Positive Babywearing Stories, Anyone?

You only have to browse through online parent forums and communities for a short while to find hundreds of stories of parents who have borne the brunt of negativity with regards to their parenting practices – especially babywearing.

I’ve lost count of the amount of anecdotes I’ve read from mamas who have been accosted by (mostly) well-meaning strangers, terrified that their babies are about to plunge from their (safe and secure) carriers to hit the floor below. I’ll never forget one mamas story of how a stranger snuck up behind her and proceeded to attempt to untie her mei-tai straps, and when the angry mama span around to confront her she was met with “see how easy it is for someone to just come up and undo these?? You wouldn’t even know until your baby hit the deck!!”
Positive Babywearing Stories, Anyone?
Mostly, babywearing parents are told that their babies will be spoilt, and will never tolerate being put down if they are worn (my confident and secure 5 month old, who has used a pushchair just a handful of times, begs to differ). However, I feel like I am missing something because I have never suffered any of these foolish statements. In fact, I have never been the target of anything other than positive comments and curious questions from my family, friends and the general public over babywearing. Just today, a pair of elderly ladies spent 15 minutes cooing over Squish in the mei-tai at the bus stop. One of them remarked on what a lucky little baby he is, being carried so close to his mummy when so many others are “laid flat in prams and left to scream by themselves” (her words, not mine!).

Maybe I am one of the lucky ones, living in a town in which people are open minded about different parenting styles – either that, or they are too polite to say anything.

I just felt compelled to share that lovely story of the elderly women at the bus stop today. It felt pretty special to be congratulated for the choice I have made, despite the fact that the only congratulations I need are my happy, secure, attached children.

I’d love to hear what positive things people have said to you when you’ve been out and about wearing your babies and toddlers! Please share in the comments below!

image courtesy of zimpenfish @ flickr

Comments

  1. says

    I’ve never had a negative comment when wearing Delilah! I often get asked by moms, grandmas, and pregnant women about my carriers. They often ask if it’s “one of those Baby Bjorns”, giving me the opportunity to explain the differences between carriers and steer them away from the ‘crotch danglers’.

    • says

      How wonderful! I have to restrain myself when i see a babe in a crotch-dangler from accosting their parents and telling them all about the evils of Bjorns! lol. Its great that you find the opportunity to educate others. Babywearing: a public service :D

  2. says

    I carry my 9 month old around in a Littlelife backpack, which she loves. I usually get lots of stares and smiles from people. Sometimes I see people waving at me and then I realise it’s because my baby is waving and smiling at them from the backpack. I get the odd person who says “don’t you find her awfully heavy”, but I’ve never received any negative comments thankfully. The story of the stranger untying the mei-tei straps is shocking!

  3. says

    I only had positive experiences as well. People always commenting on how comfy or cuddly Nora looked in the sling. We got the most when she was able to sit in a kangaroo carry (facing out), people loved it. I think one of the secret benefits of baby wearing is that you get more compliments, because people can really see your baby…as opposed to if the baby is hidden behinds awnings and blankets. And who doesn’t love to hear that they have a cute baby?

  4. Sum says

    Love my moby wrap and baby does too wish we hadn’t bothered to buy a stroller as it has been used more to take the laundry to an from the launderette (while baby was in moby so my hands were free to actually load and unload the laundry)

    So many people make u feel like u need a stroller/ travel cot system but I know my 5 month old is happier in his moby wrap esp as dad loves carrying him every time we r out together and it is great bonding for them.

    I am british but live in NY and felt more positive vibes and even some complliments from people in New York than in Nottingham (where I have worn my baby on visits) but no overtly horrible comments!

  5. Natalie says

    I used an Ergo at work today (I work at a child care centre) – BEST THING EVER! It was simply amazing and the little girl (15 months) was so settled and happy in it. And, I could get some jobs (like hanging the washing) done, knowing that she felt safe and secure. It was brilliant!

  6. says

    We’ve also only ever had positive comments! We wore our little Mausi (also a nickname :)) exclusively for the first 16 months, and have only recently purchased a stroller as she is getting a bit heavy for extended walks. We’ve worn her in a sleepy, ring sling, woven wrap and ergo, and absolutely LOVE the freedom of wearing her! A women at the grocery store said it reminded her of home (Ethiopia) and an older couple in our building absolutely adore seeing her worn. Our neighbour has always said “oh you won’t be able to wear her that much longer…” but she probably started saying that at 2 months, and so we just smile and ignore the comment.

  7. says

    Where I live I can’t imagine hearing a negative comment. I will admit I secretly judge parents who tote their babies around in car seats.

    I especially love compliments from older people and those in the medical field who see lots of babies. One of my L&D nurses commended me on doing skin to skin in a way that (sadly) implied it wasn’t all that common there. Makes me feel great but bad for the babies who don’t get to be so attached.

  8. chelsea says

    i had a wonderful time BW my first born. She was very colicy, so i would sling her during the day and i noticed she slept better at night. i was told by ALOT of ppl that slinging during the day would cause her to be ‘spoiled’ to it. but she is one of the best sleepiers i know. at 14 months she would walk to her bed and wave bye bye and wait for us to tuck her in ( she was moved to a toddler bed early due to climbing) she is now ( almost 3) a very independtant child and still a wonderful sleeper. I personally believe that when a baby gets the attention they need early on it helps them deal with things at that time and help with thier confidence later on in life. slinging or baby wearing was one of the best choices i ever made with her!

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