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Hands Off My Baby!

Hands Off My Baby!

Hands off the newborn baby, please.

That's what many moms who have just given birth would like to say to all the well wishers who want to cuddle and snuggle their recently-arrived bundles of joy.

"I was comfortable with the six-week rule," posts Marina G. in the Debating Mums community. "I just don't see the need to expose my newborn to everyone else's germs unless it is absolutely necessary."

I tend to agree with her. But I extend the "not exposing to everyone else's germs" long past the first month of life. Frankly, I feel that way about all the members of my family — not matter what their age.

What is it about a new baby that cause people to loose their senses and their respect for basic boundaries?

Everyone wants to hold, to touch, to coo at the latest model. Poor kid is more crowded than when in utero.

Yes, it is wonderful to hold a young life. There is an amazing warmth and joy wrapped up in a child that has recently come into the world.

But leave the first traces of all that happiness to the child's parents for at least a little while. Let mom and dad and immediate family relish in the excitement of a new member in the clan.

All too quickly everyone else — daycare providers, church nursery workers, babysitters, mom and dad's co-workers, that nice lady from down the street whose first name you cannot remember, and preschool teachers — will make their way into the new child's life and forever end this peaceful time when it is just the three of you: mom, dad, and baby.

These new faces are all crucially important in this child's development. But not at one week or even one month of life. The rest of us need to leave some space for the bonds between child and parent to grow and be strengthened.

Give parents and a new baby some time to get to know each other before the rest of us intrude.

Image Source: stroyvillegirl via Flickr/Creative Commons

The views expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of, and should not be attributed to, POPSUGAR.

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VictoriaMorton19880 VictoriaMorton19880 3 years
Germs? I wasn't worried. Dropping her? I wasn't worried. But I wanted my baby. She was my first and everyone was taking her away from me. At least, thats what I felt. My Korean mom flew from the west coast to the east coast to help. We were surrounded by my husbands family. Everyone wanted to 'help out'. My mom did help with all the cooking, laundry etc. Everyone else just took advantage of our hospitality and came and ate and took turns holding the baby. No one brought us food as first time parents. I'm not sure who I resented more, DH's family who would drop by and hold the baby and leave without helping, or my mom who did everything including taking the baby at all hours. I realize now, that is a cultural thing as much as her trying to get her time in. But the fact was that I carried my daughter for 9 mo. I was absolutely beyond in love and wanted to bond with her. I wanted everyone gone. People need to respect a new moms feelings over her baby...and give her some space. Whether she wants it or not, she needs to bond with the baby and those first weeks are crucial. When my 2nd was born, I was thrilled my mom came to help. I let her have him plenty.
BernadetteFinzel BernadetteFinzel 4 years
Relatives and friends may mean well when they want to hold and cuddle our newborns but they can take it to the point where they are in fact interfering with the parent and infant bonding process. My first child was the first grandchild of my inlaws. Between them and other relatives visiting me at the hospital I didn't have a moments' peace. I came home exhaused and had my inlaws in my face almost 24/7 for the first two weeks of my baby's life. It was very stressful. They also, without our permission, invited any friends of theirs to see their new grandchild. My husband never really got to bond properly with his son because they wanted to take over everything, even the breastfeeding if they could have. I would advise all new parents to set clear boundries with all relatives and friends seeing your baby. Don't worry about hurting other people's feelings. You and your baby come first.
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