Monday, March 21, 2011

I Follow Bare Minimum Safety Requirements.

I don't normally get all political on my blog...and maybe this is less about politics and more about mommy blogging, but it's my blog. So there.

If you've seen this: New AAP RECOMMENDATION Then you might have some vague idea about why I'm having the following rant...

I have been a Florida driver. It gets INTENSELY hot inside cars...which means the car seats are intensely hot. It can be 120-140 degrees inside the car on a good day. And it takes MUCH longer to get air to the kids (unless you throw the windows open, which aren't necessarily helpful when it's 98* outside) when they rear face! Most of my trips were under 10-15 the car doesn't cool down at all while we're in it...unless you're sitting in the front seat, or the back-middle. I drove a 1994 A/C-less Volvo in FL. I have a Blazer now (for the non-city driving in upstate NY)...and if I had a 3rd child, we'd need a bigger vehicle due to the size of car seats.

I have nothing against SAFETY. My kids were intensely carsick when rear-facing. It cleared up the minute the were forward facing. Which is more dangerous: A CONSTANTLY distracted/frustrated mother with screaming infants in the car? Or the mere possibility of a high impact incident from BEHIND at speeds over 30 MPH?? I used to work for an insurance company...I know the risks of car accidents. I would never want my children to be hurt, but I am VERY glad I don't have a child under 2 anymore (3.5 & 7). I don't know if I could follow laws about this. (Remember, right now it's simply a recommendation...not a law in my state.)

Oh...and the reason ADULTS under 4'10" (or high schoolers under 100 pounds) don't need a booster is b/c they can ADJUST THEIR OWN DAMN SEATBELTS, folks! The AAP & highway safety is assuming younger kids (like those under 10 years old or so) can't/won't adjust their own seat belts and could be injured by putting the belt behind them or letting it slip over their necks.

I do have an issue with the costs. I got my first infant carrier as a shower gift from a family member, my second from a local Sheriff's office...and eventually was able to purchase others. It wasn't that we didn't plan well enough to afford our children, circumstances beyond our control kept us from having enough in the bank to spend $80 or $120 on ONE item and also being able to afford food or keep our power turned on! It seems like more & more the things we're REQUIRED by law to have are getting more expensive, but it's not as if we're getting more for those extra expenses. It feels like a racket! Also...some people are assuming anyone can just run to the store & get what they need! I live 90 miles from a major baby store. The department stores near me carry basic styles of necessities. I would have to drive 3 hours round trip OR pay about $40-60 in shipping charges to get the kind of carseat that can extend rear-face, or the 'slim' models that allow 3 seats across. There's no guarantee when I get to that store that I can find what I'm looking for! So children have been kept safe with the minimum, and I'm okay with that. I am glad I don't have to make these decisions or deal with these problems right now...and I am grateful my children have survived my clearly awful parenting for giving them only the bare minimum.

...End rant. For now. ;) Forgive the way it's's sort of "in response" to a lot of comments I have been reading about why every parent who waivers a little on whether or not they want to follow this recommendation wants death for their child. I certainly love my children and want them to be safe. And so far, the "bare minimum" of requirements or the law has kept them that way. I know every child has not been saved by these minimums...It's regrettable. Though I am sure there will never be a time in our future when every injury & death will be prevented due to safety regulations. Alright...I'm ready for the backlash! Comment away on how much I must hate or wish for the deaths of my children. I can take it.


Stefanie said...

I'm with you. It's the same in our house, too. Don't worry. I don't think you want your kids to die. I think you are just more practical than the rest of the world. :)

Nettie said...

I agree with you and Stefanie. I don't have kids myself but I do have nieces and nephews.
Over here we have had new laws introduced that kids up to 7 (I think) have to have a booster seat but it doesn't have to be rear facing. We have the same problem with the heat but even not taking that into consideration, rear facing booster seats just aren't practical.

Maegan said...

Booster seats aren't quite *as bad* as convertible seats or standard car seats/infant seats. The seats for younger children are HUGE. With 2 car seats in my back seat...there is no room for a 3rd person. There's about an 8 inch gap. I think with boosters, most kids don't mind them...and they can even take care of the belt themselves b/c it's just like a standard belt, only readjusted to a child's level. The main reason rear-facing is important involves the baby/child's neck and accidents causing whiplash. In a normal person, it's painful, but not much else. In infants/young children their spines cannot support the head in a whiplash accident and the *extreme* case would be internal decapitation. I am all for safety, and I think my child safety restraints are a good idea. But to buy expensive, large seats (I went to Amazon to make sure I knew what I was talking about...and one of the seats I know is common among ERFers is the Britax...about $200 was the cheapest seat I found for Anicah's weight range) seems like overkill. It's like driving around in a tank b/c it's SAFER for your family. By many standards, the fact that I am not driving a tank...means I hate my family and want them to die every time I get on the roadway.