My daughter HATES the car seat

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My daughter HATES the car seat

Post  takobell on Wed Aug 06, 2008 1:11 am

After spending the first 6 months of her life being pretty much carried by me or my husband in a carrier or sling of some sort, my daughter Sienna is not taking well to being carted around in a car seat. But we moved to L.A. a month ago and car seats are an inevitability. Unfortunately, the stroller isn't much more well received either. Given that we pretty much have to ride in the car almost every day, it is becoming hell for us all. While she does fall asleep or sit happily occasionally, for the most part she screams for the duration of the journey, however long or short it may be. I've heard some say that once they're big enough to sit facing forward things change, but she is 7 months now, so that is still months away. I've got her sitting in a bucket seat, but am thinking of trying a convertible one and also putting a mirror up so she can see me. Does anyone have any thoughts on this matter?
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Re: My daughter HATES the car seat

Post  floatingworld on Wed Aug 06, 2008 2:41 am

Hi there,
Oooh, howling babies in the car are no fun!
Ali has been much happier in the car since we turned the seat around - I think because he can see me and also more of what is going past (we have his seat in the middle, so he gets a good view between the front seat). So a mirror might be good, if it lets Sienna see more. Also, maybe she'll relax more as she gets used to it, since it's something new.
Right now (11 months) Ali has a trick of going completely rigid and howling whenever I start to clip him in the car seat or stroller, so I have to really push him down and jam him in (this makes me feel like an awful mother!), but as soon as he's clipped in he's happy again - weird, and kind of stressful! Let's hope it's just a phase...
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Re: My daughter HATES the car seat

Post  kat on Wed Aug 06, 2008 5:45 pm

Sienna is 7 months old!!! When did that happen?? We miss you ladies.

So the car seat...as you know I am absolutely no help here since we only ride in a car minimally here in Tokes. I know that Maud has had similar problems and she tried the mirror too - it's worth a shot! I know that Sienna sits up too now, so it might be an idea to try a convertible seat instead. Jake is not a fan of the stroller for long periods of time too, but now we let him sit upright and hold onto the front bar and only do up the bottom of the harness and leave off the shoulder straps - that makes him much happier and he can move a lot more.

Also another idea.....rig up a dvd player somehow??? I know it seems terrible to divert a baby's attention with tv, but having a happy baby in the car is much safer for everyone than a howling one.

Oh and another sit in stroller trick, which is not very good probably, is feeding them baby senbei - Jake LOVES these coz he can feed himself!! I try to limit it to when he is about to have a complete meltdown. Man it really keeps him busy on the train or in any other awkward moments!!
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Baby hates car seat

Post  amylou on Wed Aug 06, 2008 9:20 pm

My daughter is only 6 weeks old and also seriously hates the car seat, and only tolerates a stroller for a short time. You always hear about how much kids love riding in the car and how it helps babies sleep etc. etc.- not mine, she will scream until she can't breathe. I also don't have much of a choice on transportation, and for awhile wasn't going anywhere because of it, but finally said screw it and just started going. I have pulled over or turned around more than a couple of times. A couple of things have helped though in the last week- we installed one of those baby mirrors that you attach to the headrest, and even though I don't think she really sees herself, the shiny-ness of it seems to distract, and it is nice to see her in the rear view mirror. I also play around with the windows until I get what I call the helicopter sound, you know when your windows are down just right you get that really annoying vibration noise? Well she seems to like it of course. And it always helps if I go somewhere with somebody to have one of us ride in the back. I know there is a world of difference in a 7 mo. old and 6 wk old, but maybe this will help? If nothing else I feel your pain- there really isn't much worse than a screaming baby in a car.
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Re: My daughter HATES the car seat

Post  pixiepurls on Thu Aug 07, 2008 12:51 pm

I have friends who tried other strollers and other car seats with success, but that can get expensive. Craigslist? My girl did not like when I went from her graco snugride to a convertable, britax diplomate, but now she is fine in it and even finally has no problems sleeping in it. It took a few weeks/months for her to become comfortable in it. I find she likes to hold a closed bottle of water.

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Re: My daughter HATES the car seat

Post  takobell on Thu Aug 07, 2008 11:02 pm

Thanks for all the insights, ladies! It's comforting to know that others go through the same thing. I keep worrying that I am damaging her spirit for life the way she screams sometimes. But since that first post, I have installed a mirror and also loosened the car seat straps and it seems to be working, knock on wood! Today I also bought the Britax Marathon convertible car seat, so we'll see how she goes with that tomorrow.
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Re: My daughter HATES the car seat

Post  metalmom on Fri Aug 08, 2008 9:51 am

I find that cranking up the tunes (Lucy's favorites - Sesame Street, Raffi, The Little People...) usually works in calming Lily down when she's had enough of her car seat. Also, sticking a blind up on the window to keep the sun out of her eyes. I also hang toys from the car seat handle - changing them every couple of days or so.
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