Few would argue that air travel brings out the best in humanity. The attitude is very much every man, woman, and child for themselves, and you ask a favor at your own risk — some of the world's most withering eye-rolls have been leveled on the early flight from New York to Chicago.
Recently, on the Entitled Parents subreddit (home to rants, vents, and questions about the worst parents in the world), a woman shared a story of a favor demanded, denied, and turned like alchemy from molehill to mountain. .
'An entitled mother insists that I 'share' my Nintendo switch with her child on my flight,' wrote user Artlanta in her post title.
Her story begins after boarding:
The scene is a Southwest airline flight. I was sitting in a window seat next to two lovely women, and directly horizontal from us was an empty seat, a mom, and her son.
The flight was taking off. For those who don’t know, you are required to stay seated and keep your seatbelts on for the beginning of the flight until the captain says otherwise. I was strapped in my seat and decided to take out my Nintendo Switch from my carry on beneath my feet.
Enter: the object of desire — a Nintendo Switch, handheld gaming console.
“Excuse me? Ma’am?”
I didn’t realize at first that the mother in the seats horizontal from me was trying to get my attention. She unbuckled her belt and moved to the empty seat by the aisle, closer to me.
“Ma’am! With the video game!”
I lifted my head, but the stranger next to me nudged me as well. “That lady wants to get your attention…” the woman next to me muttered.
I turned my head to see this woman leaning across the aisle with her hands on the arm rest of the aisle seat in my row.
“Sorrrry,” she began. “I just wanted to know if there was any way that my son could use that game for a little while.”
“I’m so sorry,” I began. “My Nintendo switch is just really important to me. I don’t feel comfortable giving it to anyone I don’t know. I don’t even let my sisters play with it — “
I was going to continue but the woman cut me off. “Oh, my son's not like most kids,” she replied. “He’s not destructive, his cousin has one of those and he knows how to play.”
Here's where the altitude really starts to rise. [Emphasis added is ours — to illustrate the most infuriating gesture this argument could have produced.]
She smiled and set her hand out. The two women seated next to me looked back at me, as if they were also in disbelief.
“I’m sorry,” I said again. “I just don’t feel comfortable. I brought it for me.”
“How old are you?” The woman said with a huff, retracting her hand and slapping it on her lap.
“I’m 25, but I don’t see how that matters.” I replied, growing exceptionally uncomfortable.
“Well,” she began, clearly sounding agitated. “My son is 8. This is an hour and 45 minute flight and he just wants something to do. He can’t see it for a few minutes?”
“No. I am not comfortable with that, I’m sorry, but I’m expecting you to understand since this is my property.” I put my head down and un-paused my game, as to ignore anything she had further to say.
“Are you serious?” She seemed genuinely livid. “Well (insert child’s name here), sorry, buddy. Not everyone knows how to share,” the woman said to the kid next to her. Her child started whining and kicking the seat in front of him. “Thanks for this!” She said to me. “A sweet kid just wants to share with you and you’re being ignorant about it.”
Another character enters the mix, on the side of the protagonist:
Before I even opened my mouth, one of the ladies in my row snapped back at her. “How dare you bring that energy on this plane. She told you so kindly that she doesn’t feel comfortable with passing her electronics to a stranger!”
The mother wasn’t having it. “She’s an adult and can’t share with a child for a few minutes of a nearly 2 hour flight?!”
“YOU should’ve brought something for him to do then,” the woman in my row responded. It shut her up good.
The next figure that enters the story provides somewhat of a plot twist, since He descends from heaven.
At the end of the flight, the woman collected her luggage from the overhead bins and said “I hope you’re happy going against god's word, not sharing with a child.”
Some of the people around us giggled. I’m sure that they all overheard the drama at the beginning of the flight. I’ve come across some entitled people in my life, but this strange lady took the cake.
Makes you just want to go ahead and book the next flight to Bora Bora, doesn't it? The tenor of the discussion on the post was about as you'd expect — a lot of disbelief, frustration, and jokes at the mother's expense.
I've flown frequently with my kids and grandkids. Each of them wore a little backpack full of toys and games and books. If nothing else, there's always storytelling.
Senior_Trick_7473 explains how they would have reacted:
I probably would have been put on the “no fly list” if this lady did this to me. Good for you for remaining calm!
“My child isn’t destructive” as he then throws a huge temper tantrum and kicks the seat in front of him. I can’t with these types of parents.
Cyclonic2500 is a theologian of sorts:
Ah yes the the old passage from the Bible that said 'What is mine is mine, and what is thine shall also be mine.' -Karenthians 6:66.
fading__blue has read the whole thing:
Pretty ironic she accused you of “going against God’s word” when she was literally breaking the Tenth Commandment by coveting your Switch (and probably was planning to break the Eighth by not giving it back).
And Maynards_Mama has clearly been on a flight or two before:
In future, don't explain yourself or entertain further harassment; 'NO' is a complete sentence.
It never fails to come true: our most miraculous human achievements bring out our most heinous human behaviors. Happy travels!