Car seats

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lizzib45's picture
Joined: 12/06/08
Posts: 957
Car seats

Now that our LOs are rapidly approaching 2..... anyone already or planning on move them to FF at 2? Or planning on extending RF?

lizzib45's picture
Joined: 12/06/08
Posts: 957

I was thinking of continuing RF until he is tired of RF. He has no issues now with RF and he is little so I understand that keeping them RF is safer. So dont think we are changing it anytime soon.

pickles07's picture
Joined: 05/30/07
Posts: 175

Alice is well past the weight limit on rear facing for her seat. She's been forward facing since her 1st birthday. And we just moved her into my son's seat and got him a high backed booster with now harness. I was going to buy her the same one my son had and keep him in his, but I really hate that car seat and didn't want 2 of them! Evil Britax evolva! I know its safer to keep them rear facing longer and in a harness longer. But we are in the car like once a week if even that! I don't drive so we walk everywhere all week!

zobi's picture
Joined: 12/24/07
Posts: 607

Charlie has been FF since he was one...I couldnt wait to turn him...I have a cut off of no earlier than 1...I KNOW I KNOW ba mummy, but he hated it, spent all his time twisting himself around to see out the front like his brother and sister and his legs were all squished up into the back of the seat...
I have actually just bought him a harnessed booster like his brothers, he has all the extra padding in his one still though, I took Liams padding out as he doesnt need it anymore...
This is the one I got (but charcoal circles not red) and I LOVE IT...so much so I own 4 of them HAHAHA, 2 for each car so theres no having to switch seats over!!!
http://www.babyfactory.co.nz/afawcs0156955/CATID=85/ID=844/SID=195850932/Edinburgh-Deluxe-Booster-Seat.html

KatieWillis's picture
Joined: 07/01/07
Posts: 1441

Sully will be RF until at least 2 years, but I'm hoping to make it to 3 years. Our seat goes to 40lbs RF. After that he'll be in a 5 point harness for a VERY long time. DS1's seat goes to 65lbs in a 5 point harness and we plan on keeping him in it until he outgrows it. I feel pretty strongly about this topic Smile

lizzib45's picture
Joined: 12/06/08
Posts: 957

Yay another RF mama! Yeah Tommy isnt having any issues so we are keeping him RF as long as we can! I am sure he would be happy FF as sometimes he seems a bit bored back there but I am all about safety. Good thing that both DH and I drive big full size truck so in an accident we would be better off than a little car. At least I think we would. Smile

girlisrad's picture
Joined: 04/24/07
Posts: 1587

we will rear face till 2, then re-assess. His seat will RF t0 35 lbs, and he is nearly 31 now... so we will just see what happens.

I DID let him ride in his big brothers NEW Nautilus seat to the store the other day.. he didn't seem to really care at all about FF, and went back to his RF seat with no fuss at all!!! So thats awesome ,I am glad he will stay RF for as long as he can Biggrin

trixiepixie's picture
Joined: 07/05/09
Posts: 127

We have been FF since she turned 1, i just couldnt wait lol it was a pain for her bc of her long legs and she wasnt happy at all being RF. She loves her FF seat and will stay in it until she literally outgrows it.

Joined: 05/31/06
Posts: 4780

Jake is 22 months and still RF.....though as he is like 32 lbs he is swiftly approaching our Britax's RF limit of 35 lbs. Good news is that is weight gain has slowed considerably so I have a few months, at least, before I turn him. He is happy that way, he gets to face his two sibs who are in our third row, so it's great for us. My DS is 5 and still in a 5 point harness, as is DD who is 4. No plans to change up any of that.

Marite13's picture
Joined: 08/07/09
Posts: 3368

My DD is just shy of 25lbs and quite happy rear-facing, so I have no plans of changing that any time soon. #2 will (obviously) go in RF as well, and neither of them will be any wiser! Smile I think moving from the middle seat to the window seat will be exciting enough of a change to keep her quite happy RF for a lot longer. Knowing what I know about how much safer it is to RF, I'll keep all my kids that way as long as I can based on each of them individually!

jubileerose's picture
Joined: 06/12/09
Posts: 549

My daughter has been forward facing since she turned one. *shrug* we felt fine with our choice and her carseat guidlines and our state laws were all consulted in our decision.

Joined: 01/25/02
Posts: 2023

My twins were rf until about 22 months. At that point the almost expired hand me down seats (from my aunt and well taken care of) were vomited on, and I needed new seats. I did major research on Amazon, and they arrived the day my brother passed away. Things got crazy and I did not have the time nor energy to install them, so we used the built in car seats our van has. Do not love them, but they worked for those few crazy weeks. At that point, we couldn't go back to rear facing easily.

These are the seats we have and I LOVE them! http://www.amazon.com/The-First-Years-Recline-Convertible/dp/B004FN0Z8K/ref=sr_1_1?s=baby-products&ie=UTF8&qid=1334553802&sr=1-1

You can removed the cover w/o unthreading the selt belt, major bonus, as we have had the vomits in a few seats. lol. Also, super easy to buckle in tightly, and you can adjust the harness height w/o rethreading the belts. I would highly recommend these seats. Smile

My 7yr old is in a booster still (and tall for his age, but our state, you must be in a booster until 8 years). My dd is 9.5 and also still in her booster, she finds it more comfy, and I am all for it (she is small for her age).

Ladybugsteph's picture
Joined: 06/21/06
Posts: 2977

Let's see, Carson RF'd until he was about 26 or 27 months. The seat would have allowed for him to RF longer, but I couldn't lift him up backwards into his seat anymore at the end of Jackson's pregnancy, so I turned him around. Jackson is 25 months today, and he's still RFing. I think we'll make it to the weight limit of his seat (35lbs). If he's not turned around by the end of Sept, I'm going to turn him around. We have a super long car trip planned, and we'll be abusing the iPad for movies Wink

We bought a (brand) new vehicle a couple of months ago, and I brought it in (on my own with 2 kids) to get the rustproofing done. They gave me a rental car, and I had to switch the seats. I knew that Jackson wouldn't sit still, so I kept him strapped into his seat while I moved Carson's over. Well, when it was time to move Jackson's seat over, I strapped him into Carson's FFing seat. He thought that was the most amazing thing. lol! He didn't want me to take him out of it! He tried to keep me from unbuckling it Wink He's still happy to RF, but I just laughed my butt off at how much he loved the novelty of it. Haha!

cactuswren's picture
Joined: 10/19/09
Posts: 4658

DD has been RF in one car and FF in the other since about 18 months. She's really tall and was well over the age and weight requirements and SUPER unhappy RF, so I made a judgment call to split the difference and I feel fine about it. Bought her a Graco 3-in-1 recently and I love it...works great and I like that I won't have to buy another car restraint device ever again! I think I'll get another for the other vehicle eventually, although we don't use the truck all that much (where she is still RF and doesn't mind because she can see us) so I am fine waiting a while on that one.

kilahmaree's picture
Joined: 08/28/09
Posts: 951

My goal was to keep Miss H RF until the carseat weight limit (35lbs), as she is currently just barely 25lbs. But in February, I drove 11hours with both babes solo to visit my dad and thus could not drive at night like we typically do. I knew there was NO WAY I could sanely drive that far with her screaming the whole time (since birth, she shrieks like a banshee the second she is in a carseat. Not even kidding. Doesn't matter is it's for 2 minutes or 2 hours, or 12 hours, she will SCREAM the whole time). So I flipped the seat and she loved it and is SOOOO much better in the car.

Since Lio is way more laid back, I have a feeling we will most likely make it to the weight limit with him, but we'll see.

I'm such a huuuge advocate of RFing as long as possible, so I feel like I need to hide in shame when I say H isn't. But we all gotta do what we gotta do, I guess.

cactuswren's picture
Joined: 10/19/09
Posts: 4658

"kilahmaree" wrote:

I'm such a huuuge advocate of RFing as long as possible, so I feel like I need to hide in shame when I say H isn't. But we all gotta do what we gotta do, I guess.

Yeah, this exactly (same way we found out how much better FF was for her, too). I just finally got over it. If people want to judge me, well, that's their problem. She is properly LATCHed in to the middle seat of a very safe car with a five point harness and at 30 lbs/34.5" is WAY over the height and weight minimums for the seat's safety ratings for FF. She's legal, happy, and I feel comfortable with her level of safety. End of story.

Joined: 04/30/09
Posts: 2257

DD will be RF until she's sick of it or she reaches the seat limits (which I think she'll meet in height long before weight). Our seat goes RF to 40 lbs and FF to 65. She hates getting put in her car seat, so DH tried to say "we need to turn her" about a million times, but I've stayed firm and he's come to realize it's the not wanting to be in the car that bothers her, not how she's facing.

ETA: I hate when people call one another out on things like this. It's just like BFing or anything else polarizing in parenting -- it's fine to have strong opinions, but you can't know what caused another family to make the choices they did. As long as the kid(s) are healthy and happy there's no problem in my book.

Kier's picture
Joined: 03/12/12
Posts: 1973

I switched DS1 at about 15 months. He had started getting car sick, and flipping him to FF cured it. DS2 was flipped at 12 month. He was the right weight and his feet had started resting on the seat. DD is still tiny.. barely breaking the 20lbs mark, and is still short enough that her feet dont hit the back seat (she is just about 21 months old and in 12 month clothing). I'm not sure when we will flip her FF. She is content facing back now... it helps that she is in the 2nd row of seats (we have a van) and both of the boys sit in the back behind her. We also take out the 2nd captain chair next to hers, making it easier for her to see them. I'm guessing things will change once #4 comes and we need that other seat in there. I guess we shall see Smile

lizzib45's picture
Joined: 12/06/08
Posts: 957

I agree, I dont know why people would think badly if you choose to FF. I think its everyones decision and you need to do whats right for you and your family! Dont let anyone made you feel like hiding.

Joined: 01/25/02
Posts: 2023

"MissMia" wrote:

ETA: I hate when people call one another out on things like this. It's just like BFing or anything else polarizing in parenting -- it's fine to have strong opinions, but you can't know what caused another family to make the choices they did. As long as the kid(s) are healthy and happy there's no problem in my book.

"lizzib45" wrote:

I agree, I dont know why people would think badly if you choose to FF. I think its everyones decision and you need to do whats right for you and your family! Dont let anyone made you feel like hiding.

Completely agree with both of these!

and like Kier said, I think my boys were able to rf longer because they had their siblings to look at behind them. Smile

zobi's picture
Joined: 12/24/07
Posts: 607

Ditto with both....
....Altho I did tell a lady once in a supermarket that put a newborn baby into a frontward facing carseat, not buckled in properly, how she should buckle in her baby for its safety.....:busted: OPPS, I sooooooo couldnt help myself, but I felt sooooo sad looking at this poor defenceless baby with not a chance if they had even a minor accident.....Oh well I felt better knowing I may have made her think...HAHAHA.....

Joined: 05/31/06
Posts: 4780

I don't really care what other people do with their children, as long as they comply with the law. That said, I hope that states start changing their laws to make RF to two mandatory in accordance with the AAP recommendations.

led082607's picture
Joined: 11/17/06
Posts: 47

We turned our daughter forward facing just before her second birthday. My youngest was switching from an infant seat to a convertible seat and we had to do some rearranging and buying of new seats. At the time, I had a smaller car and it was difficult to get three seats across to begin with. We have a Sunshine Kids Radian for her and there was just no way it would fit RFing in either of our cars, so we switched her around to FF. My youngest is still RF at 13 months and I can't even imagine turning her around yet. Now that my husband and I both have bigger vehicles, space certainly isn't an issue, so she will be RF for as long as I can keep her that way. My 4.5 year old is still in a 5 point harness (Sunshine Kids Radian as well) and he will stay that way for as long as possible. He has about 15lbs until the weight limit, which will definitely be a while since his growth has slowed down a lot.

cactuswren's picture
Joined: 10/19/09
Posts: 4658

"Potter75" wrote:

I don't really care what other people do with their children, as long as they comply with the law. That said, I hope that states start changing their laws to make RF to two mandatory in accordance with the AAP recommendations.

I actually think it's really unhelpful and annoying to have the recommendations based on age. The range of heights and weights is so large in this age group...there are a lot of over-twos who could probably still benefit from being RF, and a lot of under-2s who are probably perfectly safe FF. At 19 months my DD was the size of an average 2 year old...that's why I felt comfortable turning her. I tried hard to find the actual testing stats to get some height/weight info to make an even better decision based on science, and it was not at all readily available. I get that they want to make it as clear cut and simple as possible to reach the greatest number of people, but babies are not made on an assembly line and I think making a rule somewhat arbitrary like that actually leads to LESS safety. I really feel strongly that they should make the height/weight safety information more public so that those of us who want to can make a better-informed decision.

And yeah, Nat, I would totally say something if I saw someone putting a NB FF! That's not being judgmental, that's just common sense!

Joined: 05/31/06
Posts: 4780

"cactuswren" wrote:

I actually think it's really unhelpful and annoying to have the recommendations based on age. The range of heights and weights is so large in this age group...there are a lot of over-twos who could probably still benefit from being RF, and a lot of under-2s who are probably perfectly safe FF. At 19 months my DD was the size of an average 2 year old...that's why I felt comfortable turning her. I tried hard to find the actual testing stats to get some height/weight info to make an even better decision based on science, and it was not at all readily available. I get that they want to make it as clear cut and simple as possible to reach the greatest number of people, but babies are not made on an assembly line and I think making a rule somewhat arbitrary like that actually leads to LESS safety. I really feel strongly that they should make the height/weight safety information more public so that those of us who want to can make a better-informed decision.

Maybe, but I would have found weight and height only requirements to be really unhelpful or annoying. Jake was a round breast fed ball of dimpled love weighing in at 20+ lbs at 3 MONTHS, and was over 30 lbs and 34 inches at his 18 month appointment.....but I would be fooling myself to have thought that those 20 lbs of dimpled thighs and quadruple chins in any way impacted his neck strength. Some states have a 20 lbs OR 1 year rule (Its currently 20 lbs AND 1 year in my state).....but its crazy to me to think that in a state with the OR rule I could have legally forward faced my three month old. That is ridiculous. His weight has no bearing on what happens to his neck in the event of a crash, whether as a 21 lb 3 month old or tall, heavy 18 month old. Safety legislation would push carseat makers to make seats which safely and COMFORTABLY allow babies to rear face as long as possible, which its impossible to argue would not benefit the safety of all children. Just like some parents argued against car seats at all, let alone rear facing or FF back in the 1970's I think that one day extended rear facing will become the law, and subsequently the norm, which I think is great. I think that someday the way you feel about seeing a newborn FF might be how many people feel seeing an older baby FF. Its all about societal norms, and as more safety information is available to us and more is learned (like how the AAP changed rec's from my first child to my third, which was only 3 years!) more safety legislation will pass, and more options will be available to us as far as car seats go, which is great all around.

Joined: 01/25/02
Posts: 2023

I agree, while the height and weight requirements are helpful to some (I definitely paid attention since my dd was tiny and did not reach 20 lbs until 15mo or so. Abram is tiny too, but since we planned on rear facing it didn't matter when he reached 20lbs (I think he barely made it 19mo), But most ppl would not pay attention, and it would be harder for an officer to ticket someone, its much easier to say, "How old is your child" vs their weight, and easier for an officer to guess their age than to guess their weight.

Back when my dd was not heavy enough to ff, our ped said (she is 9.5) that it was 1 yr AND 20 lbs, and the one year was more for neck strength, if they were walking every where their neck muscles were stronger. But even in that time ideas have changed. Hopefully it will become the societal norm to rf longer, though I see so many moms bristling to even the suggestion. But my MIL doesn't think my school age kids need to be buckled either.. what can you do (besides not let her take them, and since she is out of state, not really a problem! lol). ?? Smile

cactuswren's picture
Joined: 10/19/09
Posts: 4658

Oh, I'm not advocating 3 month olds FF! I just think the safety recommendations should be based on real factors. I do agree that it should be an AND age requirement because of muscle development, etc, but that I couldn't even find the stats on height/weight safety that they used for the 2 year RF rule made the whole thing seem somewhat arbitrary and stupid--and thus I painstakingly gathered my own info and made my own decision based on MY child and HER development and needs. I also agree that societal norms are important in changing these things, and if 2 was the law I would have followed it. But I don't think it would have necessarily been a better thing for my family, if she really is big enough to be safe that way and the rule is just to make the recommendation unambiguous. I guess I just really hate being treated like I'm too dumb to make decisions, which happens A LOT with parenting recommendations. They're usually aimed at the lowest common denominator--the people who would just let their kids jump around in the car if they wouldn't be arrested for it, in this case. I understand that we live in a society and that rule makers have to draw a line somewhere, but I just would appreciate a little more informed parental discretion.

Comfort isn't really the issue. DD was plenty comfortable RF--she was too tall but didn't care if her legs were bent--but she HATED not being able to see us and car rides just became miserable. Same reason she always HATED being carried parent-facing as a baby and was only happy in cradle or FF babywearing positions. FF she feels like she's part of the action and is perfectly fine. When she feels like she's been stuffed away somewhere, she flips out. Not sure how any car seat design can handle that problem.

Kier's picture
Joined: 03/12/12
Posts: 1973

The safety recommendations are based on age because of the "average" size of kids that age. I was told by my DS1's doc that turning him at 15 months was fine (even though he wasn't over the weight limit yet) because he had the head control (aka the muscles in his neck were developed enough by then) to face forward. The whole height weight thing is great, but, I personally am 4ft 9in. at 27 years old. My husband always jokes that I am just over the height rule for needing a booster seat. I think in the end, you need to do what is best for your child. you know them better than any "expert" what they are or not ready for.

KaellyNicole's picture
Joined: 12/27/07
Posts: 219

Alice will Rear-Face until she can't anymore. She's about 38 inches and 35 lbs so we've got quite a bit of room left. She'll turn 2 in June, my goal is 3.

ETA: Shortly after my eldest's 2nd birthday, a friend lost her daughter in a car accident (2010). She's was two months older, but small enough to still be RFing and would have lived had she been rfing. Her neck was snapped when they were rear-ended going 35 mph.

KaellyNicole's picture
Joined: 12/27/07
Posts: 219

If the law changes it'll go to 2 Year AND/OR 35 lbs. The weight will be included in there, just like most states are 1 year AND 20 lbs or 1 year OR 20 lbs.

Weigh alone doesn't mean development though. While Alice is built like a 3-4 year old, while she's 35 lbs, and while he's 38 ish inches, she is still a 22 month old baby and is internally developed as such. Her neck muscles aren't as strong as say, my 3.5 year old, who Alice is almost identical to in stats.

Joined: 05/31/06
Posts: 4780

"Kier" wrote:

I think in the end, you need to do what is best for your child. you know them better than any "expert" what they are or not ready for.

See, I'll be honest and say that I really don't know better than the experts. Nothing in my background of being a doula or massage therapist, or in corporate finance led me to know squat about physics and inertia and propulsion or to have collated stats on car accidents involving minors and all the rest that goes into these studies. I am able to look at the hard data that the experts collected, however, and learn from evidence. Since I DON'T know much about the subject, or didn't until my first was born and I started considering when to turn him, I trusted the experts on this one. I probably would have turned him at 12 months if I hadn't been exposed to compelling evidence on here about why not to. I simply didn't know, and thankfully someone on my BB offered up a ton of info on the safety considerations, prompting us to stay rear facing past what was then the AAP recommendations.

The academy cited a 2007 study in the journal Injury Prevention, indicating children younger than 2 are 75 percent less likely to die or be severely injured in a crash if they are riding rear-facing.
Forward-facing toddlers are much more likely to suffer neck and spinal injuries, according to medical experts.
“The data is just dramatic,” said Dr. Joe Sasin, University Medical Center emergency room medical director. “A rear-facing child is so much better protected.”

To me, and with my honest to goodness lack of knowledge, that was enough. I personally don't know better than the experts, because I have evidence to prove that they are right, so I just trust it. Maybe I'm naive :). I don't think that my child is exceptionally different from other 2 year olds, so I do trust the stats. I respect that others may not trust the stats or may not care about them, and that is their right, but it does not mean that the stats don't exist or are incorrect or somehow magically don't apply to certain children, IMO.

I don't want to debate it, because I'm sure that I won't change anyones mind, but I just wanted to speak up to admit that even though I am reasonably intelligent, I simply don't know enough about this subject to make an informed decision, in reality, so while I do know my child, I do trust the experts on certain issues with quantifiable and proven data.

KaellyNicole's picture
Joined: 12/27/07
Posts: 219

"Potter75" wrote:

See, I'll be honest and say that I really don't know better than the experts. Nothing in my background of being a doula or massage therapist, or in corporate finance led me to know squat about physics and inertia and propulsion or to have collated stats on car accidents involving minors and all the rest that goes into these studies. I am able to look at the hard data that the experts collected, however, and learn from evidence.

I very, very, very rarely would agree on this, but I agree with you. If we want to talk medical---whether to treat with antibiotics or not, when a cold could be more, sleep issues, nursing issues...blah blah blah, yes, I know my child better, but for carseats? No way! I was accused of boinking my Physics teachers because no one knew how I was getting an A (I don't either, but I swear I wasn't and he didn't exactly swing my way anyway, God Rest His Soul) so I know NOTHING about that stuff, but what I do know is common sense. Common sense tells us that our children are safer while rfing, there is solid research and years of studies behind it...we also know car accidents are the number one killer of children in America, therefore, it's hard for me to understand why anyone wouldn't.

cactuswren's picture
Joined: 10/19/09
Posts: 4658

I actually totally agree with you. I just wish they made the ACTUAL DATA more readily available rather than just saying that "age 2" is a magic number. It's not like they wake up on their second birthday magically developed into a different child.

lizzib45's picture
Joined: 12/06/08
Posts: 957

My DS is small- 3-5% I think he would still fit into a bucket seat if not for his height. DS didnt hit 20lbs until around 16 months. I will try and RF him as long as I can since he is small and techincally its the safest for kiddos. He doesnt mind although he is bored but I would rather him be bored any day of the week if it means he is safer while riding in the seat.

Kier- my SIS is 4'10" and I too tell her she just barely clears the limit for a booster seat. But I say that to get her worked up cuz at 33 she still gets worked up about her height. I am not doing it meanly, just fun teasing.

Kier's picture
Joined: 03/12/12
Posts: 1973

"Potter75" wrote:

See, I'll be honest and say that I really don't know better than the experts. Nothing in my background of being a doula or massage therapist, or in corporate finance led me to know squat about physics and inertia and propulsion or to have collated stats on car accidents involving minors and all the rest that goes into these studies. I am able to look at the hard data that the experts collected, however, and learn from evidence. Since I DON'T know much about the subject, or didn't until my first was born and I started considering when to turn him, I trusted the experts on this one. I probably would have turned him at 12 months if I hadn't been exposed to compelling evidence on here about why not to. I simply didn't know, and thankfully someone on my BB offered up a ton of info on the safety considerations, prompting us to stay rear facing past what was then the AAP recommendations.

To me, and with my honest to goodness lack of knowledge, that was enough. I personally don't know better than the experts, because I have evidence to prove that they are right, so I just trust it. Maybe I'm naive :). I don't think that my child is exceptionally different from other 2 year olds, so I do trust the stats. I respect that others may not trust the stats or may not care about them, and that is their right, but it does not mean that the stats don't exist or are incorrect or somehow magically don't apply to certain children, IMO.

I don't want to debate it, because I'm sure that I won't change anyones mind, but I just wanted to speak up to admit that even though I am reasonably intelligent, I simply don't know enough about this subject to make an informed decision, in reality, so while I do know my child, I do trust the experts on certain issues with quantifiable and proven data.

Well, in that case, better sign me up for a booster seat. I wasn't saying that there was no reason for the guidelines. And, I'm not saying that a 1 year old should automatically be FF. I'm saying that as far as when you move your child to a new seat, or switch their position, should be based not only on the guide lines, but also your judgement. My daughter probably wont be 35 lbs till she is around 5 or so. Should she have to be rear facing till then? I don't think so. Should I have to sit in a booster because at 13, and short for 13, I stopped growing... Again, I dont think so.

Joined: 05/31/06
Posts: 4780

"Kier" wrote:

Well, in that case, better sign me up for a booster seat. I wasn't saying that there was no reason for the guidelines. And, I'm not saying that a 1 year old should automatically be FF. I'm saying that as far as when you move your child to a new seat, or switch their position, should be based not only on the guide lines, but also your judgement. My daughter probably wont be 35 lbs till she is around 5 or so. Should she have to be rear facing till then? I don't think so. Should I have to sit in a booster because at 13, and short for 13, I stopped growing... Again, I dont think so.

Why would you need a booster seat? You are 4'9, which is universally agreed upon as the minimal height for seatbelt wearing/too tall for a booster (4'8 would not be). Plus, I'm assuming you drive, and its universally agreed that boosters or car seats are unsafe in the front seat. You are also in your late 20's. So, just like its universally agreed that RF is safer, what you are personally doing as far as driving with a seatbelt is perfectly within the experts guidelines all around, as far as age, height, and seat position goes. Again, I was just pointing out that because I have no real knowledge of physics/child anatomy etc my judgment wasn't based on any knowledge. So for me, having poor judgment not based on facts, I went with the experts.

As to your 5 year old, I didn't see anyone in the thread advising a 5 year old RF. I can't think of a seat that could RF a 5 year old height wise. I think that the AAP recommendations of 2 yo which are evidenced based would be a great new adjustment to the law, however, mixing age and height.

lioness4's picture
Joined: 04/30/06
Posts: 366

julia has been front facing since 14 mos...it was horrible for her to ride the 6 plus hours trying to watch the tv in our van while everyone else was able to...we turned her around. I know rearfacing is better etc...all my kids ff at 1...I also know organic is better,cloth diaper is better and so is breastfeeding past one but as I mom I made the choice to do what I feel works/is better for my child...I am okay with it...I should still be in a booster too as I am a small girl. at least she is buckled up...I know ppl who put children in a booster at age 1 or dont use a carseat at all.

tori729's picture
Joined: 07/23/07
Posts: 1743

"KaellyNicole" wrote:

If the law changes it'll go to 2 Year AND/OR 35 lbs. The weight will be included in there, just like most states are 1 year AND 20 lbs or 1 year OR 20 lbs.

Goodness, I would hope that it's not 35lbs!!! My 4yr old is barely over 35lbs and I can't imagine him being RF still!
I turned my daughter at 19 months and I thought that was a good time for it. She was probably 22lbs or so. I think in general I will try to keep any future children RF as long as possible until I feel that they are ready to be turned.
I personally hope the laws do not change but that's because I pretty much think it should be the parents' decision, not the government's.

I do remember seeing a woman with a bucket seat RF but in the FRONT seat of her car! I kept looking to see if there was actually a baby in it but I couldn't tell. It sure looked like there was!

Joined: 05/31/06
Posts: 4780

"tori729" wrote:

Goodness, I would hope that it's not 35lbs!!! My 4yr old is barely over 35lbs and I can't imagine him being RF still!
I turned my daughter at 19 months and I thought that was a good time for it. She was probably 22lbs or so. I think in general I will try to keep any future children RF as long as possible until I feel that they are ready to be turned.
I personally hope the laws do not change but that's because I pretty much think it should be the parents' decision, not the government's.

I do remember seeing a woman with a bucket seat RF but in the FRONT seat of her car! I kept looking to see if there was actually a baby in it but I couldn't tell. It sure looked like there was!

Just curious, if you think that it should be the parents decision, are you against all car seat regulations in general? If not it seems illogical to accept some but not others under the guise of being anti governmental interference. I think it is great for the government to help those who are unable to help themselves (i.e minor children who rely on their parents to keep them safe. Sadly, some parents simply aren't capable of making good or wise decisions, so the law becomes important in protecting our most vulnerable car passengers from harm).

Also, and/or means once they had turned two, they could turn. So your 4 year old could legally turn at 2 regardless of weight. They would be 2 OR 35 lbs. 2 would be the age minimum, just like my 20 lb 3 month old could not turn FF even though he was 20 lbs,....because I live in a 20 lbs AND one year old state (currently), so he didn't hit the age requirement, and was required to stay RF. Its a nice balance of common sense regarding both age and weight.

The NTSB just published an article coming in line with the AAP, so look for new carseat laws regarding RF to follow shortly!

tori729's picture
Joined: 07/23/07
Posts: 1743

Ok, I understand now, that makes more sense.
Yes, I would go so far to say it's not the government's responsibility to protect people and that I think they have overstepped their bounds. Children are the responsibility of their parents, not the gov't and it's the parents' fault if anything happens to the child. It's always the parents' fault, whether the gov't is involved or not. So I Just don't think it's necessary for the gov't to intervene in this.
Making car seat laws stricter and stricter is just controlling, to me, I think, as a parent and causes debates like this!

Joined: 05/31/06
Posts: 4780

I don't necessarily think that it's a debate, I think that it is a discussion.

I respect the view that the government should have no input, as long as it is consistent. If a car seat in the front seat, or a baby in arms is palatable to others, or babies riding in the trunk is okay because the Government has no business interfering, I respect their consistency. I don't agree, but if general you believe that sort of thing, it is consistent (if illegal).

If someone agrees with *some* government rules (like, RF till one) , but not others (like RF till two), under the guise of personal parental autonomy.......well, I don't understand it.

Personally I am glad for Governmental rules which dictate how we can or cannot cause harm to minors who cannot advocate for themselves. I tend to be very liberal when it comes to the free will of adults (I am pro prostitution, drugs, etc), but when it comes to my and/or other babies, I tend to lobby in favor of protecting the wee ones from the lazy/and uninformed parents. I believe that the law serves an important part when it comes to babies, at least when the results are easily quantifiable.

Joined: 01/18/06
Posts: 1626

"Potter75" wrote:

I don't necessarily think that it's a debate, I think that it is a discussion.

I respect the view that the government should have no input, as long as it is consistent. If a car seat in the front seat, or a baby in arms is palatable to others, or babies riding in the trunk is okay because the Government has no business interfering, I respect their consistency. I don't agree, but if general you believe that sort of thing, it is consistent (if illegal).

If someone agrees with *some* government rules (like, RF till one) , but not others (like RF till two), under the guise of personal parental autonomy.......well, I don't understand it.

Personally I am glad for Governmental rules which dictate how we can or cannot cause harm to minors who cannot advocate for themselves. I tend to be very liberal when it comes to the free will of adults (I am pro prostitution, drugs, etc), but when it comes to my and/or other babies, I tend to lobby in favor of protecting the wee ones from the lazy/and uninformed parents. I believe that the law serves an important part when it comes to babies, at least when the results are easily quantifiable.

I agree.

My 2yo is rear facing and will be til she reaches her seat limits. She loves being able to see her sister who sits FF.

Joined: 01/18/06
Posts: 1626

ooops dp

cactuswren's picture
Joined: 10/19/09
Posts: 4658

FWIW, I agree with you Melissa about the government aspect. My point was that age itself tells so little of the story, and the fact that I could not get any data on what factors actually increased safety that led them to make that recommendation was what I have an issue with. A two year old is not a two year old is not a two year old. As many have mentioned, some six or seven year olds are barely the size of my not-quite-22-month old.

The difference between 1yo RF and 2yo RF recommendations in my view is that the fact is that keeping an infant in a RF car seat is no big deal for anyone to follow, and at that age the physical development differences are within a smaller range. But keeping an older child RF becomes more and more difficult for a lot of people for a wide variety of reasons, and I think that if you don't give people evidence-based reasons to keep their large, verbal, rebellious toddlers in RF positions even when it becomes inconvenient, you're going to see a lot of people (like me) just making their own call. It is in EVERYONE'S best interest, IMO, to tell people what specific, measurable factors they need to be looking for before turning a child. If age really does have a measurable impact, fine, but that isn't the sense I was getting from my research, and since my 18 month old was the size of many average 2yo children, I felt comfortable turning her. It isn't really about parental discretion in the sense that it's their kid so they should get to make dumb and unsafe choices if they want to, but just that children come in different shapes and sizes and I think that should be factored into the recommendations so that parents can hold their individual child up to those standards and see when they match. And if that isn't the point and safety IS about age for some reason I don't understand, then that should be made more clear.

MissyJ's picture
Joined: 01/31/02
Posts: 3218

*lurker* playing a bit of devil's advocate: Dirol

"Potter75" wrote:

The NTSB just published an article coming in line with the AAP, so look for new carseat laws regarding RF to follow shortly!

Melissa -- can you post or send me the link from the NTSB article? I did a search and couldn't find it. I'd like to update our info as well as possibly include it within a Facebook "discussion." Blum 3

"Potter75" wrote:

If someone agrees with *some* government rules (like, RF till one) , but not others (like RF till two), under the guise of personal parental autonomy.......well, I don't understand it.

Personally I am glad for Governmental rules which dictate how we can or cannot cause harm to minors who cannot advocate for themselves. I tend to be very liberal when it comes to the free will of adults (I am pro prostitution, drugs, etc), but when it comes to my and/or other babies, I tend to lobby in favor of protecting the wee ones from the lazy/and uninformed parents. I believe that the law serves an important part when it comes to babies, at least when the results are easily quantifiable.

I don't believe that it is fair to label those that disagree as "lazy/and uninformed parents" or to compare having "free will" as an adult involved in illegal activities that some experts have deemed as detrimental to the health / safety of their children (agreed -- that's another debate LOL) with parents that are following the current laws for their kid's car seats. I get your point that you are trying to make... just disagree with the presentation. I don't believe that there are any government laws that dictate how we can *purposefully* cause harm to minors.

"KaellyNicole" wrote:

I very, very, very rarely would agree on this, but I agree with you. If we want to talk medical---whether to treat with antibiotics or not, when a cold could be more, sleep issues, nursing issues...blah blah blah, yes, I know my child better, but for carseats? No way!

Curious - since in some of the cases you listed above involving medical issues that could prove to impact the health/safety of your child (and perhaps others), you feel that you know better than the experts, (which btw, I am in agreement with your right to do so), but yet you disagree with other parents following the (current) laws and determining what they feel is best for their child? I wouldn't want a parent's rights removed for those decisions (although I know some advocate for that to be the case -- a.k.a. vaccine mandates), as long as they remain compliant with the law. I know most parents spend a great deal of time researching their next car seat before moving FF... trusting those "expert" safety ratings to get the best they possibly can for their child. Even among car seat ratings, some of the more expensive FF have a higher safety rating than some RF counterparts. Should those be mandated to own?

"KaellyNicole" wrote:

Common sense tells us that our children are safer while rfing, there is solid research and years of studies behind it...we also know car accidents are the number one killer of children in America, therefore, it's hard for me to understand why anyone wouldn't.

Actually, I do believe that education is important in shaping that "common sense" view... including through the valuable discussions/debates here. Sharing the research... talking about how/why the American Academy of Pediatrics and National Highway Traffic Safety Administration recommendations for remaining rear-facing changed... and the NTSB, (if they have a new article out advocating change as well), will aid in more parents weighing in and perhaps reconsider their options. I know that some of the information presented within debates taking place here onsite were instrumental as we made our decision for a new car seat for our youngest. Up until that point, we had kept our kids rear-facing over a year but as most of them tended to be tall, I thought that there was a point where by keeping them rear-facing I was *risking* causing them harm. (I loved whomever shared the Swedish car seat approach info back then. It stuck with me.) We went with a new seat that could keep her RF longer. I know though when the laws changed here years ago for booster seats to age 9 and one of our sons was just months away from his 9th bday and had been out of a car seat for 4.5 years that I thought the law change was crazy. LOL We went ahead though and bought a booster... forced him in to comply and then passed it down later.

I do wonder though... are there any rear facing seats that sit upright? Like someone else mentioned, we also had a child that was car sick E.V.E.R.Y. time we went anywhere while rear-facing. Once we finally turned her around FF (about 18 months if I remember correctly as I thought she just suffered motion sickness), she was fine. I now wonder if it was due to her being more reclined while RF or if it was the RF vs. FF that contributed. :question:

Somewhat related -- I find it disturbing that federal laws on hazardous toxin levels found in car seats has yet to be addressed. As the article states, these substances are linked to allergies, birth defects, impaired learning, liver toxicity, and cancer -- putting our most vulnerable infants at risk.

Joined: 05/31/06
Posts: 4780

Melissa -- can you post or send me the link from the NTSB article? I did a search and couldn't find it. I'd like to update our info as well as possibly include it within a Facebook "discussion." Blum 3

http://shine.yahoo.com/parenting/aaps-new-car-seat-guidelines-change-rear-facing-booster-rules-2466904.html

http://www.nhtsa.gov/Safety/CPS

http://www.autocrashlawyer.com/autocrashlawyer/news/pediatricians-ntsb-call-for-rearfacing-car-seats-for-kids-under-2

It looks like the articles are using NTSB in the headlines but talking about NHTSA. Either way, all moves in the right direction.

I don't believe that it is fair to label those that disagree as "lazy/and uninformed parents" or to compare having "free will" as an adult involved in illegal activities that some experts have deemed as detrimental to the health / safety of their children (agreed -- that's another debate LOL) with parents that are following the current laws for their kid's car seats. I get your point that you are trying to make... just disagree with the presentation. I don't believe that there are any government laws that dictate how we can *purposefully* cause harm to minors.

That is fine. We can all label those parents however we so choose. If you get my point than my presentation must be effective, even if you don't like it. Sorry. I guess we all communicate differently. I don't know what you are talking about in regards to adults and illegal activities. Who is talking about purposfully hurting minors? I'm talking about protecting them from lazy and/or uninformed parents. Simple.

Curious - since in some of the cases you listed above involving medical issues that could prove to impact the health/safety of your child (and perhaps others), you feel that you know better than the experts, (which btw, I am in agreement with your right to do so), but yet you disagree with other parents following the (current) laws and determining what they feel is best for their child? I wouldn't want a parent's rights removed for those decisions (although I know some advocate for that to be the case -- a.k.a. vaccine mandates), as long as they remain compliant with the law. I know most parents spend a great deal of time researching their next car seat before moving FF... trusting those "expert" safety ratings to get the best they possibly can for their child. Even among car seat ratings, some of the more expensive FF have a higher safety rating than some RF counterparts. Should those be mandated to own?

I don't agree with you that most parents spend a great deal of time researching, *most* parents seem uninformed and eager to turn children around for their own convienance or some perception of comfort. If they want to choose their own personal convienance over their childs safety, that is their right. Again, that is just your opinion vs mine. That is why I would like to see the law changed. I don't agree that parents know best. If they did, they would know that rear facing is safer for ALL people! Heck, whenever I'm on a train I make sure to take a rear facing seat. It isn't about how heavy your child is, it is about how impact works and about how relatively fragile our necks are. To infer differently simply is incorrect, however you want it sugarcoated. This (http://www.carseat.se/why-is-rear-facing-so-much-safer/)makes that point well in stating how RF is not only safer for a 3 year old, but for a 55 year old. Its simply physics. You can disagree with them all day long, but you are wrong. If parents want to choose ease over safety, fine! At some point I do hope that they lose that right, at least up until the age of 2.

Joined: 05/31/06
Posts: 4780

"cactuswren" wrote:

FWIW, I agree with you Melissa about the government aspect. My point was that age itself tells so little of the story, and the fact that I could not get any data on what factors actually increased safety that led them to make that recommendation was what I have an issue with. A two year old is not a two year old is not a two year old. As many have mentioned, some six or seven year olds are barely the size of my not-quite-22-month old.

The difference between 1yo RF and 2yo RF recommendations in my view is that the fact is that keeping an infant in a RF car seat is no big deal for anyone to follow, and at that age the physical development differences are within a smaller range. But keeping an older child RF becomes more and more difficult for a lot of people for a wide variety of reasons, and I think that if you don't give people evidence-based reasons to keep their large, verbal, rebellious toddlers in RF positions even when it becomes inconvenient, you're going to see a lot of people (like me) just making their own call. It is in EVERYONE'S best interest, IMO, to tell people what specific, measurable factors they need to be looking for before turning a child. If age really does have a measurable impact, fine, but that isn't the sense I was getting from my research, and since my 18 month old was the size of many average 2yo children, I felt comfortable turning her. It isn't really about parental discretion in the sense that it's their kid so they should get to make dumb and unsafe choices if they want to, but just that children come in different shapes and sizes and I think that should be factored into the recommendations so that parents can hold their individual child up to those standards and see when they match. And if that isn't the point and safety IS about age for some reason I don't understand, then that should be made more clear.

ALL people are safer rear facing. There is no magic age. There are simply magic ages and weights where we can easily protect our most loved and valuable assets (our children) without having to entirely redesign cars to reposition all seats to be rear facing. Obvs a driver could never rear face. Size has absolutely nothing to do with it, though I understand that parents like to make themselves feel better and/or safer if they have a bigger or heavier child. That simply isn't the case, however. My DH weighs 220, I weigh 120, we are equally unsafe forward facing in the event of a crash. We would be equally safer rear facing in the event of a crash. Its why we always ride in the rear facing seats on the train Smile Its safer.

cactuswren's picture
Joined: 10/19/09
Posts: 4658

I actually disagree with you that size and weight have nothing to do with it--yes, physics is such that having your head smush into a padded seat back rather than snap forward on impact is safest for anybody--but car safety devices are designed with certain weights and dimensions in mind, and falling out of those ranges on either end absolutely impacts their ability to help keep you safe.

You yourself point out some "over the top" examples of RF (like everyone in the car except the driver RF)...but that's just a line you draw. Someone else might think it's perfectly reasonable to expect that car manufacturers should redesign cars that way if it makes everyone so much safer. Why not? My point in saying this is that life is all about a constant stream of risk/benefit analysis, and we're all just doing the best we can. Nobody is 100% safe in any car--does that mean we should never ride in cars? Of course not. We make calculated judgments based on a whole spectrum of needs and information, and then we have to just hope for the best. That's true in just about every aspect of life. Eating food. Riding in cars. Existing in a society where we are exposed to germs and other physical dangers out of our real control. Your personal risk assessment line might be higher than mine, and that's fine. It doesn't make either of us more or less right, we just choose to conduct our lives differently. By putting our kids in cars AT ALL, we are both accepting SOME risk. I personally think that my daughter's emotional and mental health gets some weight in the equation alongside her physical safety--yes, that is weighted more heavily, but within the guidelines of acceptable risk, I'm going to factor in other elements. That's my personal decision to make.

It's the government's job to find a baseline that is designed to weed out the people who would take ridiculous risks with the lives of vulnerable minors, and to give the rest of us some basic safety guidelines that we are not equipped to figure out for ourselves, but beyond that I do think parents have the right to make their own decisions. I think anyone who is following the tested safety guidelines of their vehicle and seat is doing the right thing. If you are fortunate enough to have a child who has no issues riding RF longer, or feel that the added safety is important enough to you that you don't care if they're freaking out or vomiting or whatever in exchange for the reduction in risk afforded by RF longer, that is your prerogative. But I don't think that insinuating that people who make a different decision in their own circumstances are bad parents is right or helpful.

Joined: 05/31/06
Posts: 4780

Of course, who is arguing that a child be in a seat who they are too big or heavy for?

I'm not fortunate that my child has no issues, I am his parent and it is my job to keep him safe, even if he doesn't like my decisions at times. He isn't capable of making safety decisions. Smile I would rather he cried, than died if he didn't have to. Luckily he doesn't cry, it is what he is used to and comfortable with, despite being so large.

It is irrefutable that riding rear facing IS safer, so I respectfully disagree with this

It doesn't make either of us more or less right, we just choose to conduct our lives differently.

Its just a fact. You can disregard that fact for your own comfort, but it doesn't change the fact Smile It is right, simply right, that rear facing is safer.

Other than that, I really have nothing more on the subject. People take it personally when they don't like the facts, and I'm not willing to argue individual circumstances, as honestly I don't care enough. I know what it safer, so I do it, because that is my job as a Mom.

Also, please, please don't put words in my mouth. No where have I said parents who FF early are bad parents. I will say clearly that I think that they are making a BAD DECISION........but if my only gauge of good vs bad parents were how a baby sits in a car seat, I would be an idiot. I can judge decisions without trying to sum up the parenting of people I don't know based on one tiny fact.

tori729's picture
Joined: 07/23/07
Posts: 1743

"cactuswren" wrote:

You yourself point out some "over the top" examples of RF (like everyone in the car except the driver RF)...but that's just a line you draw. Someone else might think it's perfectly reasonable to expect that car manufacturers should redesign cars that way if it makes everyone so much safer. Why not? My point in saying this is that life is all about a constant stream of risk/benefit analysis, and we're all just doing the best we can. Nobody is 100% safe in any car--does that mean we should never ride in cars? Of course not. We make calculated judgments based on a whole spectrum of needs and information, and then we have to just hope for the best. That's true in just about every aspect of life. Eating food. Riding in cars. Existing in a society where we are exposed to germs and other physical dangers out of our real control. Your personal risk assessment line might be higher than mine, and that's fine. It doesn't make either of us more or less right, we just choose to conduct our lives differently. By putting our kids in cars AT ALL, we are both accepting SOME risk. I personally think that my daughter's emotional and mental health gets some weight in the equation alongside her physical safety--yes, that is weighted more heavily, but within the guidelines of acceptable risk, I'm going to factor in other elements. That's my personal decision to make.

It's the government's job to find a baseline that is designed to weed out the people who would take ridiculous risks with the lives of vulnerable minors, and to give the rest of us some basic safety guidelines that we are not equipped to figure out for ourselves, but beyond that I do think parents have the right to make their own decisions. I think anyone who is following the tested safety guidelines of their vehicle and seat is doing the right thing. If you are fortunate enough to have a child who has no issues riding RF longer, or feel that the added safety is important enough to you that you don't care if they're freaking out or vomiting or whatever in exchange for the reduction in risk afforded by RF longer, that is your prerogative. But I don't think that insinuating that people who make a different decision in their own circumstances are bad parents is right or helpful.

I agree, well said Leigh!

I think some people are just more passionate about this subject in not only their own children but others as well and ensuring that other children are safe and that we as parents are making informed decisions about things. That goes for lots of things - whether we feed on demand or schedule feeding, have a drug free childbirth or scheduled c/s, etc. I think these things are just things that we need to know the FACTS about each thing and make our own decision as to what WE think is best for our life. And with the car seats, sometimes even though we know that it's safer to RF our kids, it's our decision whether we want to turn them or not (within the laws of our state that is). It's also (usually) safer to have a vaginal birth than a c/s but it's always the parent's decision what THEY want to do.

Joined: 01/18/06
Posts: 1626

Everything is a 'personal decision'. Fact is RF is safer. The laws of physics don't discriminate. It's not like vaccines or birth choices where there are give and takes and valid opinions on both sides. Plainly put and without judgement, RF is safer. It's just a fact.

Obviously it's a personal decision and those who go against recommendations based on sound research that is proven may feel 'judged' but that's on them.

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