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  1. #1
    CPST Instructor Carrie_R's Avatar
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    Ugh, that was NOT the way to handle that...

    One of my families was on vacation last week, and mom took today off as a recovery day. I met them for breakfast this morning, to get a bite to eat and then hand off the kids.

    She had parked next to me, and when we went out to the cars I noticed that they'd turned their youngest guy's seat. He's not quite 19mos, and last Thursday (before they left on vaca) the seat had still been RFing. I did one of these , more out of shock than anything else, almost a "something is different," and glanced at mom. "I know, I know, we turned it around..." Ok, I can handle not going off about that, but when I poked my head into her van I found (at a minimum) the seat in major recline mode, with the LATCH strap run through the RF belt path and the installation loose (not super loose, but more than 1" of movement.)

    "Well, it's not even so much that you turned him, but you have the belt in the wrong place... and it's too reclined, and the straps are probably below his shoulders..."

    My reaction wasn't intended to chastize her, it was more diarrhea of the mouth as I catalouged the misuses. I realized it as soon as I did it, regained my calm (it really was shock, not anger,) but of course at that point mom felt terrible because she realized she'd put her kid in danger. "I'm sorry, I really thought we had it in right!" The look on her face was not good. (She did say they'd turned it for more leg room while driving, and were going to turn it back.) I tried to soothe her with "listen, 9/10 seats are installed incorrectly, that's why we have techs," and I know she's not mad at me, but I'm still upset that I made her feel awful.

    We talked for a couple more minutes, and in short I said to her that listen, if you want to turn him around, it's your choice; I don't agree with it, but I need it to be an informed decision. Up until this point, I don't think she's listened to WHY he needs to be RF, although I've told her, but that was pre techdom and her response has always been, "I don't want to look at the videos, I just want you to tell me what to do and when to do it." No more; I know that this decision came from lack of understanding. I also told mom to let me know in the future -- I have seats that would install differently and give them more room.

    I have the baby now and told her that when she comes for lunch today (we're doing a pizza party) we're going to go out and I'm going to make sure she understands WHY I recommend RF, the risks of FF at his age, and how to install the seat FF. (They can install RF just fine.) I do think they'll turn it back around, but I want to make sure that if they opt to turn it at any time, they know how to.

    Just... ugh. Vaca was a twelve-hour drive each way, he rode like that and I don't think the seat was tethered, either. Obviously he's just fine -- so no harm done in the long-run -- but I'm sick that he rode like that and even sicker about how I handled the situation. Clearly I did not educate these parents well, and my reaction was even worse. Ugh.

    Sorry for the long ramble, I just needed to vent, and no one IRL wants to hear any more about carseats.
    Down to just a spare Radian, folded in the hall closet for my Godbaby.

    Check out this thread for a Pilot overview!

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  3. #2
    CPS Advocate
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    Re: Ugh, that was NOT the way to handle that...

    If you are close to the mom and there is trust and mutual respect there, I think your honest shock and 'diarrhea of the mouth' may have been more effective than a restrained and formal response

  4. #3
    CPST Instructor Carrie_R's Avatar
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    Re: Ugh, that was NOT the way to handle that...

    Thanks. I've had her kids for most of the last eight years, so I know she does trust me -- that's why her response has been "you tell me what's right." She told her son, "I'm in trouble with Carrie," lol.

    I still feel poorly for shaming her... but thanks for understanding.
    Down to just a spare Radian, folded in the hall closet for my Godbaby.

    Check out this thread for a Pilot overview!

  5. #4
    CPS Technician emtb79's Avatar
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    Re: Ugh, that was NOT the way to handle that...

    I totally understand I tend to have diarrhea of the mouth when it comes to carseat stuff with my parents.
    Susan, Momma to my squishy and Daycare Provider,CPST
    M 12/06,J 3/05,K 6/08,A 7/11,B 9/05


  6. #5
    Senior Community Member Jennifer mom to my 7's Avatar
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    Re: Ugh, that was NOT the way to handle that...

    You know, that new rear facing video actually even made my dh understand MORE about why rear facing is safer. He got the concept, but didn't grasp all of the force aspects until he saw that one. I like it because it is not a tear jerker one, but just the facts in a quick little video that isn't too long, and you don't have to read anything.
    Whatever Wendy said

    "No one else will ever know the strength of my love for you, after all, you're the only one who knows what my heart sounds like from the inside." -Unknown

  7. #6
    CPS Technician glockchick's Avatar
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    Re: Ugh, that was NOT the way to handle that...

    Which video are you referring to?
    Shanna - Paramedic & Mom
    Trenton (19), Michael (17), Gabriel (15), Miss Abigail (12), Kaleigh (10), and Caleb (8) - Evenflo booster

    They just don't make em like they used to.

  8. #7
    Senior Community Member Jennifer mom to my 7's Avatar
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    Re: Ugh, that was NOT the way to handle that...

    The one from the tryggTrafikkNorge.

    This one.

    [ame="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sssIsceKd6U"]YouTube- Rear facing vs forward facing position in the car[/ame]
    Last edited by Jennifer mom to my 7; 08-23-2010 at 12:02 PM. Reason: spelling
    Whatever Wendy said

    "No one else will ever know the strength of my love for you, after all, you're the only one who knows what my heart sounds like from the inside." -Unknown

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  10. #8
    CPS Technician autumnlily's Avatar
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    Re: Ugh, that was NOT the way to handle that...

    I hate when I let things slip out in a manner that I'm less than pleased with. Especially anything related to parenting. At least you two are close and can talk about it.

    I find at Car Seat Clinics... when I get a sad face from a parent as I point out the changes we need to make - that if I follow up with, "as a parent, we only do what we know at the time... it's parents like you that come to learn more that are doing a great job to do it safer". It's the best cushion I've used so far... but I'd love to hear more ideas.
    Misty, CPST and SK Senior Checker

  11. #9
    CPS Fanatic
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    Re: Ugh, that was NOT the way to handle that...

    Its ok! You did the best you could. And remind mom she did too. After all, she did not know that she was installing incorrectly.

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