Author Topic: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers  (Read 9360 times)

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Tabby Uprising

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Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
« Reply #15 on: November 10, 2012, 11:35:06 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

Acadianna

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Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
« Reply #16 on: November 10, 2012, 11:44:34 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.

JenJay

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Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
« Reply #17 on: November 10, 2012, 11:44:55 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?

LeveeWoman

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Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
« Reply #18 on: November 10, 2012, 12:04:33 PM »
Just because some parents can get along fine without using the strollers does not mean that all parents can do so.

Sharnita

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Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
« Reply #19 on: November 10, 2012, 12:08:42 PM »
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.

snowdragon

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Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
« Reply #20 on: November 10, 2012, 12:46:54 PM »
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.

Knitterly

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Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
« Reply #21 on: November 10, 2012, 01:25:22 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.

WillyNilly

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Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
« Reply #22 on: November 10, 2012, 01:53:52 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.

HorseFreak

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Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
« Reply #23 on: November 10, 2012, 02:14:02 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.

SiotehCat

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Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
« Reply #24 on: November 10, 2012, 02:15:55 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.

Acadianna

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Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
« Reply #25 on: November 10, 2012, 02:28:53 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.

Allyson

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Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
« Reply #26 on: November 10, 2012, 02:47:45 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.

Tabby Uprising

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Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
« Reply #27 on: November 10, 2012, 02:49:38 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.
« Last Edit: November 10, 2012, 02:56:07 PM by Tabby Uprising »

TootsNYC

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Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
« Reply #28 on: November 10, 2012, 02:50:21 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.

SiotehCat

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Re: s/o Standing room only--baby strollers
« Reply #29 on: November 10, 2012, 02:54:15 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.