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To refuse to give my cousin a lift home when she has a broken leg?

(170 Posts)
NatJon Tue 05-Aug-14 22:33:43

I was in my aunts house today visiting and her daughter, my cousin (27), came down with her 2 yo ds. My cousin has broken her leg so obviously can't drive. Her dp dropped her and their ds down and it was arranged he would pick them up again after he finished a job (self employed electrician).

After 2 hours I was about to leave when my cousin asked me if I would give her and her ds a lift home as her ds was getting bored and tired and she thought her dp would have been back by now. I said no problem as long as there was a spare car seat. My aunt has lots of grandchildren and usually there is is a spare one lying around.

The spare one was being used by another family member but cousin still insisted on a lift home. She lives 5 mins away by car but I was very uncomfortable travelling with her ds without a car seat. I told her this but she just kept saying over and over that it would be ok and she would belt him up, keep a hold of him etc. that he was getting cranky and I was being mean not helping her when she had a broken leg, it's only 5 minutes. I put my foot down and said no, it wasn't happening. Cousin got very angry and started swearing at me saying I was being a fucking prick. My aunt told her to stop talking to me like that but she continued.

She is never like this so it was quite upsetting for me to hear. After about 10 mins, thankfully her dp comes to collect them and the ds can travel safely.

I feel a bit bad I couldn't take them home when her ds was unsettled but thought it more
Important that he be protected in the event of a crash. Cousin obviously thought I was being unreasonable.

MidniteScribbler Tue 05-Aug-14 23:13:28

I would have refused, and her performance would guarantee never getting a lift anywhere from me ever again.

NatJon Tue 05-Aug-14 23:16:36

Thanks for the replies everyone, a lot of mixed views. I know it was 5 mins and the chances of having an accident were slim but I am not the most confident driver under normal circumstances, and felt very nervous about taking him.

Still feel awful though I didn't help her sad

HappySeaTurtles Tue 05-Aug-14 23:17:51


Statistically speaking most car accidents happen less than 1 mile away from your house.

As driver you're responsible for all your passengers, I'd want all mine to be secured as possible. I don't allow cars I'm in to drive off until everyone's buckled, even if I'm not the one driving. I open the door and plant my feet on the ground until they do. smile

queenofthemountain Tue 05-Aug-14 23:26:12

'Queenofthemountain What a load of ignorant claptrap!'

why? What do you think the odds were of the child being injured on that journey were?

queenofthemountain Tue 05-Aug-14 23:33:18

Just calculated the risk, assuming the distance was 2 miles.It is 1 in 62.5 million

lia66 Tue 05-Aug-14 23:34:20

Myself and my then almost 2 yr old daughter were hit head on by a car that lost control coming out of a bend last year on a half mile journey home from school. I was badly hurt despite seat belt and air bags, daughters window was completely gone and she had to be dragged out of what was left of it.

Luckily because she was in a correctly fitted car seat she escaped with a cut cheek and seatbelt bruising.

Very naive to say nothing would happen. Op did the right thing.

Namechangearoonie123 Tue 05-Aug-14 23:38:23

I would have taken them because it's his mothers call, not mine.

It's no different than taking a taxi anyway .

Namechangearoonie123 Tue 05-Aug-14 23:38:58

Scratch that. Actually I think as the driver you're legally liable for the passengers

SolidGoldBrass Tue 05-Aug-14 23:47:01

It would have counted as an unexpected short journey and not, therefore, have been illegal. And the likelihood of an accident happening on such a short journey is pretty low.
I think you were being precious and self-righteous and, given that your cousin had a broken leg and a fractious toddler to deal with, I'm not surprised she was angry with you. Maybe she was excessively rude, but when you're in pain and tired and someone is standing there smugly and prissily refusing to help you, it's understandable that you are going to get pissed off.

OnlyTheWelshCanCwtch Tue 05-Aug-14 23:49:55

You did the right thing

ChelsyHandy Tue 05-Aug-14 23:51:14

The milk of human kindness clearly flows in a very diluted, fully skimmed version with you OP. However I'm sure you are self-congratulating yourself but I think possibly a tad U not to appreciate your cousin may have been swearing because of frustration at things mounting up while she has a broken leg, and because self-righteous people who drone on about things that might go wrong without actually doing anything useful generally aren't particularly popular (other than on mumsnet).

NatJon Tue 05-Aug-14 23:55:59

How the fuck is it self righteous, precious and smug to want a toddler to be fully protected against any possible accidents in a car? You know it is possible to say yabu without being so nasty.

"Congratulating myself", seriously? hmm

grocklebox Tue 05-Aug-14 23:58:37

I would have done it. How is it any different from a taxi, which I'm sure you would have had no problem with at all?

MysteriousCircusZebra Wed 06-Aug-14 00:01:24

I would have taken her.

NatJon Wed 06-Aug-14 00:01:30

If the taxi driver had no problem doing it, then that's up to them.

trufflesnout Wed 06-Aug-14 00:01:57

I'm not sure I would have done it. Tbh I probably would have caved against my better judgement because I am a pushover.

Isn't it statistically more likely you'll have an accident on a short journey vs a long one? I can't remember where I read that but I've definitely read it before.

I don't know if she thought swearing at you was going to convince you, but I would have told her to fuck off right back.

grocklebox Wed 06-Aug-14 00:03:12

but if a taxi had arrived and she got in it, would you have had a problem with the child not being in a seat? My bet is you would have given zero fucks.
So really you were being rather selfish.

NatJon Wed 06-Aug-14 00:06:33

No I wouldn't have been particularly happy with it but I could hardly stop it from happening.

ICanSeeTheSun Wed 06-Aug-14 00:13:13


I can not drive, I can not take my children out without relying on lift, heck ATM I can't even have bath when I want to.

Lucky for me in that I have a supportive family that I can count on to give me a shred of interpendancy

MidniteScribbler Wed 06-Aug-14 00:16:01

Geez talk about an overreaction from some posters. Anyone would think the OP stole the cousin's crutches and ran off giggling. So she had to wait ten more minutes before her husband showed up and the child could go home in a car seat. Big deal.

CheerfulYank Wed 06-Aug-14 00:17:42

I'd have done it but if you're not comfortable with it, that's your own business.


Morloth Wed 06-Aug-14 00:19:36

Wouldn't the obvious solution be to leave your DS with your family for the 10 minutes you would be running them home?

CheerfulYank Wed 06-Aug-14 00:21:58

It's the cousin's DS Morloth

Nanny0gg Wed 06-Aug-14 00:25:12

A family were driving from our village to the next one, so were 5 minutes from home.

Hit by a lorry.

The toddler (in her proper car seat) had to be cut out and airlifted to hospital. She isn't back completely to herself 18 months on.

No, the OP may have been fine. But if anything had gone wrong she would never have forgiven herself.

Not worth the risk. And that doesn't make her self-righteous or any of the other spiteful terms that have been applied to her.

Nanny0gg Wed 06-Aug-14 00:26:36

And if you book a private hire car here (as opposed to black cabs) they will bring a child seat.

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