By Ana Balich
We’ve made a personal decision, and I feel it’s my duty to put it out there for the sake of other parents who are considering doing the same and feel alone. Shortly after I became pregnant, I read an article about a baby who was in a car crash. She had been buckled in a properly installed car seat. That baby came out of that crash with bruises all over the places where the restraint belts pushed down on her tiny body. The car seat CAUSED the injuries to the baby!
I started doing some research, and what I found was astounding. In many cases, car seats cause bruises and sometimes even broken bones!
Did you know that the first safety car seat was not developed until the 1960s? So for about a whole century, we were riding along with kids in our laps as nature intended. It wasn’t even until the 1980s that states started enacting laws to force parents to unnaturally strap their babies down. NO kids were car-seat injured until then. What changed? I’ll tell you what changed. Big Car Seat.
The Car Seat industry is huge and depends on forcing us to buy their overly-priced, improperly researched steel injury traps to get rich. They have virtually everyone in their pockets. Politicians, doctors, mommy bloggers, Sarah Michelle Gellar. They conduct their OWN research, which we’re supposed to accept at face value.
When we were leaving the hospital after having our first baby, the nurse forced us to show her that he was properly restrained in the car seat. Is this the kind of intrusion we want parents to be subjected to? I told her I wished she cared more about my parental autonomy than making money for Big Car Seat. She told me she only cared about the baby’s safety and following state law. WHO DOES SHE THINK IS BEHIND THE LAW? Total sheep.
My husband was skeptical at first. Of course, he supports me, but the use of car seats was so ingrained in his psyche I had my work cut out for me. At first, he asked if we could use an alternative car seat schedule. He suggested we just skipped over the most restrictive ones, like infant car seats, and just tie down our baby via backless booster “That way we can provide some protection, you know, just in case, while still retaining some semblance of control over our kids’ bodies,” he naively reasoned. I showed him what happens when you put a baby in a car seat.
Have you ever witnessed this? It’s horrible. They cry and resist and as they get older they kick and scream. That’s because your child instinctively knows they should not be in there. Their bodies are literally rejecting the car seat.
My parents give us grief that we are not properly protecting our kids. They don’t understand that you can train your kid to properly react to being propelled in an accident so that the car seat actually becomes unnecessary.
Sometimes I randomly press the brakes hard to train them. Their bodies are building up resistance to being propelled every day this way. Sometimes we even go to Braking Parties. Some liked-minded moms and I go to the Walmart parking lot with our kids and White Claws in tow (for after; what kind of parent do you think I am?) and we drive our cars in crazy patterns and avoid hitting each other by swerving and braking. Sure, sometimes a kid can get injured, but it’s all building up their bodies’ resistance to propelling.
This started out as one of the hardest decisions of my life. Not because I doubted that I was making the right choice. I know in my gut we are doing what’s best for our children. I don’t need Big Car Seat’s research to tell me what’s best for my own kid. It was so hard because of all the judgment we’ve received from friends and strangers.
I lost a friend who told me that I was putting other people in danger. She said having an unrestrained kid in my car could be a distraction to me as I drive. Or that my kids could open doors or windows and jump out and cause a huge collision. She said these things have a greater chance of happening than my kids being car-seat injured and that generally speaking, the injuries would be greater than the possible injuries of car-seat restraint.
I felt so judged. It’s up to me to decide what risks I am willing to take to keep my kid safe. I mean, she gives her kids Kraft Mac and Cheese, for god’s sake. Good riddance.
I’m not saying this is right for every family. I’m just saying maybe do your research before you blindly trust the advice of your doctors, friends with kids, and the government.
Please feel free to comment, but do not bring up stats that have been published by the government (Big Car Seat owns them) or independently funded research (also bought by Big Car Seat).
NOTE: In case it isn’t obvious, and OMG stop the planet because the fact that a disclaimer is even needed makes me want to get off it, this is satire.
About The Author
Ana Balich is a stay-at-home mom of three who is thinking about starting a blog, going back to work, or focusing singularly on her kids until the last one is married. We’ll see.