5 Bad Driving Habits You Might Be Passing Down to Your Kids
Children are constantly emulating the actions of their parents, including when they’re in the car. It can be anything as simple as whether you listen to music to remembering whether you use your indicators before making a turn. It’s good to remember that every time you get behind the wheel with your kids in tow, you’re teaching them how to drive.
- Not Wearing Your Seat Belt
Are you preaching to your children that they need to wear their seat belts, but not doing so yourself? You could be teaching them that wearing a seat belt isn’t important. Even just forgetting every now and again could leave them with lasting impressions.
Kids are constantly watching their parents, and if they see that you aren’t wearing your seatbelt, even though you are telling them how important it is, they are more likely to do as you do and not as you say.
Going 40 in a 30-mile-per-hour zone? If you speed, even only slightly, your children pick up on that and may emulate that themselves when they begin driving one day.
Pay attention to your speed not only for the safety of everyone in the vehicle, but also for the sake of the future drivers that you are creating.
- Using Abusive Language This is one of the most common driving traits that children pick up from their parents. If you get angry at someone in another car, honk your horn, shout, or curse, your children see that as appropriate driving behavior and are likely to be the same way when they become drivers themselves. Instead, try to remain calm, take a deep breath, and use appropriate language.
- Eating or Texting While Driving Do you do distracting things while you’re driving like text, make phone calls, eat, or tune the radio? If these are things that you find normal while you’re driving, your children will think that it is safe and acceptable when they start driving. It’s not safe for an experienced driver to be distracted on the road, but for an inexperienced teen driver, it could be lethal behavior.
- Ignoring Stop Signs Think rolling through those stop signs is no big deal? Just like with other habits, children observe how their parents react to different things like stopping at red lights or turning right on red. If you blow through stop signs or do a slow roll through them, your kids will think that’s what they can do, too. They risk not only the possibility of getting an expensive ticket from a police officer, but also possibly getting into an accident.
If you are going to be driving with your children, it’s important to begin paying attention to your driving habits and figuring out how you can be the best possible role model. We all have bad habits that have formed over many years of driving. When we do something for so long we become a little bit lazy and unattentive. Just think about what you want your children to learn from you every time you get in the car.