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Influencing a man's perspective for centuries
The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recently revised its policy and now recommends toddlers remain rear-facing in their car seats until 2-years-old, or until the specified height or weight limits are reached for the car seat.
The AAP previously recommended one year and 20 pounds as the minimum for turning them into a back-seat driver and yelling at you to slow down when you see brake lights.
Per science, children under 2 are 75 percent less likely to die or sustain serious injuries when rear-facing. Per my professional experience, children under 2 are 100 percent less likely to die if you people would STOP REAR-ENDING VEHICLES IN FRONT OF YOU.
The Boy, now 3, has been checking out the back of my balding dome for a while now, but he was rear-facing until he reached the appropriate weight limit of his seat. The Boobs and I attended a car seat safety class before he was born, and we left with strong feelings that our child would be placed in the middle of the back seat and remain rear-facing until he was kissing the head rest.
My parents, however, hated it. When they raised my sister and I in the late ’70s and early ’80s, car seats and seat belts were for pussies. I survived just fine on the floor of their Volkswagen Bus as a toddler. If my sister and I survived thousands of miles piled in the back of my dad’s Ford truck, only comforted with carpet lining and enclosed by a camper shell, then surely The Boy would be safe facing forward and cooing as my mom sang Wheels on the Bus as if it were on repeat.
They’d say his long legs look squished and pondered whether he’d feel less isolated if he’d only face forward. The Boobs and I firmly repeated safety to them and requested that they not turn their car seat forward until we instruct them. They listened, and all was well.
With The Twins stuck watching The Boy pick his nose during car trips for the next two years of their lives, I asked The Boy what his thoughts were of the new guidelines and what’d it mean for his new brother and sister.
Me: What do you think of the new guidelines which increase the age limit to 2 for rear-facing car seats?
The Boy dropped his Finding Nemo DVD and stared and me blankly. No doubt he was in utter shock and dismay.
Me: Were your legs squished when you sat rear-facing?
The Boy: Yes.
Me: Do you think that other mommies and daddies should keep their kids in rear-facing car seats until they’re 2?
The Boy: No.
Me: Do you think that sitting in a rear-facing car seat will keep a child from dying in a car accident?
The Boy: Lightning (McQueen) crashed. Then Chick Hicks crashed, then The King.
Me: Excuse me?
The Boy: I need poop.
Me too, son. Me too.