Pregnant lesbian told ‘I hope your baby dies’
A LESBIAN couple from Brisbane have spoken out about a shocking comment made by a stranger as they shopped for groceries in the city's north.
Partners Lisa and Ebony are expecting their first child, with Ebony due to give birth this month.
Both women were shopping in Coles at Brookside when Ebony was approached by a complete stranger.
"My partner encountered quite possibly the most cold-hearted example of judgment I have had the misfortune of experiencing," Lisa said.
"She was just going about her day when a man she describes as being in his mid- 50s - completely unprovoked - told her 'I hope your baby dies - it's better off without you.'
Lisa was not at her partner's side at the time, but said she was shaken by what occurred.
"That is quite possibly the most vile and disgusting thing to say to an expectant mother," she said.
"While I assure you she is so strong and exceedingly capable of looking after herself, I hope that our community as a majority shares my white hot rage at this completely unacceptable behaviour."
The couple said nothing in response to the man and left the store immediately.
"Ebony told me straight away what had happened and we were both in shock. Ebony took it very hard and cried," Lisa said.
"It affected us for a few days. It shook Ebony up a lot and caused unnecessary concern for the baby. I guess as an expectant mum, she was already filled with concern, so someone saying something like that plays on your worst fears."
Lisa said she wasn't sure if anyone else had heard the comment, but urged people not to stand by and do nothing if they see or hear something like this.
"This time, there was no aid or assistance but I would hope that in this community there are people who would not stand by and let this disgusting behaviour slide," she said.
When Lisa posted about the incident on social media, the couple were swamped with support.
"It was overwhelmingly positive. It's part of the reason we love living here - there's a strong sense of community," she said.
The couple said they wouldn't stop shopping at the centre but would take precautions in future.
"I am hesitant for Ebony to go by herself while she's still pregnant at least," Lisa said.
"I don't know what we would do if we saw him again, but it's likely saying anything would just be lowering to his level and getting the exact response he is looking for, so it's probably better to take the high road."
Lisa said she wanted to warn others with her post, but had also had reactions from other local shoppers that suggested the incident wasn't an isolated one.
Brookside Shopping Centre manager Russell Shaw said he wasn't aware of the incident involving Ebony.
"But I would certainly encourage anyone in that instance to report it immediately to the store, our security and to our police beat on site at the centre so action can be taken," he said.
While the couple admit they have encountered homophobia in relation to their pregnancy before, the supermarket incident was the worst.
"We haven't had anything like this. Occasionally we'll notice someone looking with a disapproving face. And Ebony will sometimes get it when she's alone because she has a sleeve of tattoos - people tend to be judgmental about that," she said.
"When we're together, we tend to forget that not everyone shares the same open-mindedness as others, but we don't hide that we are together so us holding hands or me rubbing her belly will sometimes draw a look."
While those attitudes are disappointing, Lisa said they are becoming less and less.
"And that makes it easier for us to be ourselves," she said.
"I don't ever want to hide my pride in my family, so those voices and looks won't stop me from showing off my little family at Coles or wherever we are."