Mom Defends Children Not Wearing Coats in the Car for This Surprising Reason
One mom is calling for other parents to think before they judge her child’s winter attire — or lack thereof.
In a Reddit post by user MindyS1719, she defended parents who have been on the receiving end of negative, unsolicited feedback surrounding how they dress their kids for the season in what she called “a winter PSA to anyone who hasn’t had a baby in the last 5(ish) years.”
“If you’re out and about [and] see a parent with a baby/toddler who isn’t wearing a coat, pleeeeease don’t assume that parent is some kinda monster who doesn’t care if their kids freeze,” she continued.
The user called out “new car seat guidelines” that warn parents against allowing their children to wear coats while riding in a car seat, pointing out that “it’s chaos” for many parents to figure out alternatives in the in-between times.
“Since there’s not a great commercial product to solve this issue yet, everyone comes up with their own solutions,” she writes, giving examples of blankets, layers and more and imploring others to “cut parents some slack” before jumping to conclusions.
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MindyS1719’s comments are in line with guidelines posted in October by consumerreports.org, which state, “As a general rule, winter coats should not be worn underneath a car seat harness because that can leave the harness too loose to be effective in a crash.”
“It’s important that the harness is tight enough so that you can’t pinch the webbing between your thumb and forefinger,” the report advises. “Extra slack in the harness can let the child move to the point where he or she is beyond the protection of the car seat, perhaps even being ejected during a crash.”
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The site then gives a step-by-step tutorial to check whether a coat is too big to be worn under the car-seat harness, as well as tips for keeping kids warm in the car without their coats.
Some suggestions include regular and (car-seat-approved) fitted blankets, or even turning a bigger child’s coat around and putting it on backward after they’re securely strapped in to serve as a makeshift blanket on top of the seat’s safety harness.