S/O 5 year old NOT harnessed? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 124 Old 04-27-2010, 09:47 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Seems like I"m the only one. Without starting the mommy wars, is there anyone else out there not harnessing their 5 y/o? My dd is small, 36 pounds and 46 inches. She's in a turbo booster.

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#2 of 124 Old 04-27-2010, 09:53 PM
 
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My 5.5 year old isn't in a harness either. She's 47inches, 46lbs and in a Nautilus without the harness.

She still fits in the harness, but can't undo or do it up and I just couldn't handle having to buckle three kids in their carseats when our new son was born. She sits perfectly 100% though so it works out well.

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#3 of 124 Old 04-27-2010, 09:54 PM
 
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i don't have a 5 year old. Not to scare you... but a person locally had her 45 lb 5 yr old in a booster and got in an accident - car rolled over, 5 year old was ejected from the car and they found him in a snowbank - he survived, but was in the PICU for a while...

that story scares the out of me and though I'd been planning to keep my kids in a 5 pt harness anyway, there's no chance of not doing that, now. I'm also considering turning my kids back to rear facing...

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#4 of 124 Old 04-27-2010, 10:00 PM
 
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Chances are good that if a 45# child was ejected from a booster, there was misuse involved. 45# is a fine weight to use a booster. But not all 5yos can use boosters properly. I would speculate that ejection was due to a user failure and not a method failure.

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#5 of 124 Old 04-27-2010, 11:03 PM
 
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I replied on the other thread, but it won't be long until my 5 yo is too tall for his Apex. He sits fine in a booster, so it is not worth it to me to get a new seat with a higher top harness slot. He recently turned 5, so I'm sure he'll still be 5 when we switch full-time.

My now 7 yo I believe switched to a booster before his 6th birthday. I have tall kiddos, and I agree that it's a PITA when you have numerous kids to buckle up.

Harness vs boosters is not such a big deal to me compared to rear-facing vs forward-facing (assuming the child fits and sits correctly).

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#6 of 124 Old 04-28-2010, 12:01 AM
 
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NO ONE I know who has a 5 year old is still using a harness. NO ONE. I think it is very, very common for 5 year olds to be in boosters.

I'm not there yet so unsure what decision we will make.

Surviving sleep deprivation one day at a time with dd (Oct '11) & ds (Oct '08).

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#7 of 124 Old 04-28-2010, 01:27 AM
 
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For some reason, I have the 40# weight in my head for switching to a booster.
I'm sure there are some carseat safety techs that can give you more research-based info.
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#8 of 124 Old 04-28-2010, 01:48 AM
 
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My 5yo is about 41-42lbs. He's been in a turbobooster since he was a little over 4 and proved to me he could sit properly. He was VERY motivated to not be in a harness. But, I do think he was a rare 4yo who would sit properly. My 2nd is really squirmy, and I think he'll be harnessed longer, but tiem will tell.

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#9 of 124 Old 04-28-2010, 08:42 AM - Thread Starter
 
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the turbobooster says 30#.

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#10 of 124 Old 04-28-2010, 08:47 AM
 
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My dd was in a booster at 5yo in two of our three vehicles. She outgrew the 5-pt. harness limits on the convertible seats in two cars at around 5yo and we are still using them as boosters (she's 8). We had one Marathon and she stayed in that until it expired (that was at around 6 yo). She's never had a problem staying put in a booster and I always check to make sure she's snugly and securely buckled.

It's not safe to keep a child harnessed beyond the limits of the seat. If they've outgrown the harness, then the booster is safer.

If the seat is certified for a height and weight as a booster, then properly used, it is safe. If kids get ejected from cars, they weren't properly restrained. End of story.
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#11 of 124 Old 04-28-2010, 11:17 AM
 
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Originally Posted by lifeguard View Post
NO ONE I know who has a 5 year old is still using a harness. NO ONE. I think it is very, very common for 5 year olds to be in boosters.

I'm not there yet so unsure what decision we will make.


Most people I know aren't even using boosters at all. Some let their 5yos ride in the front seat. I try not to think about it or else it keeps me up at night.

I live in a province where child seats are required until 40lbs OR age 6 with no booster laws. Its awful. I've written to government officials about it, and only got PFO letters in return.

ETA: We aren't there yet either, but I am not sure what we will do at that time, assuming DD is developmentally ready for a booster at that time. There is definitely intelligent debate about which is safer. I think a lot (but certainly not all) 5yos can use a booster properly.

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#12 of 124 Old 04-28-2010, 11:59 AM
 
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DS1 was in a HBB at 5. We bought a Sienna and he was over the 48lb LATCH weight limit on his Radian. Radians are notorious for being a PITA to do a seatbelt install in Toyotas so we switched him to a booster, Compass B505, I think. Not sure on the exact model. Now, at 7, he is probably the only kid in his class who still rides in a HBB. Most kids in his class ride in the backless boosters or no boosters at all. I do let him ride in the backless booster for short trips around town.

DD will be 5 in the beginning of June. Laws here state 4 years and 40lbs before a child can use a booster. She's currently 37lbs and she's been told once she turns 5 and as long as she's 40lbs or more, she can switch to a booster. She'll be in a Monterey. I highly doubt she'll be 40lbs by her birthday but once she hits 40lbs and stays there, we'll be switching her. She knows the importance of sitting properly in a booster and her older brother sets a good example for her.

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#13 of 124 Old 04-28-2010, 12:23 PM
 
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I think this is the kind of thing that varries by region and state, somewhat dependent on state laws. Here is a link to carseat laws by state:
http://www.elitecarseats.com/custser...=car_seat_laws

I let my oldest switch to a high back booster at age 5 and 40 lbs, she's now the only 7 year old I know that is still using a booster, but she's only about 50 lbs, so not nearly heavy enough to quit using it. I know a lot of people who moved their kids up to boosters earlier than I would have-like age 3.

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#14 of 124 Old 04-28-2010, 01:39 PM
 
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We started booster training my daughter when she was almost 5.5 she was getting close to outgrowing her marathon and so we started her out in my moms car which she rode in several times per week. At around 5.5 we switched her to a booster in my car. I was worried about it but she is very rule focused and takes tremendous care to make sure she is buckled in and riding safely. So far she is happy being in a booster as every single one of her friends is a booster user, it helps her feel more grown up and since she is mature enough to use one properly I feel good about the move too. For what its worth she is 42lbs and 44 inches.

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#15 of 124 Old 04-28-2010, 02:02 PM
 
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Do any of you have trouble with your booster users falling asleep in the car and ending up not properly secured?
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#16 of 124 Old 04-28-2010, 02:04 PM
 
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I think if kids are still falling asleep frequently on car trips, it's too soon to switch to a booster. Not counting longer stretches in the car for traveling - but if they are of napping age, it seems to young to me.

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#17 of 124 Old 04-28-2010, 02:39 PM
 
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My DD1 is 5 1/2 and has a Turbobooster. She's probably about 42 pounds, though, and tall. She does technically fit in the harness of our Radians, so I suppose she could ride harnessed, but I am fairly confident she's safe in the booster.

The Turbobooster we have has a little pad in the headrest, and when DD falls asleep in the far, her head rests on that, so that she stays in the right position in the seatbelt. If she was falling asleep often, or spilling out of the harness when she did sleep, I think I'd rethink the booster and go back to a harness, but honestly she only rarely sleeps in the car anyway.

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#18 of 124 Old 04-28-2010, 02:46 PM
 
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My 4 year old who is 50lbs and like 46 inches is in a high back turbo booster. Her sister who is 6 is in a backless booster.

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#19 of 124 Old 04-28-2010, 03:15 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Llyra View Post
The Turbobooster we have has a little pad in the headrest, and when DD falls asleep in the far, her head rests on that, so that she stays in the right position in the seatbelt. If she was falling asleep often, or spilling out of the harness when she did sleep, I think I'd rethink the booster and go back to a harness, but honestly she only rarely sleeps in the car anyway.
My 5yo does the same thing when he wants to sleep in the car (which is pretty rare these days). There has only been one instance where he came out of position in the belt while asleep (slumped forward - he was dead tired xmas night) and we stopped and fixed him. If this happened frequently I woudl harness him, but it's not been an issue. He knows to tip his head back when he wants to sleep and then he's fine.

Happily married to my dh, mama to ds1 (01/2005), ds2 (07/2007)  and dd (07/2009).
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#20 of 124 Old 04-28-2010, 03:29 PM
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Of the 11 4-5 yr. olds in my youngest son's preschool class, almost all of them are in boosters-- some backless. He and one other boy are in Radians.
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#21 of 124 Old 04-28-2010, 03:58 PM
 
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I'm trying to understand the other side, but why would you put a 5 year old in a booster sans harness, particularly if the child still fits in one you already have?

Not being snarky at all, I'm just trying to understand the other POV on why someone would deliberately choose to when they know they have other options.
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#22 of 124 Old 04-28-2010, 04:18 PM
 
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My oldest will be 5 in July and we'll start booster training her this summer. She'll be going to kindy this fall, and we'll be depending on my mom & my friend for drop off and pickup, and I can't afford to put harnessed seats in their cars for the infrequent use. She won't go to full-time booster use in my car for another year or so.

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#23 of 124 Old 04-28-2010, 04:31 PM
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My DD will probably become too tall to stay harnessed in her Nautilus while she's 5. She's 4.5 right now and has less than 2 inches of torso height left. We'll use the Nautilus as a high backed booster.
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#24 of 124 Old 04-28-2010, 04:31 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Lisa85 View Post
I'm trying to understand the other side, but why would you put a 5 year old in a booster sans harness, particularly if the child still fits in one you already have?

Not being snarky at all, I'm just trying to understand the other POV on why someone would deliberately choose to when they know they have other options.
There is a school of thought that an appropriately sized child (at least 4 and 40) is safer in a booster and seatbelt than a harness, due to increased neck loads w/a 5 pt.

I will booster my DD at 5 unless she shows unusual immaturity.

Mother to R- 2/09, & C- 5/11

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#25 of 124 Old 04-28-2010, 04:49 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Lisa85 View Post
I'm trying to understand the other side, but why would you put a 5 year old in a booster sans harness, particularly if the child still fits in one you already have?

Not being snarky at all, I'm just trying to understand the other POV on why someone would deliberately choose to when they know they have other options.

I probably wouldn't do it at 5, but my 8yo still fits in the harness of our Nautilus and she rides in a booster. I am quite aware of my options. There is absolutely no evidence to support the idea that harnessing is safer than boostering for a child who can use a booster correctly. Both options are very safe, and I pick the one that we prefer.

Carseat-checking (CPST) and WAH mama to a twelve-year-old girl.
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#26 of 124 Old 04-28-2010, 04:50 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by Lisa85 View Post
I'm trying to understand the other side, but why would you put a 5 year old in a booster sans harness, particularly if the child still fits in one you already have?

Not being snarky at all, I'm just trying to understand the other POV on why someone would deliberately choose to when they know they have other options.
We switched Bella when Grace was born so that she could buckle unbuckle herself. It was very difficult on me physically to have to buckle/unbuckle 3 kids. She is on the smaller side, and it wasn't a decision made lightly. She sits properly and we also did a transition/training.

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#27 of 124 Old 04-28-2010, 05:05 PM
 
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Im trying to rear-face straight to booster. My DD is so tiny, with such a small frame. She is 4 years and a month, 31lbs and 38 inches. Ide like her to RF as close to 40lbs as possible and do as little FF harnessing as possible.

We will see where she is next year when she turns 5, but I think she will spend most of this next year RF.
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#28 of 124 Old 04-28-2010, 05:06 PM
 
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My 5 year old rides in a harness in my car (where 90% of her rides occur), but a booster seat in DH's, sitters' or friends cars.

Lisa 85 - My DD prefers to ride in the booster seat because she can lean forward and reach things in the pocket of the seat in front of her (where we keep books and art supplies), and can reach things that she drops. She can't do so while harnessed. Also the booster would be more convenient since she sits in the rear seat of our minivan; she does so because the car pool drop-off/pick up order makes such an arrangement easier on our family. But she can't click herself in - I have to climb back to the third row to click her in, which is a pain - especially if you are in the car line at school with a hundred cars behind you waiting on you to unload.

It is also easier to pass along a booster seat for sitters or car pooling, than to have to have a harnessed seat belted into another driver's car.

I let DD ride in the booster for a few days in my car after I took her carseat out to clean it and was slow to put in back in. It was nice to have her be able to get herself in and out without my help. She did fuss when I put her harnessed seat back in, but now seems okay with it again. She has noticed (and pouted) that her school friends ride mostly in booster seats, but happily we have several non-school friends whose five year olds are still in harnessed seats.

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#29 of 124 Old 04-28-2010, 05:32 PM
 
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Originally Posted by jeminijad View Post
There is a school of thought that an appropriately sized child (at least 4 and 40) is safer in a booster and seatbelt than a harness, due to increased neck loads w/a 5 pt.

I will booster my DD at 5 unless she shows unusual immaturity.
This was my reasoning, as well. In Sweden, the paragon of childhood car safety , they don't harness forward-facing kids. Children go straight from rear-facing to a booster, at around 4 or 5.

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#30 of 124 Old 04-28-2010, 06:49 PM
 
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My DD prefers to ride in the booster seat because she can lean forward and reach things in the pocket of the seat in front of her (where we keep books and art supplies), and can reach things that she drops. S
This would be a good case for extended harnessing. If a child is still leaning out of position, reaching to pick up dropped items, etc, they are too young/immature for a booster.

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