Baby Safety Harnesses

Baby safety harnesses and leashes are one of the most controversial type of child restraints and in my opinion one of the least understood and appreciated. We don't think it's odd to use 5 point harnesses in car seats, do we?

Some of the members of my mother's morning out group are totally ridiculous in their behemoth objections to them! I just don't get it, what's so wrong about allowing a child some freedom and exercise while keeping him or her out of danger?

Just today one of the mothers said that she found the practice of putting a child on a leash and treating it like a dog to be bizarre! I believe that I may have upset her when I was unable to keep my mouth shut and told her that I found her comparison to be more bizarre than using baby harnesses and leashes but that if she wanted to bring dogs into it,why do dog lovers put their pets on leases; could it be because they love them and want to keep them safe? Her response was that she could not sanction child abuse.

Child abuse? Seriously? My mother had a wrist restraint (a leash if you will) that she used whenever we went through airports and other crowded busy places. There was no way that she could have carried me or held my hand when she needed both hands to handle our luggage.

Do I consider myself a victim of child abuse? Hardly. I also didn't feel anxious, nervous about getting lost or worried that I might be snatched when my mother wasn't looking.

Baby safety harnesses do not only give parents and caregivers peace of mind, they give the child a sense of security and while exploring their first taste of independence.

I'll make a deal with you moms who are against baby leashes; if you won't look at my child with pity in your eyes when you see us in the airport, discount store or the mall, I promise not to be visibly smug when you have to call security to locate your child who wandered off while you weren't looking.

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Proper Use of Baby Restraints

I must admit that ideologically it seems aberrant to use baby restraints but the facts are that in these modern times it is probably going to become more necessary.

I think when used with love ,compassion and common sense such a thing can be useful rather than cruel or harmful. If a parent uses such a piece of equipment or anything (crib, play yard etc.) for that matter to not integrate the child with their day to day routine and uses it to ABANDON the child rather than to keep them safe from harm; only then does it become a bad thing.

In some situations you must weigh the lesser of different evils, etc. If you feel like you need one, get one. But do not do so with the expectation that its use will create lots of free time for you or something and use the restraint with restraint! Keeping our babies safe by using various types of nursery products and baby restraints is a very good thing. lol

From the webmaster:

I agree that the attitude of the mother (or caretaker) has much to do as to whether or not baby leashes are cruel. Some people object because they compare using a harness on a child to a dog leash which I find totally ridiculous. As you mention, a baby crib can just as easily be classified as an object of abuse and/or cruelty if it's used as a prison to hold a child hostage rather than to keep them safe while sleeping. So many baby safety products' intended usage might be overridden to become tools of mistreatment and neglect to more of a degree than child restraints. If you wanted to carry things a step further, the nursery door if kept closed for extended periods of time becomes a tool for an emotionally abusive parent. When you think about it, it's all about an individual's intent and approach to parenting, isn't it? Fretting about the use of baby restraints seems kind of silly when they are primarily used by parents who are doing their best, often opening themselves up to criticism as we've seen, to keep their kids safe while there is evidence of individuals secretly neglecting their children using the very beds that they sleep in.

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by Melinda
(Houston, tx, US)

Baby harnesses and leashes are a great safety item when you have a lot of children that are close in age and don't have a babysitter everytime you need to grocery shop, the baby harness is great and much needed.

The average shopping carts only have room for one baby to be seated and I can't put the others in the basket because I fill that space up with groceries for my family. What I do is put my youngest child in the basket of the shopping cart, another in an infant seat at the front of the shopping cart and the next youngest in a safety harness.

The rule is that they must hold on to the shopping cart at all times. But when a 2 year old toddler sees something neat they run to check it out rather than listening.

Another reason that I don't make them all ride in the basket is because it's hard to manuever a basket full of groceries alone, much less to chase the kids down when they venture away. Plus, you can't leave the basket unattended because you have a baby strapped in it.

Baby harnesses and leashes do a great job of preventing my child from running away and and keeps them out of danger. So many times I see a toddler in the store all by themselves with no parent around and then I will either see or hear a frantic parent with a basket full of children rounding the corner clearly upset and overwhelmed that one of their children is missing. Then, they are so relieved when they locate the lost little one that ran. A toddler harness would have prevented all that upset and it would save alot of kids from being kidnapped!

And it's so dangerous when parents are shopping in busy places where kids wiggle from your hand and they are gone! There you are screaming their name while you shove people out of your way. I see this way too often and it's scary to not know if someone has abducted your child.

Anyone who is against baby harnesses and leashes either don't remember what it was like raising their children, only had one child or they were spaced apart so the older child was a great help.

But if you have a 4.5 year old, 3, 2 and 6 month old baby I see nothing wrong with keeping your babies safe with a harness. I ignore all the critcism because they wear the harness for their safety and for my sanity! LOL

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