She’s Driving me Crazy – Adventures in Teen Driving, Part Two

posted in: family, kids, parenting, rants | 0



My daughter is required, by New Hampshire state law, to log 40 hours of driving with a licensed person over the age of 18.

I don’t know why 18 is the cutoff age here because I remember how I used to drive when I was 18 and there’s no way I’d want anyone at that age offering driving advice to my daughter because OK FLOOR IT and SHUT THE LIGHTS OFF THE COPS CAN’T SEE YOU was pretty much how I rolled back then.

So far, we’ve logged about 7 hours of driving time over the past 3 months because I can only stand being in the car with her for 3 minutes at a time before I’m screaming stuff like YOU’RE TOO CLOSE TO THE SIDE OF THE ROAD and SLOW DOWN SLOW DOWN STOPSTOPSTOPSTOP and LET ME OUT.

Driving with a person learning is pretty stressful. Those “Oh shit” handles that they have inside the cars should actually dispense anxiety meds if a teen is driving.

Me: OHMYGOD SLOW DOWN [squeezes handle, 3 Adivan plop out]

I’m so patenting that.

According to the driver education laws, 10 of these 40 hours spent practicing have to be between the hours of sunset and dawn.

I have no idea how or when this is going to happen because I’m 48 years old as I write this and sunset pretty much matches up with my bedtime and by dawn I’ve already eaten supper.

Getting old sucks.

Mainly we’ve been driving on side roads (in New Hampshire that’s pretty much every single road except for the highway which is riddled with hoofprints and cow poop) so we have yet to experience the exhilaration of driving faster than 30 mph (893 km/sec for those who calculate speed using Celsius) which is a good thing because my daughter has zero idea how to concentrate on anything other than hitting branches hanging over the side of the road.

Me: Honey, move over you’re too close to the side of-[WHAPWHAPWHAP]-the road, never mind. Remind me to call the body shop when we’re done.

When we enter our driving time in the driving log I have to put in a start time, an end time and then what types of things we practiced. Typically the driving log looks something like this:


Start time: 4:30 PM

End time: 5:00 PM

Skills practiced: Driving in the shoulder, hitting branches, narrowly missing pedestrians, giving father a frigging heart attack omg


We spend a lot of time driving around in vacant parking lots because they’re big and there’s not much to hit. I’ve been showing her the ropes on how to park in parking spaces and how to back out of them. If she does something wrong – like pull too far into a different space or back into another space or park sideways wtf how did you manage to do that – I’ll get her out of the car with her and show her what she did incorrectly.

We spend more time out of the car than in it. This is actually a good thing because my screaming inside the car can get pretty loud. Outdoors, the sound can disperse.

I’m sorry. I know you didn’t plan on this being about science.

So, at this point we have 7 hours down and 33 to go.

I hope this “Oh Shit Handle Anxiety Dispenser” patent comes through quickly.