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to not understand people's obsession with having to touch/hold babies?

(76 Posts)
princessj29 Sun 31-Mar-13 22:34:33

Was at DHs parents house today and they had lots of family there for Easter meal. Our baby is 7 months and also have a 5 year old. Baby is used to it being the 3/4 of us but does go to baby groups and is very Smiley and sociable but FROM A DISTANCE! I appreciate his family want to interact with her but literally every time she was playing happily one would pick her up or come and stroke her face/wave her arms about etc. Or they'd ask if they could hold her if I was, I'd say yes but face away from me as she's going through a clingy phase and will cry and reach for me if she sees me - but no, each of them stood there telling her it's ok, mummy's there etc with her crying. Cue me having an upset baby to deal with all day and them all branding her as whingey. It was the same way when my eldest was a baby and drove me mad then too - I don't understand why adults can't play alongside babies/toddlers and let them initiate physical contact, why do they insist on it? I have neices and nephews I obviously love and care for but would not pick them up and remove them from playing happily with their toys just because I felt like it and then be surprised when they weren't happy about it. AIBU to wish people would keep their distance and enjoy her happy rather than insist on physical contact and make her upset then swiftly hand her back for me to deal with while calling her whingey?

scottishtablet Sun 31-Mar-13 22:36:37

YANBU. It's just shocking that people want to interact with beautiful little children. If I were you, I'd erect a ten foot safety fence so they can only look at her.

SDTGisAnEvilWolefGenius Sun 31-Mar-13 22:37:57

Because they are so cuddly and gorgeous - and some are nostalgic for when their babies were that tiny. There is, in my opinion, almost nothing as lovely as holding a baby - they way they snuggle in and go to sleep, or coo and smile.

WorraLiberty Sun 31-Mar-13 22:38:25

Meh! I think you sound a bit miserable to be honest.

That might sound harsh, but you know people like to cuddle's not that weird and they've kind of liked it since the beginning of time.

Personally, I think they're all whingey little snot rockets and I can often be heard silently praying that someone won't expect me to hold their baby.

So my point is each to their own really.

AgentZigzag Sun 31-Mar-13 22:41:29

YANBU to feel protective of your baby, but YABU to not understand what the physical touch of a baby means to other people.

They're just so...ooooh...squishy and new grin

And when DD1 got older I really missed that square feeling of her little bod picking her up under her arms.

I don't come in contact with many babies and wouldn't have previously said that I'm a 'baby person', but holding another persons baby just brings back the feeling of closeness I had with my own babies, and it was such a lovely feeling.

Don't be tight sharing it about a bit smile

ImTooHecsyForYourParty Sun 31-Mar-13 22:41:32

There's something irresistible about babies. I would love to get the chance to get my hands on them but nobody I know has got one. Damned selfish of them, if you ask me. angry

I think that cuddles with babies should be prescribed on the NHS! grin

That said, you can't just grab a baby without checking that they are ok to be grabbed! If someone said actually, they're going through a clingy phase (or whatever reason) then I would just leave it, because there's no point inflicting yourself on a baby that wants you to leave them the hell alone grin

You can't treat a baby like a toy.

But to address the whole 'obsession with having to touch and hold babies' - it's cos they're so damned gorgeous! Squidgy and lovely smelling little critters.


Iaintdunnuffink Sun 31-Mar-13 22:41:33

You do sound quite unreasonable.

But they are bu to suddenly pick up a baby that's perfectly happy, then complain the baby is whingey when it lets everyone know that it's wants to be left alone.

Bridgetbidet Sun 31-Mar-13 22:41:58

Maybe the reason why she gets upset is because she's not used to it? I think you're being overly precious about it. When I opened this I thought it was going to be about strangers but this is her family, it's nice that they want to pick her up and hold her and play with her. I don't think you're encouraging her to be sociable, I don't think being sociable FROM A DISTANCE is truly being sociable. It's an odd attitude, to want everybody to keep their distance from her, very strange.

Doodledumdums Sun 31-Mar-13 22:42:23

I think this sounds like a bit of a difficult situation involving a lot of people, so in this particular instance I don't think you were being unreasonable. But taking the question in a general context then yes, YABU, babies are very yummy, and I think it is perfectly understandable to want to hold and cuddle them. Having said that, my DS is only 12 weeks old, so is not yet at a clingy age and is happy to go to anyone, so maybe I will change my mind in a few months! I don't think people do it to be irritating though, most people just love babies smile

AgentZigzag Sun 31-Mar-13 22:42:25

Babies have been designed to be cuddle magnets, people are just responding.

Iaintdunnuffink Sun 31-Mar-13 22:43:37

You could always start creeping up behind the other adults then giving them a big cuddle, don't let go and stop them from getting on with what they were doing. Then tell them not to be whingey if they complain.

carovioletfizz Sun 31-Mar-13 22:43:48

I know what you are saying a bit - I don't mind people wanting cuddles, but cannot bear it if they don't hand baby back immediately if he starts crying and wanting me, instead of trying to distract him or convince him that he does really want to be held by them!

gymmummy64 Sun 31-Mar-13 22:49:10

I've never been a big fan of babies - much preferred mine once they could walk and talk. Neither of mine were particularly contented babies so there wasn't too much of a queue of people wanting to cuddle them..

I find the opposite tbh - so many people assuming I will want to cuddle their babies and insisting I must have a 'hold'. Actually, largely I don't want to. If you're not a baby person, you forget those baby skills pretty quickly ime.

Just before you dismiss me as terribly cold, there is still nothing I like better than a DD on each shoulder for a cuddle in bed on a sunday morning. Always been like that and DDs are now 13 and 10 grin

Lovelygoldboots Sun 31-Mar-13 22:50:59

Really? I can't believe you were at a family party and expected your babies relatives to not interact. Don't understand what the problem is. They clearly all love her. Yabu. And a bit of a curmudgeon.

princessj29 Sun 31-Mar-13 22:57:57

Yes babies are gorgeous but surely sitting with her while she giggles, plays, babbles etc is more enjoyable for everyone concerned than trying to cuddle a baby who's whinging and trying to push you away? She literally didn't get a seconds peace all day - even when I was feeding her relatives felt the need to boo/clap at her and ever time I got her to sleep and left her then within 5 mins one had picked her up.

WorraLiberty Sun 31-Mar-13 23:02:56

How about a baby grow with "BACK OFF BASTARDS"?

Or is that too subtle? grin

elQuintoConyo Sun 31-Mar-13 23:08:20

Worra: you sum it up so succinctly!

tazzle22 Sun 31-Mar-13 23:11:34

I can understand you dont want her picked up when she is playing ......... but its hard for most adults to resist babies, especially family members . Think of it like a survival instinct ... the group is "looking after" the most vulnerable memners of the group, we are hard wired to do so wink

Having said that most should put her back down to play when she wants to ..... it is frustrating when all adult wants to do is cuddle ...... my youngest DGD just back from Germany did not know me very well on return and not keen for cuddles sad .... sensible to wait for her to come to me.

so you are both and neither grin

MissBlennerhassett Sun 31-Mar-13 23:14:37

grin Worra, just choked on my curry at that.

BoulevardOfBrokenSleep Sun 31-Mar-13 23:14:43

Who the hell picks up a sleeping baby? Are they insane?!

I don't think YABU at all, but I have never understood the thing people have about grabbing babies. Maybe cause I'm not a very touchy-feely person myself; obviously I make an exception for my own DC!

I still remember me and 6mo DD spending a few days with my extended family, with her being passed around all comers. When she started to cry on one aunt's lap, I was pathetically grateful when she said,' Oh, she wants her mummy', and handed her straight back.
As opposed to all the others, who had tried to cootchie-coo and entertain this poor wailing baby who just wanted a boob.

princessj29 Sun 31-Mar-13 23:17:54

Maybe it's because I'm more of a toddler than baby person too, particularly with other peoples children. Just don't get thatthey don't understand it's annoying if they keep making DD cry and I have to soothe her all day when usually she's very content. Yet 5 year old was asking people to play/read with her and being ignored!

Mumsyblouse Sun 31-Mar-13 23:19:36

It's an instinctive thing. Thanks goodness the lovely strangers at church today didn't feel the way you do (though I do sympathise if she is going through a stranger anxiety phase)- they let me hold and cuddle their absolutely gorgeous little four month old daughter (they offered). Made my Easter.

But if you feel it is too much with the holding, just say 'oh, she's not so good with other people at the moment' and try to get them not to pick her up. Stroking cheek/arm is really not intrusive though, is it?

olgaga Sun 31-Mar-13 23:25:13

I don't think YABU in the slightest. I hate it when people treat babies like toys (because that's what they're doing). It used to really unsettle my DD and you're the one who suffers the consequences.

I used to think, no-one would treat a puppy or a kitten this way, they would have more consideration!

OTTMummA Sun 31-Mar-13 23:25:16

I would buy that adultonesie babygrow.
Along with some MOTHER FUCKER tea towels i'd be all set.

CatsRule Sun 31-Mar-13 23:28:28


I can understand where you're coming from. I have no urge to do that with other peoples babies and don't understand the obsession own baby I naturally feel differently.

My ds hates people being in his face, he's a busy boy playing and doesn't want disturbed...he will initiate contact when it suits him...usually with those people who aren't constantly in his face!

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