|Ours was all white, but it did have that cool pop top...|
|Look, Ma, no seatbelts!|
This sort of obsession with child safety is, on the one hand, laudable, and on the other, going to ridiculous extremes. And what is unthinkable is changing, it seems, at an ever-faster pace. When Rapunzel was born, I would not have dreamed of using the crib my mother used for my brothers and me - the bars were too far apart and a safety hazard (little heads could get caught - Mom claims we all had really big heads, so it was fine...). I felt very superior that I knew better. But the crib Rapunzel and The Nerd slept in? Is now deemed unsafe because it has drop sides, and one day, both of them will refuse in horror to use it because "everyone knows those are not safe!"
I wonder what else I did as a parent when the girls were young that they will gasp in horror at when they have children. Like I did when my mother-in-law told me that when her sons were babies, baby formula was a make-it-yourself affair consisting of condensed milk and karo syrup.
It's not that I don't feel protective of the girls - I do - but at what point does taking reasonable precautions cross over into compulsive overprotectiveness? It makes sense to legislate safety protections for things that kill thousands of children and can be avoided through reasonable precautions (say, carseats for babies or booster seats for kids too short to safely use a shoulder belt). But no carseat is going to change the fact that driving is a risky activity. Thousands of adults are killed in car wrecks every year, even with seat belts and air bags and antilock brakes... So at some point, reasonableness has to take over. I would argue that keeping kids in booster seats until they're 12 crosses that line. Likewise, convenience must be weighed (and don't tell me it doesn't - if we weren't weighing in convenience, no one would drive. We'd still be using the horse and buggy.)
|A deathtrap, if you believe the CPSC.|
I've said it before, and will say it again: you can't eliminate risk from life. We weigh risks against many other factors every single day, even if it's not conscious.
Still, I might as well take the crib the girls slept in to the dump - I doubt they will ever be willing to use it. And I'll steel myself for the inevitable "you did WHAT?"s that I will surely hear when they have kids and I start saying "when you were a baby, we...."
The more things change....