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Mum divides opinion after wanting to leave baby daughter in car while she's sleeping

Tom Wood

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| Last updated 

Mum divides opinion after wanting to leave baby daughter in car while she's sleeping

Featured Image Credit: Pixabay/Pexels

A mum has totally divided opinion by suggesting that she wants to leave her sleeping baby in the car for a short while whilst the pops across to the shops.

When we say divided opinion, in this case we mean really divided opinion.

Of course, you don’t have to be a parenting expert to know that you shouldn’t leave kids in the car for long periods of time when it’s really hot, just the same as you wouldn’t leave a dog.

Whilst the mum seems pretty sure that nothing would happen to the baby if she was only away in the shops for a minute, she’s more concerned that the judgement that would be made about her parenting if she was to leave.

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In a post on Reddit, she said that she feels like it’s ‘taboo’ and wondered whether someone might call the police.

The woman – based in the USA –explained: "OK so, of course in MOST circumstances, leaving your baby or young child in the car while you go into a store is unsafe, neglectful, and generally a bad idea.

If the kids are sleeping, can you leave them in the car? Credit: Pixabay
If the kids are sleeping, can you leave them in the car? Credit: Pixabay

"But what I'm wondering is, are there circumstances where this is OK? Yesterday I needed to duck into a UPS store.

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“I found a parking spot right in front of the building - I would be able to see my car the whole time I was in the store. It was going to take me under 5 minutes."

She continued: "My baby was asleep in her car seat. The temperature was comfortable. I knew if I took her in with me, even in the car seat, she would wake up and her nap would be cut short.

“If I left her, she was likely to continue snoozing peacefully, or at worst wake up and cry for a couple of minutes.

"It felt totally safe for me to leave her, but I didn't, because it just seems like such a big taboo, and I was worried someone would see her, and judge me or call COPS."

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Of course, more than 500 people piped up to offer their opinion on it. And they’re varied, to say the least.

"Be prepared for consequences," one person ominously wrote.

"My SIL [son in law] ran into the gas station for just a few minutes and left her two and four-year-olds in the car and the police were called.

“A Child Protection Services case was opened against her and it took ages and a tonne of stress to fight.

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"Getting babies in and out of cars is hard, and sometimes it’s annoying when you’re going somewhere for literally two seconds just to have to buckle them up.

“But I don’t think it’s worth the legal trouble or potential devastation."

Maybe it might be better just to get the kids out. Credit: Pixabay
Maybe it might be better just to get the kids out. Credit: Pixabay

Another said: "I've read you should never, ever do this, even for short runs in somewhere where you can still see your car, because if something unexpected happened to you in the store - seizure, gunman, heart attack, etc. - no one would know you have a baby in the car outside.

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"You get carted off in an ambulance and how long before baby is found?"

However, another said: "This is very situationally dependent, so no judgment here!

"I don't think we need to live our lives under the assumption that every worst-case scenario will happen to us.

“Statistically, driving our kids to the store is more dangerous than leaving them in the car for five minutes when we get there."

A third – with perhaps the best take of the lot – said: "I think it's fine, may get flamed but life is nuanced, and you still have to get things done to survive in this capitalist hellscape."

Obviously, different places have different laws on leaving kids in the car unsupervised, with most seeming to say that it’s not allowed.

So, it might be worth checking what the legal situation is, or just getting the kids out of the car, sleeping or not.

Topics: Parenting, Life, Reddit

Tom Wood
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