be an insufferable dickhead, but when people pull out the ‘your pregnancy isn’t my problem’ card, it’s usually rooted in a deeper dislike of women who have the audacity to have children, and their warped belief that pregnant women feel entitled to being catered to (and usually fragile jealousy that they don’t get catered to themselves).”
“In case it wasn’t clear: NTA” – peach_gushers
“NTA, Pretty sure if the bus is super full your ‘taken seat’ ticket is void, if you didn’t sit on it someone else would’ve don’t feel ashamed.”
“Over here pregnant women come first especially if they ask for a seat, but most of the time they’re offered one before they get the chance. This man to have the audacity to not only deny you the request but put his hand in place… just no.”
“It was called for, don’t put your hand on a seat unless you want to be sat on.” – Astxria2020
While the OP really needed to sit after a long day, she felt conflicted about how she handled the situation after hearing her husband’s criticism.
The subReddit, however, did not agree with her husband’s or the man on the bus’s concerns about acting inappropriately.
The man on the bus acted inappropriately, as well, by withholding an empty seat on a full bus.
Not only was the OP not expecting someone to give up the seat they were actually sitting in, but being so close to the end of her pregnancy, it was preferable for her to remain sitting while the bus was moving for the safety of her and her baby.