A Woman Tried to Steal My Seat on the Plane for Her Son; I Refused

People
month ago

One woman found herself at a crossroads, torn between societal expectations and standing up for her own comfort. The conflict arose during a flight, where the pressure to be generous clashed with her determination to prioritize personal space.

This incident unfolded on the airplane.

I am overweight.

I’m headed across the country to spend Christmas with my brother and his husband. Knowing that comfort is important, especially considering my size, I decided to book an extra seat for the journey. It’s not the most pleasant thing to pay extra, but it is what it is.

Things went smoothly during check-in, security, and boarding initially. However, a bit of a situation arose when a woman approached my row with her approximately 18-month-old son. She insisted that I squeeze into one seat so her son could have the other. Instead of asking, she told me to do so. I politely declined, explaining that I paid for the extra seat for my own comfort.

This caught the attention of the flight attendant as the woman made a fuss, claiming I was taking the seat from her son. I showed my boarding passes to prove that I had indeed paid for the extra space. The flight attendant asked if I could try to make room, but I firmly asserted my right to the seat I paid for.

The flight attendant eventually instructed the woman to have her son sit on her lap, as is common for children of his age during flights. Throughout the journey, I endured dirty looks and passive-aggressive remarks from the woman, but I stood my ground in prioritizing the comfort I paid for.

People in the comments expressed their support for her.

  • “I’ve taken 9-hour flights with an infant in my arms and shorter flights with a toddler in my lap, who was capable of sitting in his own seat and very much did not want me to hold him. Did it suck? Yes. But it was my problem alone, and as long as my child was under 24 months and I didn’t have to pay for his seat, I chose to hold him. I swear, not all of us parents are this entitled!” paprikastew / Reddit
  • “She’s wrong for not buying a seat for her son and assuming someone else would give up a seat they paid for. Odds are she was hoping there’d be extra seats on the flight so she didn’t have to pay and used the lap thing as a loophole.” the-lurky-turkey / Reddit
  • “I’d go so far as making a complaint to the airline about their employee supporting another passenger harassing you.” Radiant-Ability-3216 / Reddit
  • “I am sickened that someone who paid for a seat, whether their own seat or an extra seat is just expected to let some entitled person have it for their child? That they didn’t even pay for?! Then I question the flight attendant. How can she even ask someone to let them use it after they show her it was paid for? Unbelievable.” Ok-Cap592 / Reddit
  • “You should always do what you can to be as healthy as you can, but being fat isn’t a character flaw or a moral failing. We all have our own challenges in life, and you deserve not to be ashamed of your body and yourself, even if you aren’t currently meeting your goals. If the mom wants an extra seat for her kids, she should have purchased one. She’s not entitled to a seat you purchased, and you don’t need to feel bad for her bad behavior.” LadyCass79 / Reddit
  • “This is why I hate traveling during the holidays. I fly all the time, but during the holidays, people just go nuts. That woman was both rude and wrong. You did exactly what you should have done, and I’m surprised the flight attendant didn’t just tell her to pound sand.” trailer_trash_dreams / Reddit
  • “The flight attendants on my most recent flights have started announcing during boarding ‘If the answer is no, do not ask again.’ The idea was that if you had a real need, you would settle it at the ticket booth instead of putting it on another passenger to accommodate you. It was incredibly refreshing.” BadTanJob / Reddit
  • “Good for you buying the extra seat. You being the sort of conscientious person who will spend the extra money to avoid encroaching on others is probably why you are having (needless) self-doubt about the encounter.” uhhh206 / Reddit

Despite facing judgment or skeptical looks, the woman in today’s story held onto a strong sense of self-confidence. However, certain situations linger in your memory, and you find yourself thinking about them, sometimes even years after they occur.

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