Passenger Suggests that Baby be Slapped

February 10, 2013

in Senior Stories

I was on a flight from Toronto to Budapest a few years ago, with a stop in Frankfurt. This was on Lufthansa during a strike, so a lot of people were pretty crabby as there was no meal service (they did, however, give out large bags of chips to everyone, and still had beverage service, so it wasn’t too bad.)

I was sitting about three rows behind a woman and a very young child, less than a year old. The child was fussing a little before takeoff – not being loud or crying, mind you, just making noises the way babies do. I noticed an older woman, who was walking down the aisle to be seated, give the mother a disapproving look. She passed me and went to sit – I’m not sure where, but several rows behind myself, because when I later went up to use the bathroom I saw her sitting towards the back of the plane, wearing large headphones. This was an overnight flight, by the way.

About three hours into the flight, the baby in front of me starts to cry. Really, with the noise from the plane and my own crappy airplane earbuds, I didn’t notice it crying until I took them out and got up to use the bathroom.

The lady at the back, however, definitely noticed.

This WHOOSH of air rushes past my arm (I was in the aisle seat), and I look up to see that the older woman was now standing in the aisle and talking very animatedly to the woman with the baby. I will now reproduce their conversation as best I can:

MOM: *sounding very distressed* I’m so sorry, I’m doing my best, I don’t know what else to do to calm him down.

OLDER WOMAN (OW): What is wrong with you? What is wrong with HIM?

MOM: It’s his first time on a plane, okay?!


MOM: *getting audibly angry now* Oh, do you think I’m NOT? Do you think I’M enjoying this?

OW: When I was his age, I would have been SLAPPED for such behaviour!

MOM: HE’S SIX MONTHS OLD! You would slap a baby?

OW: I sure would!

MOM: Get away from me right now.

OW: *retreats two steps, comes back* He should be SLAPPED.

MOM: YOU should be slapped!

OW: *starts to walk away*


OW: *turns back* UNFIT MOTHER!

FLIGHT ATTENDANTS: *do nothing at all*

I feel really bad for the mother, but damn, that was sort of amusing. Incidentally, the old lady’s yelling woke up a lot more people than the baby, who ironically calmed down after this. But really – who would slap a little baby?

{ 22 comments… read them below or add one }

Jodi February 11, 2013 at 12:50 pm

Wow, just…wow.


Mary. March 25, 2013 at 12:18 pm

Having lived oversea and traveled extensively with two children from 6 weeks of age to 11 years when we finally came back to the US, here are some helpful tips you can give to a parent the next time you encounter this: A bottle or pacifier helps equalize pressure in baby's ears. From one year on buy little items and keep them hidden from the children until a tense moment ( crayons, matchbox cars, small stuffed toys etc.). In 11 years I had one bad flight with each child, meaning they were fussy for up to 15 minutes. Being helpful is much better than angry. I now travel with no trouble with my 5-year-old grandson


Adam March 25, 2013 at 1:31 pm

I hate kids… I hate travelling with kids… I hate parents who bring kids too young to control on an aircraft. If you can't stop your kid from crying, screaming, or yelling… they are too young to get on a plane. While I would certainly NEVER yell at a mother in flight.. .or any woman in flight… I do think this needs to be stopped. It didn't used to be a problem, as people used to understand that kids are a responsibility… you are responsible for them… and that means unless you can control them or find someone to leave them with nice restaurants, movie theaters, and plane rides are not on your list of things to do until this changes… it's called being a parent!! I think the airlines need to step in and help these brainless twits that frankly shouldn't be sharing their genes with the pool anyway and make 50% of all routes child FREE flights especially business routes. On all other planes a simple wall between the last 10 rows with a sealed sliding door to create a kid zone… and if you are bringing kids under 5 on a plane you get to site with all the kids and free us from the burden since we decided to not have kids… or leave them at home where they belong. I AGREE, you can't shut up a 4 year old… you also can't trust them to play with guns… or drive a car… it is illegal for you to give them a gun or your car… but you get to bring them on a plane and act like it is some new found knowledge that you can't shut him up… have some class and some respect and take on the challenge of parenting without demanding the rest of us join you.


Tom March 25, 2013 at 1:46 pm

Adam is a moron.


Dion March 26, 2013 at 7:55 pm



Jim Mitchell March 25, 2013 at 4:11 pm

Try entering the real world ……kids cry. If you hate kids, what do you know about parenting? Moron


april March 25, 2013 at 5:38 pm

I hate idiots. . . I hate traveling with idiots. . . I hate people who are too old or too big for me to control getting on an aircraft with me. If you can't stop your mouth from spewing idiotic comments, please stay off a plane, and off the internet. While I certainly would NEVER yell at anyone in flight. . . I do think this needs to be stopped. It didn't used to be a problem, as people used to understand that there are all kinds of circumstances and that sometimes young children need to be on a plane. . . to visit a grandparent for the first time. . . to move across country or across the globe. . . because sometimes you just can't get someplace by driving. But that doesn't stop idiots from thinking that every person with a young child on a plane is just out for a joy ride and to make other people's lives miserable. If you can't see things from a different perspective and understand that there are circumstances that warrant a young child being in certain locations including a plane. . . if you can't get your head out of your a$$ and control your idiotic, entitled rants, then traveling and commenting on blogs are not on your list of things to do. . . it's called being a grown-up!! I think someone needs to step in and help these brainless twits that frankly shouldn't be sharing their genes with the pool anyway and make 50% of all routes and blogs idiot FREE flights especially blogs that I read/routes that I have to travel. On all other planes a simple few seats on the wings of the plane, reserved for idiots, to create an interior that is idiot FREE for the rest of us. . . and with any luck there will be fewer idiots when we land. . . and if you are bringing an idiot on the plane s/he gets to sit with other idiots and free us from the burden since we decided not to be clueless a$$holes. . . or leave them in an institution where they belong. I AGREE, you can't always shut up an idiot who's mouth is bigger than his brain. . . you also can't trust them to have any kind of perspective. . . or have a degree of understanding. . . or know the proper grammatical use of ellipses. . . it is illegal for you to shoot them or put them in a car that's going over a cliff and put the rest of us out of our misery. . . but they get to be on a plane and act like it is some new found knowledge that there are other people in the world, people with children, with circumstances that require them to travel. . . have some class and some respect and take on the challenge of being a grown-up without demanding the rest of us join you in having no appreciation for the circumstances of other people.
And perhaps in future, you can bring pick up a few pacifiers and bring them along on your next flight. And if you happen to sit near a young mother with an infant whose ears are in pain from the change in cabin pressure and who starts to cry, you can stuff the pacifier into your mouth and choke on it and forestall any future rants.


may December 28, 2014 at 8:40 pm

…slow clap. That was brilliant!


Traveler1 May 21, 2016 at 5:22 am

That was EPIC! ahahaha


jonasgal August 2, 2016 at 6:14 am

That was a ridiculous "rant!" Adam's right! People with kids shouldn't really fly that much!


JDB March 26, 2013 at 2:51 pm

I totally dislike children, I don't like being around them and never want to have children of my own but what you are saying is totally insane! Sometimes kids cry and no matter what a parent does they can not get them to calm down, it has nothing to do with responsibility. If you are using air travel as the public transit system it has become then you need to learn tolerance or charter your own plane…


Amanda April 5, 2013 at 9:15 am

Looks like we've got a parenting expert here! So, Mr. Expert, how was I supposed to take my infant for us to go live with her father in Japan without getting on a plane? How will my child get to see her family across the ocean without us getting on a plane (my family is completely unable to fly — some for financial reasons, others for medical reasons)?

And there is no comparison between giving a child a gun and traveling with a child! My baby slept 11 of the 14 hours of our last flight, and didn't cry at all. She only made a noise when she woke up to nurse. Wow, what a nuisance, huh??

Sounds like your unenlightened ass needs to stay home rather than the kids.


Mary Mahi Mahi April 6, 2013 at 2:15 pm

Yeah except I am a mother myself I had so many mothers with not infants or toddlers that can't help it. At age 4 or 5 yelling & screaming kicking your seat during the entire flight that should call for a spanking if you're a good parent. I remember one flight in particular the mother insisted on the four year old to keep her shoes on so the battle during the five hour flight was the child pulling the shoes off then kicking & screaming when the mother would put the shoes back on. Leave the shoes off lady give me a break! Totally destroyed everyone's peace during a horrendous flight from hell. You can shut up a four year old don't give me that perhaps one day you will meet that mother. Bring some games some toys something to distract the child during the flight. Expect some crying and disturbance when it lasts the ENTIRE flight with no assistance from the flight attendants all the passengers suffer even in First Class where they kept looking behind as it to say stop it right now. We can only take so much.


wade August 9, 2013 at 10:37 pm

moron mary,
" At age 4 or 5 yelling & screaming kicking your seat during the entire flight that should call for a spanking if you're a good parent"

do you know what happens if you spank your child in public these days?

you get arrested for child abuse


Max November 17, 2013 at 6:53 am

It's not the baby's fault. You should really learn to put up with children. If you really hate children on flights so much you should spend the extra money to fly first class. In economy, you do get what you payed for and there is likely to be children in economy. I hate people who get annoyed at children for reason like this. They have not respect at all. I doubt you know what bringing up a child is like!


Diablo August 18, 2016 at 11:11 pm

Adam, do us all a favor and take a nice big swig of bleach. Your butthurt self isn't helping anybody. The baby section sounds good though, but parents are going to drop their children on other parents there. It's not going to work, you have to suck it up. I'd tell you to grow a pair and deal with it, but you must have big balls to say what you said.


Sherri March 25, 2013 at 2:16 pm

Agreed Tom. I hope Adam takes his own advice. Gene pool restrictions is a great idea.


Nicole March 25, 2013 at 3:12 pm

I agree too! In a world where families live across continents it's not always about traveling for a luxury vacation. Sometimes people travel with infants to see family that they see less than once a year, or to see family who are suffering/ dying/ etc. Adam should maybe shell out for business class and avoid the children he so royally hates. They paid for their ticket just like he did — there are other ways to travel that wouldn't put him directly in the path of having to deal with a crying child — ship, concord jet, train with sleeper car, automobile. He has every right to choose one of these other venues if he really loathes children that much.


Carri March 25, 2013 at 4:19 pm

I agree also, Adam is a jerk. As Nicole said, if you want to see family, flying may be the only way.


Guest March 26, 2013 at 12:03 pm

Some of us are stationed overseas for various reasons and must travel with our families. Sometimes life isn't fair, but somehow I manage to deal with it….and so must you.


Guest April 10, 2013 at 2:33 pm

Too bad Adam's parents didn't opt for an abortion. Strange. I'm usually so against people having abortions but in his case, it would've been for the best. Seriously? People with children shouldn't be permitted to go to nice restaurants or travel? What an A$$!


Amy September 3, 2016 at 3:40 pm

I cannot imagine how awestruck you were. I also cannot imagine what it must have been like for that poor mother to have some old, annoyed woman come up and say her child should be slapped for crying because of air sickness or whatever. If I was the mother in this scenario I would definitely have to talk with the flight attendant and request to have this lady moves to another seat on the plane (if there was one), so that she could get some peace and quiet, and not bother everyone else by complaining. Everyone was a baby or child once, and everyone annoyed another person by crying or throwing a fit at sometime in their life. I bet this woman once flew on a plane as a child and caused everyone to want to cut their ears off, but could they? NO!!!!!!!


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