Travelling with an infant that's not yours - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 54 Old 08-03-2009, 12:29 AM - Thread Starter
 
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My boyfriend's brother is sending his infant son to stay with his grandparents here in Chicago. He wants someone to come pick up the baby and we've tentatively been elected. I'm not sure how comfortable I am with the arrangement. We'd have to fly to Seattle and then bring him back with us a few days later. Given that we are not his parents, how would that work at the airport? Do infants need some sort of identification or birth certificate when flying? If I agree to go along on the trip, I am thinking that we need both of the infant's parents to write a letter stating that we are transporting their son and then have the letter notarized. Do you think this would be necessary?
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#2 of 54 Old 08-03-2009, 12:32 AM
 
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I would call the airline and ask. I am sure they will require some serious documents, and there may be a procedure. If it was me, I would even request some kind of medical power of attorney in case of an emergency en route.

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#3 of 54 Old 08-03-2009, 12:43 AM
 
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I remember from when I was a Nanny that they do not ask for any ID or a birth certificate, but it could have changed since then.

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#4 of 54 Old 08-03-2009, 01:16 AM
 
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I flew recently with my kids and I did not have to prove that any of them were mine. I didn't even have any ID for them. It was a complete non-issue.
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#5 of 54 Old 08-03-2009, 01:29 AM
 
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I was a nanny for a year as well, and not a single person ever asked me if I was the child's mother or if I had documentation. Heck, these kids (two of them age 3 and 5) had passports and their last names were different than mine and not a single airport person said a thing.

This was also a couple a years ago, but after 9/11 if that matters. Maybe things are different now. But, when I did it, it seemed ridiculously easy to me to just take someone's kid and fly wherever you want with them.

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#6 of 54 Old 08-03-2009, 01:30 AM
 
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We have never been ask for any sort of identification when flying with any of our kids, and we have flown alot.

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#7 of 54 Old 08-03-2009, 01:32 AM
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Poor baby.

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#8 of 54 Old 08-03-2009, 01:40 AM
 
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I have flown post 9/11 and have never been asked or id for my kids.
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#9 of 54 Old 08-03-2009, 01:41 AM
 
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If the infant is travelling as a lap child, airlines require an official birth certificate as proof of age, although in my experience only some airlines actually request to see it. (And I can't remember which ones anymore.)

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#10 of 54 Old 08-03-2009, 02:00 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Poor baby.
I know! This is a whole other issue, but I think its absolutely crazy that the parents are allowing their baby to be away from them for so long and with people who he doesn't know. They're set on their plans though and no one can convince them otherwise. Even the grandparents (my boyfriend's parents) are weary of having the baby alone, but his parents want to send him to visit his relatives in Chicago! I think the grandparents are more worried about their age and their ability to care for the child, and not the trauma that the child will endure by being away from his parents at such a young age. I'm going to try to visit with the baby as much as I can while he's here (for a month or more) and do lots of cuddling with him, because I'm not sure many others will be doing this. The grandmother is of the type that likes to make sure babies are "independent" by letting them hang out in the crib alone while awake for long periods, CIO, etc.

I was actually thinking of refusing to go pick up the baby, in sort of protest of the whole ordeal, but my boyfriend is trying to convince me otherwise.
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#11 of 54 Old 08-03-2009, 02:10 AM
 
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TBH, I personally wouldn't take responsibility for this. If your boyfriend wants to pick up the baby alone - fine. But, I wouldn't tag along. This whole scenario sounds crazy to me. And if, god forbid, something went wrong, I would not want to be the one responding to questions! I'd try to stay as far away from this whole situation as possible.

Not to sound horribly callous, but it's not your responsibility - no need to take it on. Heck, even when I was a nanny, I was very aware of everything that could go wrong. In many ways, I think it's scarier to take responsibility for the care of other people's children than your own.

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#12 of 54 Old 08-03-2009, 02:19 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Sailor, I'm feeling that way the more I think about the situation. It's not my responsibility and you're right, I wouldn't want to be answering any questions in this situation. That's why I was thinking about documentation and the need for some kind of official letter. We've been talking about this for a while, and I've been on the fence, and as I said in my first post, I've never really been comfortable with the situation.
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#13 of 54 Old 08-03-2009, 02:37 AM
 
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What a weird situation. What is so important that you need to send your infant so far away for so long? I'm having a hard enough time letting my 4 year old go with his grandparents in an RV for 5 days. I've already said no.
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#14 of 54 Old 08-03-2009, 02:38 AM
 
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Just wow... I can't imagine sending my infant away for an entire month. IMHO there's more to this story than meets the eye. What does the the infant's mother say about all this? Is this a situation that could backfire?

I'm actually with the folks who say they would refuse to do this. I'd have pretty strong feelings about the whole situation.

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#15 of 54 Old 08-03-2009, 02:41 AM - Thread Starter
 
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What a weird situation. What is so important that you need to send your infant so far away for so long? I'm having a hard enough time letting my 4 year old go with his grandparents in an RV for 5 days. I've already said no.
Yes, very weird. Supposedly they want him to get to know his relatives in Chicago, specifically the baby's grandparents.

I had another thread about this situation a while back, and someone mentioned that maybe the parents are having some difficulties that they aren't sharing with the rest of the family.
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#16 of 54 Old 08-03-2009, 02:55 AM
 
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Yikes! I've traveled with my kids a lot and have never been asked for proof that they were mine (within the US).

If you don't feel comfortable with this, don't do it! Just tell them it's too big a responsibility for you. What if baby were to get sick or need medical treatment? And I think beyond needed a notarized paper from the parents for travel, you need something signed for medical treatment.

Craziness! Poor little babe.

Wife to a wonderful dh and mom to four beautiful kiddos, dd (3/04):, ds1 (1/06), ds2 (10/08), and ds3 (7/10)
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#17 of 54 Old 08-03-2009, 11:00 AM
 
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There needs to be a notorize POA just incase the baby get sick for the people who are transporting and for the grandparents.
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#18 of 54 Old 08-03-2009, 11:06 AM
 
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There needs to be a notorize POA just incase the baby get sick for the people who are transporting and for the grandparents.
Yes, this.

I think it would be really generous to do. If you do, you MUST have proper documentation and contact information. I don't think you'll run into any serious issues if you have the documents that reflect the reality... it's not illegal to take a baby somewhere with its parents' permission.

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#19 of 54 Old 08-03-2009, 11:20 AM
 
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I have flown many times with DS, both as a lap baby and with him having his own seat, and I have never been asked for any kind of documentation for him. I always bring it though because I know the one time I don't, they'll ask for it. I would find out and get everything that you need just in case.

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#20 of 54 Old 08-03-2009, 12:00 PM
 
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i think either the parents or the grandparents should be the ones traveling with baby. why would they ask someone else to do it? this is so strange to me.
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#21 of 54 Old 08-03-2009, 12:13 PM
 
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You should make sure that whatever documentation is signed by BOTH parents. This is all very weird.

And I definitely would refuse to do it if it were me, for a lot of reasons. If I was the one asked to care for the baby, I might do it... but then I'd know it was getting milk and cuddles and everything. But I wouldn't take someone else's baby to be cared for someone else who I don't feel will do a good job.
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#22 of 54 Old 08-03-2009, 12:15 PM - Thread Starter
 
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The grandparents don't want to go get him because they're older and don't like to fly. I've heard that the dad can't bring him because he's in the military and doesn't have the time to bring him. Don't know why mom isn't bringing him, but she does work as well. We've been asked, I think, because we're off for the summer and dont have any kids or pets. So basically, we're free to pick up and go.
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#23 of 54 Old 08-03-2009, 12:29 PM
 
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It's sounds like the Grandparents aren't really up for it. I think everyone here just needs to put their foots down and say no. If mom doesn't work, why isn't she coming (and staying!) with the baby? This just sounds ridiculous to me.
It's really important to me that DS know his Grandma is TX, so we go down there and spend time with her.
If there are other things going on, then I don't think it is fair of them not to tell you. If they are close enough to ask you to be responsible for their child, then they should be open about the full situation. Also, it will be helpful to know if there is maybe a chance that they won't be ready to take the baby back after one month.
Also, I would definitely be having more discussion with BF about this whole idea, since it's his family and sounds like maybe mostly his decision.
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#24 of 54 Old 08-03-2009, 12:33 PM
 
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It's not something I would do, but in some families it's extremely common. Friends of mine sent their 5 month old to spend the summer with his parents and then came and picked him up at the end of the summer. It was no big deal to them and totally normal in their family. I still don't get it though, I couldn't do it. Now if someone wants to take an 8 year old, I'd be willing to miss him for a bit

I don't see what the big deal is about doing the transporting. Get something that says you can authorize medical treatment for sure though. Drs can treat emergency things without the parents approval, but what if he gets an ear infection or something like that.
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#25 of 54 Old 08-03-2009, 12:55 PM
 
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It's not something I would do, but in some families it's extremely common. Friends of mine sent their 5 month old to spend the summer with his parents and then came and picked him up at the end of the summer. It was no big deal to them and totally normal in their family.
I don't get it either, but in some cultures it really is the norm - grandparents are seen as primary to caregiving as parents.

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#26 of 54 Old 08-03-2009, 01:56 PM
 
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I don't get it either, but in some cultures it really is the norm - grandparents are seen as primary to caregiving as parents.
That can't be the case here though, since the grandparents are worried about their ability to care for the child.
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#27 of 54 Old 08-03-2009, 02:20 PM
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That can't be the case here though, since the grandparents are worried about their ability to care for the child.
If I understood correctly, these "grandparents" who will take care of the baby aren't even actually the grandparents of the baby.

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#28 of 54 Old 08-03-2009, 02:23 PM
 
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If I understood correctly, these "grandparents" who will take care of the baby aren't even actually the grandparents of the baby.
Really? I thought they were the grandparents. The OP's boyfriend's brother's baby's grandparents. I couldn't tell if they were the boyfriend's parents, but it seemed pretty clear they are the baby's grandparents.

I do think the situation is unusual, though, and not something I'd be comfortable with.
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#29 of 54 Old 08-03-2009, 02:33 PM
 
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FYI Southwest requires birth certificates for lap kids and they enforce it. My sister and I both fly SW recently, her with a lap child and she had to proof her dd's age every step of the way. With mine in a seat they never asked for anything.

Oh and I agree with POA for everything.

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#30 of 54 Old 08-03-2009, 02:56 PM
 
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I was only ever asked for documentation when the child could remotely look like he was two. So if you're talking 5 month old, I'd be shocked if anyone asked to see anything. When my 22 month old traveled as a lap baby? Yes, we needed a birth certificate at every leg of the trip.
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