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Teen Called A ‘Little B*tch’ For Refusing To Give Up Her Exit Row Seat To ‘Larger-Bodied’ Woman On Flight

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Traveling can be an incredible and fulfilling experience, but sometimes there are people who discolor the experience.

Sometimes it’s as simple as arguing about a seat, pointed out the “Am I the A**hole?” (AITA) subReddit.

Redditor evvelfond was recently the target of an altercation over an airplane seat and who was more “entitled” to it.

When she was called an inappropriate name, the Original Poster (OP) wondered if she was being too stubborn.

She asked the sub:

“AITA for not allowing a middle-aged woman to take my exit row seat?”

The OP boarded the plane early.

“I (18 [Female]) was flying back to campus after Thanksgiving break.”

“Every time I fly, my parents and I make sure to check me in immediately as soon as check-in opens so I can get in boarding group A and get a window seat.”

“So I was one of the first people to board and got a window seat in the exit row.”

“There were two seats specifically in the exit row on either side with no seat directly in front of them, allowing you to fully stretch out your legs. I’m very tall, so it’s appreciated.”

A woman confronted her about the seat.

“So I was already settled into my seat, and the last few people came on.”

“Suddenly, a larger-bodied, middle-aged woman appeared and said, ‘Excuse me. You aren’t old enough to sit in this row, sweetie. And I need that seat because I need extra room.'”

“And I was like, ‘Um, I’ve been sitting in the exit row since I was 15, the age when you’re legally allowed to. I’m entitled to this seat.'”

“And she said, ‘No, I’m entitled to that seat because I paid for a ticket, and I have the right to fly comfortably. The other seats don’t give me enough room to sit comfortably. And at your age, you don’t have enough flight experience to do the exit row duties properly.'”

“And I was mad by then and said, ‘Sweetie, I’ve been on hundreds of flights. Probably more than you.'”

“I have plenty of frequent flyer miles. And I don’t want to be rude at all, but she did not look very mobile or like she could do the exit row procedures quickly.”

A flight attendant got involved.

“The flight attendant came to see what the hold-up was.”

“And the woman said, ‘This little girl stole my seat. She’s not old enough to sit here, and the other seats are too small for me.'”

“I vehemently denied this and told her what actually happened. The flight attendant told the woman she was causing a scene and to go sit in one of the other open seats.”

“As she walked away, the woman muttered, ‘Little b**ch,’ at me.”

“I’m quite shaken as I’ve never had a plane confrontation in all the times I’ve flown.”

“AITA for engaging and protecting my seat?”

Fellow Redditors weighed in:

  • NTA: Not the A**hole
  • YTA: You’re the A**hole
  • ESH: Everybody Sucks Here
  • NAH: No A**holes Here

Some said the OP was completely within her right to keep the seat.

“NTA. She forced you to engage, and the fact the flight attendant sided with you shows that you did nothing wrong. If she wanted an exit row seat, she should have checked in sooner.” – sunshine12873

“Addendum to this: You could’ve had that person kicked out for calling you a little b**ch.”

“If anyone ever insults you verbally, just tell the flight attendant and let them deal with it but that person had no right to try to take your seat or insult you. Good for you for standing your ground.” – dyen8

“‘I make sure to check me in immediately as soon as check-in opens so I can get in boarding group A and get a window seat.'”

“Ah, the joys of flying Southwest. I set up alerts on the app so I could get a notification when boarding opened up, just so I could get the A group. I also signed up for Early Bird Check-in for that very reason.”

“NTA. Not your fault or responsibility that she didn’t have the foresight or initiative to check-in earlier to avoid this scenario. She’s just being a big entitled bully.” – PrscheWdow

“NTA.”

“You took the seat you were entitled to, and are not AH for keeping it.”

“The other person is AH for trying to bully you out of it, whether it was a man or woman of any age, for any reason.” – 1962Michael

Others agreed and said the other woman could have planned ahead.

“I’m a big girl, so I buy my seat ahead of time, to make sure I’ll have space to be as comfortable as possible.”

“If she didn’t want to sit in regular seating, she should’ve either checked in earlier or bought her seat. It increases the overall cost of the trip, but it’s worth it to me, to be able to be comfortable in flight.” – Witchywomun

“Let’s be real. I wouldn’t want her to be in that seat in case of an emergency. if there’s an age guideline, there needs to be some kind of fitness guideline.” – zeroFstotakeorgive

“NTA & I absolutely LOATH folx who pull the illegitimate ‘physical issue’ card when, if it was an actual issue, they could have made pre-arrangements for seating” – SnowFox84

“I mean, we all remember that one twitter story from a few months ago where that woman was being unreasonable and didn’t get her way and tweeted at the airline herself to complain and the reaction was very much not what she thought it would be.”

“The age thing was likely an excuse. She couldn’t comfortably sit in her seat and instead of taking it to someone who could actually help her she decided to make it OPs problem.” – Forsaken_Distance777

While she was thrown off by an older woman calling her a terrible name for not giving up her seat, apparently for a need that was greater than her own, the subReddit felt she should hold onto her seat. Planning ahead is especially useful in situations like this.

Written by McKenzie Lynn Tozan

McKenzie Lynn Tozan lives in North Chicago, where she works as a poet, freelance writer, and editor. She received her MFA in Creative Writing from Western Michigan University, and her BA in English from Indiana University South Bend. Her poems have appeared in Rogue Agent, Whale Road Review, the James Franco Review, Thank You for Swallowing, and elsewhere; and her essays and book reviews have appeared with Memoir Mixtapes, The Rumpus, BookPage, and Motherly, among others. When she's not reading and writing, she's in her garden or spending time with her family. For more, visit www.mckenzielynntozan.com.