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Multitasking Gone Too Far?

I'd venture to guess that many of us have been in similar situations to a mom in Dayton, Ohio. Kids need to get to school. Someone in the car is hungry. But that's where one mom's decisions went incredibly wrong. The mom was seen breastfeeding her baby -- who was leaned up against the steering wheel -- and talking on her cell phone all while driving on wet roads.

Police were alerted to the incident by another motorist, who called the police non-emergency line. The dispatcher on the call indicated that the police could do little without witnessing the woman themselves. Still, police did follow up and tracked the mom down. She admitted to breastfeeding while driving and has now been charged with child endangerment, according to the Dayton Daily News.

What amazes me is not just that this mom seemed to see nothing wrong with nursing while driving. What strikes me is that another motorist had the sense not just to shake his head, but try to do something about what he saw. After all, how many times have you seen a minivan in front of you swerve, only to notice a parent handing something to a kid in the back seat while driving? And how many distracted drivers have you seen barely notice you while they are driving and chatting away on their cell phones?

How much do you multitask while chauffeuring your kids around?

By Stacey Garfinkle |  March 2, 2009; 2:22 PM ET  | Category:  Babies , Newsmakers
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Wow, do people just have no imagination? What would have happened if she had been in even a minor fender-bender and the airbag deployed?

It wouldn't have killed either the older child to be a few minutes later or the baby to be hungry until they got to school.

Posted by: floof | March 3, 2009 9:56 AM | Report abuse

Her breastfeeding while driving was unbelievably dumb, dangerous, arrogant even, maybe desperate.

But what do you want to bet that if she'd been on her cell phone while putting on mascara in the rear view mirror while the kids in back had the volume way high on the standard-equipment dvd player, the caller would have just driven by.

Posted by: practica1 | March 3, 2009 10:56 AM | Report abuse

I love how almost no one has commented on this item. Perhaps because everyone drives distracted by kids, cell, etc, all the time and has no room to throw stones? Hmmm? I cannot tell you how often I see distracted driving because people believe their phone call is just too darn important to wait. Or because the driver has one hand on the wheel, the other reaching into the back seat to do something for/with/to the kid back there. I am by no means a perfect driver, but at least I understand that driving should absolutely not be a multi-tasking operation.

Posted by: falltillfly | March 3, 2009 11:02 AM | Report abuse

I think the reason that there aren't many posts on this is because it's not a controversial topic! Forget the multi-tasking while driving: the child wasn't in a car seat! Yes, everyone is distracted while driving. It's the nature of having children in the car. We don't need to add to that distraction by putting on make-up, eating, talking on the phone or whatever other crazy things people do. I'm guilty of handing things back to my kids: there isn't a parent out there who isn't. The child was endangered not by the multi-tasking but by being in the lap of the driver. She could have had both hands on the wheel and still been side swiped by some moron on the phone, drinking a cup of coffee.

Posted by: kimf13 | March 3, 2009 2:57 PM | Report abuse

I've nursed while doing any number of different things- BUT nothing that might endanger my child, myself, or others.

If the vehicle is moving, the child needs to be properly restrained, period.

Posted by: CrimsonWife | March 3, 2009 10:44 PM | Report abuse

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