Wednesday, July 21, 2010

A trip to the Police Station

So I have been having a problem with Brayden (I know, what else is new?!) and I have been thinking about possible solutions. We may have come up with one today, but I don't know if it worked like I wanted...
Brayden is in a booster car seat with a back. He has been in it for a few months, ever since he hit the weight/size/age limit. He can buckle himself in, which is nice...but he can un-buckle himself, which is not so good in the middle of the freeway when I am going 75mph...
He does it specifically because he knows he is not supposed to. I have been telling him that I am going to put him back into a baby carseat if he continues to do it. At first I was nice about it, then I pushed it a little higher, told him I would get a ticket and he could get in an accident...then I pushed it into full gear andtold him that if someone hit our car and he was unbuckled, he would go flying through the windshield, have shards of glass all over his body, have to get a million shots, stitches, possible surgery and be crying in pain and possibly die.
What? Seriously? Really?
So I have toyed with the idea of taking him to the police station and having a police officer tell him the same thing...maybe coming from that type of authority would help. So today, after going to the post office and having him slide down from his car seat because he wasn't wearing it correctly, I marched right into the police station.
I told the lady at the front what was going on. I realllly wanted to say "please send someone out who will be aggressive, even mean who will really scare him..." but I couldn't. A sargeant came out, he was a little stern, but mostly nice calling him "little buddy," etc. I am not sure if Brayden gets it. I mean, I know he knows its wrong and knows he shouldnt do it (which is exactly why he does it), but I don't know if the little chat with the officer today made any difference cause he was still so nice about it.
He gave him a badge in the end and told him the only way he could wear it is if he promised to wear his seat belt right all the time. I think if he takes it off or wears it wrong again I am going to put him back in the convertable car seat for a day to really show him I am serious and will not put up with it, then I think maybe he will wear it right. I am just not sure, but I really hope either way that today worked...


Jenn said...

He's only 4, which in my opinion is too young for a booster seat anyway (but then, I'm super conservative when it comes to carseat safety). Most kids are around 5 or 6 before they reach the maturity level they need to sit properly in a booster seat, and boys are even less likely to be ready for a booster early on. The whole weight/size/age thing is important, but maturity level is key as well.

Ryan just turned 6 and he still rides harnessed 90% of the time....we've been booster training for a few months and he's just not ready to sit properly all of the time, and in my car that's going to be a requirement before you move into a booster full-time. We've talked about the convertible seat he rides in and let him know that it's the safest way for him to be in the car right now. We rarely carpool, but he's armed with responses if other kids make fun of his "baby seat" (and, I have to admit that I cringed a little when you said that....their purpose is to keep KIDS safe, not just babies).

My advice would be to get him back into that convertible seat, and not just for a day. His current behavior shows that he's just not mature enough yet, and his safety in the car is not worth the risk of keeping him boostered right now. You'll have to do some back-pedaling to get him into the mindset that riding in a convertible isn't a punishment for his inablity to ride properly in a booster, but that it's the best way to keep him safe because he's too important to get hurt or die in the case of an accident.

When he turns 5, start letting him ride on short trips in his booster and give him the chance to practice and you a chance to gauge whether or not he's ready to make the switch for good.

And, that's my not-so-humble opinion on that topic :)

annieareyouok said...

Liz, only you know when your guy is ready for a booster/car seat so I'm sure whatever you decide to do is the best for him and you. It's easy to judge from the outside looking in, but I know that you wouldn't do anything that was remotely unsafe ... that sort of goes without saying. Personally, I just don't have the energy to "fight the battle" so I would opt for a car seat as long as possible. I DO think that it is HIGHlarious that you actually took him to meet and policeman. Priceless ... thanks for sharing that and I hope it works!

Sarah said...

Oh Liz I am so sorry about your little stinker. Olivia asks me all the time to just sit in a seatbelt, telling me how big she is. Sigh. Double sigh. I'm locking her in for as long as I can.