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More of a “How do I avoid being VIEWED as unreasonable”…

(45 Posts)
OneOf8 Tue 05-Jul-11 11:27:02

1st thread, so please be gentle!

Having spent the last week looking for a rear-facing car seat, I now know it is a ridiculously hard task trying to find a rear facing car seat safe for 2 or more different car makes?

I need to tell DP's mum not to use the seat they have purchased as is not as safe as I would like.

Before you tell me I am being unfair or not, please see next post below. I want to AVOID being seen as unreasonable!

TrillianAstra Tue 05-Jul-11 11:29:04

What next post below?

buzzsore Tue 05-Jul-11 11:29:41

Give her a minute grin.

ellie02 Tue 05-Jul-11 11:31:51

You buy the mil a car seat suitable for her car and say there is a campaign just now (there is in my area where the police are spot checking).

OneOf8 Tue 05-Jul-11 11:31:59

Short version - My 6 month old is a long baby, and is nearly at the top of the car seats (2 as needed to fit 2 completely different cars). The seat used primarily in my car fits all other family members cars.

As he is still only a baby, and not yet sitting up unaided, he needs a rear-facing seat. I can’t find one to fit all the cars it needs to. Simple situation is to buy 3 separate car seats as he will be with my mum for a few days per week when I return to work, so will be easier to buy one to leave with her. I’m ok with this, as cost was something we expected following the issues we had buying a “newborn” car seat.

A week or so ago I mentioned to my partner that we should look at getting one that can at least fit his mums car as well as one of the others, so not to unintentionally exclude his side of the family.
I asked him to get the exact make etc of his mums car so we can check it in principle (online) and once we find a suitable seat we can arrange to have it tried in DP mums car for fit/safety etc before we buy.

DP’s mum brought a forward facing car seat pretty much the same day – it is sold as 0+ so technically is fit for purpose, but having spent the last week being told how dangerous it is for a baby to be in one of these before they are 12-18 months (and in other countries its much longer – 4+ years!) I don’t want him in it.

She is trying to be involved, and I am grateful she is taking an interested this is not the problem. The problem is I don’t want him in it having now done the research into seats for the next size up.

How do I tell her she is not to use it? It is not as simple as just telling her, as there is a history.

She also took him out in it (her seat) when I left the current car seat with her as he “might enjoy seeing where he is going”. I didn’t say anything at the time, as didn’t seem appropriate. She had told me she had her child seat fitted professionally and didn’t want to cause an issue (and I wasn't aware it was dangerous).

My baby’s safety is paramount and the choice between his safety and keeping the peace – well, there is no choice BUT I don’t want to cause any conflict if there is an easier way around this.

If you were in DP mums position – how would you want to be told?

OneOf8 Tue 05-Jul-11 11:33:59

Sorry -is a long one, as I know some posters pick you up on adding points you fail to mention in the first posts and call you a troll!

Malcontentinthemiddle Tue 05-Jul-11 11:34:55

How often do you think the baby will need to go in mil's car? Is there any way you can just use yours for trips together until he's big enough to use the one she's bought? It's a nice thought not to exclude her, but is there not some way you can fudge through this until he's sitting up/holding head up?

buzzsore Tue 05-Jul-11 11:36:42

It's unfortunate that you didn't say anything when she first took him in it.

I think try to sit down with her and explain your worries gently - surely she should be able to take it back for an exchange and you pay any difference?

worldgonecrazy Tue 05-Jul-11 11:41:10

I would say that you hadn't realised about the difference between rear and forward facing until you'd watched this video but now you're feeling quite evangelical about the whole thing . . . .

Show her the video, let her draw her own conclusions. I tried to find the Youtube video made by a grandparent whose grandson was left paralysed after a road accident that would have resulted in minimal injuries had he been rear facing. That one is a real tear jerker.

trixie123 Tue 05-Jul-11 11:44:39

unlikely you'll be able to exchange it once its been used - TBH if he is not going to be in it very often and its only a few months until he will be big enough for it, can you not just minimise his time in it, insist on yours for any long journeys and try to ride it out. Of course his safety IS paramount but you do slightly have to weigh up the odds of an accident on those few occasions over against the problems caused. British safety standards are pretty stringent. If he is within the right weight / height range for this seat then it IS safe.

griphook Tue 05-Jul-11 11:48:21

I don't really think that you should worry about looking unreasonable to be honest, whilst I think she is only trying to be nice You baby is only 6 months old and needs to be in a rear facing seat. Tell her why, tell her in a nice way that this is going to happen. Just out of interest if the seat she brought is for 0+ it must be a rear facing one, are you sure you can't turn it round to fit in.

OneOf8 Tue 05-Jul-11 11:51:02

Malcontent He sits up in a bumb, so head holding is fine and is getting there with his unsupported sitting but there is a lot of information supporting rear-facing seats.

Buzz I didn't know enough the first time she used it to ask her not to - I hadn't expected her to be using it, and had left the "normal" one. He is my first and I confess I worry about everything.

She brought it over a week ago, and it has been sitting in the car since, so I doubt she would get a refund.

DP suggested avoiding the issue by making excuses not to let her take DS in her car - but 6 months is a long time to not let her look after him for an afternoon!

My mum will have him 3 days per week, reducing to 2 by end of August. For this reason, we agreed to arrange DP's mum to do collections from the minder/my mum a couple of times per week (I'll be returning to long hours), and one saturday per month she has DS for an afternoon - Saturdays are random but only there to allow DP's family time with DS alone (like my family have when I'll be at work).

I know she will be frustrated that they spent out on the chair that I now don't want them to use for 6 - 12 months.

Malcontentinthemiddle Tue 05-Jul-11 12:01:48

I honestly think that 6 months can probably be fudged - they'll pass sooner than you think!

gapants Tue 05-Jul-11 12:04:41

I think you are over thinking this and worrying too much. However if you are very against the use of the seat then you will just have to tell her, ebay it to recoup some of the costs and use your one. We have only one seat and we switch bewteen cars all the time, massively inconvenient but necessary.

wakeupandsmellthecoffee Tue 05-Jul-11 12:07:02

She was not asked to buy the car seat so she cant get huffy about it .
You are replacing the carseat so it dosnt cost them any more money . Surely when they are told about child safety they will not want to risk the child .
I dont get this spending time with baby alone like your mum . I thought the baby was going to your mum so you could work late .
You dont really want to give up a Saturday to them if you work long hours all week and not see much of your baby . . This is a human child we are talking about not a posession

Oakmaiden Tue 05-Jul-11 12:11:43

Are you sure it is not one of those seats which can be fitted either front or rear facing? I used to have one of those... Ask to see the instruction leaflet thast came with it - if it is advertised as 0+ then it surely must be able to be rear facing?

MrsCarriePooter Tue 05-Jul-11 12:12:47

I don't understand how, practically, she can have bought a 0+ car seat which is only forward facing. Is it the Britax 0+/1 First Class for example? That's supposed to be rearfacing as 0+ but forward facing for Group 1 - has she actually misunderstood and fitted it forward facing but it would go backwards and then no one needs to spend money on anything else, and your baby is rearfacing?

MrsCarriePooter Tue 05-Jul-11 12:13:04

cross post with above

seeker Tue 05-Jul-11 12:18:44

"OH, Lord, MIL, look what I've just found on Utube! Isn't it awful? I had no idea that forward facing car seats were so dangerous! We'd better put that one you've got away until he's older. Here, use this one for now"

Job done.

Insomnia11 Tue 05-Jul-11 12:26:10

Mine outgrew their infant rear facing seat supposed to last until 9 months at 7/8 months and went into forward facing ones that were supposed to last until they were 4 and lasted until DD1 was 3 and DD2 was 2.

What you should do is-

- Obey the law
- Keep them in the safest seat possible for as long as possible...obviously if they outgrow a seat then it is no longer safe
- Make sure your car is as safe as you can possibly afford- a bit hard to stipulate what cars others have
- Drive carefully
- Accept that being a passenger in a car carries certain risks and you can never totally eliminate them.

Insomnia11 Tue 05-Jul-11 12:28:40

Child seat advice:

Insomnia11 Tue 05-Jul-11 12:31:36

Hmm- that makes sense having read that again - DD2 is 2 but also 33lbs!

OneOf8 Tue 05-Jul-11 12:51:11

I will ask to check the instructions - it is fitted forward facing as is currently in her car, but she said it was suitable for his age group. If it can be switched round, then problem solved.

If not, we'll have to have new seats soon (planning to make a final decision and purchase this week), so I'll just insist we use them in all cars. Thank you for the advice and links - will show her the YouTube link next time I see her, and apologise if it causes her any offence, but insist she uses whichever seat we provide for a bit longer.

Looking at it reasonably, its a max of 5 Saturdays (and some of those I'll be with them) and a few collections (which can be removed if there was any issue)

My personal opinion is we need to make the extra effort to ensure time is spent with DP's family and not just my own once I return to work. Saturday is the best time for this due to DP's dad's work. Wakeup No, I don't really want to give my DS to DP's family (or anyone else) for a few hours as I want to spend my time with him - but I do want him to know all his family, so am willing to put my feelings aside for a few hours once a month. I don't think this is treating him like a possession, but I do understand where you are coming from. It not about me, it me trying to do my best for him. This was the 1st month (almost as a practise run before I go back to work).

DP asked for this - it’s a small sacrifice (3/4 hours per month). I will not feel guilty or resentful as I know we are lucky to have supportive family on both sides.

hugeleyoutnumbered Tue 05-Jul-11 13:04:26

your dc your rules don't let her bully you, you have to stand up to her, dc is with your parents because you are working not as a treat! MIL needs to grow up in my opinion

ShoutyHamster Tue 05-Jul-11 13:18:59

History or not, you have to insist. With a smile. It's the baptism of fire - this will be the first of many many of these situations, so you may as well get used to it now. Perhaps especially as there's 'history'!

There's no easy way around it, but it will get easier and even possibly quite enjoyable. Because you can be far, far more assertive and pushy when in 'mother' mode and get away with it, whereas if it were a simple disagreement between you and MIL you would not look so good.

'No, I'm sorry, but NO. His safety comes first, second and third. Think about it for just a minute and as his grandmother you should be DELIGHTED that I'm willing to upset you rather than compromise, MIL. I know I can speak honestly to you about this because I know in my heart that just like me, you would want him to be as safe as he could possibly be. Watch this video. We'll supply another seat, and I am sorry that you've shelled out - I wish you'd spoken to us first. Just be happy that you know that THIS daughter in law is NEVER going to take chances with your grandson.' (Big smile).

How can she argue with that? grin

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