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An Overwhelmed Mom Struggles To Care For Her Kids On A Plane While Her Husband Reclines His Seat & Relaxes

Photo: DemKat, Friends Stock / Shutterstock 
mom, dad, kids, plane, travel, childcare

Those of us who travel by plane are familiar with the sight of a mother attempting to settle her screaming child while getting the other one situated and buckled into their seat. Suddenly, a magic bag emerges with toys, books, and snacks, in addition to all the other carry-on items she packed and prepped. 

Meanwhile, the father is already sitting down with his headphones plugged in ready to watch his favorite show, seemingly oblivious to the chaos happening with his own family. 

One mother knows this situation all too well and took to social media to share the reality of traveling with her two kids and husband. 

The mother shared a video of herself taking care of her children on an airplane while her husband reclined his seat and watched a movie. 

Maria Roberts, a speech pathologist and mother of two, recently took a family vacation to Walt Disney World Resort in Florida. However, before they all arrived at the happiest place on Earth, they first had to get through the most stressful place on Earth, AKA the airport and the airplane that transported the family there. 

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During their flight to Disney World, Roberts decided to record part of their experience and post it on Instagram. 

The video depicted Maria scrambling to get her children situated with their books and toys, ensuring that they had their headphones to watch a show or movie. Once settled, she used the limited space she had to get herself seated with her necessities. 

All the while, her husband Lou happily sat in the row across from the rest of his family, headphones plugged in, enjoying a movie with drinks in front of him on his tray table. 

Sadly, Maria’s situation was one that many mothers could relate to. “This is so spot on,” one Instagram user commented. “You forgot the part where he asks you where his headphones are!” another noted. 

While some people obviously believed that the video was hilariously relatable, many others were outraged, claiming that it was time to break these unfair gender roles. 

“Why do we keep putting up with this — it’s not ok. We burden so much to make everyone comfortable,” one user wrote. “But we are the partner — not the mom. It’s not our job to make them comfortable.” 

mom struggles to care for her kids on a plane while her husband relaxesPhoto: damircudic from Getty Images Signature / Canva Pro

“I hate that this is still a standard we are promoting. Even young children can learn that Dad is a good option and don’t need to always be with mom,” another shared. “Please for the love of God stop reinforcing that dads are incapable.” 

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“I cannot believe that in 2023 women still accept this behavior,” another added. 

Maria claimed that her husband can't help with the kids on flights since they prefer to sit with her. 

“As Lou likes to say, ‘I would switch with you, but they refuse to sit next to me,’” she wrote. 

Still, most people did not believe that her explanation was acceptable and that even if the children wanted to sit with mom, dad should still be able to step in and help. Some people encouraged Maria and Lou to “divide and conquer.” Considering they have two children, they suggested that one parent sits with one child while another sits with the other. 

That way, neither partner is overwhelmed. 

mom struggles to care for her kids on a plane while her husband relaxesPhoto: Latino Life / Canva Pro

Even if Maria and Lou are both happy with their flying arrangements, this does not mean that all fathers should be exempt from caring for their children while traveling. Traveling with children is challenging, and most of the time, the burden lands on the mother while the father is either sleeping, kicking back, or watching a movie. 

By stepping up and splitting the responsibilities, a father makes life easier for his partner and also sends a powerful message to his children about shared responsibilities and parenting roles.

So if you're a mother flying with her kids, feel free to pass the kids on to Dad if you need a little break. He will be able to handle it, even if he misses a nap. 

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Megan Quinn is a writer at YourTango who covers entertainment and news, self, love, and relationships.