Today, in horrifying news, a toddler was left in a freezing cold car for -- wait for it -- eight hours while her yahoo of a mother allegedly gambled at a Baltimore casino. The 4-year-old girl was found shivering and hungry, and the mother, thankfully, has been placed in jail. The girl is currently in the care of a relative, who, god willing, won't be so cruel and stupid as to do such a thing.
I know lugging your kid in and out of the car to the store or, in this case, the casino is a pain in the butt when it's super cold out, but for the love of god, you don't leave a child to freeze for the sake of convenience!
Every summer, we hear stories about children, usually toddlers, being hospitalized or, worse, dying, due to being left in the car. And then, when winter rolls around, we hear the same thing. A simple rule of thumb is: Don't leave your child in your car -- ever. Not in the summer. Not in the winter. Not in the spring. Not in the fall. Ever. It's just a bad idea.
I'm fully aware of the inconveniences that come with taking your child in and out of the car seat -- particularly when it's freezing out and nine million layers of clothing, hats, boots, and gloves are involved. It's a task. But if you think it's a good idea to leave your child in the turned-off car for hours on end while you gamble, well, maybe you shouldn't be a parent to begin with.
Glad this poor girl is okay, and if her mother is found guilty, let's hope she gets to permanently stay in the care of someone who will go through the trouble of taking her out of her car seat and bring her inside to wherever they're going -- even if it is a casino.
Have you ever left your child in the car?
Image via Muffet/Flickr