Kim Hudson: Your driving habits get transfered to your kids

There is nothing that will make you more aware of your own driving than a teenager who has just completed driver’s education classes. All these years of driving a seemingly oblivious child to and fro have suddenly been replaced with a rule book roadster who doesn’t hesitate to point out even the slightest infraction of the law.

Which can be both good and bad, right? It’s good to be conscious of my own driving habits.

Of course I want to be a positive role model and set a good example. On the other hand, almost 30 years of driving (that makes me feel old) lends itself to the reality that some not-so-good habits have been formed. And having said teenager point them out does not always make for a happy mother. We haven’t even started the actual driving part and I’m feeling stressed.

What I find happening is I am now super aware of all the – how do I say this nicely – creative ways others are driving. And the realization that my teenager will soon be driving on the same roads as these crazy, I mean creative, drivers is enough to  make me want to keep Kim’s Cab open for business forever.

Seriously though, there is a higher level of awareness once your child is getting ready to get their license.

It’s too late now for me to change my habits; he’s been in the car with me for 15 years and has witnessed both the good and bad. But I can become more vigilant in my conversation with both my children about the dangers of driving and what they need to be aware of.

It certainly wouldn’t hurt for me to brush up on my knowledge of the rules of the road either.  Take for instance the pedestrian crosswalks. I think it’s obvious that pedestrians have the right of way at an intersection with a stoplight.

But it isn’t so clear when the crosswalk is not in an intersection, like the ones near the hospital on Carroll Street.

There’s so much for a new driver to take in. I know for certain that we can all use the reminder that cell phones are a distraction while driving. And remember that your kiddos are watching your habits in the car. Checking a quick text message while you come to a stop at the light? Yeah, they saw you.

So maybe just a little food for thought is necessary as we think about driving. Every day a new driver gets behind the wheel of a car. That new driver could be your child, relative, neighbor, or friend.

According to the Maryland Motor Vehicle Administration, every 14 minutes someone dies in a motor vehicle crash, every 10 seconds an injury occurs, and every five seconds a crash occurs.

Maybe we could remember to slow down, drive safe, put away our phones and be the kind of driver you want your teenager to be.

Contact Kim Hudson at


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