Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Take That, Parenting Police!

If the parenting police ever show up at my house, there is a good chance I'll go to jail and be sentenced to Life in prison.  I think I do what needs to get done to keep my kiddo safe, but with all the over-the-top safety regulations these days, there are times I just have to give the middle finger to the safety police and do it my way.

The other day, one of my Facebook friends posted this article about keeping your child rear-facing in a the car until they are well past two years old.  The article argued that kids are comfortable in car seats like this:


A while back, I also got a serious lecture from the carseat specialist at my dealership when I innocently asked her to change my carseat to forward facing when my child was only 13 months old.  I knew it was recommended to keep them rear-facing until they are two, but it was always my understanding that the minimum was when they turned one.

We made it to 15 months.  At that point, our child was miserable staring at the back of the seat and he could about eat his knees for a snack.

After reading the article, I realized that I will not feel guilty about turning my child around and that this is one of those times where, as a mom, I just feel that I made the right choice for my kid.  I'm not a safety expert, so I'm not going to argue about whether or not it is safer for him to be rear-facing or whether or not the girl pictured above is comfortable.  What I do know is it is what works best for our family.  When JJ was rear-facing, he hated it.  He fussed and whined the entire time, which took my attention away from driving and, in turn, made us all less safe.

Additionally, we've now turned car rides into learning experiences.  We observe the world around us and JJ knows we stop at red lights and we "Mommy, go!" at green lights.  He points out all sorts of vehicles including pick-ups, semis, motorcycles, Jeeps,and his favorite - school buses!  We talk about the colors of the cars and what the trucks are carrying.  The kid can also spot a Quik Trip from a mile away, which shows we have love for similar things and also makes Mommy quite proud.  Much better than, "Hey, JJ, what color is the seat you are staring at?"

And look how happy he is with his squinty little eyes (of course, we were headed to the circus, so who wouldn't be this happy?).


Guess what else, safety police?  I have bumpers in my little dude's crib.  So take that!  After he got his leg stuck between slats a few times, I made the call to screw the expert advice and avoid a broken leg (and for the record- I did some research and only like a handful of kids have died from bumpers and they were usually very young and had other extenuating circumstances).

I also do not strap him into his high chair - God forbid!  And you know what?  He hasn't even come close to falling out.

But I do some good, too.  Although he is facing forward, he is strapped in that carseat even if we are driving across a parking lot.  All the outlets are covered and I have those pain-in-the-neck latches on all the cabinets.  I never leave him alone in the bath, and I'll never let him ride in the back of a pick-up truck like I did all the time when I was a kid.

I think my kid is doing just fine and here's to hoping the parenting police only charge me with a misdemeanor.

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10 comments:

  1. Ha! I hope the safety police aren't prowling around my neighborhood because I committed the mortal sin of crib bumpers too and we sat our convertible carseat forward from the time we installed it. And don't tell anyone- we put a blanket on our daughter when she was an infant! GAAAAH!!!

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    1. And your child is still alive???? Amazing!

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  2. I LOVE THIS!!! I read the whole thing, saying, "Yep!" over and over again. Car seats turned at one-year of age, bumpers in the cribs.....right there with ya, sistah.

    Found you through the Honest Mom linkup.....I am your newest fan!

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    1. Glad you liked it!! Some people are just so overboard with all the rules and I think our kids will be just fine!

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  3. Common sense and comfort have to prevail sometimes. it also becomes a matter of picking your battles.

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    1. Absolutely!! Like I said- having him rear facing was making it more dangerous for all of us.

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  4. I am with you 100%! I have had two one-year-olds who were the size of three-year-olds-how do you keep that rear-facing?!!! They were so big they just re-installed their own seats to face forward. :)

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    1. That's too funny. The article said those kids were comfortable rear facing, but I have to wonder if they just didn't know any better!

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  5. I have a confession to make. Forgive me JJ Project, for I have sinned . . . . I let my daughter have a blanket in her crib FAR before she was one. Gasp!!!! How long do I have to keep her rear facing to make up for that?

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    1. I like your bartering idea! I'll take three months of forward facing for three months of no blanket in the crib!

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