A Mom Changed Her Baby's Diaper On An Airplane Tray Table And It Sparked A Debate
This is why you always bring disinfectant wipes on planes.
There have been a lot of debates about plane etiquette when it comes to families and kids. Do parents have the entitlement of being sat with their kids if they didn’t plan ahead? How do you handle a screaming baby on a four-hour flight? Should kids even be allowed on planes at all?
These types of discussions have gone on for as long as planes have taken to the skies. However, there’s probably one subtopic of kids and planes that most can agree on — kid’s poopy diapers are meant for the bathroom and the bathroom only.
A woman asked the “Am I The A**hole?” Reddit thread whether she was in the wrong for asking a couple to use the bathroom instead of changing their baby’s dirty diaper on the tray table provided for each seat.
“I (28F) was on a flight for several hours today, seated behind a couple with a baby. I’m a really nauseous flyer, so I took a Dramamine ahead of time and did my best to get some sleep during the flight. This didn’t happen because of the baby’s crying, but oh well, I know flights are scary and stressful for infants and there was nothing anyone could do about that,” they wrote.
Though the OP understood that babies on planes is a thing that happens, realizing she was just going to have to ride it out, she finally had enough when the mother of the crying infant decided to take down her tray table and use it as a changing station for a foul-smelling diaper.
“We were at the back of the plane right by the bathrooms, which I confirmed had baby changing tables when I had to go back there to throw up after the smell hit me,” she wrote.
“I didn’t say anything the first time, but the second time I heard them go into the diaper bag a couple hours later I asked if they could please go use the plane bathroom instead of exposing everyone on the plane to the smell.”
Her request did not go over well, and the mom on the plane “went off” on the OP.
“[She] said I had no idea how stressful it is to travel with an infant, which is true—I don’t have kids,” she wrote.
After getting a flight attendant’s attention, staff asked the couple to only use the bathrooms to change their baby. Then, the pilot made an announcement that all diaper changing needed to be done in the bathrooms, after which both parents looked “extremely annoyed.”
“AITA for asking them to stop changing their baby in the middle of the plane and inadvertently bringing it to the attention of the flight crew?” she asked.
Hundreds of Reddit users made their opinions known on this mom making a stink over complaints of her child’s diaper, assuring the OP that they did the right thing.
“NTA. There are changing tables in the bathrooms. That's what they are for. Also, thank God the maintenance crews disinfect between flights. The thought of eating/drinking off a tray table used as a changing table makes me want to hurl,” one top comment read.
Who wants to tell this person that they probably don’t disinfect between flights anymore?
Another wrote, “NTA. Baby turds stink worse than regular ones. Exposing people in a closed metal tube thousands of feet in the air to that is criminal.”
“NTA. Just the fact that she was using the tray intended for passengers to place their food on is revolting. I can't begin to imagine the smell,” another Reddit user chimed in.
“Yes, flights are stressful for parents and their children, but that's no excuse to be inconsiderate and downright gross, especially when there are literally changing tables available in the bathrooms.”
An actual pilot also weighed in on this sh*tty situation. “NTA. Pilot here. This is what the bathrooms are for. You aren’t alone in an aircraft and having an infant doesn’t excuse you from anti-social behavior,” they wrote. “If you can’t respect your fellow passengers, you probably shouldn’t be flying. I’m willing to bet if they were on the receiving end, they would be the first to complain.”
Yes, plane bathrooms are small, but parents should preplan and work out a solution that will hinder the occurrence of submitting everyone on a plane to the smell of your child’s feces. Obviously if a diaper change needs to happen, heading to the bathroom is the best option.
Most airlines have at least one bathroom on board with a baby changing station inside. However, it’s always best to check with the airline to make sure. If there is no baby changing station on board, ask a flight attendant to direct you to the best area for a changing. Bonus points for packing small plastic bags you can tie up after disposing of a soiled diaper.
Bottom line: there’s most likely a better option for changing a baby’s diaper on a plane than the tray table. First, those tray tables are small and pretty flimsy. Second, they aren’t even that clean to begin with. You don’t want your baby’s bare butt exposed to all those mystery germs. Lastly, like this OP wrote, it’s rude and pretty vial.
Read the entire AITA thread here.