Flight Attendant's List of Gross Things

iVillage Member
Registered: 09-20-2009
Flight Attendant's List of Gross Things
Thu, 01-24-2013 - 2:44pm

Apparently, a group of flight attendants got together and listed their top ten gross things seen on a flight and two of the ten include something related to breastfeeding.  I saw the list here:  http://www.huffingtonpost.com/sara-keagle/the-top-ten-gross-things-airplanes_b_2505038.html

Other "gross things" on the list are poopy tissues, blankets with snot on it, gross panties found in the seat pocket, and other things that are actually gross.

One of her breastmilk "ickies" is when some poor mother's frozen milk thawed and started leaking from her bag.  I just feel bad for that mom on that one.  I think if the other one is true (woman with both breasts exposed to pump), then that is iffy for me, but her list sounds a bit embellished.  I can't imagine anyone doing that on an airplane.  But is it really as gross as the other things on the list?

iVillage Member
Registered: 04-18-2012
Thu, 01-24-2013 - 3:00pm

I agree that the list seems embellished. I honestly can't imagine some of those things taking place on a crowded airplane. Blech!  However, I don't think you can even compare the two breastfeeding points with the others.  I feel horrible for the mother with the leaking breastmilk.  Obviously that wasn't done on purpose. If the woman was pumping as she described (which I highly doubt!), then of course she could have been more discreet.  But comparing that to peeing in a seat or putting tissues used as toilet paper back in the box (gag!) back in the box- yeah, not even close...

iVillage Member
Registered: 08-08-2012
Thu, 01-24-2013 - 3:20pm

I have been on many flights in my many years and most of that I haven't seen or heard about. Sitting in the jump seat I know is a no no, but I can't imagine someone peeing on the seat.

I have breastfed all my children in various places. One that comes to mind is sitting in the laundry room at a camp ground with my two girls and one was only 3wks old, the other 2 1/2 ish and I was tandem nursing. The big one on the bottom and her sister laying on top of her. A woman came in to check on her laundry and did a double take and then we struck up a conversation. Those two I tandem nursed for another couple of years, and usually I would get into some interesting conversations.

I have nursed on planes, keeps them happy, quiet and their ears popped. I HAVE changed them on the small fold down tray..I have yet to see a changing table in an airplane bathroom! Trust me it is pretty tricky to get them changed on a tray table hahaha

Most of the other stories sound like hyperbole.

iVillage Member
Registered: 09-30-2011
Thu, 01-24-2013 - 3:54pm
As gross, maybe not, but still pretty icky. I get the need to pump when you need to, but that mom could have been a heck of a lot more discreet than just pulling out both boobs in plain sight. I wouldn't want to be the person sitting next to her, especially when it sounds like it went on for quite awhile. You can pump and still maintain some sense of decorum. As for the frozen breast milk, it is still a body fluid and you have no idea what it could contain and the health history of the mother. Is it as gross as other body fluids? Certainly not, but I don't want to be in contact with anyone else's body fluids if I can help it ;)


"Minds are like parachutes. They only function when they are open."

iVillage Member
Registered: 07-11-2006
Thu, 01-24-2013 - 9:15pm

I don't want to be in contact with anyone else's body fluids if I can help it ;)

On a visceral level - I agree. But when you think about it breastmilk isn't like blood or snot. It is so loaded with antibacterial qualities that it shouldn't be seen as a bodily fluid. It should be seen as formula or cow's milk. Still gross, but not disease spreading.

iVillage Member
Registered: 09-01-2002
Sat, 02-02-2013 - 7:46pm

I agree.  Since they recommend moms with HIV don't breastfeed, I'd say another's breastmilk is a bodily fluid I don't want to come into contact with!


Community Leader
Registered: 10-01-2010
Sun, 02-03-2013 - 11:26am

<<Since they recommend moms with HIV don't breastfeed, I'd say another's breastmilk is a bodily fluid I don't want to come into contact with!>>

That recommendation is changing:

Breastfeeding And HIV: Breast Milk Destroys HIV, Prevents Oral Transmission [Study]

When the mice were exposed to the virus through the breast milk from HIV-negative mothers. None of the mice acquired the disease, meaning that breast milk exhibits a complete inhibitory effect on virus infectivity. In other words, in terms of breastfeeding and HIV, breast milk destroys the HIV virus, thus preventing the oral transmission of the disease.

Read more at http://www.inquisitr.com/256491/breastfeeding-and-hiv-breast-milk-destroys-hiv-prevents-oral-transmission-study/#p5mxYQjcEJ4UM7rp.99