When I don’t feel well, I tend to become the worst possible version of myself -whiny, cranky, all around pitiful. I also become hypersensitive to any criticism, even if it’s not directly aimed at me.
I read a blog post earlier from a “fashion blogger” who ended it by saying something to the effect of “I’ll never understand why people take crying babies on airplanes.” There was something about her smug superiority that got really under my skin. I made a comment on the post and immediately unsubscribed to her blog, but I wanted to expand on it a little bit here.
Did you know that parents don’t like to hear their children cry? Shocking, right? A cry is a communication tool that indicates that a child is in pain, uncomfortable, or angry (unless the child is a toddler…then the cry could mean that the meanest mom ever wouldn’t let her eat something off the floor…), and no mom or dad wants that for their offspring. Sure, there are those handful of parents that can blissfully ignore their child(ren)’s cries, but the majority of us feel compelled to respond when those tears start up.
I get it. Hearing a crying baby can be annoying even when you’re a parent. I imagine it’s particularly annoying and frustrating in the confines of an airplane where you can’t necessarily just get up and walk away. However, those type of judgmental and rude remarks are exactly the types of things that add more stress to the already stressful job of parenting. You’ve chosen to be child-free. That’s great that you made that decision, but for those of us who haven’t, we really don’t need your unsolicited opinion or snark about where we choose to take our children. Let parents make their own decisions. For example, I don’t think that taking babies to movies or concerts is the wisest decision, but instead of calling someone out every time I saw it happen, I simply chose not to take Charlotte to the movies or a concert. Now, if The Wiggles come anywhere within a 100 mile radius of our town, you’d better believe I’ll buy those tickets in a hot minute. For her. Not because I sing Wiggles songs to myself all of the time. Not at all.
So, to that blogger, I offer my unsolicited opinion – get over yourself. Perhaps next time you should pack some noise-blocking headphones on your carry on bag and enjoy the fact that you get to escape whatever noise inconveniences you. Perhaps also you should look in your bag for a little empathy. Changes in altitude can cause physical discomfort in little ones that they don’t know how to alleviate. Changes in environment and being surrounded by strangers (even with parents present) can cause emotional distress in little ones that they don’t know how to express. Changes in routines during holiday breaks can be disruptive to little ones who thrive on daily routines. Get the picture?
I don’t like to be so openly snarky to people (I prefer to save my snark for private conversations with family and friends), but this really got under my skin. I know the odds of the original blogger ever reading this are pretty much 0%, but maybe my message will be helpful for some of you out there – as in, maybe you can pass it along when you see another judgmental jerk.
Now, excuse me while I go drink a delicious cup of nighttime cold medicine and wait for my semi-pleasant self to reappear.