Pregnant Woman Ignored by Commuters Ends Up Passed Out on Train Floor

priority seating on a trainCommon courtesy seems to be dying in a worrying way these days. Chivalry? Fuhgettaboutit! From the U.S. to the U.K. to Canada, people are sitting idly by as pregnant women stand right in front of them as they stare at their phones. And there are upsetting repercussions for expectant mothers in the wake of this upsetting epidemic.

A pregnant woman from Calgary named Mandy Flynn is actually making headlines this week for speaking out about her personal experience while riding the Canadian city's crowded C-Trains. When fellow commuters failed to offer her a seat, Flynn ended up fainting.


To the Calgary Eyeopener radio show, she relayed a recent unnerving experience in which "nobody was giving up their seats," and when she felt herself "at the point of nearly blacking out," she chose to speak up and ask a girl to move, but it was too late. "I just didn’t get the words out on time and ended up fainting."

While it's disturbing to think no one offered Flynn a seat, I can't help but think this may be a sign she and pregnant women in her shoes need to take more of a stand. (No pun intended.) There was no reason she should have had to wait until she was about to pass out to ask for a seat! Especially in the wake of this disconcerting trend of lacking common courtesy and etiquette, expectant mothers must be more empowered to speak up and assert themselves. Particularly if they're concerned that standing on a train could pose a risk, as it clearly did for Flynn.

The Calgary mom-to-be also discussed a more recent trip on the train, which turned out to be as dismaying as the previous had been distressful. Left standing, despite having made eye contact with people in the priority boarding seats, Flynn reports that "everybody looked up and then looked back down at their handheld devices." It wasn't until about four stops into the trip that a woman offered to get up for her, but as far as Flynn is concerned, "At that point, the effect of kindness has come and gone."

Her frustration is completely understandable. I'd be just as irritated! But maybe what Flynn experienced yet again is a lesson not only to the rude commuters. Maybe eye contact is not enough. No, pregnant women shouldn't have to say, "May I please sit down?" but if it comes down to the sort of situation Flynn describes, it may be the kick in the pants people need to start to do right thing.

For now, we can only hope that perhaps by sharing her story, Flynn will encourage more of us all to speak up and spread awareness about this ugly, shameful trend. Because to think we could be living in a world where people think it's okay to sit idly and selfishly by as expectant moms risk passing out on a train is heartbreaking. We're better than that ... aren't we?

What do you think could be done to spur people to do the right thing and give up their seat for pregnant women?


Image via surveying/Flickr

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