Apathetic Father

December 24, 2007

in Baby & Kid Stories

I was on a flight going only halfway across the U.S. (thankfully only 2.5 hrs), sitting at a window with two seats to my left. A mother with a child of about 2 on her lap was next to me, and the father next to her. The mother actually had a ticket for the other side of the aisle, and the father and child for my side. But the father didn’t seem too interested in taking care of the child, and the child must be incapable of sitting, because the mother had it in her lap. Her job was to keep it still. It wanted to lay there and kick rather than sit up, and lay there and kick it did. In my direction, too. Daddy had a magazine and didn’t seem to want the child’s head in his lap, so Mommy constrained it with its feet hanging underneath the armrest separating us. It kicked my thigh, and kicked, and kicked. When Mommy sat it upright, it screamed bloody murder. Daddy didn’t even look up from his magazine. Every so often I turned at glared at her, which prompted the child being shifted so its head was on Daddy’s lap. That lasted no more than about 3 minutes each time before he got an annoyed look and Mommy shaped up. Then she’d sit it up again, we all got sick of the screaming, and then it was lain down again.

When she had to use the lavatory, she asked him, “Hon, could you please take him for a minute?” and he looked over uncomprehendingly, slowly put the magazine in the seat pocket, took the kid without standing up, then realized that he had to stand and gave the kid back, then stood and took it, sat down and didn’t manage to help it stop crying, and literally dumped it on Mommy’s lap after she got back. Without a word, he was back to his magazine (no, not a work magazine–some low-quality news thing).

I actually felt sorrier for the mother than for myself when the flight was over.

{ 15 comments… read them below or add one }

zebra April 2, 2009 at 9:55 am

Why didn't they just exchange seats? At least that would have prevented you having your space encroached upon.


Anonymous April 2, 2009 at 10:06 am



MT April 2, 2009 at 10:09 am

OMG! These people set by me too.. however mine ends with the little dear barfing on me and mom. Milk barf…smelled awful. Thank good I have a little guy and can stand that smell. ugh..


Barry S April 2, 2009 at 10:56 am

I understand your frustration, but it sounds like you said, a deadbeat for a dad that refuses to help. I feal sorry for the childs mother, I am sure she gets no help with childraising off the plane either.


C April 2, 2009 at 12:27 pm

Are you serious? "IT"????


Jesse April 2, 2009 at 2:14 pm

That is one guy who should have had a vasectomy.


Jessi April 2, 2009 at 6:43 pm

i'm not sure we're living in the same epoch!!! "IT"???? what insensitivity.


HadEnough April 3, 2009 at 12:41 am

I believe that Demonspawn are usually referred to as IT. Don't feel hurt if you're the parents of said demonspawn – it's just the word the English language has set aside for such creatures.


AL April 3, 2009 at 1:51 pm

Some people here are too fucking sensitive. This website was not made to be PC.. get over it.. Yes, "it"… so what?


Jenn April 7, 2009 at 6:47 am

I would have kicked the hell out of you too if you were calling me IT


Joe Mama April 8, 2009 at 6:35 am

Unfortunately I know people like that. The father is totally hands-off as a parent and seems to think that his job was making the kids. I guess that's why his wife is divorcing him now.


Nacho April 10, 2009 at 6:17 am

Well then, Jenn, there are more appropriate things that we could call you, but I fear they may be too offensive for a public board. So I recommend you stick with "it."


Sarah April 16, 2009 at 9:39 am

I couldn't have said it better myself, Nacho.


Atari May 31, 2009 at 7:35 pm

Thank you, Nacho and Sarah. I might have had to say something, myself, if you two had not.


College Kid November 4, 2010 at 11:23 am

It is pretty safe when you are not sure of the sex of the child. Babies are hard to tell apart with out checking their undersides.


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