Monday, November 9, 2015

Tell Your Kid To Stop Telling Mine That Her Booster Seat Is For Babies









My daughter Natalie is 8.

And she sits in this.




Kids her age are starting to tell her that booster seats are for babies. This makes her upset. This makes her whine in a voice that makes me wish I could pull off my ears. "Why am I still in a baby seat?"

I explain to her that the booster seat will keep her safe should we get in an accident. We live in Oklahoma, land of no one wanting to use turn signals and being distracted by cell phones while driving. Basically? These are some frightening roads.

"But Suzy gets to ride in the front seat! With no booster seat!" Natalie will argue with me.

"Suzy will most likely fly through the windshield or be smothered to death by the airbag if she's in an accident," I'll explain. Maybe it's a bit dramatic. But unfortunately it might also be true.

"But people keep calling me a baby!" Natalie will shout indignantly. It's apparently mortifying to be called a baby when in the third grade.

"You're being safe. You aren't a baby." But I'll fume and wonder why these kids are making my daughter feel ashamed for the way she travels. Sometimes I'll hear them taunt Natalie when we pull up in front of the house. They'll rush over and yell, "Natalie! Why are you in that baby seat? Are you still a baby or what?" I'll have to bite my tongue to not lash out and shriek, "At least she has a higher chance of survival in a car accident you Veruca Salt wannabees."

The rules actually state that kids between the ages of 8-12 should be in a booster seat--or until they reach 4 feet 9 inches. Natalie is 4 feet 2 inches. Many kids Natalie's age shouldn't even BE up front--it's recommended that kids 13 and under remain in the backseat. I've told Natalie this. Over and over again. Whenever she freaks out about being called a baby I remind her of this.

Maybe she's learning because when we pulled up in front of the house the other day and her friends began to laugh about her booster seat, Natalie snapped, "At least I won't die in a car accident like you probably will." This caused the other girls fall silent.

So please. Remind your kids not to make fun of others. If you feel comfortable letting your children ride up front or without a booster seat, it's obviously your children. Your choice. Maybe they are taller than 4 feet 9 inches and don't really need the booster.

But remind them that some kids?


Still ride in a booster seat.

And that's okay.

71 comments:

  1. I would rather be safe than sorry. I saw a news story about a child not being securely in a car seat and being ejected and had they been facing the other way could have been ok. I wouldn't want to take the chance with my kid. So you are being smart, and safe.

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  2. Awww, I hate that they're teasing her! You're doing exactly what you should be. In NJ they just passed a law that kids have to be in a car seat until at least 8. And it's illegal for kids under 13 to sit in the front. Tell her it's a princess seat and all the others are peasants not using one

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  3. Then I should pretty much still be in a booster seat.

    I love Amanda's retort.

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  4. We have the same seat belt law. It went into law this past July. I remember all my friends laughing that I barely missed it. I'm 4'10. Thankfully there is that age out. But to be honest sometimes I wish I had a little booster seat to help me see over the hood better.

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  5. It makes me sad that kids can be so mean. I see kids around here that are 5 riding in the front seat. Or I see kids tucking the shoulder strap under their arm so they only have the lap belt. I hope they don't get into an accident because it will not end well. I make my 5 year old use the 5 point harness still, and she is thankfully not fighting me about it...yet.

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  6. Tell Natalie that my 12 year old just got out of the booster seat this summer because she was finally tall enough. Henry is 8 and he's still in one too. I've had kids question it when they're in the car with us, and mine will just shrug and say, "It's safer this way."

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  7. Yep, safety first. My eight year old still fits in the 5-point harness car seat and so she still rides in it. I hate seeing kids riding in positions or seats that aren't safe for them.

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  8. Nothing wrong with still being in a booster seat. My older two aren't (almost 11 and 9.5). My 9y/o is a little guy, but we went by the guideline of being able to sit all the way back and have his knees hit the right spot on the seat and his feet touch the floor. My 7y/o is in a backless booster. None of my kids ride in the front seat.

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  9. Why the hell is an 8 year old in the front seat? That's 827 shades of dangerous.

    My child is not in a booster seat but there is no way she'd ever make fun of someone who is. We actually just had this conversation last week.

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  10. Omgosh. Kids are horrible. This gave me flashbacks to my days being bullied.

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  11. My son was in a booster until he was 4'9 and yes, he begged me to let him not use one. No thanks, I'd like my children to follow safety regulations and survive, thanks. My son also begs to sit in the front and I say, "Nope, not yet!". My husband and I even sat down and had a talk with my mom when we caught him in her front seat!

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  12. My son was in a booster until he was 4'9 and yes, he begged me to let him not use one. No thanks, I'd like my children to follow safety regulations and survive, thanks. My son also begs to sit in the front and I say, "Nope, not yet!". My husband and I even sat down and had a talk with my mom when we caught him in her front seat!

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  13. Children can be horrible sometimes, but I love that your daughter snapped back. Safety first!

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  14. Someone said that to Simon recently. He's 5! He sits in a carseat. I guess his friends are allowed to ride with nothing at all?? I said nope, not in my car.

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  15. Ugh people are ridiculous! Safety comes before anything else!

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  16. Kids are so mean - and sadly, this is just the beginning. I'm glad you're teaching Natalie how to speak up for herself. My younger son was a "late bloomer" and had to sit in a booster seat longer than any of his friends. I just told him it was one of those non-negotiable things. You're being a good mom!

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  17. There's nothing wrong with a booster seat. Not that I ever want anyone in an accident...but better safe than sorry! My 12 year old nephew only "graduated" from his booster seat last year.

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  18. Umm.. yeah.. I'll keep Scarlet in there until she's 30 if I can! Safety before ANYTHING.

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  19. Suzy's parents are not very smart, the front seat!! Seriously people wise up!

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  20. For sure...! Safety first! But kids are so mean, sadly... But really their parents are to blame........

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  21. It drives me crazy when I drop my daughter off at school, and I see people letting their tiny children sit in the front seat and without any kind of booster. Do they just not care about their safety?! My girl is 6 and still harnessed because she doesn't even meet the minimum requirements for her booster yet! She knows she is safe and the others are not. She tells me all the time that when she's 12 and passes the 5-step test, she'll sit in the seat like an adult and be very excited. (Obviously, I am very passionate about car seat safety.)

    P.S. Natalie's booster headrest needs to come up a click or two.

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  22. Here in Australia kids need to be in the back but do parents care, no, I've even seen baby seats in the front which is the most stupidest bull on the planet. I was in the back until I was in my teens. And any expert will tell you that air bags can blow a kids head off, so yes, it is safer for them to be in the back.

    As for you biting your tongue, don't. As the parent of a child being bullied it is up to you to put them in their place and say something. If they run whinging to their mummy then you set the mummy straight and make sure you remind them of the laws of where to put a child in the car.

    It's all well and good to remind your kids not to make fun of each other but it makes more of an impact on them when they see and hear their parent defending them to the bullies. Don't bite your tongue, put them little shits in their place politely and assertively and maybe then, they'll never do it again. Something like, "if you can't stop being mean to my daughter then don't bother speaking to her at all because I will not tolerate you bullying her." Who knows, it might work.

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  23. Okay, I LOL'd at this: "Suzy will most likely fly through the windshield or be smothered to death by the airbag if she's in an accident." NOT that that's okay, but you know what I mean!

    Keep up the good work, Mama. This is a great topic/post. I bet BlogHer would feature it or even syndicate it.

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  24. Safety always has to come first, and our kids need to understand that. Maybe we should find a new name for booster seats for older kids?!

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  25. I love that! I am appalled when I see smaller children riding in the front seat - kudos to you for making your child understand the importance of car safety!

    Abigail of GlobalGirTravels.com

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  26. I'm a mom myself and I'd rather be safe than sorry! Thanks for writing about this, it's so important.

    http://forblueskies.com

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  27. We all know that kids can be mean to one another, but hey, so can adults. Safety is priority so I would go that route.

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  28. Unfortunately, teasing is mainstream these days. The important thing is that your child is safe. How important - and difficult - it is for parents to help their children develop tough skin, while nurturing them at the same time. Here's a video that I found helpful: http://www.bing.com/videos/search?q=how+to+beat+a+bully+without+using+your+fists&&view=detail&mid=395441FC12272FF7453B395441FC12272FF7453B&FORM=VRDGAR

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  29. Kids will be kids I guess and it's hard to get them to stop making fun of eachother but You are right in essence. - Jason Young.

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  30. Yeah I've heard its a certain weight as well in some states where they have to weigh more than 40lbs to not be in a booster. Those kids are bullies and it just makes me wonder why at such a young age they are already becoming insecure beings.

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  31. I was one of the last parents I know to let my kids even ride up front. I'd prefer they were safer in the event of an accident than sorry. Plus...once they learn to drive they'll drive up front all of the time anyway.

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  32. This post just shows what a good and caring mom you are!!

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  33. Its the truth, parents are crazy, dont they want their children to be safe as well!

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  34. Kids can be so mean. Safety is the number one priority!

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  35. This kids will never understand it but honestly safer in a car seat and being called baby than flying through the window dead

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  36. I'm with you 100%. My eight year old is jealous that his eleven year old brother is out of one and some kids at school in his grade say they aren't either. To that I say "Then they aren't safe!"

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  37. This is totally ok. Safety is priority, it doesn't matter if she is two or twelve.

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  38. Moms will always know best. With kids, I guess moms ( or even dads! ) can never be too complacent. You'll never know what other people do - totally don't like people who drive and still use their phones. It's always best to be cautious than be sorry in the end.

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  39. Safety first! I don't care who makes fun, the life of your kid comes first.

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  40. Safety is so important. Your right on puttING her in a booster seat. I agree that kids under 13 shouldn't be in the front seat either. It's just to risky. Especially with the air bags alone.

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  41. My son is 7 and in still in a booster seats. Luckily none of his friends teased him about it. Children could be mean sometimes but I guess as parents we just have to state our grounds. Safety first, baby or not!

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  42. We have the same recommendations here. It's amazing how many don't follow this. I've never understood why a parent wouldn't stop their child from making fun of another child.

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  43. I'm so sorry your little girl is getting teased for following the laws in your state. What part of Oklahoma? I'm in Kansas but travel to OKC. I have family there.

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  44. Some kids are understandably having a difficulty of letting go of their childhood belonging (or they call it their property) and that's okay. We adults should let them understand the principle of sharing their old belongings to others letting them understand that it brings joy... I'm pretty sure they will :D

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  45. I'll be honest-- I laughed at what you said and then what Natalie said to her friends. I hope it teaches them a lesson to not pick on her. And unfortunately, it is true. Better to be safe!

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  46. My second grader I should in a booster and probably will be thru third grade too. He's small for his age and I want to keep him safe, after the high back booster, he'll go to just the booster part when he's of the right height and weight.

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  47. Kids can really make u smile and scratch your head at the same time.. they are the cutest by far. Explaining to them why and how is it and the way it is can be helpful.

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  48. You see that's how bullying starts. These parents need to learn how to teach their kids about acceptance and that not everyone thinks like them. I think it's nice that your daughter is still in a booster. With the number of car accidents rising, you can never be too safe.

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  49. Its impossible to stop other kids commenting on things. Focus on making your daughter confident in her own opinion and way of doing things. I don't think this is bullying, it is just kids being kids and inevitable.

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  50. Safety first especially to our children. :)

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  51. Safety is too important! I hate that other kids tease over that!

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  52. You're doing a great job! I'm glad that you're teaching her the right way.

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  53. I LOVE THIS!! I can't say it enough!!! My son is 9 but SHORT so he doesn't meet the safety height requirements so sitting in a seat is so much safer!

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  54. It's so unfortunate that kids can be so mean still and that their parents aren't teaching better manners. Safety first is all that matters.

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  55. I so feel you. These new laws have them in seats longer and it's frustrating to hear other kids complain and get yours going.

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  56. I can't believe kids make fun of the booster seat. I'm glad that Natalie starts to understand that you care about her safety and that's why she still has to use the booster seat.

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  57. Safety is super important! I always encourage other moms to use them as long as possible :)

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  58. I know what you mean. My youngest is a head shorter than everyone else in her class. This year she finally was able to move out of a car seat into a booster seat. Thankfully, nobody tells her it's for babies.

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  59. Safety is the most important thing when you have kids rest doesn't matter

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  60. Besides, Natalie looks very cute sitting on the booster seat. I wouldn't mind her sitting in there until she gets tired of it. :-)

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  61. Better be safe then sorry. Prrrrft parents should mind their own business. xx

    www.annanuttall.com

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  62. Children should not be worrying about what other children are doing. They should be busy playing and having fun.

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  63. this is a nice article to remind other parents to educate their children as well. True, safety first before we are sorry.

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  64. It's sad how children are growing up so fast these days and rushing each other along. Ugh... Great post!

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  65. Good for you for putting your daughter's safety first. Kids can be so cruel sometimes. Sending love <3

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  66. Ugh, some people's children... Kids can be mean, you are doing the right thing, safety should always come first. As parents we need to educate our children so that they aren't bullies.

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  67. As a parent, safety is on top of my list of priorities especially when it comes to traveling. I really like that you're still requiring your daughter to use a car seat.

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  68. LOLOl its funny how when we're young we just want to grow up and when we're older we just want to grow back down hahah.
    I went through that phase too.

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  69. If it keeps a child safe then surely a boaster seat should be seen as a good thing and parents should be saying that to their children. I would much prefer to be safe.

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  70. One good way to deal with this is to prepare kids on how to handle teasing and bullying. That will teach them to adapt to what you want them to do no matter how embarrassing it may be for them. It's just a phase anyway, they'll be glad you're thinking of what's best for them when they grow up.

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