I Sit in the Back Seat With My Baby: Doesn't Everyone?

car seatEver since my daughter was born, I've been sitting in the back seat with her if I'm not driving. It started when we were leaving the hospital, and almost two years later, it's still how we roll. I always kind of assumed this was the norm for moms of only one, but the other day I was talking to a friend, and she casually mentioned an upcoming road trip she was taking with her 5-month-old and husband, saying, "If he gets fussy, I can always sit with him in the back for a while."

Wait. If he gets fussy? Doesn't everyone always sit in the back with their little one?

To be honest, I enjoy sitting next to my daughter in the car, but I've realized recently that this practice may be slightly annoying to undo. My daughter now knows that if my husband and I are both getting in the car with her, I'm going to be seated right next to her car seat. We were driving a few blocks away to the store the other day, when I gleefully declared to my husband, "I'm going to sit in the front with you!" And, as I was opening the passenger door, my child was all, Helllllll no. You're going to sit right next to me, like you always do, and we're going to play the night-night game, where I say, "Night night" and you put your head on my lap and pretend you're sleeping. (Insert, OMG you're creating such a brat! comments here. Got it, guys, thanks.)

No one ever told me to sit in the back seat with my baby, and as far as I know, this isn't one of those divisive parenting topics, like whether cutting your baby's nails is ethical or not. It was just a knee-jerk reaction for me. I think a good part of the reason is because my daughter is still young and in a rear-facing seat, so it's difficult to see and interact with her when I'm in the front. My car also seems to be the only one in the entire universe that doesn't allow for one of those velcro mirrors, so we can never see what she's up to. 

I'm aware that if my husband and I ever decide to have another child, my daughter's going to have no choice but to get used to me sitting in the front. Also, I'm not gonna lie, I get car sick sometimes. It probably won't wind up being a gigantic ordeal to make the switch -- just some whining, maybe a little crying. And, I don't know, even though once in a while it'd be nice to not have a conversation with my husband through the rear view mirror, I'm sure there'll come a day when I miss being relegated to the back. Nausea and all.

Do you sit in the back seat with your baby?


Image via Corbis

car seat safety


To add a comment, please log in with

Use Your CafeMom Profile

Join CafeMom or Log in to your CafeMom account. CafeMom members can keep track of their comments.

Join CafeMom or Log in to your CafeMom account. CafeMom members can keep track of their comments.

Comment As a Guest

Guest comments are moderated and will not appear immediately.

Bruic... Bruickson

I sat with my daughter for almost her whole first year. She had horrible reflux and I was always worried she would choke. She eventually grew out of it and I started sitting up front again. It wasn't a hard transition either. I was happy to not be carsick anymore, my husband was happy to have some company and I think she enjoyed having a little space lol.

nonmember avatar My name

I will on long trips and she starts getting fussy. Otherwise, I'm up front. That's where I'm most comfortable. If your comfortable in the back, more power to you.

MamaP... MamaPeanut

Is that photo of the writer's daughter?

If so, if she Really cared about her baby, she would still have her rear-facing, which is proven to be 500% safer, especially for a baby that young. Mom Being in the back seat won't do anything to save the baby in an accident.

Also, that car seat is one of the worst on the market, listed every year by the NHTSA.

nonmember avatar BostonBob

Probably a stock photo.

We kept both kids rear-facing well past a year, which IS the safest. Those who disagree should say "I am deliberately not doing the safest thing for my child".

Anyway, back to the topic at hand. We rarely did it beyond the first trip home from the hospital for #1. If he was fussy we would, but otherwise no. Having #2 just 18 months later resolved the issue completely though. We'd quietly snicker at those attachment parents who sat in the back with their kids.

Einyn Einyn

@MamaPeanut - 1) stop being so judgy. I'm sure your parenting choices haven't all been so 100% perfect. 2) the article very clearly states her kid is still in a rear facing seat.

laris... larissalarie

No I do not sit in the back.

nonmember avatar FarmersWife

I always sit in the back unless I'm driving. My son is 2 and still rear facing. I plan on breaking the habit whenever he goes to front facing. Easier for him to understand when the big changes go together, and he'll be able to interact with me in the front when he's turned around anyway.

NicoleFW NicoleFW

That is not my daughter. It's a stock photo.

NoWei NoWei

I never sit in the back. I prefer that my child learn independence & I don't need to stroke my own ego.

Pam.N.42 Pam.N.42

I have only sat in the back with one of my girls when they were really getting cranky on a long car trip. My husband and I like to be able to talk while driving and do so quietly enough if (read when) one of the kids falls asleep.

1-10 of 124 comments 12345 Last