I started flying with Reagan when she was four weeks old and Elliott started when she was five weeks old. Other passengers usually give me one of two looks when I walk on to the plane with babies – 1) Aww look at your sweet baby! or 2) Eye roll and muttering under their breath. It’s like some people automatically assume that your children are going to make their flight a living hell. Now, both of my kids are very well behaved on flights and I don’t think we’ve ever had an incident where one of them was screaming uncontrollably and was inconsolable. However, Reagan has had moments where she got cranky or woke up during a red eye and it took a minute to get her calmed down, and people started giving me that look.
The way I see it, I’m traveling with a baby who deals with a lot of uncontrollable emotions and is in an unfamiliar environment. YOU are an adult who is more than capable of handling how you react to new and uncertain situations. Put your big kid pants on, and deal with the crying baby. Unless my kid is causing you physical harm by their crying, I have no intention of being overly apologetic for their behavior.
After one flight when Reagan was just over 1 year old, someone actually stood up and told me they had requested a seat change when they saw I had a baby and would be sitting close to them (CLOSE, not even right next to) but they were pleasantly surprised when Reagan didn’t cry once. I’m lucky that Reagan has always been a pretty chill kid, but I was irritated that someone thought to judge my parenting based on how a 1 year old acted on a long flight.
I know we’ve all seen those parents who handed out earbuds and snacks to all the other passengers as a way to make up for the fact that they were bringing a child on the flight–while it’s very considerate, I don’t think we need to apologize for having kids and wanting to travel with them! People get way too offended these days, and I think they could use a lesson in dealing with their emotions 🙂