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HELP! AP parent can't cope with carseat

post #1 of 67
Thread Starter 
Help. My DS hates, I mean really hates the car. He’s ok for about 10 min. and then that’s it. He cries so hard it breaks my heart. That’s the only time I hear him cry like that. So needless to say we’ve managed to walk most placed up till now. In two weeks we are moving to a city 9 hours away. Why does he cry? Most parents tell me they use the car to calm their kids. Any suggestions to help us survive this trip?
I BF before we head out and on trips longer than 15 min. I will pull over to bf, so it can’t be hunger.
post #2 of 67
How old is he??
post #3 of 67
Thread Starter 
He's 4 months and after the first 2 weeks developed his dislike toward car trips.
post #4 of 67
Can you start your trip around the time his biggest sleep usually is? My ds hates the car as well but where we live we have to drive places....I try hard to go when he is well fed and kinda sleepy and that tends to help him....he just goes to sleep.

Also, for the long trip, would help for one of you to be sitting next to him so he can see you? I do that when dh is around and he does better if he can see me.

Hearing your baby cry is so hard!
post #5 of 67
Dd was the same way. It's why against every single mothering instinct, I turned her FF at 1 year (she was already about 23 lbs.)

We simply did not go anywhere unless I could sit in back with her. It started when she was about 4 months old and started understanding separation from mommy/nursings but still couldn't comprehend that I was still there, just not visible. And from the day I turned her around, it has been fine.

I remember thinking the same things you said, especially about how heart-wrenching the cry is.
post #6 of 67
post #7 of 67
what kind of carseat is he in? dd HATED her bucket seat!!! she was miserable in the car until we bought a convertible seat (wish i had thought of it waaay earlier) at about 4 1/5-5 months or so when she was starting to outgrow the bucket- turns out that was the reason all along!!!

we also worked towards desensitizing her to the car by taking lots of small trips to the store, for mommy's cup of coffee, etc, to give her more experience overall.

good luck!
post #8 of 67
I see this problem all over the place, my dd espically hates the car. I swear one day I'm going to invent something where mama can hold the baby in the backseat and still be just as safe as a car seat. Hmm some kind of super sling? No advice though, just hugs, my dd is the same way and it's tourture.
post #9 of 67
I would drive through the night for your 9 hour trip if possible. My dd is OK with the car now but it was shaky when she was tiny like that. We do a lot of long car trips and we did most of them through the night.
post #10 of 67
We had the same experience with Ally, and it was awful. Still is, sometimes. The thing that helped us the most was arranging our outings around her biggest sleep periods. When we took a road trip when she was 4 mo old, we drove overnight. And when she's start screaming, we'd pull over, I'd put her in the sling, and walk her to sleep, put her back, and keep going. At a minimum, be sure to leave after a healthy awake period so that beginning the trip cooresponds with sleeping. Also give yourself a ton of time. For a 9 hour trip, I'd give it at least two days, so that you can have big breaks and stop altogether if you need it.

You should bring along some Rescue Remedy for both her and you. It might help.

To this day, I still arrange our outings around Ally's naps, although at 10.5 mo it's alot easier because I know when she's going to be napping and I make it a point to only drive alone (she and I) during those times. While it's a pain, it has helped to add good structure to our day, which I think is really helpful for her.
post #11 of 67
Thread Starter 
I've bought new CD's with nature sounds etc. just for the car. We sing, play games, I've tried to bf while he's in the seat but I'm too small to make this work. I have thought about the motion sickness possibility but what can one do about that. I have been trying to go on small trips and extend them bit by bit and maybe 30kms was pushing it today. we haven't been going every day either so maybe I should try to make it routine. Thanks so much for your comments and helpful sugestions.
post #12 of 67
driving at night would probably work best. Maybe a 6-7pm to midnight, then wake up when baby does, relax at the hotel and plan to drive during a morning nap.
What worked best was having dd besides me in my truck (pre-airbags).
When I got my car, singing Christmas carols, pacifier, someone sitting next to baby, or someone hold baby's hand.
My dd eventually outgrew it, and now is a great passenger. We did a 5am to 2am trip with only a 3hr break at a beach in the middle when dd was 3yrs and everyone survived.
post #13 of 67
Is it just you and him going? If not, do you really have to be along for the drive? Could you and the baby fly there?
post #14 of 67
My DS was like this too, he hit a wall with the car about the same age. We started trying all different types of music, and one day we found it, The Beatles Abbey Road. Seriously it was a miricle for us, two bars into "Come Together" and he was silent.

Each time you have to go out try a different CD for that day, keep trying until you find the one that works. Also can you break up the trip into 2 or 3 days?
post #15 of 67
No advice - just empathy. Both of my children cried and cried in the car seat - I hated going anywhere. It got to where I'd be so nervous just anticipating the crying - which didn't help things.

Good luck to you - things get better soon! It's like FREEDOM when you can take a 30 minute trip (imagine!) without any worries!

post #16 of 67
I would definitely switch to a convertible seat. You will have to get one eventually any way...but they have been much more comfortable for my kids.

I keep some small yet fascinating toys handy, when the fussing starts, I hand them one. Even my hairbrush has helped keep their attention.

It will get better...I promise. My first was terribly fussy in the car as an infant. Now at 2 1/2 she only fusses when we are on our way home. "NO HOME...Go Bye BYE MORE!"
post #17 of 67
My daughter hated the car, too. I 'third' the convertible seat, whenever dc is large enough. Car seats are cruel. Restraint is psychologically punishing and panic-inducing. My mother deals with this issue all the time- she investigates nursing home abuses, and so learns how even the helpless feel when restrained. We finally had to put my daugter up front with me. Of course, at the time I was driving an early 70s vintage car- one of the largest Fords ever made, all STEEL. No car manufactured now could really make a dent, and we never drove on roads with a speed limit higher than 45. It was that or stay home. I don't know what I would have done if I had had a newer, fiberglass car. I suppose just run errands with my husband, since public transportation sucks here. I think it's sociologically very interesting that we place the adult needs for speed, and oil and auto industry needs for profit over our children's need for dignity. There is no real need for anyone to drive anywhere at life threatening speed. There is no need to sell flimsy cars. I am not advocating a return to the time when children bounced around in cars. . . . but doesn't anyone else wonder . . . I never hear stories of children dying left and right back in the bad old days of driving big slow cars. I'm sure just the thought will get me flamed. But children didn't have a say in the process of designing carseats and making them into law, you know, and it seems like in enacting the changes in auto safety and speed limits that there was alot of guilt heaped on mamas and not a lot of the questions like who profits? who loses? and who decides? Well, we have a damn older Camry now, so when this next one gets here I have to listen to him/her wail in the back seat and I dread it.
post #18 of 67
It could be car sickness.
My cousin, who's now in his 20's, hated the car as a baby. Even now he gets extremely car sick and has to wear those magnetic bracelet things.
post #19 of 67
DC hated the car. She still does at 4 and I don't blame her. But, it does get better with out car training them. DC is now able to do over 2 hours without much of a fuss and probably more if we're willing to accommodate her a little. The key for us is respecting that the car is just not enjoyable (or healthy) for her and respecting that by limiting it as much as possible. In the end, this had a really posibive impact on all our lives.

I know you have to do this trip, but just get through it as best as you can and go back to your walking, no -unnecessary trips lifestyle when you get there! If you can, try to find another way to get there ~ bus, train, fly etc. Try to drive during naps and talke lots of breaks. Consider staying over or driving through the night. See if you can nurse in the seat (ask if that's considered safe). Sit back with DC.

I hope you have a good move. Good luck!
post #20 of 67
Originally Posted by provocativa
We finally had to put my daugter up front with me. Of course, at the time I was driving an early 70s vintage car- one of the largest Fords ever made, all STEEL. No car manufactured now could really make a dent, and we never drove on roads with a speed limit higher than 45. It was that or stay home. I don't know what I would have done if I had had a newer, fiberglass car.
Actually, the newer cars are much much safer (and this is comming from someone who LOVES classic cars and thinks new cars are crap). Your car may not get crushed, but you will. There was an old car made by ford affectionatly reffered to as the sherman tank. You could run this car into a brick wall and it wouldn't have a dent, but every person inside would be dead. You want cars to crumple, that absorbs the energy. The energy from a car crash MUST go somewhere, so if it doesn't get absorbed by the car, it will be absorbed by your body causing MAJOR damage. Sorry, I know this is off topic, but I didn't want someone to think that a car not crumpling is a good thing.
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