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Making a 14 hr drive alone with a 6 month old? PIOC

I'm making a trip in about 2 wks, I'm driving 14 hrs to VA to go to a church camp, but I'm going alone with my baby and I'm terrified!!
1. I'm scared she'll get fussy from sitting in a carseat for so long.
2. I'm terrified of highways anyways, and I've got a 14 hr trip full of highways, including through the mountains.
3. I'll be alone, so I have to do the driving, feeding, changing, etc, all on my own.

I'll be stopping in NC to pick up my dad and sis on the way, but that's not until about 10 hrs into the trip.
Has anyone made such a long trip with a baby before? How did you do it? Should I drive through the night?


Asked by srhmldndo at 10:32 AM on Jul. 3, 2009 in Just for Fun

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Answers (6)
  • I wouldn't drive through the night, especially not on your own. I think there's too much risk of falling asleep or hitting an animal. I would leave early early in the morning so that LO can sleep in the car and it's still part of normal sleep time, then plan on taking a decent sized lunch break. If you leave at 5 am you'll have half your trip out of the way by lunch! Then maybe you won't feel so strapped for time in the afternoon and will be able to take another break when you pick up your other passengers. Let them know your plans and ask if you can take the baby inside to crawl around for a bit and maybe have an early dinner.
    Or there's always the possibility of breaking your trip up into 2 days, getting a hotel room for an early night and time to relax.

    Answer by bltcahill at 11:44 AM on Jul. 3, 2009

  • Well after taking a car to the shop and double checking all your mechanicals, tires, belts, fans, etc. Then I would review all the safety info I could. Such as checking in hourly with someone, so if you don't check in, someone knows something is wrong. Calling before you leave and making sure at least two people know your route! Only stopping at secure locations with many people around. DD's diaper or bottle can wait for a safe moment, time and place. Allow plenty of time to get there and for plenty of stops. Call your local police on the non emergency line and ask them for other tips. As for baby, well other than stopping often, taking soothing music, understanding that she may just decide to wail for no reason etc. there's not much you can do. Try to get a good night's sleep before you leave so you won't be exhausted before you begin.


    Answer by Lesli at 10:54 AM on Jul. 3, 2009

  • I have and for the longest time I had a fear of driving with just me and my little one. This was in the days before cell phones too. My sister lived far away and we were very close, so I wanted to visit often. I thought, what if my car breaks down? What if the baby gets fussy and screams and cries for miles? You are at an advantage...assuming you have a cell phone, if you don't at least get a pre-paid phone so you can call in case of emergency. Be prepared as possible for the trip. I do NOT recomend a woman alone stopping at a rest stop..a McDonalds or busy gas station is much much safer especially after dark. Do you have a friend you could get to come along?

    Answer by salexander at 10:55 AM on Jul. 3, 2009

  • Also, in your mind try breaking it up into smaller increments. Like sections. This might make it easier.

    Answer by Lesli at 10:56 AM on Jul. 3, 2009

  • salexander: No I don't have enough room in my car for another person. I have a 4-seater, and I have to leave 2 seats for my dad and sister when I pick them up in NC. I was going to when they were just gonna meet me in VA but now I have to pick them up.

    Answer by srhmldndo at 11:14 AM on Jul. 3, 2009

  • DH and I drive through the night if we are taking our kiddos, but that is only 9-10 hours, and there are two of us.

    We are moving next weekend 12 hours away and we are doing it in two 6 hour days to make it easier on the kiddos.

    I think the ladies have given you some good advice. If you want it to be easier on you, with less stops, I would go at night if you are good about staying awake and can nap for few hours before the trip.

    Answer by twin_mommy at 5:21 PM on Jul. 3, 2009

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