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Parents with little children on flights.

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Shouldn't/Couldn't they be more considerate?
4 years ago, June 17th 2009 No: 1 Msg: #76632  

It is not so much that I abandon my parenting role when flying, but being squashed into a small space with a restless kid for several hours..... Keeping them entertained is no easy thing. And they do make a mess no matter what they get to eat. As for the toilet thing, even if they do go before getting on the plane, it does not mean that they wont insist that they need to go every half hour while inflight.

People often have lots of ''bright'' ideas about what parents should do to make their child behave like adults during flights, but they really should test their theories to make sure they work, before they judge, because kids pick up on stress from people around and act out on it. Makes things worse for everybody.

But, so far all the airline staff I encountered have been completely kind and understanding. Thank goodness for that!



Quote from deleted_49612



Yeah Mell, a child, especially a very young one can be a complete gamble for flying. My wife just got back from visiting family and said she sat next to a lady whose baby screamed until the last 15 minutes of a 2 1/2 hour flight. I'm sure a lot of the passengers were hating the mom, hell, if I was on the plane I admit I might be one of those people. At the same time, if the parent is trying to figure something out and the kid/baby has just gone over the edge, you just put it in perspective and realize if it's the worst thing that happens to you in the day, you're doing well.

because kids pick up on stress from people around and act out on it



Sometimes the problem starts in one area and even if the parent figures out what the problem is/was the situation has blown up and the child gets into a self-feeding loop. The parents and people around it are obviously unhappy which creates more stress on the child, which ramps up the parents/people, etc.

Anyway, my wife said she felt worse for the parent than anyone as it was obvious she was about to lose it over not being able to console her baby. Everyone made it though, so no harm done.
[Edited: 16:17 - Mell ]
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4 years ago, June 17th 2009 No: 2 Msg: #76644  

..... I was on the plane I admit I might be one of those people.


I used to be one of those people, before I had a child. Now, I know what it is like to have a screaming baby for half the day after a sleepless night. The only thing that can make that worse is being around demanding people who think the mother should be able to make the baby quite but for some reason she is stubbornly refulsing, because she likes the noise herself maybe. ;)

Anyway, my wife said she felt worse for the parent....


That is usually how I feel when I see parents with loud over active kids on planes, or anywhere for that matter. Either you wife is a mother herself, or else she is a naturally very kind and understanding person. Reply to this

4 years ago, June 17th 2009 No: 3 Msg: #76648  
B Posts: 602
I just try and help out. I will start a game of peek-a-boo or something like that with the child. Ok, I make it worse. Reply to this

4 years ago, June 17th 2009 No: 4 Msg: #76650  
I do that too Dympna. :) Reply to this

4 years ago, June 17th 2009 No: 5 Msg: #76653  

Either you wife is a mother herself, or else she is a naturally very kind and understanding person



She is the latter, she's a nurse by profession.

And I think, for me, as strange as it sounds, my mood would be partially dictated by how close I was to the baby. If I was right next to it, I would be much more understanding because I could see the parent being helpless to do something. If I was somewhere further away, I might be more inclined to be angry or frustrated because I would have no idea if the parent was just sitting there ignoring the problem, or helpless to do something about it. Just being close enough to interact would make it much easier to deal with because I wouldn't feel so helpless and would at least know what was going on. Weird, I know. Reply to this

4 years ago, June 17th 2009 No: 6 Msg: #76655  
1 posts merged into this topic from: How annoying are you on flights? Reply to this

4 years ago, June 17th 2009 No: 7 Msg: #76658  

I would have no idea if the parent was just sitting there ignoring the problem, or helpless to do something about it.


That is another thing that makes it really difficult when other people are around. In public, a parent can never tune out for a while when (s)he cant take any more, like (s)he can do at home. There is constant pressure from those around to do something NOW. The people around can become as demanding on the parent for attention as the baby is. As well as trying to deal with the baby, the parent has to keep appologising, defending ..... to the people around.

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4 years ago, June 17th 2009 No: 8 Msg: #76659  
B Posts: 602
When my brother got married in Mexico we all went down. The last leg of the flights was on Continental - I will never fly with them again. They did not pressurize the plane correctly and the babies cried. You could not explain to them that they needed to yawn, all they knew is that their ears hurt. It was MISERABLE! Reply to this

4 years ago, June 17th 2009 No: 9 Msg: #76663  
I even had a situation where I was travelling without a child. A single person complained to me in what she seemed to think was a single to single conversation about how she objects to parents who do nothing about it when their children stare at her. Apparently, a 5 year old was standing on the seat accross the aisle from her on her last flight and staring at her. Now, receiving complaints like that as a parent is MISERABLE!

I think the lady who made that comment to me should grow up. :D Well, that phrase does not seem to fit here, but it seems like at least something to say, if I was the stroppy type who bothers to say things like that.
[Edited: 16:41 - Mell ]
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4 years ago, June 17th 2009 No: 10 Msg: #76664  
B Posts: 602
I agree Mell. I would have asked her what she did to make the child stare. LOL I would have had so much fun with the child and made my flight much easier. Reply to this

4 years ago, June 17th 2009 No: 11 Msg: #76665  

....what she did to make the child stare.


LOL I was going to tell her that they sometimes stare when somebody is wearing an unfashionable outfit or smells astrange. But, I am not the type to say things like that either. ;) Reply to this

4 years ago, June 17th 2009 No: 12 Msg: #76667  
B Posts: 602
Some people have on agenda for day:

1. What can I do to make my life miserable. LOL Reply to this

4 years ago, June 17th 2009 No: 13 Msg: #76671  
I think, they think they are being reasonable. Reply to this

4 years ago, June 17th 2009 No: 14 Msg: #76672  
B Posts: 602
Sad but true Mell LOL Reply to this

4 years ago, June 18th 2009 No: 15 Msg: #76712  
Hey Guys,

Feel I have a little experience in the field. My son did 63 flights before he was 20 months old.

First and foremost rule...parents stressed mean child stressed. And you won't stop some people to get stressed on planes, that they fly with children or not.

Second, come prepared....I had a simple but efficient way to organize this. You make sure you come early in the plane to be properly set up. Once the family is set-up...it was time for bottle feeding or breast feeding (I've never done the breast feeding...lol). After this, there is a good chance that he would sleep for a while.

Later on, you make sure you wake him up 45 minutes before landing. This is the exact time when a plane start to get down for landing...which means his little ears will suffer. By having him eating at this precise time...as slowly as possible...you decrease the misconfort for him...therefore reduce the chance of crying.

In flight, I make sure if he was not sleeping, to have a stroll in the plane at least every hour...make it easier.

For bigger guys...same kind of story. Get in the plane early...and come equiped....drawing ALWAYS work before taking off...ask the to draw the plane and the airport.

After this, it's just a question of keeping them busy. The nicest thing today is the inflight video system on some planes....that's the best babysitter ever. Get a gameboy or something like that...I hate these things most of the time...but in a plane, they are life-savers. Now my son is nearly 9...fly all the time, all over...and he his the one complaining of other unruly kids. I have a very simple approach to these. I go and speak to the parents straight on. Now a kids who doesn't behave on land...won't behave in a plane. You don't deal with him, you deal with the parents.

Well, that's my little cent of opinion... Reply to this

4 years ago, June 18th 2009 No: 16 Msg: #76746  
Children have different temperaments. It is unreasonable to expect them all to behave like the more even tempered ones.

Sad but true Mell ...


What I cant understand is why the realities of parenting are so misunderstood. People have been parenting forever and children have always been present in society.
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4 years ago, June 18th 2009 No: 17 Msg: #76837  
B Posts: 602
PA you are so right. Especially when a parent is upset, the children are out of control also. Reply to this

4 years ago, June 18th 2009 No: 18 Msg: #76843  

I go and speak to the parents straight on. Now a kids who doesn't behave on land...won't behave in a plane. You don't deal with him, you deal with the parents.



I have to point out that I am likely not bering very openminded in this discussion, because I have been subjected to an overdose of being judged(NOT on TravelBlog). There probably are parents who really could do better with their children on flights.

As a parent, I am so often in the situation of my child behaving worst than all the others, despite anything I try. My daughter is very active, loud and demanding and always was. If there is anything that will increase stress for parents with these types of children it is other parents who point out that their child does not behave like that, so the parent must be doing something wrong or even worse still they make comments the child can hear about the child. But anyway, what people have not personally experienced, they are unlikely to understand. It still increases my stress though, when I do encounter this situation with other parents which does nothing to make my child quieter.....
[Edited: 16:26 - Mell ]
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4 years ago, June 20th 2009 No: 19 Msg: #77029  
To be honest i am very bothered by how parents must take their children everywhere (especially in this country) I can't stand them especially the little spoiled brats who shout, run around or constantly cry

When travelling perhaps parents should consider getting their children to the doctor before a long flight and get some sedative or sleeping pills prescribed for their kids
[Edited: 05:22 - euro melb ]
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4 years ago, June 20th 2009 No: 20 Msg: #77050  
Goodness me Piero! :D Baby sitters are expensive. As well as that, I suppose we as parents want to spend time with our children so take them to as many places with us as we have the energy for.

But yes, I can see how they would be irritating for singles, when they are irritating for us as parents who love them.

When travelling perhaps parents should consider getting their children to the doctor before a long flight and get some sedative or sleeping pills prescribed for their kids


I for one would never give my child drugs to make her quite. In some situations, the best answer overall it not the convenient one.



[Edited: 10:04 - Mell ]
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