Kids For Dummies

Being as I’m neither a parent nor an expert in the field of parenting, it’s not very often that I’m ready to judge someone’s ability to parent. However, occasionally something happens that makes me wish there were legal forms requiring a signature from a doctor, lawyer and priest before one could utilize their reproductive organs.

When I pulled up the red light I was so busy trying to figure out why my favorite radio station wasn’t coming in that I paid no attention to the vehicle next to me. Then, using my super hero-like peripheral vision, I noticed the passenger side window of a bright red mustang rolling down and it caught my attention. It’s cold outside, why in the heck are they rolling down the window?

When I looked over I really expected to see someone tossing a McDonald’s bag or ashing their cigarette, in which case I promptly would have rolled down my window and screamed one of the following before speeding off in a cloud of dust:


Instead of sharing my obviously judgement thoughts with the world, I sat speechless with my jaw in my lap when I saw neither McDonalds nor Marlboro tumbling out the window…

No, what I saw coming out of that window was the tiny fingers of an adorable blonde-headed little boy. A three-ish year old in the front seat of a Mustang, leaning on the dash, rolling down the window and sticking his hands out to wave at me…all while dad tells the other end of a cell phone about last night’s American Idol premiere.

Dad noticed the window was down and rolled it back up just in time for them to speed off ahead of me when the light turned green. About a mile up the street I was going around 52 mph and they were a good ways ahead of me, so let’s be generous and say they were going 60 mph (which is 10mph over the speed limit in this area, but if you don’t buckle in your 3 year old I’m not entirely surprised when you are speeding with one hand on the wheel and one hand fixing the sun visor your unrestrained child was just hanging off of).

For some perspective, watch as this unrestrained three-year simulation child flies almost through the front window after a crash at 30mph (!!!!) and sustains what the narrator describes as “most likely fatal injuries.”

I follow a few heartbreaking blogs of amazing women (“From IF to When,” “Got Love – Been Married – Now, Where the Hell’s The Baby Carriage?,” “Many Many Moons,” “Seriously?!” – I could go on and on) who would LOVE the opportunity to buckle their child in, while this parent carelessly risks the life of theirs.

There are so many fabulous couples battling infertility who would do anything for the chance to safely strap a baby into a rear-facing car seat or booster seat in the back of their car, while this guy practically asks for his child to be taken away from him.

Why, with all the knowledge we have about child safety, do people still risk the lives of their kids like this? All it takes is one blown tire or one quick glance off the road to change your life entirely…to end your life entirely…to end your child’s life entirely. 

So, while I don’t honestly think that there should be consent forms before someone has a child, I wish that parent’s would understand the magnitude of the choices they make. I wish that people who were going to be bad parents just wouldn’t ever get pregnant and that people who would be absolutely wonderful parents wouldn’t have to fight the frustrations and heartache of infertility. 

I guess all I’m saying is I wish the world was a more fair place…and I wish I could protect kids like this from the consequences of the choices their parents make. 

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5 Comments + Add Comment

  • I agree. People need to treasure their children. Parenting is a huge responsibility. And some seem to have missed that memo.

  • Wow, Danielle! I just happened to pop over, having never officially checked out your site…ironic that I am here and Grrr! Thank you for sharing this with others. And yes, there are so many of us that would cherish even just the thought of having a child in our BACKSEATS!

    As I struggle through my paperwork to be 'approved' to parent, this kind of neglagence in society is really frustrating. Thanks for raising a little awareness and for supporting us all.

    I love this! I'm so glad that I found you today. :)

  • I can barely hold back my tongue when I see irresponsible parents, recently I was at a Walmart when I saw a woman putting a very young baby (looked to be no more than a month or so)in the front passenger seat! I couldn't believe my eyes. Not only that but she was in a carrier facing forward. She didn't buckle it in. All the while she was talking on a cell phone. I had left home w/o my cell so I took down her plate number and called 911 first chance I got!

  • Thank you so much for the shout out. These stories just tear your heart out don't they.

    BTW – LOVE the kitchen island you created!

  • I hope that dad finds your blog somehow!!!

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About The Author

I'm an ObGyn. I started this blog as a medical student (some would call that doctor school) and now I'm working as an Ob/Gyn, which is seriously the coolest job ever. I'm a twin mom and recently added a baby brudder to the mix. My life story through November 2010 can be viewed here. The events in the many years following can be summed up as wedding bells, books, exams, babies, and doctoring. I started this blog in hopes of landing a role in a Lifetime movie so I could quit medicine and move to Hollywood, but that hasn't happened...so if you wouldn't take medical advice from Angelina Jolie, you shouldn't take it from me. I may not even be a real person. In fact, I'm probably a spambot. Or possibly a 15 yo boy blogging from a dingy basement. If you're really interested you can read more about me here. If you have any questions or want to guest post contact me.

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