HELP! AP parent can't cope with carseat - Mothering Forums

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Old 02-14-2006, 10:30 PM - Thread Starter
 
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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.
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Old 02-14-2006, 10:36 PM
 
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How old is he??
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Old 02-14-2006, 10:44 PM - Thread Starter
 
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He's 4 months and after the first 2 weeks developed his dislike toward car trips.
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Old 02-14-2006, 10:48 PM
 
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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!
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Old 02-14-2006, 10:52 PM
 
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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.
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Old 02-14-2006, 10:52 PM
 
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Old 02-14-2006, 10:59 PM
 
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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!
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Old 02-14-2006, 11:06 PM
 
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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.
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Old 02-14-2006, 11:09 PM
 
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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.
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Old 02-14-2006, 11:09 PM
 
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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.
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Old 02-14-2006, 11:10 PM - Thread Starter
 
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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.
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Old 02-14-2006, 11:50 PM
 
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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.

mom to 14yr dd and 4yr dd
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Old 02-15-2006, 02:55 AM
 
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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?

Midwife (CPM, LDM) and homeschooling mama to:
14yo ds   11yo dd  9yo ds and 7yo ds and 2yo ds  
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Old 02-15-2006, 03:50 AM
 
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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?
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Old 02-15-2006, 04:00 AM
 
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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!

~Eve
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Old 02-15-2006, 11:47 AM
 
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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!"
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Old 02-15-2006, 01:40 PM
 
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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.
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Old 02-15-2006, 01:46 PM
 
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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.
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Old 02-15-2006, 01:55 PM
 
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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!

Mama to DD September 2001 and DD April 2011 *Winner for most typos* eat.gif
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Old 02-15-2006, 02:28 PM
 
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Quote:
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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Old 02-15-2006, 02:29 PM
 
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No real advice here, just wanted to tell you that my DD was exactly the same way from somewhere around 6 weeks until maybe 5, 6, 9 months? I can't even remember. She hated, hated the car. I dreaded having to go anywhere. I guess I must have grouped trips around naps and I know that I spent an awful lot of time in parking lots nursing her so that I could get her back in the seat to get home. I remember many times DH had to bring books along when he was out with us so that he had something to do while he waited for us. Still I refused to just put her in the seat and let her scream like that. There were the few inevitable times where I was a few miles from home and it made more sense to keep driving, but it was hard. I also had never heard her cry like that until we were in the car. I remember when she was about 6 or 8 weeks and we were going to a class on breastpumping of all things and she started screaming so bad and I was at a light waiting to turn left into a parking lot. It seemed like forever until I could pull over. She was so worked up that by the time I pulled into the parking lot, turned off the engine and got her out of her seat, it took her five minutes to just calm down and stop hyperventilating. By that time I was also crying. It was horrible.

I guess if it's motion sickness, then a lot of babies have it. DD did much better at 12 months when I turned the seat around. I guess just keep doing what you are doing and try some of the suggestions here. You could try a pacifier just for the car. Even though I was not a big fan of them, I finally decided I would use them for the car only. It didn't work everytime, but I think it got us through the worst of it. She usually only would take one if I was in the back seat with her (when we were with DH), but it helped during a 3-hour car trip we took at Thanksgiving and we had already stopped numerous times to nurse.

Hang in there!

{Partner to DH  and Former WOHM, now SAHM  to DD, DD , and DS } *** ***
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Old 02-15-2006, 04:51 PM
 
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My DD HATED teh carseat for the first 3-4 months or so .. we just did the best we could with making trips as short as possible, and at naptime so she would sleep. There just isnt much you can do, AP or not ... the kids gotta be in there. Maybe a DVD player with a Baby Einstein movie?
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Old 02-16-2006, 01:49 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bailey228
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.


Doesn't the energy go into the other car?

Mama to DD September 2001 and DD April 2011 *Winner for most typos* eat.gif
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Old 02-16-2006, 02:41 AM
 
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DD hated the car seat, I barely left the house for her first 1.5 years of her life. She hated the seat from day one, nothing ever helped, and I tried everything. She has always hated being restrained, she is 3 years old and still can't stand anything that hold her back. DD finally just got old to understand that the carseat has to be used and that she won't be in forever. We can't take long trips, but she is ok driving to town now (a 30 minute drive). I'd drive at night for your move, we made all of trips in the middle of night, not the most pleasant thing to do, but a required for sanity.

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Old 02-16-2006, 03:15 AM
 
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Originally Posted by IdentityCrisisMama
Doesn't the energy go into the other car?
What if both of you are driving sherman tanks? What if it's not a car? (like you spin off an icy road and hit a tree) Even if it is another car that is newer, you still would be safer if your car also had a cushion. I used to have a full ton chevy truck. I was rear ended by a guy in a little cavalier. My truck had no dents at all, but I hurt my back pretty bad. The guy in the car that crumpled, even though he was 1/2 the size of my car, was just fine. (and cavaliers have horrid safety ratings)
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Old 02-16-2006, 04:46 AM
 
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Originally Posted by bailey228
What if both of you are driving sherman tanks? What if it's not a car? (like you spin off an icy road and hit a tree) Even if it is another car that is newer, you still would be safer if your car also had a cushion. I used to have a full ton chevy truck. I was rear ended by a guy in a little cavalier. My truck had no dents at all, but I hurt my back pretty bad. The guy in the car that crumpled, even though he was 1/2 the size of my car, was just fine. (and cavaliers have horrid safety ratings)
Yea, I'm not sure. I just thought that mass would be a pretty significant factor and that a steel car would be pretty massive.

But, I haven't had a physics class in ages. Do you have any resources you could recommend for me to read more about this? My family car is a Cavalier, btw. It doesn't seem safe...I've often wished it was more massive. It never really occurred to me to be thankful that it's so crumpley.

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Old 02-16-2006, 04:53 PM - Thread Starter
 
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My mom is flying down so she can drive the car while I sit back with ds, couldn’t afford a moving comp. So dh is driving the uhaul. I’ve had people say “why don’t you take him out of the seat once you’re on the highway, that’s what I do?” I’m tempted but afraid.

will look at new carseat. thanks again for all the great advice and shared compassion.
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Old 02-16-2006, 06:08 PM
 
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You could also look into one of those car-driver services and use the money you were going to use to fly your mom down to fly up! Your child could be a lap baby if money is an issue...it would be safer than driving for sure.

My grandmother uses a driver service for her car when she moves and it doesn't cost too much. Or, try Craig's List or post a note at one of the Universities.

Mama to DD September 2001 and DD April 2011 *Winner for most typos* eat.gif
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Old 02-16-2006, 06:09 PM
 
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Or, get a bigger U-haul and put your car in it.

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Old 02-16-2006, 07:02 PM
 
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Originally Posted by cocoloco
I’ve had people say “why don’t you take him out of the seat once you’re on the highway, that’s what I do?” I’m tempted but afraid.
Please don't do this. Really it's not safe.
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