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Dad Gets Annoyed That His Brother Forced His Kids to Wear Seatbelts in the Car

Dad Gets Annoyed That His Brother Forced His Kids to Wear Seatbelts in the Car

Just from reading the title of this story, you almost don’t need to know what happened to guess who the assehole is! Long gone are the days when children are left to roll around in the back of a car untethered, and for good reason! Wearing a correctly fitted seatbelt reduces the odds of being fatally injured by up to 50%, so it’s unfathomable that a parent would knowingly allow their child to go anywhere without one. But according to one Reddit user, common sense isn’t always common. After agreeing to drive his nieces and nephews to a summer day camp so that his brother could attend a doctor’s appointment, the journey got off to a rocky start when his young niblings, aged just 10, 8 and 5 years old, refused to put their seatbelts on.

I (26m) recently drove my nieces and nephew (10f, 8m, 5f) to their summer day camp because my brother had a doctor’s appointment and I was available.

Now, I’m very strict about safety in my car, and I especially don’t tolerate anyone not wearing their seatbelt properly, and that goes double for kids. That day, my nieces and nephew decided to be difficult, and refused to buckle their seatbelts. I refused to start the car until they did, and in the end I had to video call my brother at the doctor’s office waiting room and had him threaten to ground them. We were fifteen minutes late for camp.


After the fact, my brother told me that he was frustrated with me because I “made them late for no reason”. He told me that we rode around in the back of our parents pickup truck all the time and turns out fine (this is true), and that it was a short drive, so it wouldn’t have been a big deal. He said I “have a stick up (my) ass” and need to lighten up a little. That I have no right to discipline his kids, and he just called me a bad guardian in general. He’s probably right that nothing would have happened, but I feel like he’s being too dramatic about fifteen minutes of lateness. AITA?

That’s right! The father of the children thinks that his brother should have allowed them to travel in the car without their seatbelts.  Instead of being annoyed at his children for misbehaving for their uncle, he directs his displeasure at his brother.

Commenters were quick to point out the problem with the father’s nothing-bad happened-to-us attitude.

Survivorship bias is a thing.

The kids who didnt wear their seatbelts and got into accidents mostly died. You and your brother were just the lucky ones who survived to talk about it. (Oahrahm)

NTA. You didn’t make his kids late, he did, when he taught them to not wear their seat belts and then asked someone else to drive them someplace. They could easily have put on their belts and got to camp, but that wasn’t their decision. (south3y)

My answer when someone says, “we did it and turned out fine” is always, yeah and the ones that died aren’t here to tell us their story. Like they made it a law for a reason, it saves lives (my best friend growing up wasn’t buckled in and a drunk driver hit the car he was in so hard they rolled several times in the ditch…first responders found him dead upon arrival).

Heck I drove my neighbours daughter (40’s) the other week and refused to move my vehicle until she buckled in, let alone kids. (Competitive-Candy-82)

Other people pointed out that the father would have no doubt had an entirely different take on the situation had there been an accident.

If you had an accident with the car, your brother would blame you for sure if his kids got hurt and call you a bad guardian who drove while his kids didn’t have seatbelts on. (LifeAsksAITA)

Clearly bro has not considered what the “guard” part of “guardian” means (oliviamrow)

And, there is also the small issue of it being against the law to drive passengers of any age without seatbelts on.

Even if you didn’t get into an accident, you can still get pulled over by the cops and get a hefty ticket for endangering the children. So stupid for your bro not to realize them not wearing their seat belts is a multifaceted issue. (ProfessorShameless)

Many people advised OP just to refuse to take them anywhere from now on.

I’ve got a pretty simple solution for you, tell your brother that until his kids have a habit of buckling as soon as they enter the car, you will not be driving them anywhere. You were doing him a favor by driving them, wearing a seat belt is hardly an inconvenience and a simple task to perform, and these kids are too young to already be in a habit of not wanting to wear them. (Salguod14)

But we think @rittwikaPM-7552, a survivor of a deadly car crash sums it up best with this line: ‘Better to be alive and late than dead early. Nothinf should trump safety.’

We couldn’t agree more.

What would you have done in this guy’s position?

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Jolene enjoys writing, sharing and connecting with other like-minded women online – it also gives her the perfect excuse to ignore Mount-Washmore until it threatens to bury her family in an avalanche of Skylander T-shirts and Frozen Pyjama pants. (No one ever knows where the matching top is!) Likes: Reading, cooking, sketching, dancing (preferably with a Sav Blanc in one hand), social media, and sitting down on a toilet seat that one of her children hasn’t dripped, splashed or sprayed on. Dislikes: Writing pretentious crap about herself in online bio’s and refereeing arguments amongst her offspring.

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