Singapore mum fed up with rudeness and congestion on daily public transport commute

Singapore mum fed up with rudeness and congestion on daily public transport commute

Parenting is stressful enough without having to deal with issues like this...

Something is very wrong with us, with society, when we lack basic understanding or empathy towards others. What’s even scarier? Those of us who bring up our children to also be similarly heartless, perpetuating a vicious cycle of stone-heartedness. 

A Singapore mum of a 10-month-old baby who takes the green line train back to Pasir Ris on her daily commute, gave theAsianparent permission to share her  recent experience.

Needless to say, we are very upset with what she had to endure and we bet you will be too. 

Here’s what happened:   

In Singapore, 5:45pm at Paya Lebar mrt station on a friday it will already be packed like sardines. I’m a mom with my son aged 10.5 months old. As I board the green line train towards Pasir Ris, I stood at the side of the door after entering, as there was barely enough space for me to move in with my baby in the stroller. One woman in her late 50s stood came close to me. Thinking that she wants to alight at Eunos so I didn’t bother about her.

As the train was reaching Eunos she looked at me and raised her voice ‘Do you have any conscious to move your FU***** big pram so that me and other commuters can exit?’ I replied calmly even when she used vulgarities, ‘there’s no space for me to move’. She started raising her voice even higher, ‘excuse me you’re only paying one ticket! ‘ before I could react, she was making her way out of the door, . She left me an impression of ‘crazy stressed Singaporean’.

When I was expecting, I got rejected when I asked for seats with a bulging tummy, got reprimanded when I sat on a reserved seat cause the person mentioned its meant for elderly only, but I had never thought about posting it on social media. Even when on 2nd of April 2017, strollers could be used on bus, I had always make it a point to give way to others, nobody owes me a living, I can be the last to alight. I will wait.

Many times, parents face situations like this. Even when the lift clearly states ‘Please give way to elderly, handicapped, expecting woman and parents with kids’, many able-bodied students and working adults can’t seem to understand the picture.

Attached photo is just an example of what I face, in a normal day of going out with my son alone. Many times, parents face situations like this. Even when the lift clearly states ‘Please give way to elderly, handicapped, expecting woman and parents with kids’, many able-bodied students and working adults can’t seem to understand the picture.

Seldom do I see that there’s anyone who would give way to parents like us. Don’t blame the parents who use strollers on escalators. They had no choice. Don’t blame the parents who use cargo lifts. They had no choice too. Don’t tell us to take grab or uber everyday. Why not you the one who is complaining, try to take it everyday. If you are capable, you won’t even have to squeeze on the train too.

Parenting is stressful enough. Just as much as I wanted to reprimand people who do not give way to me, I did not. Just as much as I wanted to reprimand people who do not need what they are using, I did not. Don’t spoil someone else’s day just because you had a bad day.

Disgraceful enough, not only these people look stressed but lazy too because they have no empathy at all.

singapore public transport issues

Faces averted, eyes fixed on devices. The reality of modern society.

How to cultivate empathy? 

What’s the point of living in a developed nation if our basic human values are not developed too?

What’s the point of having a high IQ (and kids with high IQs too) if we don’t have a high Emotional Quotient (EQ) that makes us (and our kids) balanced individuals and more importantly, sensitive to the emotions of others around us? 

For some, such as the rude woman on the train, cultivating empathy towards others could very well be a lost cause. Yes, we understand that she must have been stressed and tired. But this doesn’t give her the excuse to talk and behave in the manner that she did to an equally stressed and tired mummy. 

But there’s always hope that we can get through our children.

Raise them to be aware of others’ needs and emotions.

Teach them not to live in a perfect little bubble, oblivious to everything else except themselves and their electronic devices.

You’re doing them a favour by teaching them this, as research has proved that kids with a high EQ do better in life.

You’re also doing society, and the world a favour – because kindness, empathy and decency will without a doubt make it a better place. 

(Image shared with permission)

Tell us what you think about this mum’s experience. Have you had a similar experience? 

Also READ: Can children sit on reserved seats in Singapore MRT?

Got a parenting concern? Read articles or ask away and get instant answers on our app. Download theAsianparent Community on iOS or Android now!

app info
get app banner