I have to make this quick because it's one am and my child is awake, (UGH...night time parenting and all that but...UGH) BUT...I don't understand the whole arguement about keeping your kid rear facing until they're two.
The first time I strapped C into his seat, he was dreamy. I was mistaken.
He screamed and wailed and cried if he was strapped into that damn contraption for longer than five minutes and, who can blame him?!
His Daddy had some inspiration one day and removed the junk that came with the seat and, WAH-LAH, baby was better.
Colin STILL hates his seat but, he's a toddler who is active and spirited and, for pete's sake, if I were him, I WOULD HATE being strapped down in a seat for longer than two minutes.
I ply him with toys and snacks and water and, if Daddy is driving, I sit in the back seat and breastfeed, tickle, read to and entertain him.
I HATE it when he cries. I am upset and anxious and flustered when we're home and he cries. I dislike it even more when we're in the car.
I KNOW I CAN'T DO A DAMN THING ABOUT IT besides:
1.) Putting in his favorite tunes
2.) Giving him a snack
3.) Pulling over and comforting him
Since he's a toddler, I can also plan around nap time and hungry time and cranky time.
This is my kid, I pay attention to his ways but, i'm not perfect and he cries and I am selfish and he cries and I drive and drive and put on tunes and give him snacks and say, "it's okay baby, we're almost home".
But, I have NOT and will NOT put my Son forward facing until he's two.
I am NOT heartless. I am NOT made of steel. I care and it disturbs me when he cries but, I will NOT take the off chance that someone hits MY car and sends me and my child somewhere we don't ever want to be.
No one thinks it will ever happen to them.
I've been there.
You can do what you want with your child and, chances are, you may not ever be in an accident but, maybe you're a decent driver but, what about the jerks on the road that don't care about the fact that you have baby in your car or, that you're a mommy and that you need to stick around for that baby?
Unless your kid has a doctor approved medical reason to NOT be in the car, unless your kid has the potential to suffer from Post Traumatic Stress and cannot seek counseling, you should probably just deal with it.
Yes, deal with it.
For your kid's sake. NOT yours.
Of course they won't like it but, you can find ways, can't you? Be inventive. Be creative. Call upon the village. For God's sake, KEEP YOUR KIDS SAFE.
You can't count on everyone driving safely, even if YOU do.
God forbid your babies don't make it...GOD FORBID.
Ultimately it's your call. Ultimately, you know Your baby. Ultimately, YOU are throwing the dice.
Hopefully, the dice land in your child's favor.
My Baby is going to stay rear facing till he's two and I will work with him so that he is happy and content enough in his seat, rear facing. I imagine that, even forward facing, we'll have issues. He will have his moments of unhappiness and I will be even MORE flustered because I CAN see him and he CAN see ME but, we'll deal with it.
In the meantime...he's rear facing for as long as possible. We're not entirely safe from crazy jerks but, HE IS safer.