Imagine the scene: a mother and her young child find themselves boarding a crowded bus at a busy stop. She spots one spot occupied by a man and requests that he move for her child. And to top it off, he's using a wheelchair. Does this seem fair?
Surprising Seat Request
Parents often seek a safe seating arrangement for their young children on buses, making it understandable when they occasionally ask someone to switch seats.
Typically, when a person asks someone to move seats on a crowded bus and their request is denied, they accept it and move on. However, one woman was taken when a man in a wheelchair declined her request to move, as she had expected a different response.
One Empty Seat
A 32-year-old mother took to Reddit to share an incident that occurred while she and her 5-year-old daughter were on a crowded bus.
As luck would have it, there were no empty seats except for one next to a 40-year-old man who happened to be using a wheelchair.
Asking To Move Seats
The mother then approached the man to ask if he would consider relocating their wheelchair to allow her and her young daughter to sit together.
However, the man declined, explaining that he needed the space for his mobility device.
Mom Didn’t Like It
The mother was “taken aback” and “frustrated” by the man's refusal to move seats. Hoping to change his mind, she explained to him that her young daughter needed to sit beside her for safety reasons. Still, he remained unmoved.
Uncomfortable Bus Journey
As a result of the man's refusal, the mother was forced to stand for the entire journey with her young daughter, which was an “uncomfortable” and “tiring” experience for both of them.
“Insensitive” And “Ableist”
The mother was met with criticism from her friend after sharing the story with them, who accused her of being “insensitive” and “ableist” for doing what she did, stating that the person in the wheelchair had a right to the space they needed and that it was unfair of her to ask them to move.
Bad Bus Etiquette?
Questioning her actions in this situation, the mother sought the judgment of the Reddit community with the question, “AITA for asking a disabled person to move seats on the bus for my child?”
The Reddit community didn't hold back, delivering their judgment with a mix of sharp wit, sarcastic remarks, and occasional practical advice, with one Redditor declaring:
“This is the most ableist and selfish AITA question ever.”
A Simple Solution
Commenters were taken aback by how “entitled” the mother was in this situation, recommending her a “simple” solution that could have saved everyone the hassle: “So the child sits and you stand. YTA”
Another chimed in, “Or her 5-year-old could’ve just sat on her lap.”
“Imagine Being So Entitled”
One Redditor, attempting to summarize the story based on their own interpretation, wrote, “Imagine being so entitled that you genuinely think standing up on your perfectly good, working legs is so awful and tiring that you ask someone who is physically unable to stand to get out of your way.”
A Reddit user remarked that the mother's response was over the top, writing that “she had to make a song and dance out of it.”
They explained, “She also doesn't understand how difficult it is to maneuver a wheelchair whilst the bus is moving. That spot is designed for the wheelchair user. YTA.”
Another “YTA” voter wrote, “I'm so sorry your legs were tired from standing. Must be hard when the person in the wheelchair can sit the whole time.”
In a sarcastic tone, someone responded with, “But, but… can’t you see how it is all terribly unfair to OP having to feel pain in her legs from standing, when the man in the wheelchair will never have to experience that suffering???!”
Unnecessary Bus Drama
“Your kid can sit on your lap or you can ask someone else to move,” one commenter suggested, pointing out, “A disabled person literally has ONE spot on the bus they can be.”
In response, someone else expressed, “OP made them both stand rather than stand near daughter while she sat or had her sit on their lap. But nope, tried to make the disabled person feel like an AH by biting off their own nose.”
“You think a person in a wheelchair should MOVE THEIR WHEELCHAIR away from themselves so a 5-year-old can have a seat???? On what planet?” questioned one user.
“A. They need access to their only way of mobility. B. Pop your kid on your lap. C. Sir your kid down and stand. Far out. YTA big time.”
The Downside Of Public Transportation
“YTA. Just because you have a child doesn’t automatically give you priority over others,” commented another individual, suggesting, “If the bus is too crowded, take a cab. Otherwise, you’re going to have to deal with the downside of public transportation.”
“You were frustrated at the response because you’re so accustomed to getting your way. I too have a child the same age. Plan better.”
“Of course YTA!” voted another Redditor.
Using a bit of sarcasm to criticize the mother, they commented, “Oh no, you had to stand on a bus ride, the horror. You had the opportunity to teach your child that some people have disabilities and need certain accommodations, such a shame you wasted it on being a selfish ableist.
“Mothers With Kids Are Entitled”
In the comment section, someone who used to take the bus a lot suggested that “mothers with kids are the most entitled bus users to exist, especially if they have a pram.”
They shared, “There was a guy in a wheelchair on my route and the sheer unbridled karenness that would come out when a mother had to disassemble their pram to let the wheelchair user use their designated spot was a site to behold.”
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Sylvia Silverstone is a passionate writer who loves to share her knowledge and expertise on a wide range of topics, including beauty, life hacks, entertainment, health, news, and money. With a keen eye for detail and a talent for storytelling, Sylvia's engaging writing style keeps readers coming back for more.