Baby on Board – A Royal Waste of a Badge

Several times a day I open my Sky News app to see what’s new in the world.

This evening Sky News had a story on Kate Middleton being given a “Baby on Board” badge.

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Really Sky News? Really?! That is NOT news.

Lots of pregnant women are given “Baby on Board” badges. Hell, even train companies have them. I have 2!

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Paul Harrison, Royal Correspondent says “The Duchess of Cambridge has been presented with her own “Baby on Board” badge which allows pregnant passengers access to priority seating on the Tube.”

Clearly Mr Paul Harrison has never truly witnessed what these badges get you when travelling on public transport. Which is absolutely nothing.

These badges DO NOT allow pregnant passengers access to priority seating on the tube. They should do, but they don’t. People look at you, with your pregnant belly, they look at your “Baby on Board” badge and then they IGNORE you. It is actually very rare that someone gives up their seat for a pregnant woman.

A friend of mine is pregnant, she also has SPD and has to use crutches to help her walk. Yet despite being clearly pregnant AND on crutches, she was often ignored, or pushed past by others scrambling for seats and once she was even shouted at by a man because she was sat in “his” seat and he demanded she move. She was so upset, distressed and scared that she moved so he could sit down. No one offered her a seat, no one stood up for her.

I’ve written about this several times. I had to start my maternity leave early because I couldn’t cope with the commute. The number of times I’ve been ignored on a packed train despite my 2 “Baby on Board” badges is unreal.

I am so glad that I don’t have to commute anymore. I have 2 days left until Flump is due (ha ha ha) and my Baby on Board badge has been retired.

Fatal Effects

This evening someone felt the need to end their life. Underneath the wheels of a train.
I don’t know what was happening in that persons life that made them feel like there was no other option but suicide, but whatever it was, it causes my heart to ache.
I understand depression all too well. Sometimes I feel like I’m losing the battle, sometimes I feel like I’ve conquered it, but mostly I feel like I’m doing ok. I’m very lucky to have a very supportive husband and doctor, unfortunately that’s not the case for some people.
But this post isn’t about that.

Tonight someone in my twitter feed asked this question.

 

 

 

Majority of people (myself included) responded. The common answer from everyone that responded was pretty much this – “No, it’s disrespectful

I REALLY do not understand WHY someone would do such a thing. Normally when an incident such as this occurs there are a lot of unhappy people because they have been delayed through no fault of their own. Some people are so unhappy that they tweet things like this;

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I have purposefully removed the user names from these tweets, although really I should have left them in and let you all descend on them like a pack of rabid wolves with a deer carcass, for obvious reasons.

Why? Are these people really that selfish and uncompassionate? Whatever happened to being empathetic?

I’m issuing you a challenge. The next time your train is delayed because of a fatality, before you complain about being delayed, or having to be squashed on to a train, or not having a seat, or being stuck on a train or for whatever reason, THINK.

Think about that person being your mother, father, sister, brother, child, best friend. Think about the people who were minding their own business and then witnessing something such as that. Think about the driver of that train, think about what he or she see’s when that person jumps or falls and is killed. Think about the fact that someone, somewhere will shortly be opening the door to two police officers asking if they can “come in” and then being told that their loved one has been killed.

Just for 1 minute THINK. Just for 1 minute of YOUR life have some COMPASSION for a fellow human being who has just DIED.

Suicide doesn’t just affect your journey home or your journey to meet friends for a night out. Look at the bigger picture. It affects the driver of that train. It affects the people who witnessed it. It affects the police officers and the emergency services workers who have to attend the scene. It affects that persons friends and family and co-workers.

I’m going to leave you with a story, told to me by a friend, who just so happens to be a train driver.

One day he was driving his train when all of a sudden there was a huge bang and a sudden splatter of blood on his windscreen. He hadn’t been driving trains on his own all that long and his heart hammered away in his throat for a millesecond before he realised he had hit a pigeon and that was what had exploded on the front of his train.

A pigeon weighs approximately 1lb. An adult human being weighs between 130lbs and 220 lbs (on average). Now image what would happen if you threw something of that weight in front of a moving train.

The next time you’re delayed because someone didn’t think they had any other option in life but to die under a train, think of that story.

 

If you are having suicidal thoughts, please do not think there isn’t another option. There is. It may not seem like there is help out there or that there are people willing to help, to listen or to lend a hand, but there is. Please get in touch with the Samaritans or with Mind. Please don’t end your life. There are people in this world who care.