- A Twitter user’s thread asking for advice on sending her son flying gained thousands of comments.
- The poster said her ex-husband called her “soft” for not sending their 6-year-old flying alone.
- Most of the respondents agreed with her concerns.
A mother’s Twitter thread last week asking if it was OK to let her child fly alone drew thousands of comments and sparked a larger discussion about child safety and co-parenting.
The thread, posted by Twitter user @That1teddygirl, said her ex-husband called her “soft” for not wanting to send their 6-year-old son on an airplane by himself to visit him in another state. She added that she really didn’t want to change her mind on this, especially because the child told her he didn’t want to fly alone.
—Teddy (@That1teddygirl) January 18, 2023
A majority of the top replies came to her defense, saying they certainly wouldn’t let a 6-year-old fly alone, and that they would feel terrified if they were put in that situation as a child. Some also called out the ex-husband for approaching this topic insensitively.
“6 years old?” one of the top replies said. “Your husband is out of his mind.”
“A man calling a woman ‘soft’ for wanting to protect her child will never sit right with me,” another Twitter user wrote. “The details are irrelevant.”
Teddy gave more details about the situation in further tweets, saying that while her son had flown a couple of times before, he doesn’t even feel comfortable crossing the street alone. She also said she asked her son point-blank and he apparently said “absolutely NOT.”
—Teddy (@That1teddygirl) January 19, 2023
Some people also raised concerns that @That1teddygirl felt the need to gather evidence in order to stand up to her co-parent.
“Trying to frame this nicely, and I don’t know y’all, but you needing to find evidence instead of just stopping at the fact that your son said no says a lot about his father, who I’m sure just wants to see his son but is not going about it in the best possible way,” said one user.
Though most users agreed that her son shouldn’t fly alone, some who spoke from personal experience said there are options to help keep children who are traveling alone safe.
According to a US Department of Transportation booklet, most airlines let children 5 years old or older fly by themselves, but they have to adhere to special “unaccompanied minor” policies, which include special pickup and dropoff procedures, among other protocols.
It states that parents can fill out an accompanied minor form that makes sure airline workers are aware that a child is flying alone. The child may be given a special badge to wear to denote this. The US Department of Transportation also recommends writing down important information, like phone numbers and addresses, for the child to hold onto.
The booklet says that while airports will always try to keep children safe, there are no services that “include constant supervision” during the flight.
Insider has reached out to @That1teddygirl for comment.