Etiquette Hell

General Etiquette => Life...in general => Topic started by: AuntyEm on November 10, 2012, 06:34:09 AM

Title: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
Post by: AuntyEm on November 10, 2012, 06:34:09 AM
Continuing with crowded bus/subway etiquette, what about someone bringing a stroller on crowded public transport during rush hour?  I think they should be banned, along with bicycles, unless it can be collapsed and the child taken out and put on the person's lap.

I'm amazed at the people who bring them on and are oblivious to blocked aisles, blocked empty seats and people trying to hang on to poles around their strollers.
Title: Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
Post by: WillyNilly on November 10, 2012, 07:56:09 AM
Well in my city (NYC) that actually is the rule. Strollers must be folded on buses and trains during rush hour (actually it might be always but I doubt anyone cares if its not crowded). Its pretty well enforced on buses, on trains its only enforced if a person in authority sees it and the stroller is causing a problem.
Title: Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
Post by: misha412 on November 10, 2012, 07:59:14 AM
If the bus authority does not ban them, there is nothing much to do about them.

However, I am with you about banning them unless they collapse. I have seen some that take up the equivalent of three adults standing close together. You put that on a bus, not only is it inconvenient, it is dangerous as well. When you pair that with a parent who is oblivious or uncaring to the impact of their stroller to other passengers, you get a bad situation.
Title: Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
Post by: camlan on November 10, 2012, 08:00:34 AM
I'm coming at the from the angle that having lived in Boston, where many people don't own cars and use public transportation or walking exclusively. I don't have children, so I don't really have a stake in this matter.

Strollers are allowed on public transport in Boston. In fact, I just checked the MBTA website and they have very little to say about strollers, except that recent accessibility changes make things easier for people with strollers as well as the disabled and the new larger buses they are planning would give more room for strollers. There are no rules for where you can have a stroller or having to collapse them or anything about them. (I found that a little surprising, actually.)

Parents should attempt to minimize the effects of strollers on the rest of the passengers, but I don't think strollers should be banned. If you know you will be using a stroller on public transport, you should get a small, lightweight, easy to handle stroller. One with a small footprint that won't take up the entire aisle.

Taking a child out of a stroller is fine, if there are seats available for the parent to sit in. But on a really crowded bus or subway car, there probably won't be. Tiny babies aren't much of a problem to hold, but larger ones are, if you have to go any distance.

Holding a squirming 25 pound baby while trying to maintain your balance clinging to a rod over your head and keeping hold of a stroller--well, you might end up inconveniencing your fellow passengers by falling. Or dropping the baby. Or losing hold of the stroller. And small children who can stand and walk frequently can't reach the available handholds and are safer stashed in the stroller.

There's also the fact that crowds of people pushing into a car or bus don't allow the parent any time to get the child out of the stroller and close the stroller before the bus is in motion and the parent needs at least one hand to hold onto something.

The best compromise I see is a parent sitting down on a seat that faces the center of the bus, and putting the stroller right in front of them, holding it close to the seats. But that can only happen when there are seats available.

I don't think the parents are oblivious so much as making the best of a tough situation.
Title: Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
Post by: Deetee on November 10, 2012, 08:29:30 AM
Public transportation is just that " public" . In many cities it is the only way to get around for many people. As was pointed out by camlan taking a child out of a stroller can be hazardous and annoying if the kid is mobile or squirmy and downright dangerous if the parent is standing and has more than one kid. A stroller takes up space but contains the kid.

Monster strollers are not polite in general, but I don't think requiring umbrella strollers only is entirely reasonable as those things are designed to kill your back ( I'm pretty short but have to become a hunchback to push ours)

Yes it is annoying and the parents should try to minimize with smaller strollers and off peak travel, but banning or requiring folding is not practical.

 I have kinda sighed at people on buses with huge strollers, but then I think how glad I am to have a car because public transit with kids is the opposite of fun.
Title: Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
Post by: johelenc1 on November 10, 2012, 09:13:04 AM
I've always wondered how in the world parents get around on subways and buses with little kids in places like NYC.  I've actually been in the city with my girls - in a stroller - and what I discovered in that people are very kind.  They will help you down the stairs and generally, you can find someone to help you.

Banning strollers is a terrible idea.  First, children have a right to "space" on the subway(as an example) as much as anyone else.  The stroller is apart of their space.  I appreciate that their need for space is more than others, but they still should have a place to be. 

Second, If you want to ban strollers because they take up too much room...what about wheelchairs?  On a bus, a wheelchair takes up a ton of space and it takes forever to load.  You could get 3 or 4 people in the space of a chair - and faster too.  So, how about no more wheelchairs?

Third, having parents hold their children is just not possible - or safe.  I have twins.  How am I supposed to hold two squirming 2 years old on my lap while being pressed on all sides by a ton of people?  What if I have a third child - maybe a 4 year old?  I need to hold his hand.  And, what if we are all standing up?  It's impossible.  And, then, once I am holding two babies on my lap, who's going to fold up - and then unfold - the stroller for me?  What if I have packages or groceries?  Where do those go?  On a subway, once my stroller is folded up, how do I unfold the stroller to put the babies back in (since now all space is used up), and if I can't, how do I pick up the stroller, my packages, and my two babies and make it to the doors so I can put everything back together on the platform.  If I do have space to open the stroller (although I'm not sure how, since my hands are full), I probably need to start at least a stop ahead to get everything loaded so I can make it through the doors before they close.

Fourth - Taking a child in and out of a stroller, folding it up, then unfolding it, and putting the child/ren back in is time consuming.  Depending on the length of the trip, one could arrive at their destination by the time they get everything situated, and then have to put everything back the way it was.

Fifth- some strollers are medically necessary.  Some children can't walk and must be in a stroller.  I suppose that's similar to
a wheelchair, which takes me back to point one.

Personally, I think it's a rather selfish attitude to expect and require one type of person to give up space they deserve just to fit one or two more people.  I understand that at rush hour buses, trains and subways are crowded.  But, really, that's just life.  So you have to wait for the next train.  That's just the way it is.

Kids are people too.  They have as much right to space on public transportation as anyone else.  Their space just includes the stroller they are riding in.  Sure, parents in cities like NY should try to be space-conscious as possible in choosing a stroller, but you can only compact a double stroller but so much.

Unless you want to just ban kids altogether, banning strollers is just a ridiculous, impractical, and really, in my opinion, a rather selfish idea.
Title: Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
Post by: sunnygirl on November 10, 2012, 09:22:58 AM
Buses here have special areas for strollers and wheelchairs. People are allowed to stand there if there are no strollers or wheelchairs. I think that's a good policy.
Title: Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
Post by: stkatie00 on November 10, 2012, 09:23:26 AM
I've always wondered how in the world parents get around on subways and buses with little kids in places like NYC.  I've actually been in the city with my girls - in a stroller - and what I discovered in that people are very kind.  They will help you down the stairs and generally, you can find someone to help you.

Banning strollers is a terrible idea.  First, children have a right to "space" on the subway(as an example) as much as anyone else.  The stroller is apart of their space.  I appreciate that their need for space is more than others, but they still should have a place to be. 

Second, If you want to ban strollers because they take up too much room...what about wheelchairs?  On a bus, a wheelchair takes up a ton of space and it takes forever to load.  You could get 3 or 4 people in the space of a chair - and faster too.  So, how about no more wheelchairs?

Third, having parents hold their children is just not possible - or safe.  I have twins.  How am I supposed to hold two squirming 2 years old on my lap while being pressed on all sides by a ton of people?  What if I have a third child - maybe a 4 year old?  I need to hold his hand.  And, what if we are all standing up?  It's impossible.  And, then, once I am holding two babies on my lap, who's going to fold up - and then unfold - the stroller for me?  What if I have packages or groceries?  Where do those go?  On a subway, once my stroller is folded up, how do I unfold the stroller to put the babies back in (since now all space is used up), and if I can't, how do I pick up the stroller, my packages, and my two babies and make it to the doors so I can put everything back together on the platform.  If I do have space to open the stroller (although I'm not sure how, since my hands are full), I probably need to start at least a stop ahead to get everything loaded so I can make it through the doors before they close.

Fourth - Taking a child in and out of a stroller, folding it up, then unfolding it, and putting the child/ren back in is time consuming.  Depending on the length of the trip, one could arrive at their destination by the time they get everything situated, and then have to put everything back the way it was.

Fifth- some strollers are medically necessary.  Some children can't walk and must be in a stroller.  I suppose that's similar to
a wheelchair, which takes me back to point one.

Personally, I think it's a rather selfish attitude to expect and require one type of person to give up space they deserve just to fit one or two more people.  I understand that at rush hour buses, trains and subways are crowded.  But, really, that's just life.  So you have to wait for the next train.  That's just the way it is.

Kids are people too.  They have as much right to space on public transportation as anyone else.  Their space just includes the stroller they are riding in.  Sure, parents in cities like NY should try to be space-conscious as possible in choosing a stroller, but you can only compact a double stroller but so much.

Unless you want to just ban kids altogether, banning strollers is just a ridiculous, impractical, and really, in my opinion, a rather selfish idea.

POD to all of this. I have 11.5 month old twins, and with their stroller, would we take up space for 3 (maybe 4) people? Yes, but that's because there ARE three of us, and I can't hold them both if it's just me with them. At least, not comfortably, and it would be pretty darn near impossible to hold them, collapse their stroller, then I collapse it and get off the Metro (I'm in Northern Virginia). Fortunately, I haven't had to use the Metro with them yet, and I would not plan on using it during rush hour, and would be as unobtrusive as possible, but sometimes, the logistics mean that I'm going to take up more room.
Title: Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
Post by: WillyNilly on November 10, 2012, 09:41:55 AM
I like the way NYC does it. It is the "official" rule (its also against the rules to eat or drink on buses & subways) but its usually not enforced. This way if there is a problem (a fight let's say) there is a quick & easy resolution, but 99.9% of the time its just ignored so long as the rulebreaker is polite about it. Basically by having it as silent rule it puts a burden making darn sure to be polite on the rule breaker because there's no room for entitlement. And for the most part it absolutely works. And in turn, yeah NYers tend to be polite back - I can't even say how many times I've picked up and end to a stroller to help it up stairs, or made goofy faces at an aggitated kid to get them to grin; its just what one does on the subway - we're all in it together.
Title: Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
Post by: AnnaJ on November 10, 2012, 10:02:48 AM
Second, If you want to ban strollers because they take up too much room...what about wheelchairs?  On a bus, a wheelchair takes up a ton of space and it takes forever to load.  You could get 3 or 4 people in the space of a chair - and faster too.  So, how about no more wheelchairs?

This is nowhere near comparable and I'm disappointed to see this comment on EH.  Comparing someone who is forced to use a wheelchair to the someone *choosing* to use a stroller is unconscionable. 
 
 
Title: Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
Post by: LeveeWoman on November 10, 2012, 10:09:02 AM
Second, If you want to ban strollers because they take up too much room...what about wheelchairs?  On a bus, a wheelchair takes up a ton of space and it takes forever to load.  You could get 3 or 4 people in the space of a chair - and faster too.  So, how about no more wheelchairs?

This is nowhere near comparable and I'm disappointed to see this comment on EH.  Comparing someone who is forced to use a wheelchair to the someone *choosing* to use a stroller is unconscionable.

I'm not comparing the stroller with a wheelchair as a means to get around but, what is a parent to do if she needs to go to the grocery store and must take her baby? That stroller is a necessity, not a luxury. Same with a parent who has more than one child.
Title: Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
Post by: Tabby Uprising on November 10, 2012, 10:14:30 AM
Second, If you want to ban strollers because they take up too much room...what about wheelchairs?  On a bus, a wheelchair takes up a ton of space and it takes forever to load.  You could get 3 or 4 people in the space of a chair - and faster too.  So, how about no more wheelchairs?

This is nowhere near comparable and I'm disappointed to see this comment on EH.  Comparing someone who is forced to use a wheelchair to the someone *choosing* to use a stroller is unconscionable.

I'm not comparing the stroller with a wheelchair as a means to get around but, what is a parent to do if she needs to go to the grocery store and must take her baby? That stroller is a necessity, not a luxury. Same with a parent who has more than one child.

Big ol' POD to johelenc1 and LeveeWoman.
Title: Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
Post by: WillyNilly on November 10, 2012, 10:17:01 AM
Second, If you want to ban strollers because they take up too much room...what about wheelchairs?  On a bus, a wheelchair takes up a ton of space and it takes forever to load.  You could get 3 or 4 people in the space of a chair - and faster too.  So, how about no more wheelchairs?

This is nowhere near comparable and I'm disappointed to see this comment on EH.  Comparing someone who is forced to use a wheelchair to the someone *choosing* to use a stroller is unconscionable.

I'm not comparing the stroller with a wheelchair as a means to get around but, what is a parent to do if she needs to go to the grocery store and must take her baby? That stroller is a necessity, not a luxury. Same with a parent who has more than one child.

No a stroller is a want, not a need.  About 25% of the parents I know have never even owned a stroller let alone used one, even with multiple kids.  Heck my parents didn't have one for me (and I was a second child, less then 3 years younger then my older sibling). 

Strollers absolutely make things easier and they are a valid parenting choice, but they are not required to function in society with a child. 

A wheelchair on the other hand often is a required in order for the user to function successfully in the world and therefore is a need.

And that's why for example, handicapped parking spaces are legally protected and "mommy" spaces are merely an unenforceable courtesy.
Title: Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
Post by: Tabby Uprising on November 10, 2012, 10:22:21 AM
Okay, a stroller may not be a need in the way that food and water are a need, but they aren't exclusively a luxury item.  You may not die without a stroller, but they make things really, really, really, really helpful especially for individuals without cars who rely upon public transport. 

Title: Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
Post by: sunnygirl on November 10, 2012, 10:27:20 AM
Second, If you want to ban strollers because they take up too much room...what about wheelchairs?  On a bus, a wheelchair takes up a ton of space and it takes forever to load.  You could get 3 or 4 people in the space of a chair - and faster too.  So, how about no more wheelchairs?

This is nowhere near comparable and I'm disappointed to see this comment on EH.  Comparing someone who is forced to use a wheelchair to the someone *choosing* to use a stroller is unconscionable.

I think your quote tag got a little bit borked there, just fyi - somehow johelenc1's post got transposed with my post about designed stroller areas on UK buses. (Sorry, don't mean to be difficult just wanted to make clear the quote above is not my post.)
Title: Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
Post by: Tabby Uprising on November 10, 2012, 10:35:06 AM
Second, If you want to ban strollers because they take up too much room...what about wheelchairs?  On a bus, a wheelchair takes up a ton of space and it takes forever to load.  You could get 3 or 4 people in the space of a chair - and faster too.  So, how about no more wheelchairs?

This is nowhere near comparable and I'm disappointed to see this comment on EH.  Comparing someone who is forced to use a wheelchair to the someone *choosing* to use a stroller is unconscionable.

I think your quote tag got a little bit borked there, just fyi - somehow johelenc1's post got transposed with my post about designed stroller areas on UK buses. (Sorry, don't mean to be difficult just wanted to make clear the quote above is not my post.)

May I just interject to say "borked" is my new favorite word?  ;D
Title: Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
Post by: Acadianna on November 10, 2012, 10:44:34 AM
Second, If you want to ban strollers because they take up too much room...what about wheelchairs?  On a bus, a wheelchair takes up a ton of space and it takes forever to load.  You could get 3 or 4 people in the space of a chair - and faster too.  So, how about no more wheelchairs?

This is nowhere near comparable and I'm disappointed to see this comment on EH.  Comparing someone who is forced to use a wheelchair to the someone *choosing* to use a stroller is unconscionable.

I don't think this is quite fair to parents, nor do I understand why the comparison is "unconscionable."  Parents don't always choose to use a stroller; they usually use them out of necessity, especially on public transportation.  Like a person in a wheelchair, babies either cannot walk for long distances or cannot walk at all.  Parents aren't always able to carry them (as several others have mentioned), and having a small child stand on public transportation, even if it's possible, could be highly dangerous.
Title: Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
Post by: JenJay on November 10, 2012, 10:44:55 AM
(snipping the quote tree)

No a stroller is a want, not a need.  About 25% of the parents I know have never even owned a stroller let alone used one, even with multiple kids.  Heck my parents didn't have one for me (and I was a second child, less then 3 years younger then my older sibling). 

Strollers absolutely make things easier and they are a valid parenting choice, but they are not required to function in society with a child. 

A wheelchair on the other hand often is a required in order for the user to function successfully in the world and therefore is a need.

And that's why for example, handicapped parking spaces are legally protected and "mommy" spaces are merely an unenforceable courtesy.

I understand what you're saying because a stroller isn't a need in the way oxygen and food are, but for some people it's definitely more than a want. My kids were very close in age. If DH was at work with the car and I needed to get into town via public transport there's no way I could have done so without a stroller. It would be neither safe nor practical to juggle a 3 year old, 1.5 year old a newborn on a bus without a stroller. We'd have taken up at least as much space (and been a lot more disruptive) with me trying to keep them all on/near me. Even with the youngest worn in a carrier and the older two in seats we still would have taken up 2-3 spaces. I would have done everything possible to ensure I wasn't inconveniencing anyone but going without a stroller? No way. I was lucky because I could schedule most of my errands for when DH was home and we had a 2nd car just in case but obviously a lot of people don't have all those options.

Not to threadjack, but I personally find those mommy/expecting parking spaces to be ridiculous. Everyone has a reason for wanting a close parking space. Where are the "It's raining/hot", "My feet/back hurt", "I'm buying something heavy", etc. parking spots?
Title: Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
Post by: LeveeWoman on November 10, 2012, 11:04:33 AM
Just because some parents can get along fine without using the strollers does not mean that all parents can do so.
Title: Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
Post by: Sharnita on November 10, 2012, 11:08:42 AM
You know, I get the arument about the need for a stroller however I also understand OP's point about the strollers that come with their own luggage racks, cup holders,ets that displace at least 3 to 4 full grown adults.  There can also be a big difference in the attitude of the "pusher". An "excuse me" goes a long way and plenty of parents will say that, let people go ahead, etc.  There are also "pushers" who remind me of the lady in the CVS commercial - the one who seems ready to drive over other customers with her segue.
Title: Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
Post by: snowdragon on November 10, 2012, 11:46:54 AM
I have seen this done really well and really badly. As long as the parent is doing the best they can not to take up more space than absolutely necessary then folks have to deal. If the rules are that they must be folded - then parents have to deal with that - if not, then can they at least make sure the wheels are locked so they don't hit people, with each start and stop? Frankly, that is my biggest issue with strollers on transport. Here they must be folded. It is enforced.
Title: Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
Post by: Knitterly on November 10, 2012, 12:25:22 PM
I've always wondered how in the world parents get around on subways and buses with little kids in places like NYC.  I've actually been in the city with my girls - in a stroller - and what I discovered in that people are very kind.  They will help you down the stairs and generally, you can find someone to help you.

Banning strollers is a terrible idea.  First, children have a right to "space" on the subway(as an example) as much as anyone else.  The stroller is apart of their space.  I appreciate that their need for space is more than others, but they still should have a place to be. 

Second, If you want to ban strollers because they take up too much room...what about wheelchairs?  On a bus, a wheelchair takes up a ton of space and it takes forever to load.  You could get 3 or 4 people in the space of a chair - and faster too.  So, how about no more wheelchairs?

Third, having parents hold their children is just not possible - or safe.  I have twins.  How am I supposed to hold two squirming 2 years old on my lap while being pressed on all sides by a ton of people?  What if I have a third child - maybe a 4 year old?  I need to hold his hand.  And, what if we are all standing up?  It's impossible.  And, then, once I am holding two babies on my lap, who's going to fold up - and then unfold - the stroller for me?  What if I have packages or groceries?  Where do those go?  On a subway, once my stroller is folded up, how do I unfold the stroller to put the babies back in (since now all space is used up), and if I can't, how do I pick up the stroller, my packages, and my two babies and make it to the doors so I can put everything back together on the platform.  If I do have space to open the stroller (although I'm not sure how, since my hands are full), I probably need to start at least a stop ahead to get everything loaded so I can make it through the doors before they close.

Fourth - Taking a child in and out of a stroller, folding it up, then unfolding it, and putting the child/ren back in is time consuming.  Depending on the length of the trip, one could arrive at their destination by the time they get everything situated, and then have to put everything back the way it was.

Fifth- some strollers are medically necessary.  Some children can't walk and must be in a stroller.  I suppose that's similar to
a wheelchair, which takes me back to point one.

Personally, I think it's a rather selfish attitude to expect and require one type of person to give up space they deserve just to fit one or two more people.  I understand that at rush hour buses, trains and subways are crowded.  But, really, that's just life.  So you have to wait for the next train.  That's just the way it is.

Kids are people too.  They have as much right to space on public transportation as anyone else.  Their space just includes the stroller they are riding in.  Sure, parents in cities like NY should try to be space-conscious as possible in choosing a stroller, but you can only compact a double stroller but so much.

Unless you want to just ban kids altogether, banning strollers is just a ridiculous, impractical, and really, in my opinion, a rather selfish idea.

POD to all of this!! 

Second, If you want to ban strollers because they take up too much room...what about wheelchairs?  On a bus, a wheelchair takes up a ton of space and it takes forever to load.  You could get 3 or 4 people in the space of a chair - and faster too.  So, how about no more wheelchairs?

This is nowhere near comparable and I'm disappointed to see this comment on EH.  Comparing someone who is forced to use a wheelchair to the someone *choosing* to use a stroller is unconscionable.

I'm not comparing the stroller with a wheelchair as a means to get around but, what is a parent to do if she needs to go to the grocery store and must take her baby? That stroller is a necessity, not a luxury. Same with a parent who has more than one child.

No a stroller is a want, not a need.  About 25% of the parents I know have never even owned a stroller let alone used one, even with multiple kids.  Heck my parents didn't have one for me (and I was a second child, less then 3 years younger then my older sibling). 

Strollers absolutely make things easier and they are a valid parenting choice, but they are not required to function in society with a child. 

A wheelchair on the other hand often is a required in order for the user to function successfully in the world and therefore is a need.

And that's why for example, handicapped parking spaces are legally protected and "mommy" spaces are merely an unenforceable courtesy.
A stroller may be a want for some.  For others it is a need.

For most of LK's infancy, I used a wrap.  It was easier on the bus because the only "safe" stroller for her was very large.  It kept her content and calm being close to mommy while we were out.  It was easier for me to enjoy a coffee while she was in a wrap vs. trying to drink a coffee and push the stroller.

Now she is past 1 and is walking.  Sometimes she is fine with being in the wrap.  Often, especially when I am sitting, she is not.  It is simply unsafe for me to be on the bus with her in the wrap now.  So I take the stroller.  If it annoys someone, that's their problem, not mine.  I use the absolute smallest stroller I own while on the bus.  It is a folding umbrella stroller.  Taking LK in and out of the stroller on the bus is awkward, especially when I am also trying not to drop her diaper bag and other things.  Having her not in the stroller (which has locking wheels) on the bus is downright dangerous.  I watched a woman with a child not much older than LK on the bus the other day.  The bus jerked forward and he went sprawling down, knocked his face, cut his lip, and then to top it off, someone stepped on his poor hand.  The child was in hysterics.  :(  I felt awful for the poor little guy.

So maybe strollers get in the way, but given the alternative, I'd rather be a little bit in the way.

And I'm sorry, but I have no alternative to the bus most days, and I'm not going to become a housebound recluse just to avoid inconveniencing someone.  Taxis are not possible alternatives to parents like they are to others due to stringent carseat laws.  I can do my absolute best to be polite and not push or shove or run over people with my massive "baby travel system".  But there are lots of things other people do to inconvenience and annoy me, too.  Whenever I took the university bound bus, I was constantly getting hit in the face with overstuffed backpacks.  I even got wholloped in my hugely pregnant belly once. 

Everyone inconveniences someone sometimes.  Parents and children have as much right to public spaces as others.
Title: Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
Post by: WillyNilly on November 10, 2012, 12:53:52 PM
A stroller is only a need for you due to your life choices.  And I do agree its perfectly valid to make those choices and to use a stroller.  I was merely saying its not a like wheelchair.  You and your child could function without one by making different choices (staying local, dealing with the squirminess, etc), often wheelchair bound people don't have those choices to make - its wheelchair or bed bound, period.   Heck you could have chose to not have a baby at all.  I don't begrudge you your stroller at all - I think its very legitimate tool to ease parenthood and in fact society overall in many cases, but I don't think its on par with a wheelchair.

But as for it merely being an inconvenience to others that they just have to deal with - as people have posted in some cities strollers are not allowed on buses or trains.  So no, its not something people should just have to deal with.  In most cases people do end up just dealing with them but they actually don't have to.

That's why I like my city's response.  Officially the rule is strollers must be folded but its not enforced unless its an issue.  That puts the burden of trying their best to not be in the way on parents, because they don't want to risk having the rules enforced (in 30+ years of using the NYC public transportation system near daily only once did I see a driver tell a parent to fold the stroller or get off the bus).  And as we often see on these threads - most people's sentiment is if they see a parent actively trying to have their kids not impact others negatively, people are a lot more understanding and forgiving of minor annoyances.
Title: Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
Post by: HorseFreak on November 10, 2012, 01:14:02 PM
When I lived in Boston the strollers usually weren't a problem and people were good about folding them when the bus was busy. However, some people had strollers the size of a Smart Car for their one four year old that would literally take up the place of four average adults. This was aggravating when the bus was full and people trying to commute to and from work would have to wait for the next bus or train.
Title: Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
Post by: SiotehCat on November 10, 2012, 01:15:55 PM
I ride the bus daily in the DC area.

I haven't seen any rules actually posted about this. But, on more than one occasion, I have seen the bus driver tell parents that their stroller needs to be folded up before they can get on the bus.

I completely agree with this.
Title: Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
Post by: Acadianna on November 10, 2012, 01:28:53 PM
A stroller is only a need for you due to your life choices.  And I do agree its perfectly valid to make those choices and to use a stroller.  I was merely saying its not a like wheelchair.  You and your child could function without one by making different choices (staying local, dealing with the squirminess, etc), often wheelchair bound people don't have those choices to make - its wheelchair or bed bound, period.

But this is the exact argument used by people who have opposed legal rights for those with disabilities.  (And for the record, I don't agree with their argument.)  People have argued, for example, that things like handicapped parking spaces at stores are necessary only because of lifestyle choices (the desire to have independence and to avoid isolation) -- that people in wheelchairs could have groceries delivered or purchased for them by friends/family.  That argument is flat out wrong.  People with disabilities have a right to participate in the life of their communities and to meet their own needs, so far as accomodations can help them to do.

IMO, that sort of argument is equally invalid when applied to parents who need strollers to get out into the community.  They too want to be as independent as possible and to avoid isolation.  Many parents (as for those in wheelchairs) have no other options.

I understand that, in many places, the law requires parents to fold and stow their strollers on public transportation.  Of course, parents should comply with the law.  I hope, though, that those laws will change.
Title: Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
Post by: Allyson on November 10, 2012, 01:47:45 PM
There's also strollers and then there's *strollers*...some take up not all that much room, can be folded etc. Others take up room for 4 or more and no way can it be easily folded up. It might not be a possibility to not have one at all, but surely giant stroller vs foldable stroller is definitely a choice.
Title: Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
Post by: Tabby Uprising on November 10, 2012, 01:49:38 PM
Most things in life are due to life style choices. I have a friend whose half brother chose to get drunk and then chose to dive into the shallow end of a pool.  Fortunately, he survived, but he did wind up in a wheelchair.  That's every much a lifestyle choice as choosing to have kids, but I'd hardly begrudge the man his need for the chair. 

I don't want to make this a wheelchair vs. stroller thing, because I know it's mostly about "stuff" vs. people on public transport.  I just wanted to point out that sometimes lifestyle choices play into things beyond strollers.

And POD to Toots.
Title: Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
Post by: TootsNYC on November 10, 2012, 01:50:21 PM

Holding a squirming 25 pound baby while trying to maintain your balance clinging to a rod over your head and keeping hold of a stroller--well, you might end up inconveniencing your fellow passengers by falling. Or dropping the baby. Or losing hold of the stroller. And small children who can stand and walk frequently can't reach the available handholds and are safer stashed in the stroller.

This!

On the subway in NYC, there is an announcement that says, "Why not fold the stroller, and carry your baby?"

And I always want to shout out, "Because they I have to hold onto TWO separate things!! And the baby might squirm out!"

I see strollers a lot in NYC--seldom at rush hour, though. And we all just sort of make it work.

Believe me, it isn't all that easy on the PARENT to have a large stroller on the bus, so it's not like anybody's out to get you. They "get" themselves just as much as they get you.

Quote

Everyone inconveniences someone sometimes.  Parents and children have as much right to public spaces as others.


I agree.

When people complain about the mere *presence* other people, it makes me want to snarl, "Well, excuse me for living!" (a phrase I didn't really understand until shortly after I came to EHell and ran across a post of someone proposing that it was rude for a retired couple to travel to their vacation home at the same time as everyone else.
Title: Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
Post by: SiotehCat on November 10, 2012, 01:54:15 PM
I just wanted to expand on my earlier post.

In the instances that I witnessed, where a bus driver asked parents to fold up their strollers, it wasn't just large strollers and it wasn't always at times when the bus was full.

For the parents that this doesn't work for, they can always call a cab.

I cannot take my dog on the bus. It doesn't upset me, I just know that when I need to transport him, I call a cab.
Title: Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
Post by: wendelenn on November 10, 2012, 02:05:13 PM
I just wanted to expand on my earlier post.

In the instances that I witnessed, where a bus driver asked parents to fold up their strollers, it wasn't just large strollers and it wasn't always at times when the bus was full.

For the parents that this doesn't work for, they can always call a cab. I cannot take my dog on the bus. It doesn't upset me, I just know that when I need to transport him, I call a cab.

No they cannot, unless they also want to carry a carseat and strap it in (and that may not be safe or legal.
Title: Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
Post by: Tabby Uprising on November 10, 2012, 02:15:10 PM
I just wanted to expand on my earlier post.

In the instances that I witnessed, where a bus driver asked parents to fold up their strollers, it wasn't just large strollers and it wasn't always at times when the bus was full.

For the parents that this doesn't work for, they can always call a cab.

I cannot take my dog on the bus. It doesn't upset me, I just know that when I need to transport him, I call a cab.

I think it's a whole lot easier to leave a pet at home than it is a child.

And the thing is, there will always be times when the train or bus is crowded.  Even if we take away all the strollers, tote bags, grocery bags, luggage, back packs, science projects, instruments, camera equipment, bicycles, etc.  There will always be times when the train or bus is elbow to elbow.  There will always be times when you need to jog down to a less crowded car or wait for the next train or be stuck with your nose at sweaty armpit level to the person next to you. 

I just don't think the ultimate in etiquette is efficiently maxing out the number of people on public transportation.  Since ultimately we're all going to be cramped at one point or have to take the next ride, let people have their things.  Especially as we aren't talking about passengers randomly opening up beach umbrellas on the trains or buses.  We're talking about strollers for children which serve - if not a "necessary" function, than an incredibly helpful one.
Title: Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
Post by: WillyNilly on November 10, 2012, 02:23:37 PM
^ Well yes, of course.  But if a train is super packed, an open stroller can cause problems as it becomes a trip hazard.  People farther away, such as the doors trying to push on, will see an open space amongst the heads and will push and well, to be honest if its a person you are pushed into they are there to essentially push back (even if not push back per say, they are physically there for you bump into).  Whereas if its stroller your upper body will move but not your lower and you topple onto the stroller.
Title: Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
Post by: TootsNYC on November 10, 2012, 02:25:52 PM
Or onto the 3-y-o who is standing because Mom can't hold him.

Or onto the folded stroller.

The reason strollers get folded is so that they can't ROLL.
Title: Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
Post by: Sharnita on November 10, 2012, 02:30:37 PM
Or onto the 3-y-o who is standing because Mom can't hold him.

Or onto the folded stroller.

The reason strollers get folded is so that they can't ROLL.
 
A standing 3 yo doesn't take much square footage so people wouldn't see what appeared to be a gap like they would with a stroller.
Title: Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
Post by: Wordgeek on November 10, 2012, 02:31:02 PM
All comparisons of strollers to wheelchairs will stop immediately.
Title: Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
Post by: Tabby Uprising on November 10, 2012, 02:36:03 PM
We moved from the area before having a child, but I did always wonder how parents managed kids and strollers and car seats in urban areas.  So if you take your kids in a cab, do you need to supply the car seat?  And what about booster seats?  In Texas I think you've got to have the child in a booster seat until they're 8 or something.  How does the work if you are putting a 5 year old in a cab?

Buses and trains seem easier by comparison even with the stroller drama.
Title: Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
Post by: TootsNYC on November 10, 2012, 03:35:33 PM
Or onto the 3-y-o who is standing because Mom can't hold him.

Or onto the folded stroller.

The reason strollers get folded is so that they can't ROLL.
 
A standing 3 yo doesn't take much square footage so people wouldn't see what appeared to be a gap like they would with a stroller.

Having *been* on a crowded subway train w/ a standing 3-y-o, I can tell you that in the scenario described, when people are pushing, my child is in some pretty serious danger.


Frankly, there are short adults who would be in some pretty serious danger--they are NOT that much bigger around than a 3yo. Yes indeed, the gap would be visible. And people would be pressing into it, and *any* person the tiniest bit shorter would be in big danger. And the people pushing onto the train would be rude and dangerous, and it wouldn't matter about strollers at all.

And if people are pushing enough so that someone could fall over a stroller, then EVERYone is in danger.
Title: Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
Post by: kareng57 on November 10, 2012, 04:16:30 PM
I just wanted to expand on my earlier post.

In the instances that I witnessed, where a bus driver asked parents to fold up their strollers, it wasn't just large strollers and it wasn't always at times when the bus was full.

For the parents that this doesn't work for, they can always call a cab.

I cannot take my dog on the bus. It doesn't upset me, I just know that when I need to transport him, I call a cab.


That's really not the same thing at all.  About the only time you "have" to transport your dog is to the vet, or perhaps the groomer's.  Many people have no choice but to take their children with them on errands - they can't always wait until the other parent or another adult is available to watch them.  Also - what if they're taking them to the doctor, or they need new shoes?

Perhaps it's possible to raise children and never need a stroller but I personally can't imagine it.  Common courtesy is in order of course, such as not bringing a huge SpaceAge model stroller on transit, and trying avoid rush hour if at all possible.  Overall I have to agree with PPs that strollers on transit are one of life's little inconveniences that we all have to put up with from time to time.
Title: Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
Post by: AnnaJ on November 10, 2012, 04:34:01 PM
Quote
I think your quote tag got a little bit borked there, just fyi - somehow johelenc1's post got transposed with my post about designed stroller areas on UK buses. (Sorry, don't mean to be difficult just wanted to make clear the quote above is not my post.)

Sorry Sunnygirl, and as someone else said, 'borked' may be my favorite new word.   :)
Title: Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
Post by: Coruscation on November 10, 2012, 05:05:03 PM
There's also strollers and then there's *strollers*...some take up not all that much room, can be folded etc. Others take up room for 4 or more and no way can it be easily folded up. It might not be a possibility to not have one at all, but surely giant stroller vs foldable stroller is definitely a choice.

They are quite expensive though. I had a large stroller because I lived in a small town and walked everywhere. When my two toddlers and I visited my father in the city, he suggested we leave it behind because we were going on public transport. Half way though the day I had to pay $80 for a small stroller, way more than I'd have paid at a non-city store. Once home, of course, I had no use for it.
Title: Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
Post by: MrsJWine on November 10, 2012, 05:12:40 PM
I would rather do... almost anything than take a stroller on public transport. I very much doubt many people do it completely by choice. I've never tried it, and I'm very glad I've never had to. But I took the bus for years and years before I ever had kids. In my experience, the people taking the bus with strollers also had bags for groceries (or whatever) stuffed into the bottom of the stroller. The normal-sized strollers are a pain in the rear to get around in the aisles, but they don't take up any more seating space than a kid, an adult, and a bunch of groceries would.

Putting the baby in a carrier is the best solution for a lot of things, but I can also imagine a lot of situations (not just the, "What if he/she has [crazy and unlikely disorder]??" situations) where it would not be workable.
Title: Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
Post by: Tabby Uprising on November 10, 2012, 05:34:04 PM
I have a jogging stroller for little Upstart.  It's about average for my area as far as size goes so I can't say if it qualifies as a mega-stroller or not. I've folded it up a couple of times to stow in the car and I noticed it's pretty heavy and awkward.  It doesn't have a platform to sit on so if I had it on a bus or train I would have to hold onto it.  In other words, it can't stand on its own.  It'd be tricky to hold onto that and a toddler.

If I had to estimate, I think folded up it would maybe take up one person space - or 3/4 person? I wouldn't doubt it if there were more suitable city strollers out there though!

Title: Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
Post by: sweetonsno on November 10, 2012, 05:42:36 PM
Holy muffins. This thread has created quite a stir!

I think it's worth noting that we probably all have a different mental image when it comes to "strollers." When I read the initial post, I immediately thought of the Hummer-style strollers, ginormous behemoths that can hold a couple of kids (or more); enough diapers, formula, and changes of clothes to last through a full weekend; and Mom/Dad's latte, laptop, 4 iGizmos, umbrellas, spare coats, and gym clothes. You know, the ones that take up about as much space as a six-top. (No joke, I've seen strollers that take up more space than my dinner table.) I do think it's inconsiderate to take up that much real estate for stuff. (I think of it as being like taking public transportation to the airport when you are relocating and have four or more giant roller suitcases. I suppose sometimes it has to be done, but I also think most people can come up with an alternative.

However, if we're talking about the kind of stroller my mom used when my sister and I were young, I generally think "no harm done." The stroller was a canvas seat, the wheels, and the handles for pushing. Fully open, it probably had the space footprint of an average adult, and one could sling a diaper bag over the handles. That? No problem.If Mom/the kids could have a seat, it folded down small enough that you could comfortable put it between your knees. I doubt that most people would object to that.

Even in one of the situations where someone has to use a super-stroller, I think they can do quite a bit to avoid taking up aisle space, which is not only inconsiderate to other riders, but potentially dangerous for the kids. If you're blocking the way onto or off of the bus, people will have to scoot around, and even if they are very careful (holding onto the bars, etc), there is a chance that a coat zipper, loose shoulder bag, or something else could hit a child. Many busses and subways in large metropolitan areas have areas at the front for wheelchair parking. If those spaces aren't in use, I think a parent could park the stroller there. It wouldn't block traffic and it is probably safer for the occupants of the stroller as well.
Title: Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
Post by: Winterlight on November 10, 2012, 06:07:53 PM
I ride the DC metro every day, along with the bus. There are always strollers. So long as the parents are paying attention and doing their best not to block the aisles, I cut them slack. They have to get to work too, after all, and taxis from my area to downtown would bankrupt you in a week.
Title: Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
Post by: SPuck on November 10, 2012, 06:26:27 PM
The times I road public transportation I always appreciated it when parents had there kids in strollers. It kept them confined (versus the times I have seen children swinging around on the poles) and for adults with multiple children it gave them something easier to hold onto.
Title: Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
Post by: kareng57 on November 10, 2012, 10:13:04 PM
The times I road public transportation I always appreciated it when parents had there kids in strollers. It kept them confined (versus the times I have seen children swinging around on the poles) and for adults with multiple children it gave them something easier to hold onto.


Agreed.  Of course it depends on the rules of the particular transit system.  Here, there's a section of vertical seats that can folded up, or not (there's also a section of non-folding vertical seats on the other side of the bus).  Both are priority-seating for the elderly/disabled, or for stroller-space.  If someone with a stroller approaches, the people in the folding-seat area are expected to vacate the seat to make room for the stroller; usually the stroller-parent has to stand, unless it's a very light load.  The elevated-trains here usually do have enough room to accomodate strollers as well as a seated parent - except during very busy times.

I'm aware that some transit systems require folded-strollers-only and I would certainly never assert that anyone ought to flout these rules.  But I personally would not want to be trying to stand, hold on to a toddler as well as a folded stroller all at the same time......
Title: Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
Post by: Sharnita on November 10, 2012, 10:46:54 PM
You know, it is strange though.  I remember when my sisters were little most people used smaller strollers than you see today.  A lot of people used umprella strollers.  I am sure parents had to take their kids on busses and trains then but they somehow managed with smaller scale equipment.
Title: Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
Post by: Ms Aspasia on November 10, 2012, 10:59:48 PM
Agree with johelenc1.  Rush hour is awkward and most people are doing the best they can. 

I wouldn't support a proposal to ban large prams. Small strollers are not practical when you're using a pram in place of a car: over long distances, carrying shopping, and needing rain cover. 
Title: Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
Post by: Arrynne on November 10, 2012, 11:15:01 PM
I've seen quite a few comments about strollers on NYC subways.  Our stroller is a necessity because my little guy can't walk due to CP, but he's still small enough to use the stroller so we stick to it. Most subway stations aren't wheelchair, and therefore stroller, accessible. It was an adventure carrying Michael, and his stroller, medical gear, and diaper bag up and down stairways in the subway stations to get around
Title: Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
Post by: redsfan on November 10, 2012, 11:28:55 PM
My LO is 19 months.  One of the biggest advantages to the stroller is that she is strapped in.  Right now, she is in a phase that she thinks she must explore everything.  As soon as we get outside, her favorite word is "running" while, you guessed it, running.  If I put her in the stroller, she will generally be content to sit there.  If I get her out, she won't go back in.  To fold and unfold even our umbrella stroller takes 2 hands, and in that time she could be 20 feet away (a scary thing in a subway station).   For me, it is a necessity to have our stroller. 
Title: Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
Post by: Louie_LI on November 11, 2012, 07:36:28 AM
We moved from the area before having a child, but I did always wonder how parents managed kids and strollers and car seats in urban areas.  So if you take your kids in a cab, do you need to supply the car seat?  And what about booster seats?  In Texas I think you've got to have the child in a booster seat until they're 8 or something.  How does the work if you are putting a 5 year old in a cab?

Buses and trains seem easier by comparison even with the stroller drama.

I can't speak for everywhere, but in many places taxis are exempt from the car seat rules. This is the case in NYC, Washington DC and Paris, to name a few.
Title: Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
Post by: PurpleFrog on November 11, 2012, 07:55:03 AM
Lucky I'm in the UK, and buses here have 2-3 wheelchair/pushchair spaces. I can't drive so am entirely reliant on public transport. Banning strollers would seriously limit my ability to get around as I have a 3 year old who would struggle to walk the distances required when the 10 month old is in the pram. (I appreciate that it was a lifestyle choice to have two so close and it is not anyone else's problem). Taxi's would not be an option as a short 5 min journey costs more than 3 times as much as a return bus journey.

 Twice a week I know I'll be travelling at rush hour so take Tadpole in a chest carrier. At other times or when I have to travel with both boys I will use a pushchair, it does fold however if there is space I will keep it set up, in the event of sharp breaking or Ana accident I would be unable to hold a baby safely in my lap and stop a three year old flying out of the seat.

However I will always seat Froglet on my lap at busier times, so an extra seat is available, when on my own, or if I have Tadploe in the carrier I will always give up my seat. I have on several occasions gotten off a stop early and walked a little further when another stroller or wheelchair user needs to get on at the earlier stop, to make the space for them (its outside a school, park and a leasure center, so is a popular stop for strollers & wheelchairs)gra I've also found that when I've had to fold the pushchair, someone normally grabs the baby or bags or stroller to help, I don't expect it but do appreciate it.

I hope that by being polite and considerate to others I build good bus karma for those time when I am unfortunatly an inconvenience.
Title: Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
Post by: TootsNYC on November 11, 2012, 08:04:42 AM
We moved from the area before having a child, but I did always wonder how parents managed kids and strollers and car seats in urban areas.  So if you take your kids in a cab, do you need to supply the car seat?  And what about booster seats?  In Texas I think you've got to have the child in a booster seat until they're 8 or something.  How does the work if you are putting a 5 year old in a cab?

Buses and trains seem easier by comparison even with the stroller drama.

I can't speak for everywhere, but in many places taxis are exempt from the car seat rules. This is the case in NYC, Washington DC and Paris, to name a few.


Of course, just because the law is different for taxis doesn't make taxis SAFER without a car seat. In my personal opinion, it would be just the opposite. *I* am nervous riding in cabs, and I always wear my seat belt.
Title: Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
Post by: TootsNYC on November 11, 2012, 08:06:19 AM
You know, it is strange though.  I remember when my sisters were little most people used smaller strollers than you see today.  A lot of people used umprella strollers.  I am sure parents had to take their kids on busses and trains then but they somehow managed with smaller scale equipment.

In my experience of living in a TRANSIT city, where few people have cars, large strollers are not the stroller of choice. i don't see quite as many umbrella strollers as I used to, but people don't have those behemoths--or if they do, they don't take them on the subways. Parents who can afford a behemoth stroller can often afford a second, "subway" stroller.
Title: Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
Post by: mechtilde on November 11, 2012, 08:20:16 AM
You know, it is strange though.  I remember when my sisters were little most people used smaller strollers than you see today.  A lot of people used umprella strollers.  I am sure parents had to take their kids on busses and trains then but they somehow managed with smaller scale equipment.

That was the advice a good friend (who had had four children) gave me when we asked her about pushchairs. Get the smallest, cheapest, lightest pushchair you can. I don't know how people cope with those massive strollers. The only time I didn't use an umbrella stroller was either when they were too small for them, or when they had to go in a tandem- and you can get even more compact "double decker" type strollers these days.
Title: Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
Post by: Sophia on November 11, 2012, 08:28:06 AM
Continuing with crowded bus/subway etiquette, what about someone bringing a stroller on crowded public transport during rush hour?  I think they should be banned, along with bicycles, unless it can be collapsed and the child taken out and put on the person's lap....

I find the underlined part amusing.  Yes, bicycles are annoying.  But, aren't they more in keeping with the ultimate goal of public transport, which is to keep cars off the road? 
Title: Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
Post by: AuntyEm on November 11, 2012, 09:51:07 AM
As a bike rider myself, it would be great to have the space to bring my bike with me on the subway whenever I wanted but not so nice for the people that would be displaced if I was allowed to do that during rush hour.  On the buses here, they often have a bike rack outside under the front windshield which is super.
Title: Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
Post by: Firecat on November 11, 2012, 10:45:20 AM
The light rail trains here have four spaces for bikes in each car, so bicycles aren't a huge problem, unless the train is so packed that it's difficult to get the bike in and out of the train. But most people are willing to stand aside or step onto the platform briefly so a cyclist can get in or out.

My only requests for parents with strollers are: 1) Please refrain from using your stroller as a battering ram. 2) Please try to avoid giving your small child something to eat that will leave him/her/them with sticky hands right before boarding or during the ride. Little hands do like to reach for things, and I don't need to be trying to get chocolate stains out of my light brown pants. And if the train is crowded, it may not be possible for others to stand out of your child's reach. 3) If your child likes to wave things around, please try not to give them a hard toy to play with...some of us bruise easily  ;D.

I get way more annoyed when the local baseball team has an afternoon game than I do by strollers. Lots of people take the train to the stadium, which is cool. What's not cool is when the game ends right about the time regular rush hour is beginning. That means that the trains are packed full of baseball fans, leaving the regular commuters standing there watching at least 2-3 trains go by. And the stadium is, of course, the first stop on the downtown end. I've been half an hour late getting home thanks to that.
Title: Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
Post by: Tabby Uprising on November 11, 2012, 01:44:00 PM
You know, it is strange though.  I remember when my sisters were little most people used smaller strollers than you see today.  A lot of people used umprella strollers.  I am sure parents had to take their kids on busses and trains then but they somehow managed with smaller scale equipment.

That was the advice a good friend (who had had four children) gave me when we asked her about pushchairs. Get the smallest, cheapest, lightest pushchair you can. I don't know how people cope with those massive strollers. The only time I didn't use an umbrella stroller was either when they were too small for them, or when they had to go in a tandem- and you can get even more compact "double decker" type strollers these days.

I tried an umbrella stroller first for my son.  They're very affordable and convenient.  Then I used it.

*shudder*

I could not walk with that thing.  I took my son around the block and by the time we got home I was ready to wallop it against the pavement like a rock star with a guitar.  I'm 5'8" and I felt completely hunched over and my big feet kept tripping on the wheel-bar.  I was walking around like a drunken Clydesdale with a bad back. On top of that, I tried to walk to the park over the mulch pathway and the stroller wouldn't budge. 

It just wasn't meant to be!
Title: Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
Post by: Rohanna on November 11, 2012, 02:09:12 PM
Not to mention you're stuck carrying the diaper bag- and at 5'9 and 6'1 between us, it means a lot of making sure the unwieldy bag doesn't smack people. The cheap ones are often way to short for tall people. You can't put babies without head control in them either.
Title: Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
Post by: Shoo on November 11, 2012, 03:52:25 PM
And umbrella strollers are not really recommended for babies who are too young to hold their heads up on their own.  Those kind of strollers have virtually no support in them.
Title: Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
Post by: chigrrl1 on November 11, 2012, 04:32:13 PM
A stroller is only a need for you due to your life choices.
Riding the bus is also only a need for you due to your life choices.  The implication here is that the individuals using strollers somehow made a poor life choice and should be consequently scrutinized if perceived to be an inconvenience to anyone.  Seems like a rather ungenerous assumption considering that many people (including people with strollers) make the "life choice" to use public transportation for a myriad of reasons, including environmental conservation which is for the good of all.
Title: Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
Post by: Wordgeek on November 11, 2012, 04:51:57 PM
And the above is why debating "life choices" is pointless.

Discussion is more productive when it centers on practical suggestions on how to be courteous, given the circumstances.
Title: Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
Post by: HermioneGranger on November 12, 2012, 08:07:33 AM
You know, it is strange though.  I remember when my sisters were little most people used smaller strollers than you see today.  A lot of people used umprella strollers.  I am sure parents had to take their kids on busses and trains then but they somehow managed with smaller scale equipment.

That was the advice a good friend (who had had four children) gave me when we asked her about pushchairs. Get the smallest, cheapest, lightest pushchair you can. I don't know how people cope with those massive strollers. The only time I didn't use an umbrella stroller was either when they were too small for them, or when they had to go in a tandem- and you can get even more compact "double decker" type strollers these days.

I tried an umbrella stroller first for my son.  They're very affordable and convenient.  Then I used it.

*shudder*

I could not walk with that thing.  I took my son around the block and by the time we got home I was ready to wallop it against the pavement like a rock star with a guitar.  I'm 5'8" and I felt completely hunched over and my big feet kept tripping on the wheel-bar.  I was walking around like a drunken Clydesdale with a bad back. On top of that, I tried to walk to the park over the mulch pathway and the stroller wouldn't budge. 

It just wasn't meant to be!

I can't use one either.  Our stroller doesn't take up that much space when collapsed, but there's no way in heck that I can use a cheapo umbrella stroller without a visit to the chiropractor afterward.  Not to mention that they usually don't have any storage underneath the seat, and we needed one with room for my diaper bag. 
Title: Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
Post by: Wordgeek on November 12, 2012, 10:40:55 AM
Hermione, I may be misreading your post, but I don't see any practical suggestions on how to be courteous.  Do you have any productive comments to make?
Title: Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
Post by: hobish on November 12, 2012, 10:56:31 AM

I hate those big SUV strollers as much as the next person who has been smashed from behind by one; but banning them just doesnít make a lot of sense to me. I donít think bikes should be, either. I know very few people who choose to take public transportation for the giggles; people need to get around. Someone having a bike or a stroller with them probably makes things 10 times more convenient for them than it does inconvenient for me. That said, I know some of the lines around here have express trains during peak hours and some of them donít allow bikes or strollers of any kind. People are still able to take the train, just not the express line. It seems to work.
Title: Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
Post by: TootsNYC on November 12, 2012, 11:01:19 AM
I guess I took Hermione's comments to be, essentially, "there are some serious practical reasons by people don't choose the smaller umbrella strollers, so don't get too upset about that."
Title: Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
Post by: strangetimes on November 12, 2012, 11:43:38 AM
Having spent many years using strollers, here's my take:

Umbrella strollers are cheap and lightweight, but don't roll well. Besides the hunched back of the mom and the fact that they're not good for babies under 6 months (lack of back support), they are very hard to push. As the child gets older and heavier, they also get heavier and harder to work with. They're very useful if you have a car and can keep one folded in your trunk- they take up very little space and are easier to push on inside surfaces, like in the mall.

The reason you see parents with SUV type strollers is because they are really easy to push- they are built with rolling easily and on different types of surfaces in mind. They're great for jogging, etc.

Having lived in a major city without a car, I (and most of my friends) didn't use either of those. If you need to get around with your child, SUV type strollers are a real pain. Lots of them don't fold easily, take up more space than is often available on the sidewalk, get in the way while shopping, etc. They're really not convenient in the city. There are mid-level strollers that combine decent suspension with a more moderate size and those work the best. They're not too heavy to bump down the stairs, roll nicely most of the time, have some storage for shlepping and don't get in the way as much.

Also- in my city, the rule was strollers get folded unless you pay an extra fare. When it was too hard for me to fold the stroller, (sleeping baby, too many bags, too short a ride, squirmy kid) I was happy to pay an extra fare and not have the hassle.
Title: Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
Post by: Wordgeek on November 12, 2012, 12:08:28 PM
Thread closed, because it has gone off-topic from relevant, etiquette-related discussion.