A carer of a child travelling alone on a plane.

wolfbm1

Senior Member
Polish
Hello.

A flight attendant can assist a child who is travelling alone on a plane. Can one call such a person a carer?

Thank you.
 
  • Barque

    Senior Member
    Tamil
    She may be taking care of the child during the flight but I wouldn't call her a carer. A carer suggests a person who regularly takes care of someone.
     

    wolfbm1

    Senior Member
    Polish
    I am reading the book "Lost in New York" by John Escott. In chapter one Nicky, an English boy, is on a plane which is flying over New York and will soon land at JFK airport. He is a bit uneasy because it is his first visit to the USA and he is flying without his parents. But there is a flight attendant who assists him:
    "There was a woman next to him. She smiled at him. 'We'll be there in about ten minutes,' she said. 'Are you excited?'
    The woman is looking after Nicky. If she isn't Nicky's carer what is she?
     

    Edinburgher

    Senior Member
    German/English bilingual
    The woman is looking after Nicky. If she isn't Nicky's carer what is she?
    We would not feel a need to describe her by using a noun that represents her role towards him. She is just a stewardess who happens to be looking after him.
    You might say she is acting "in loco parentis" for the duration of the flight.
     

    dojibear

    Senior Member
    English - Northeast US
    "Carer" means someone who "cares" (feels emotions), not someone who "cares for" a child. I don't think people will understand "carer" to mean what you want it to mean.

    Even the phrase "care for" is too strong here. It normally means feeding and washing and dressing the child in a home: supplying all the child's needs. What the stewardess does is called "watching him" or "looking after him" or "minding him".
     

    wolfbm1

    Senior Member
    Polish
    Let's imagine a situation where Nicky and his mum meet the stewardess for the first time. How would Nicky's mother introduce the stewardess to Nicky? Could she say to Nicky: 'That is your minder'?
    I don't think she could say: 'That is your stewardess.'

    Or let's imagine there is a photo of Nicky and the stewardess together on the plane. How would Nicky describe the function of the person who looked after him on the plane?
     
    Last edited:

    Barque

    Senior Member
    Tamil
    I don't think she could say: 'That is your stewardess.'
    She might say:
    This lady will take care of you during the flight.
    Talk to this lady if you need anything.
    How would Nicky describe the function of the person who looked after him on the plane?
    This was one of the stewardesses on the flight. She took care of me.

    If you still want to call her a carer, that's up to you of course. But that's not how most people would describe a stewardess who is assigned to look after a child travelling alone.
     

    dojibear

    Senior Member
    English - Northeast US
    There probably isn't a noun for this in English. I think we would use a verb.

    What the stewardess does is called "watching him" or "looking after him" or "minding him".
    Nicky's mom would tell him "This lady will take care of you. You listen to her and obey her. If you have a problem, she will help you".

    cross-posted
     

    Szkot

    Senior Member
    UK English
    "Carer" means someone who "cares" (feels emotions), not someone who "cares for" a child..
    In the UK, carers are people who provides care for someone (though they may also have an emotional attachment), e.g. Young carers are children under 18 with caring responsibilities. A parent carer is someone over 18 who provides care to a disabled child ...

    But, as said, this would not be appropriate in this context.
     
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