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When Did you Forward Face?

Poll Results: When did you forward face you little one's carseat?

This is a multiple choice poll
  • 5% (4)
    Exactly 12 Months
  • 14% (10)
    12 Month - 18 Months
  • 11% (8)
    18 Months - 24 Months
  • 27% (19)
    2 Years - 3 Years
  • 27% (19)
    3 Years - 4 Years
  • 11% (8)
    Over 4 Years
68 Total Votes  
post #1 of 64
Thread Starter 

Hi All,

 

My LO hates being in her carseat unless someone is in the back seat with her.  We try not to drive great distances unless she is really sleepy and will fall asleep quickly.  In CA babies must be at least 12 months old AND 20 lbs to be forward facing but I know many parents opt to keep kids rear facing for much longer.

 

I'm wondering when you decided to go with forward facing and why (especially if you LO was not a fan of the car seat)?

 

Thanks!

post #2 of 64

I had three miserable kids who hated the car seat as infants.  HATED. IT.   They were miserable and consequently, I drove as little as humanly possible, and cried along with them the rest of the time.  



None of that made turning them forward facing at a time when they had a 500% increased risk of severe injuries or death worth it.   

Sometimes kids hate things that are good for them.  If your baby was trying to jam a butter knife into an electrical socket and cried when you took the knife away, you wouldn't give her the knife back to keep the peace.   

 

Babies under two NEED to be rear facing.  It is simply too dangerous to do it otherwise.   The good news is, by two, they're usually just fine in the car.  

My kids rear faced to 2.5 (older seats, smaller rear facing weight limits), 4 years, and 3.5 years, in descending order.  The one I'm currently baking will likely be rear facing for 4-5 years, regardless of how much he or she hates the car. 

post #3 of 64
Thread Starter 

Thank you so much for your response!!!  I can tell you feel my pain...  I too have cried along with her when we've hit unexpected traffic...  :)  I bought a top of the line carsear when we transitioned from the infant carseat to the toddler carseat which helped a bit but not nearly enough.  I try to give her new toys for the car but she throws them on the seat next to her within 5 minutes and then starts to get upset...  :/  I guess I have at least another 6 months of very short trips...

post #4 of 64

I don't know how you feel about TV but we have a carseat hater and she is much happier now that we let her watch videos on the iPhone. We download stuff from iTunes. She is TV free the rest of the time and is very good about understanding that she only watches in the car. She's 18 months.

post #5 of 64

I had a carseat hater too but shortly before he turned one we started giving him snacks in the car, puffs, cheerios, etc and a sippy cup. He's almost 18 months now, still rearfacing and totally happy in the car. Which is good since my personal RF minimum is 3 and I was worried for a while we'd have 3 years straight of purple faced, gagging, screaming.

post #6 of 64

I have had two children, both of whom hated carseats.  With my older child, FF made no difference--he still hated it and would cry most of the time he was in a carseat, even if we were going on a long trip.  It was terrible and, looking back, I really regret having taken trips to see my dad and step-mom.  I should have explained the situation and given them the choice to travel to us (they lived 6 hours away).  My younger child is 20 months old, weighs 30 pounds, and will stay RF until he his two (my understanding is that's the current safety recommendation).

 

I have learned to carry on insane conversations with him regarding the presence of trucks on the road, birds in the sky, and his toes.  Music doesn't work with him in the car.  What works is my non-stop comments, Oatios, water sippy cups (the only time he ever gets sippy cups), books, etc.  It is exhausting sometimes.

 

If DH and I are driving together, I have learned how to car nurse.  That helps a lot.  We also paid a hundred bucks to get our back windows tinted so I'm not on display.

post #7 of 64

Caden, two is a minimum.  The safety recommendation is that children MUST be rear facing till two (AAP) and that children over two but under 4 years who still FIT rear facing should remain that way until they no longer fit by height or weight (NHTSA.)

Of course, continuing to rear face after the fourth birthday is fine too.   The important thing is that birth-four years stretch. 

post #8 of 64

The AAP recommendations also say this:

 

“The ‘age 2’ recommendation is not a deadline, but rather a guideline to help parents decide when to make the transition,” Dr. Durbin said. “Smaller children will benefit from remaining rear-facing longer, while other children may reach the maximum height or weight before 2 years of age.”

 

http://www.aap.org/advocacy/releases/carseat2011.htm

 

The problem we had was that our son reached the maximum height and weight for rear-facing in the carseat we had (which we had researched for a long time before buying) when he was fifteen-months-old. We consulted our local fire department for advice, and they said it was unsafe for our son to be rear-facing beyond the maximum height and weight for that car seat. So we made the decision to turn him forward-facing. He is three now and nothing happened, thank god, but we need to keep in mind that parenting advice is not always "one size fits all," as the AAP acknowledges.

post #9 of 64

Unfortunately, you are misinterpreting the wording.   THis does NOT MEAN a 1 year old is ok in a forward facing car seat.  Your 15 month would have been very UNSAFE had you been unfortunate enough to be involved in a serious accident.  

The wording is there to prevent parents from using an inappropriate seat beyond the limits to reach an age.   

 

The only safe solution if your 15 month old outgrows his convertible (and either your child is enormous, or you had an infant only carrier, or you bought a convertible that is uniformly not recommended due to impractical size) is to buy a larger solution.   Forward facing is not a safe or correct decision at that juncture. 


This is not 'parenting advice'.  This is physics.

post #10 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by Maedze View Post

Unfortunately, you are misinterpreting the wording.   THis does NOT MEAN a 1 year old is ok in a forward facing car seat.  Your 15 month would have been very UNSAFE had you been unfortunate enough to be involved in a serious accident.  

The wording is there to prevent parents from using an inappropriate seat beyond the limits to reach an age.   

 

The only safe solution if your 15 month old outgrows his convertible (and either your child is enormous, or you had an infant only carrier, or you bought a convertible that is uniformly not recommended due to impractical size) is to buy a larger solution.   Forward facing is not a safe or correct decision at that juncture. 


This is not 'parenting advice'.  This is physics.

 

This is a large car seat, not a convertible. It's a full-size car seat designed to hold a child up to 70 lbs. One of the top recommended car seats in Consumer Reports. However, the warning label on the car seat clear states, "Not designed to be used in a rear-facing position with a child over 20 lbs."

 

http://www.britaxusa.com/learning-center/car-seats-101/car-seat-basics (see the section on forward-facing only seats)

 

I assumed their recommendations are based on physics ;)

 

ETA: Of course, we bought our seat three years ago. At that time, we could not find a seat that would allow rear-facing after 20 pounds. Since the recommendations have changed, they DO make seats that will rear face up to 35 pounds. I was just pointing out that parents should check the warning label on their car seat to make sure they are using it in the manufacturer's recommended way.


Edited by alittlesandy - 12/6/11 at 8:56am
post #11 of 64

Ok, there's obviously massive confusion here, for you. 


I'll try to pick the problems out one by one. 

1. NO BRITAX CONVERTIBLE has EVER had a 20 lb maximum for rear facing.  EVER.  In the late 1990s it was 30 lbs.   Then in the early 2000s it was bumped up to 33.  2005ish, 35.  And now the new generation seats you just linked to go to 40.  You clearly misread the warning label which says to never use in the forward facing position for a child under 20 lbs.  Those two are COMPLETELY DIFFERENT statements.    If your 15 month old was only just 20 lbs, you likely could have easily gotten another 1-2 years rear facing in that seat.     Their recommendations are based on physics...and on people correctly reading and using the seats.  

 

2. EVERY CONVERTIBLE ON THE MARKET in 2008 rear faced passed 20 pounds.  (Even the Combi Zeus got bumped up to 33 lbs).   Convertibles have not maxed out at 20 lbs rear facing in TWELVE YEARS.  ( I hope you aren't mistaking my capitals for shouting.  It's the lazy person's italics.  This is really crucial stuff.)  

 

3.  Consumer Reports is a terrible source for car seat information, for a number of reasons. No CPST worth his or her salt would ever recommend consulting them for car seat information.  I can elaborate on that if you're interested.  

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by alittlesandy View Post

 

This is a large car seat, not a convertible. It's a full-size car seat designed to hold a child up to 70 lbs. One of the top recommended car seats in Consumer Reports. However, the warning label on the car seat clear states, "Not designed to be used in a rear-facing position with a child over 20 lbs."

 

http://www.britaxusa.com/learning-center/car-seats-101/car-seat-basics (see the section on forward-facing only seats)

 

I assumed their recommendations are based on physics ;)

 

ETA: Of course, we bought our seat three years ago. At that time, we could not find a seat that would allow rear-facing after 20 pounds. Since the recommendations have changed, they DO make seats that will rear face up to 35 pounds. I was just pointing out that parents should check the warning label on their car seat to make sure they are using it in the manufacturer's recommended way.



 

post #12 of 64

I'd love to see some links and sources.

post #13 of 64

On which, Consumer Reports?  

post #14 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by alittlesandy View Post

 

This is a large car seat, not a convertible. It's a full-size car seat designed to hold a child up to 70 lbs. One of the top recommended car seats in Consumer Reports. However, the warning label on the car seat clear states, "Not designed to be used in a rear-facing position with a child over 20 lbs."

 

http://www.britaxusa.com/learning-center/car-seats-101/car-seat-basics (see the section on forward-facing only seats)

 

I assumed their recommendations are based on physics ;)

 

ETA: Of course, we bought our seat three years ago. At that time, we could not find a seat that would allow rear-facing after 20 pounds. Since the recommendations have changed, they DO make seats that will rear face up to 35 pounds. I was just pointing out that parents should check the warning label on their car seat to make sure they are using it in the manufacturer's recommended way.


Which seat do you have that says that? I think you are misreading it somehow, because that doesn't make sense. 

 

3 years ago there were LOTS of convertible carseats that rearfaced to 30, 33, and 35lbs, and soon after ones that rearfaced even to 40lbs, and now 45lbs.   3 yrs ago most infant only seats also rearfaced to at least 22lbs and some more.   Perhaps you were looking at the minimum weight limit for turning forward facing, instead of the maximum weight limit for rearfacing? 

 

The AAP has been recomending extended rearfacing for a long time (at least sense 2002, which is more than 3yrs ago), the wording has just changed some recently and the 40 and 45lb rearfacing seats have come out. 

 

Also, consumer reports don't have anything to do with safety stats, all carseats, when used correctly, are equally safe. 

 

 

 

 

OP - My son will be 4.5yrs old in January, and he is still rearfacing.  He will be rearfacing until he reaches the height or weight limit on his seat (45lbs, and he has about 5-6" of torso height to gain, he is a tiny kid!), so he will likely be rearfacing to the age of 6 or so.  I'm a carseat tech and I've seen crash tests, that is enough to convince me to rearface him as long as I possibly can.  He HATED the car until he was about 2, but I'd much rather have an unhappy kid than one thats been internally decapitated from forward facing too soon.     Installing his seat more upright helped quite a bit, and we also limited car time to what was strictly nessisary (rode bikes or walked when we could!)

 

post #15 of 64

I am only going to answer based on my youngest child who is now 6,she rear-faced until she was 3.5 yrs old at which time she had reached both the weight and height limit of her Evenflo Triumph carseat.

post #16 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by alittlesandy View Post

I'd love to see some links and sources.



On what?

post #17 of 64


Quote:

Originally Posted by leighi123 View Post



On what?


This:
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Maedze View Post

Ok, there's obviously massive confusion here, for you. 


I'll try to pick the problems out one by one. 

1. NO BRITAX CONVERTIBLE has EVER had a 20 lb maximum for rear facing.  EVER.  In the late 1990s it was 30 lbs.   Then in the early 2000s it was bumped up to 33.  2005ish, 35.  And now the new generation seats you just linked to go to 40.  You clearly misread the warning label which says to never use in the forward facing position for a child under 20 lbs.  Those two are COMPLETELY DIFFERENT statements.    If your 15 month old was only just 20 lbs, you likely could have easily gotten another 1-2 years rear facing in that seat.     Their recommendations are based on physics...and on people correctly reading and using the seats.  

 

2. EVERY CONVERTIBLE ON THE MARKET in 2008 rear faced passed 20 pounds.  (Even the Combi Zeus got bumped up to 33 lbs).   Convertibles have not maxed out at 20 lbs rear facing in TWELVE YEARS.  ( I hope you aren't mistaking my capitals for shouting.  It's the lazy person's italics.  This is really crucial stuff.)  

 

3.  Consumer Reports is a terrible source for car seat information, for a number of reasons. No CPST worth his or her salt would ever recommend consulting them for car seat information.  I can elaborate on that if you're interested. 



 

post #18 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by Maedze View Post

 The safety recommendation is that children MUST be rear facing till two (AAP) and that children over two but under 4 years who still FIT rear facing should remain that way until they no longer fit by height or weight (NHTSA.)
 


Maedze:  Is the height/weight recommendation relative to the child or the car seat?  I'm confused.  Thanks for clarifying.

post #19 of 64
my ds was 3 years 5 months and 34lbs... i didnt know the next time we would get to weigh him again, and didnt want to push it smile.gif i wish i could turn him back around, because he gets carsick forward facing, but i cant afford a radian. he's 4 yrs and 2 months now
post #20 of 64

On the whole thing?  You're KIDDING, right?   You want a source that tells you you didn't read your label correctly?  Ok.  Go out to your car.  Read your label.  The whole thing.  Come back.  There's your source. 


You want a SOURCE that tells you that seats in 2008 went past 20 lbs rear facing?  Good heavens.  It's common knowledge.  If you feel the need, you could call Graco, and Evenflo, and Chicco, and Britax, and Sunshine Kids, and Dorel Juvenile Products, and Recaro and just ASK them.  

 

I've been doing this for a while.   It's not a big deep mystery that was concealed from the common folk or anything.   When my oldest was born, in 2004, every seat available went to at least 30 lbs.  

 

In 2008, my 32 lb daughter was rear facing in a Britax Boulevard.   I'm a technician.  I didn't accidentally put her in a Britax seat that goes to 20 lbs (because, you know, they never existed) for kicks and giggles. 

 

By the way, now that I know you thought your 20 lb child had to be forward facing based on the advice you received from the fire department (Why did you call the fire department?) I also know you didn't talk to an actual CPST.

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