A woman recalls an incident from 2008 where she encountered an entitled couple that sat in the handicapped section of her local cinema and refused to move.
A Movie Night
It was a typical night in 2008 in a Midwestern mall with a movie theater, and Twilight had just come out. The protagonist, the OP (original poster), was around 13 years old at the time and was desperate to see the movie.
However, her mother would not allow her to go alone, so her older sister, who had severe physical disabilities, accompanied her.
OP’s sister required the use of a motorized wheelchair due to an extremely rare form of muscular dystrophy.
Her Sister Was Her Chaperone
Despite being a much cooler and older teen than OP, she begrudgingly agreed to be her chaperone. However, she required around-the-clock care and needed assistance from an aide during the day and a nurse at night.
The nurse who drove them to the mall that night was a phenomenal “Amazon of a woman” who was a combat vet and towered over most people. Although she made fun of the movie during the drive, she was secretly excited to see it.
No Allocated Seats
This was back in the day before you could select your seats, and so the trio got to the theater plenty early. However, a long line was still down the mall hallway to get tickets.
When they got up to the counter, the nurse asked if the handicapped section was open. The ticket person responded that it had to be; they only allowed wheelchair users to use that area during high-interest movies on opening night.
OP hated the handicapped section. The seats were too close to the screen, and she always felt like people were staring at them, which was mortifying to a preteen.
The Handicapped Seats Were Taken
So when they walked into the cinema, she could not grasp why the section was not only open but completely full of non-wheelchair users when they got in, despite there being other seats open!
Although there were a plethora of reasons why someone would need to sit in that section that may not be visible to others, there was one specific seat purposely designed for a wheelchair to fit in, out of the way of the aisle, with two seats next to it for their “companions.”
As they approached the couple sitting in these seats, OP could already tell the woman was mortified. She started gathering up her things to move, but her boyfriend stopped her.
He Refused to Move
The nurse politely asked the man to vacate the seat because they had a wheelchair and needed those seats. However, the man refused, suggesting that they sit elsewhere in a random empty space with no seats around it.
The nurse explained that OP’s sister had to have someone by her at all times, but the man was adamant, saying they should have arrived earlier.
The nurse then told OP to stay with her sister and left to grab the manager. The manager arrived, looked at OP’s sister, and was shocked.
He Insulted Her Sister Further
He calmly explained to the couple that those seats were only for wheelchair users, but the man continued to argue. He said, “This is nonsense. You all take the best seats and save them for people who can’t even understand the movie.”
This comment riled OP up. She loudly interjected, asking her sister if she could understand the movie, to which her sister said, “Well, I didn’t read the book.” So OP replied, “Oh my god, she can speak!” all while staring daggers at this incredibly rude guy.
However, the man still refused to move! The manager told him that he would have to leave, and if he didn’t comply, he would call security, and the man wouldn’t get a refund on his ticket. But for some reason, he remained stubborn, daring the manager to call security!
His Girlfriend Was Mortified
The manager did just that, and the man finally relented when a large, hulking security guard arrived to escort them out. As they left, the man’s girlfriend apologized profusely, and OP felt bad for her, but hopefully, it opened her eyes to what a lousy guy she was dating.
The manager came in clutch and gave OP and her sister free tickets to watch the movie at a later date, so all was well on their side.
But that man’s behavior was reprehensible, and OP can’t believe he refused to move. She ends her post by saying, “Seriously people, if you’re going to have the audacity to sit in a section clearly designed for those less able-bodied than you are, please move if someone who needs it shows up.” Not a complicated request!
Redditors enjoyed her story. One user said, “I love you and your sister’s response after he insulted her intelligence just because she is physically disabled. Very arrogant of the guy to insult her to her face assuming she wouldn’t understand.”
What do you think about this woman’s story? Have you ever been to a cinema when an incident like this has occurred?
Featured Image Credit: Shutterstock / Cookie Studio. The people shown in the images are for illustrative purposes only, not the actual people featured in the story.