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Lynda Loveland: Kids are distraction enough

Posted April 24, 2013

Lynda Loveland

For the last year I’ve been doing carpool to soccer practice with several other families. When it’s my turn, I usually take about six kids - four boys and two girls.

To say it’s loud would be a huge understatement. At times, it’s kinda like a version of Animal House, but this one features eight-year-olds, although I don’t tolerate potty talk. They’re just having a good time, cutting loose after school.

If I get a phone call while I’m driving, I either let my daughter answer it or I just let it ring. I figure, I’m hauling a very precious commodity. I don’t want to be distracted. The kids are distraction enough.

But the other day when I was carpooling, I noticed another parent who was also carpooling. This parent wasn’t just driving a car full of kids. This parent was also looking at something on their phone, speeding down the road!

We all know how quickly an accident can happen. You take your eyes off the road for one second and the driver of the car in front of you slams on their brakes or someone makes a quick turn. In the blink of an eye, your life and the lives of the kids in your car could be forever changed.

I emceed the Johnston County Teen Driving Summit this past weekend. The goal was to get teens to do only one thing in the car, the most important thing, drive. One of the speakers said when you're behind the wheel, you're basically operating a weapon.

If you think about how much damage a car can do, you realize it's true. The message doesn't just apply to teens. It applies to us all. It's our responsibility to drive safely and to set an example for our kids. Is it worth the risk to send that quick text or make that short phone call when it comes to the safety of your children?

I admit it. I've taken a phone call before with my kids in the car. But not again. I can live without my phone. I can't live without my kids.

Lynda is the mom of three and co-host of The Mix Morning Show on 101.5 WRAL-FM. Find her here on Thursdays. Click here to see her Facebook page.


 

6 Comments

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  • christie5 Apr 25, 5:51 p.m.

    Thanks for this article. Such a good reminder. I would add that it doesn't matter if your kids are in the car. I know too many people who say they don't text, take calls, etc...while their kids are in the car but admit to doing it freely when they are not. Just because your kids aren't in the car doesn't mean that someone else's aren't. Thanks for reminding us all to take care of each other.

  • jjrn Apr 25, 1:49 p.m.

    Well said! Glad to see you address this issue. I think all adults are guilty, but NOTHING is worth potential harm to someone.

  • br549znc Apr 25, 11:25 a.m.

    Great article, Lynda.

  • snowl Apr 25, 7:24 a.m.

    correction...."right of way"......:)

  • snowl Apr 25, 7:22 a.m.

    Not to mention you could hit a pedestrian who is ALSO looking at their phone while walking in front of you to cross the street! The pedestrian has the right away, so they don't think twice about texting and walking...all though not a good practice! I alway have deemed a telephone call as "not a priority" when it involves driving or socializing.

  • kcastleberry Apr 24, 11:09 p.m.

    You are exactly right Lynda. I wish more people would follow your lead. Too many people are addicted to texting these days including adults. We have texting blocked on all our phones. That means....wait for it....we have a 16 year old that doesn't text!!!! Shocked? Guess what? She is surviving and thriving quite well with out it and so is our entire family. Yes, we get the eye rolls and all when we tell people we don't do the texting thing, but we could care less. About the rudiest thing I've seen in recent years is trying to talk to someone right beside of you and they can't put their phone down and stop texting for the life of them. Much less what they do while driving their cars. Yes, I do answer my phone while driving, but I too am trying to curb this behavior. It's just not worth it. People are important, technology and knowing what is happening outside the car and being updated by the second just isn't. Great post!