Going On A Family Holiday? Beware The ‘Evil Stares’

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Gatwick Airport in London recently surveyed 1,000 British parents and discovered that most them get totally stressed out while traveling with their kids. But it’s not the actual children that’s the problem but rather the reactions of fellow passengers. Let’s just say that people aren’t exactly shy about wanting to travel in peace (as in, no screaming kids nearby).

More than half the parents questioned in the study say they’ve been made to feel bad when their child cries or misbehaves on holiday, reports Reuters. And 40 percent say they’ve received “evil stares” from fellow travelers. In fact, 25 percent of parents with noisy children have been outright asked to move elsewhere.

Ahh, the joys of parenting. I personally get so excited every time we book a family vacation, only to break out in hives in the week leading up to it. There’s the whole packing and organizing bit, which often feels like a full-time job in and of itself, then there’s that fear that you might forget “doggy” or whatever other stuffed toy your little one is obsessed with at the time. But the worse part is the traveling itself.

In my experience, it always starts off fabulous (oh, the anticipation!) and then begins to go sour during hour two. My husband and I discipline our kids. We teach them good manners. We pack a week’s worth of toys and games and stickers – not to mention diapers, snacks, wipes, DVDs – into a single carry-on. But there’s only so much you can say or do before a (loud) meltdown takes place in public. That’s when I’m torn between feeling really sorry for my fellow travelers – especially the childless ones – and feeling sorry for myself for getting dirty looks left, right and center.

The Gatwick Airport survey results aren’t all that surprising. But it is comforting to know that I’m not alone in getting stressed out when one of my kids throws a tantrum on an airplane, for instance, or while waiting for our luggage to arrive. It sucks for all involved – parents, kids and fellow passengers alike. But, hey, it’s a small price to pay for some quality family time away from home.

(Photo: BananaStock)