Little girl sits in urine for hours after flight attendant refuses to let her use the bathroom
Flying with little kids is stressful as hell these days. You have to worry about everything from getting kicked out of your seats if your baby is crying to the fact that most of the people without kids nearby actually wish you and your children weren’t sitting by them. But at least you know there’s bathrooms on board in case your small traveling companion has to go, right?
Stacey Osmond tells Scary Mommy she and her two-year-old granddaughter Ruby were on their way home from a trip to see Osmond’s niece in a dance recital. It was Ruby’s first trip that included a plane ride. Everything thing went perfectly, until they boarded the five and a half hour flight home from Nova Scotia to Calgary. Ruby wet herself on the flight home when a flight attendant refused to let her use the business class restroom more than once.
Knowing her granddaughter would likely have to take frequent bathroom breaks, Osmond arranged for seats near the business class, so they were close to the bathroom. But the attempt to think ahead didn’t impress one of the flight attendants. “The second or third time I tried to take Ruby to the bathroom, the flight attendant told me, ‘I can’t have you coming up here anymore,'” Osmond told CBC News. “I said, ‘She’s a baby. I was given those seats by a booking agent for that reason, so that she would be close to the bathroom.’ She said, ‘That doesn’t matter, you are not to come up here.'” Enraged, but not wanting to escalate the situation with her granddaughter watching, Osmond headed back to their seats.
With the giant beverage cart blocking the bathroom to the back and the flight attendant refusing to let little Ruby use the bathroom at the front of the plane, the little girl tried to hold it. Ultimately and understandably, she had an accident right there in her seat.
Ruby had finished potty training months before, and Osmond hadn’t flown with a small child in over 15 years. She didn’t have a spare pull up or change of clothes on hand.
Osmond found some napkins to try and clean the little girl up best she could. She tells Scary Mommy she let the flight attendant know what happened. “Later when passing the flight attendant I said, ‘She peed in her seat, thanks.’ She didn’t say anything. But then about 20 minutes later another flight attendant brought us a complimentary blanket for her to sit on.” The little girl was forced to spend the remaining three hours of the flight in her wet seat.
As someone who flies with young children semi-regularly, this is one of my nightmare scenerios. Kids who are potty trained already can get very upset and take offense when you try to get them to wear a pull-up or diaper “just in case.” I cringe every time my kids ask to go to the bathroom multiple times during a flight but at the same time, when you have to go, you have to go, right?
And who’s to say how often is too often to go to the bathroom anyway? As long as their isn’t a safety risk like turbulence, bathrooms are there for people to use. It’s part of the insane price you pay to ride on a plane. Toddlers learning how to control the urge to go, pregnant moms with morning sickness or even someone who just drank a lot of water before boarding the flight- no one should be refused access to a bathroom just because they need to use it frequently.
Osmond contacted the company about the incident. So far they’re refused to offer her a refund, instead saying they would send Ruby some things and give Osmond a $200 voucher. Osmond declined. With the exception of asking her to resend the claim number, they haven’t contacted her further.
To Osmond, it’s not really about the cost of the flight, it’s the way she and her granddaughter were treated. “I would have like a little common courtesy,” she explains. “You can’t just treat the passengers beyond the curtain like they are not worth your time. Air Canada would not be able to operate on business class alone. And I didn’t pay $1600 to be treat like garbage.”
Fortunately Ruby seems unfazed by the incident and is instead focusing on the fun she had with Grandma while away.”It was a wonderful trip,” explains Osmond. “Ruby was on stage with the dancers and now can’t stop showing us her new dance moves.”
As for fellow parents and grandparents who plan to travel this summer with young kids, she offers a tip in hopes of preventing this from happening to someone else. “Get the very back seat,” she says.