58 answers

Husband Won't Use Car Seat

For NOT the first time (and after the fact) and found out my husband isn't putting our 2 year old daughter in her car seat in his car. The car seat is in the back seat, but he puts her in the front seat with the adult seat belt (turns the air bag off).

I'm sick about this...he's just being lazy and selfish and I don't know what to do about it. I called the sheriff's dept and they said that if I know he's out with her, I can call them but it sounds like all they'll do is write a ticket. Also, I don't always know when he's out driving with her.

Has anyone else had to deal with this? Any advice?

What can I do next?

Featured Answers

Maybe if you let him know he will be charged with manslaughter should he get in an accident and she dies. My husband is a police officer and this is a big pet peave of his.

4 moms found this helpful

If he cant put her in the carseat, I would pack my bags and my daughters and that would be the end of that.

4 moms found this helpful

That is SO wrong on SO many levels. I don't even know what to say. WHY is he doing that? How would he feel is she is pushed through the windshield in a crash?

4 moms found this helpful

More Answers

I'm an insurance agent and have heard stories that you really wouldn't want to hear. I would pack up and leave him. Seriously, this is a deal breaker. You do not mess around with putting my child in danger. Simple as that. Good luck.

8 moms found this helpful

if my spouse was that reckless with my child's life, i'd be filing divorce papers and contacting CPS to limit his access to her to only supervised visitation. that may seem harsh, but her blood is on your hands as well if something happens to her - you know about it and have to do something!

5 moms found this helpful

I'm not going to judge you. My husband is a wonderful man, but some of the things he has done out of laziness or selfishness, confound me. But, this is your child and all anyone will do if something happens to her is judge YOU and question your love for your child. I love my husband, but my daughter is my life. I'm sure that you are aware that this may not be the only way he is endangering your daughter.

Here is what I would do in this order:

-take the keys away from him when I left the house without my child and limit the amount of time he is alone with the child. Because, let's face it, if he is brave enough to do this, there may be other things he is being lazy about. He does not deserve to go out of the house when he spends time with her unless he can put her in her carseat.
-show him a few videos of real accidents involving children not strapped in. I'm not brave enough to search for them, but if you can't find them on YouTube, someone at the police force can give you some.
-share this information with someone he respects and listens to. Maybe they can correct behavior that you can't.

I would never even resort to calling the cops, because he would never be allowed to drive my daughter anywhere without me being there to monitor that she is in a carseat.

If you are scared of his reaction to any of the above, maybe you need to reconsider his role in your family. That's a hard step, but your daughter comes first.

4 moms found this helpful

That is SO wrong on SO many levels. I don't even know what to say. WHY is he doing that? How would he feel is she is pushed through the windshield in a crash?

4 moms found this helpful

If he cant put her in the carseat, I would pack my bags and my daughters and that would be the end of that.

4 moms found this helpful

Maybe if you let him know he will be charged with manslaughter should he get in an accident and she dies. My husband is a police officer and this is a big pet peave of his.

4 moms found this helpful

I would look up some videos on Youtube about what could happen, and have him watch them. Then tell him to imagine that it's HIS beloved 2 year old flying through the window... or being severely injured by the strap of the seatbelt. Maybe that will change his tune.

2 moms found this helpful

Please forgive if this was suggested earlier; I haven't had a chance to read every post. Call you local police right now, and see if you can get an officer to come to your house ASAP nand talk to him firmly and warn him that he is breaking the law and putting his child in grave danger every time he drives the car. At the same time I'd just inform him he is never driving your child anywhere, ever, period. Which raises a question -- why don't you always know when he's out driving with her?

In fact, your husband could possibly be prosecuted not only for breaking the safety seat law but also for the much more serious crime of child endangerment. Hello, criminal record. Does he want to risk that, as well as his child's life?

If I knew a neighbor was consistently doing what he is doing --- and he is doing it REPEATEDLY! -- I would call both the police AND the Child Protective Services office, which would bring down a host of long-term troubles on him and unfortunately on you too. CPS means home inspections and visits, possible legal action, CPS questioning whether all the children in your home are safe and well cared for in other ways, monitoring over long periods of time by CPS officers, possible impact on his job, etc.

If he is so pig-headed and lazy he won't protect his precious child's life, maybe self-preservation will make him at least cover his backside with the law and CPS.

2 moms found this helpful

I would be angry enough that I would probably get him set up to get a ticket.

Or, just refuse to let him drive your daughter (which, if he's being selfish may be what he's trying to achieve, in some passive aggressive way).

Or, see if you can find an video with a dummy-child of a car crash safety test, and show him what happens to kids in the front seat, when they are supposed to be in the carseat. Make him watch the video.

He may be thinking "it's just down the street" or "just around the block" or "just to the grocery store," or he might just be thinking "she screams and cries and has a tantrum when I put her in the carseat"---but none of those are good enough excuses.

But personally, I would call the police on him (do it anonymously).

2 moms found this helpful

I think you take away his car keys when you are not around and he has the little one. I can not beleive you put your daughter in that risk personally.

2 moms found this helpful

It's illegal. Call the police when he leaves with her. Hit his wallet. It's a hefty fine.

I know... Harsh for your husband, right? Sorry. He's an adult and needs to make adult decisions for your (and his) daughter.

2 moms found this helpful

First find a sitter that can help you.
Never let him take her anywhere and if he does, call the police.
He sounds very young, like he is still living in teenage dreamland of "it doesn't happen to me".
I don't think I could have contolled my temper the first time. He woud be a divorcee with supervised visitation, if any at all.

2 moms found this helpful

Ok, so, assuming you go to work and your husband stays home with your daughter part of the time, and goes places with her I can see why you don't always know when he is taking her out so you can't always call the police to report him. I don't know if he is taking her to daycare on his way to work or not. But no trip he takes during the day is more important than the life of a child. I'd find his keys, and any spare keys to the car he is left with, and take them with me to work. If he calls ranting that he can't find the keys you can act innocent. Then when you get home you can tell him unless and until you can be assured of him keeping her safe you will not enable him in driving her anywhere. He's gonna be real mad but your daughter will be safe. I'd seriously rethink my job, and daycare options too. I'd pay more per month to take her myself and pick her up myself and cut him out of the transportation of her altogether. If you know a police officer you could go discuss this with them and I'd bet they will be more than willing to come over some day and talk to him. I'd hope he'd change his view after that. Also, I find it interesting that he turns off the airbag when he puts her in the front seat. He does that for safety? It just gives her a harder surface to hit before she goes thru the windshield. As for him being lazy.. I timed how long it takes to buckle a toddler in a car seat, and it never took more than 45 seconds. Even a lazy person can spend less than a minute to save a childs life. I'd question whether he really loves this child.

2 moms found this helpful

I would not let him drive with her at all. How do you know he is driving with her. Refuse to let him drive with her or say that if he wants to take her then you all go together. You should call the sherriff and let them know when he is driving around. How do you not know that he is driving around with her?

2 moms found this helpful

I've never had to deal with that, but this is SO scary! I can't understand why he's taking such a risk with your baby's life! I would NOT allow my child to ride with someone so callous even though he is her father. Make other arrangements for her care. I really hope his mindset changes, he's being unbelievably stupid. SMH.

1 mom found this helpful

You can tell your husband that I went to a funeral for a 7 year old girl that was allowed to sit in the front seat. She was killed in a 25 MPH crash. Little bodies are not protected up there. Not til age 12. Not for any reason.

1 mom found this helpful

He sounds irrational & pig headed. What kind of parent does that? Is he like this in other aspects of parenting/your marriage? I wouldn't & couldn't be with someone who didn't keep our child safe, end of story.

1 mom found this helpful

OMG wow. Just, wow. I would not allow him to drive with her at all, and then tell him that because he is so useless, he can also move out and come back when he's ready to not break the law and endanger your child.

1 mom found this helpful

I wouldn't let them go anywhere. That is unheard of.

1 mom found this helpful

What an idiot. He should NOT be allowed to drive with your child EVER.

If that can't be avoided (which you should try to avoid at all costs.) call the police and talk to an officer. Have the officer come to your home, explain the dangers, tell him it's ILLEGAL, it's NEGLECT, and discuss the legal ramifications. Call CPS and have them come out, too. If her weren't your husband, wouldn't you be tempted to call CPS on him? Then it shouldn't matter that he is.

God, I wonder what other stupid things your husband does.

1 mom found this helpful

Honestly, if my husband did this I would seriously consider divorce.

I don't think that I could stay married to someone who simply couldn't be bothered to take all reasonable steps that our children stay alive. And I sure as hell know I couldn't live with myself if something happened to them in his care and I hadn't done every possible thing to stop it.

Other pre-divorce things that come to mind include: slashing his tires, putting a "club" on his steering wheel, unplugging his battery, hiding his keys. Something that would really get his attention that this is NOT a normal disagreement where there are two sides to every story. His behavior is UNACCEPTABLE and if he doesn't change his ways, he's out!

1 mom found this helpful

What does he say when you talk to him about this? I don't even know what to say, his thinking or lack thereof is just so seriously misguided that I hope and truly pray that she does not ended up being hurt or killed...

1 mom found this helpful

I would NOT put up with that. Call the police on him and when he gets a ticket for it then maybe he will think twice about it. And if he does it again, call the police again. In the state of NY they consider that child endangerment. A friend of mine did that and he got slapped with Endangering the Welfare of a Child and was hit was a hefty fine. Just cause he turns the air bag off is not going to save her life God forbid he gets into an accident. The adult seatbelt is not going to help her. My daughter is 3 and when we are in the driveway she sits in the front and puts on the seatbelt. She has to put the shoulder strap behind her cause it goes across her face. So it is not fitted right for that age. Especially a 2 year old. I would hang him on it. Let him learn his lesson!!!!!

1 mom found this helpful

This shows how very immature he is. I would be weary to trust him alone with her at all. I am sorry that your husband is being such a stubborn child.

1 mom found this helpful

If it were my husband, he would NEVER EVER have the opportunity to drive with her in the car again. That's insane. Does he understand how dangerous that is?

1 mom found this helpful

If your husband doesn't think there's anything wrong with what he's doing, simply tell him that he's right - as long as he understands that even in a lower speed accident, your tiny daughter is going to fly out of the seat belt (that wasn't made for such a small person) and she's going to go through the windshield HEAD FIRST. She won't survive. Even if he's just running a local errand, MOST accidents happen within 10 miles of your house.

I'm really sorry you have to deal with this, but seriously - is there something mentally wrong with your husband? My daughter is nearly 12 and is 5'3" and 110 lbs. She STILL sits in the back of my car 98% of the time - even when I drop her off at middle school. My husband doesn't even like there to be heavy things in the very back of the car (we have a small truck) - because in case there's an accident, things can come flying forward and hit someone in the head.

This is a deal breaker for me. Your husband needs help if he argues with you on this.

1 mom found this helpful

Is this for real?
Is he letting her take a bath alone too, or play outside alone?
What is wrong with him?

I would not let her be alone with him. Point blank.
How do you not always know when he is out driving with her?
Is he a SAHD?
If yes, I would take her to daycare or find a new sitter, YESTERDAY.

Your poor daughter, I wonder what other unsafe things he is doing while he is with her?

1 mom found this helpful

I haven't read the other comments, but I can't imagine anyone's written in support of your husband. What's there to support? What I don't get is, why don't you know when he's out driving with her? Is he a stay-at-home dad? I think you're right to call the sheriff's and have him ticketed. But if a ticket means more to him than the life of your daughter, that's pretty sad. How else does he devalue her?

1 mom found this helpful

I like Kelsey'smomL and A.C.s answers. Taking the keys and setting him up to get busted would be great. Send him this video - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=orDM8tCn9pY&feature=re.... Don't know if it'll help, but I couldn't watch the whole thing. it's just crash test dummies, but it was enough for me.

1 mom found this helpful

Wow-I'm just mirroring all the comments really. Wow.

I agree, I don't think you should let him take her anywhere. Has he ever seen of any of the stories about children killed/maimed/injured when they aren't in their car seats?!

This is ridicoulous. How incredibly pathetic of him to put his laziness above your child's safety.

1 mom found this helpful

I would not allow him to drive her. I know he is the father, but if he is not putting safety first he is not acting like a father. A child should not be in the front seat if it can be avoided until they are at least in their teens and 5 ft tall! What he is doing is endangerment and very neglectful.

1 mom found this helpful

This cannot possibly be a serious question???......

1 mom found this helpful

Wow. I got goosebumps reading your post. You clearly know how unsafe this is, and I don't think you can allow you husband to drive with your daughter until he gets it too. This is not the time to tread lightly, your child's safety is at risk and you should do anything and everything you have to to protect her.
My dad worked as a traffic accident investigator and highway patrol officer when I was younger and he used to come home ashen-faced and physically sick after dealing with accidents involving children. Maybe you could find someone at your local police/sheriff''s department to talk to your husband and explain what his laziness could do to his daughter.
But seriously, until you can trust your husband to properly secure her in the carseat, I don't think you can leave him with her and access to a car.

1 mom found this helpful

He doesn't get to take her places. END OF STORY. He has NO RIGHT at all to drive her anywhere! This is just common sense, but sadly he's probably not the only one that does this.

If it were me - well, sorry but I wouldn't be with someone who didn't make our childs safety a top priority. But I guess if this was my husbands only downfall, than I'd get a court order (if that is possible?) He can't drive her places. Does he not realize that airbag or not, she will most likely NOT survive a crash?? It is recommended that children 13 years old and younger sit in the back seat. 13!?!? She is 2!!

My kids were still rear facing at 2. I can't even imagine! My 8 yr old daughter is in a booster and my 6yr old son is in a 5pt harness....still! Please please please, sit down with him and have a talk. YOU are your baby girls advocate. She can't speak for herself in this matter.

Sorry you have to go through this :-(

1 mom found this helpful

No, can't say I have, but I sure as hell wouldn't be putting up with it...Sorry buddy, but if you are so selfish and are not concerned with you child's safety then I'd have to say, Get out!!! No way would I allow him to take her anywhere again.. He sounds like a real jerk.

1 mom found this helpful

The question is WHY is he doing this? He's really that lazy? It takes the same amount of time to buckle the child in the car seat as it does to buckle her in a seat belt. What's your schedule like? How is it that you don't know when he's out driving with her? Not judging, just trying to find out whether changes to your schedule can be made so that he's not ever driving her around again. I'd say he's lost that privilege until he can stop acting like an idiot and putting his daughter's life at risk. What's he going to say if, God forbid, he gets into an accident and she gets hurt? That he just didn't feel like buckling her in? That's criminal, figuratively and literally.

I would see if he can find crash test videos with children crash dummys about your daughter's size... I hope that would change his mind...

Wow- why is he still allowed to take your child anywhere? I'm sorry, but this is not only unsafe, but illegal. Next time it happens and you're aware of it call the police... better yet, don't allow her to get into the car with him.

He's clearly an irresponsible parent and this is likely not the only unsafe thing going on. He's probably not supervising her when you're not home either. Time to have a serious conversation with your husband and make some tough choices about your living situation.

I think I would arrange if possible for someone else to transport your daughter. He is being lazy and selfish. Show him some video's of what happens to children in the front seat and esp children who are not safely buckled in.

Lazy or not, incompetent or not, whatever his qualities (or possibly lack thereof), would he be willing to blame himself if, God forbid, anything happened to your daughter in a motor vehicle accident?

If my DH didn't put our kids in their car seats he wouldn't be going anywhere. I don't mean anywhere with the kids, I mean anywhere. I'd let the air out of his tires, remove caps or plugs or whatever else would cause a problem. He'd get the idea sooner or later.

Best of luck to you and your little girl. :-)

Never, ever again. I would never let her ride with him again unless you KNEW he was using the carseat. It wouldn't even have to be a bad accident to do irreversible damage. Of course, putting the car seat aside, what about the dangers of being in the front seat with an air bag? The deployment of that thing could do unspeakable damage as well. There are warnings all over the front passenger side make up mirror about this.

I'm sure you love your husband, but your baby is innocent. Check out what the reprecussions are in your area for not having her in a car seat and then consider calling the cops. Just know that that move could do damage to your marriage. But your baby is just that, a BABY that needs to be protected.

I'm livid that anyone would do this!

I'm sorry I sound so rude. I don't have the energy to be nice or nonjudgemental about this one...he's an IDIOT!!! If I found out that I married that kind of guy, I might think twice about him.

I am not sure what the car seat laws are in FL, but I know here it is a very serious child endangerment issue, like you could lose your kids over it. Maybe point out, not only is it extremely unsafe for your daughter, but there could be some extreme repercussions for him as well?

She would never be in his car again. Non negotiable. How irresponsible.
I am speechless. I would call the cops if he ever takes her out again
without it. Tell them where he is and leave the rest to them. I think after
an encounter with them, he will change his mind.

That would piss me off that he's so reckless. There's a reason kids are in carseats, um to prevent accidents and death. Sorry, I'd call the cops on him if he's not home w/your daughter and let him get the ticket. He'll get tired of getting tickets and paying for them.

He is an incompetent father. I could not imagine how angry I would be if my husband was so careless with our child and put our baby at risk for death when their was a safety feature already there in the car that could protect the child. I feel livid for you, reading this.Seriously, it takes what, 2 minutes to fasten a 2 year old into a carseat? I would never let the man alone with my child again, husband or not/father or not. He sounds like a pathetic loser that does not care about his own child. I feel so sad for you for having to deal with him.

I heard you can call the state and give them anyone's license plate number and they will send them a warning that they were spotted with a child not secured in a safety seat and they also send info on safe trasportation. This is all anonymous. Maybe that will wake him up a bit without going overboard. Personally I would never leave my child alone with him ever because this shows he does not have good judgement in all areas of the child's life.

Is there anyway your can keep him and her from not being alone together? I would not let him spend anything with her. In the state of Florida children HAVE TO BE in a car-seat until they are 4 after that a booster seat is optional. Tell him how they will write him a BIG FAT TICKET with points where his insurance will go up and I am sure if he does it more than once the DCF will get involved under the issue of child endangerment / neglect. Is he an adult or is he a younger man? In the meanwhile keep reporting him over and over. I know he's your husband but he's only a man and your child comes first. If he's a neglectful parent that puts your daughter in danger get rid of him and keep him far from her unless he's supervised.

What I'm surprised about is that it seems he doesn't seem like anything is wrong with what he's doing. He thinks it's rational because he's turning off the air bag. What happens when you explode at him for this? Or do you? How have you reacted to him?
As others have mentioned, he may be a stay at home dad and perhaps you feel you have to trust him with her. Thing is, if something WERE to happen to her, you could NOT turn back time and it would be that moment you wished you spent all your money having someone competent watching your daughter instead of risking this.
Frankly, getting a ticket is a joke. He'll be pissed, pay the fine and then do the same thing again.
If he does things like this, talks to you about it like it's no big deal, he won't change. You have to be the one to do something about it.
My nutty ex used to put my daughter in the back in a car seat and the straps were so loose that if he'd turn a corner the entire seat would lean to the side too. I flipped and he said it's safer that way b/c if a car hit him on the side, the seat would move away from the damage! Whatever!!! So I flipped on him, phoned the police and explained that was illegal. I went out and bought one of those special straps for his car that clamps the seat in and only then could he drive with her again.
My daughter is 8 and she's still in the back in a booster. My friends all wonder why I still have her in a seat, she legally doesn't need to be, blah blah. I'd rather her safe than sorry. Sigh....

Is he from Mexico? (just a joke) but in Mexico they dont believe in car seats. Anyway, so scary!! I don't even know what to say to that

I wouldn't let her in the car with him...husband or not. If you know that he's got her in the front seat, I'd call the cops. Maybe a ticket is what he needs to make him realize this is not ok.

I'd be really sick about this too! What is the big deal about putting his child in a car seat... which is in his vehicle? I just don't get it other than he is suffering from a teenage symptom of "nothing is going to happen to me/us". Problem is that he is responsible for his daughter and he will never forgive himself if she gets killed because of his negligence. I would find some video and facts regarding car seat safety... maybe he just doesn't understand the dangers? (I'm trying to be as nice as I can)! I know when I was a kid, car seats didn't exist and seat belts were optional, however speeds have gotten faster and cars much bigger. I would do everything possible to make sure he does not take her anywhere and if that means you find other people to care for your daughter, than go to that extent... maybe something will click? I so hope so!!

Sorry to sound so gruesome, but it is way more work for his lazy a$$ to tend to his daughter in the hospital for months, or have to care for her in a wheelchair or vegetable state for the rest of her life, or to have a freakin' funeral for her!!! This is just beyond belief to me that he would be so willfully negligent with his own precious child. I would turn him in every time and talk to the police and call cps and have the pediatrician call him, and just in general be all over his butt until he can act responsibly.

Ok - I hope that this is just a joke. But if it's not...

Are you married to this man? If yes, put your foot down and tell him that he's endangering your child and he either uses the car seat or you turn him in to the police (and then maybe leave him because why would you want to married to a complete idiot?). If you're already divorced, call the cops on him. This is your CHILD. You need to protect her.

Is your husband careless around your daughter at other times?

maybe when he gets pulled over and gets a big fat ticket, then he'll learn. I made that mistake 1 time, my daughter had just turned 4 and threw the biggest fit that she wanted to sit in the front. we were about 2 blocks from home, so i figured it would do no harm to have her in the front seat.
i ended up getting pulled over. the officer said i didnt use my turn signal (tho i remember using it) and saw her in the front.
so i was sent on my way with a $200 ticket. that was in New Hampshire. idk how the law works where you are, but that was enough for me. it was the first and last time any of my children were not in the correct seat.
$200 is a lot to pay when you have to worry about buying diapers, wipes, clothes, shoes.
he needs to be taking that extra effort to put her in her chair

He may be careless with your daughter in the car because he doesn't understand the dangers. Show him respected resources on why it's so important and what he's risking. He might then understand the gravity of the situation.

Several good resources include the American Academy of Pediatrics website (http://www.aap.org/healthtopics/carseatsafety.cfm), Child Passenger Saftey (http://www.facebook.com/childpassengersafety), or asking a pediatrician (http://www.facebook.com/thornburgpediatrics).

Good luck and I hope this helps.

I read this the other day as I was looking for ideas on how to get this important action through my husband. Went to my town's police dept website, filled out the "contact us" page (has his name, car description, time he leaves our residence and the address where he drops off our son) took a snap shot of the page and sent the image via text and informed him the authorities have been made aware so do not be surprised when they happen to show up at the end of our driveway one morning or at the residence of the sitter. Of course I did not complete the form on the website. That was just to scare him to do what he's supposed to do in the first place. I'll have to ask my son today if he was put in a carseat today.

Can you not just pick her up from now on so that this doesnt happen anymore?

have him check out this website.


Required Fields

Our records show that we already have a Mamapedia or Mamasource account created for you under the email address you entered.

Please enter your Mamapedia or Mamasource password to continue signing in.

Required Fields

, you’re almost done...

Since this is the first time you are logging in to Mamapedia with Facebook Connect, please provide the following information so you can participate in the Mamapedia community.

As a member, you’ll receive optional email newsletters and community updates sent to you from Mamapedia, and your email address will never be shared with third parties.

By clicking "Continue to Mamapedia", I agree to the Mamapedia Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy.