Originally Posted by GoldiH
We always wear our inflatable pfd's, ...But our kids are small (1 & 3) and there is honestly no way I'm not going in after them.
That sounds very heroic and self sacraficing (and may prove to be) but will serve no useful purpose but give your husband two people to rescue rather than one. Firstly, diving in with an inflatable PFD will ensure you are unable to swim at all until you shed the vest during which time you will most certainly loose sight of the child and become disoriented as to his or her location. Then, absent a vest, little more than your neck and head will extend above the surface of the water (so long as you keep treading) giving you no vantage and, sorrounded with nothing but sky and water, you will have no points of reference. In any sea, you will have a hard, if not impossible time, locating the child and a tough time getting to him/her if you do. There are many more arguments against your proposed response but I shall not go there. The fact is, however, that there have been too many instances when one person leaving a boat to rescue another has resulted in both being lost and, in one case I know of, two brothers and a father were lost.
The solution to this issue is to keep the kids aboard. Tethers, netting, firm discipline and vigilence. Thousands of kids have sailed with their parents without inadvertantly ending up in the sea and there is no reason why it should happen with you/your kids.