Complaints About Child Crying from Pain

February 10, 2014

in Baby & Kid Stories

This occurred several years ago on a short flight (about 5 hours) when my little sister was no more than 3 or 4 years old. Not long after take off she began whimpering and crying very loudly, complaining that her ears hurt her. We tried all the tricks: yawning, chewing gum, etc. Nothing was helping. She wasn’t screaming or flailing about but she was crying, and appeared to be in considerable pain which was worrying my parents to no end.

This didn’t stop people from complaining about her, loudly and snidely making comments about parents controlling their children. Luckily for us a very kind flight attendant said she knew a little trick and brought out two plastic drinking cups with warm, damp paper towels in the bottoms of them. She placed them over my sister’s ears and thankfully the pain disappeared. My sister was quiet and happy for the rest of the trip. We were so thankful that she wasn’t in pain anymore, and that the amazing flight attendant helped us.

I couldn’t believe the callousness of some of the people on the flight. I get that a crying child on a plane is annoying, but there is a difference between a child who is throwing a tantrum and who the parents can’t control, and a child who is suffering in pain and doesn’t know what else to do but cry.

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Sandy February 11, 2014 at 4:33 pm

So happy your little sister got relief! Poor thing was probably hurting bad.. If it was one of the "complainers" children-I'm sure they would have felt differently…..


RedHead0186 February 24, 2014 at 1:45 pm

I love the warm rag/towel in a cup trick, I used to do it all the time when I got earaches as a kid.

Not that I'm saying the complainers were in the right, but did they realize that your sister was in pain? To people that aren't parents, they don't realize there are different 'cries' or ways of dealing with pain/boredom. To them, it might have just seemed like another child crying and not knowing she was in pain and just thinking the parent was being negligent.

It should have been obvious when the flight attendant was helping, and giving people the benefit of the doubt is usually a better practice than just sneering at a crying child in pain, but some people just don't know better. (Not an excuse, just a statement of fact).


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