My 6 week old hates car rides!

Melissa - posted on 07/15/2012 ( 6 moms have responded )

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Hello everyone. My sweet boy seems to hate his car seat and car rides. We went to the grocery store and on the way back he screamed and cried for 15 min straight! I thought he might start choking, it sounded so bad! Anyone else experience this? He does not use a pacifier but we tried giving him one for car rides only. But, he would not take it. Help?!

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Sarah - posted on 07/17/2012

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I also went thru this. I found loosely wrapping him so i could get the straps on securely. The feel of the wrap made him feel secure and he would drift off to sleep. This was an absolute nightmare to go thru until I worked out how to wrap him and keep him secure in the car seat at the same time. I hope this helps you. Good luck. It does pass

Lori - posted on 07/16/2012

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Both my daughters went through phases of HATING riding in the car. My oldest it started when she was a few months old, and lasted several months. My youngest HATED riding in the car from the day we brought her home from the hospital. She's now 19 months old and tolerates it if there's enough distraction. I agree with Stephanie, get a toy bar or something that attaches to your car seat to distract your LO. Both my girls also like having a mirror attached to the car seat in front of them for them to look at. And try to make sure your LO isn't hungry before getting in the car.

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Kaja - posted on 05/28/2013

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We have an iPad we use in the car and attached it like a DVD player. Instead of playing DVDs I had family members record themselves singing nursery songs and I put all the videos together with iMovie and made a long movie of everyone singing. He loves it!! Giggles and smiles the entire time. Loves mom and dads songs the best. We also recorded my husband and I making funny faces he loves that too.

Sally - posted on 07/17/2012

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Do you blame him really? Would you want to be taken away from the person upon whom you depend for your very survival, strapped into a plastic bucket so tightly you can't move your body, and left there? You have the life experience to realize it's only for a short while and it protects him from danger. He thinks he's being tortured and abandoned and he has to scream until mommy realizes what she has done and comes back for him. Nature designed those cries to drive you up the wall so you would respond to them.
It will pass as he gets used to it and starts to realize it's only temporary. (How long that will take depends on his temperament. Some babies love the car from birth and some never do. My two daughters both hated it until they were big enough to turn their seats around so they could see and my two year old still isn't thrilled about her harness.) If he's one of the late ones, you may want to limit car time as much as possible for your own sanity.
Until then, the best thing you can do is to comfort him as much as possible. If someone else can drive, sit next to him and hold his hand or pet his head while you talk to him soothingly. If you're on your own, at least talk to him so he knows you're still there. Explain to him why it has to be this way. He won't understand your words, but he will understand that you are trying to help him. Toys, music, or a mirror may help distract him until he's big enough to distract himself.
Good Luck
Also, don't worry about co-sleeping. A baby sleeping alone is based on a fad idea that babies should only have their physical needs met and that to meet their emotional needs as well would "spoil" them. It kept going because of the myths that it would make children more independent and help parents marital relationships. It only exists in the industrialized western world (though sadly it has been creeping out into the world with other "modern" ideas). Depending on your ancestors socio-economic status your family has only been doing it for 50 -200 years. At least half the moms who do it, admit (anonymously) that they sleep with their babies at least sometimes. The more we learn about how babies sleep and how moms and babies interact, we're learning that not only is co-sleeping healthier for most babies, but it facilitates nursing and gives mom more rest as well. Enjoy it while it lasts. He'll be begging to get away from you soon enough.

Melissa - posted on 07/16/2012

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Thanks for taking the time to share your experience with me! I do breastfeed and will have to try that. We also co-sleep. It's so sweet sleeping with him now but I worry about the future. I tell my self just 1 day at a time. So your exp gives me hope:) thanks again!

Stephanie - posted on 07/15/2012

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I went through this same thing, it did pass. I started giving my baby toys to play with, Freddie the firefly is a good one. Also, I would move the canopy of the car seat to distract her also singing and shaking a rattle in the front seat. Basically distract her as much as I could.
Another thing that I think may have helped (still not totally sure), I stuffed a small blanket next to her into the car seat, so she wouldn't bounce around so much. She was little for the seat and I think she was kind of getting tossed around a bit. Also, she did not like the infant insert for the car seat because it forced her head forward, you may want to check on that.
Are you breastfeeding? Maybe you could try nursing him before you head home from the store. I used to stop on the way home and nurse my little girl because I couldn't stand the fussing. I just nursed her right in the car in a parking lot and even stopped on the side of the highway before. That usually helped her.
When she stopped fussing in the car she was about 4 1/2 months, and this coincided with her sleeping in the crib on her own and learning to self sooth. I had been co-sleeping before and it was like a switch went on when I started putting her in the crib. All of a sudden she would fall asleep in the car, it was so nice.
Good luck! This too shall pass:)

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