Today on the blog we thought we’d share some real talk – some baby etiquette, if you will. We’re both first-time moms. We realize there are several stereotypes that come with that title, including over-protective, slightly anal and 24/7 worrywarts (do people still say worrywarts?). And while bringing up this topic will likely do nothing to banish those titles, we still would love to know if any other moms feel the same way we do.
We spend every minute of every day caring for very tiny humans and we’ve not surprisingly become completely obsessed with them, We do everything in our power to always make sure they’re safe and comfortable. Because of this, we’ve had the somewhat awkward misfortune of saying the phrase, “No, you may not hold my baby.” Today we’re sharing a few tips that we feel moms should be completely comfortable enforcing when it comes to their babies interacting with others.
No two babies are alike
We can’t tell you how many times we’ve heard, “Oh, babies love me.” Well that’s great, but we can’t guarantee our babies will love you. What’s so incredible and beautiful about babies is each one is born with their own personality. Each baby has his or her own likes and dislikes, comfort levels and random quirks. While we’re sure many babies have loved you, that doesn’t mean we’re ready to hand ours over to you, an individual whom he or she does not know, and just expect it to go swimmingly. Don’t take it personally; perhaps she’s just not that into you.
If we don’t offer, that may be a sign not to ask
Timing can sometimes be everything with a baby. If she’s tired, fussy, getting hungry or just feeling clingy, that’s likely not the best time to be passed off to someone else. Parents know their baby best, so they’ll let you know when they’re ready to be in someone else’s arms.
Furthermore, if we’re not ready to hand our baby over to you, then your small children are definitely on the hands-off list. Yes, we’re sure your children are lovely, but children are children and they have very little experience holding fragile objects in their hands. There’s a reason why our mother never let Lindsay into any retail stores selling crystal vases and fine China. She just couldn’t be trusted. And don’t get us started on the germs kids can carry with them once they start mingling with other humans their own age. No thank you!
If you’re visiting a newborn, as soon as you enter the home head straight for the sink and wash your hands thoroughly. We keep organic sanitizer in our homes so it’s on-hand (no pun intended) when guests come to visit. A brand we love is Babyganics. It’s alcohol- and fragrance-free and comes out as a foam.
Can’t touch this
If you see a cute baby, please resist the urge to touch or kiss (aahhh!) their feet, hands or (dear God, help us) their face! There’s a bubble that should not be broken with a newborn. Stay outside of that bubble perimeter.
No close talkers
Remember on Seinfeld when that man Elaine was dating would get right in people’s faces to talk to them and it was awkward and uncomfortable? For some reason, people have the same instinct with babies. Yes, babies are small, but they’re not ants. There’s no need to put your face directly into theirs to see their features. A little bit of space might make the meeting much more enjoyable for them and for you.
At first we felt uneasy and somewhat apologetic about this subject. But with every passing day, our mama bear instinct seems to increase ten-fold, and if we know our baby is not going to feel great joy by being passed off into someone else’s arms, then it’s just not going to happen. Sorry…not sorry. Any other mamas feel the same way?
*Photos by Welcome Arms Photography
Jacqueline and Lindsay are sisters and new moms living on the East Coast of Canada.