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Will family members offer to pass down baby stuff??

(13 Posts)
MrsHuxtable Wed 10-Aug-11 10:00:17

This may sound stupid but I don't want to be rude. Where I come from, baby clothes and equipment in general is getting passed around in the family to whoever has a baby at the moment. So now I am pregnant, but I live in the UK, away from my family. DH's mum had him really young, so his 3 aunts only had babies in the last 7 years, the youngest is 12 months now. None of them will be having any more babies.

So now, I'm a little culturally confused. Will they automatically offer to pass down things to us? Am I expected to ask? Is it rude to ask? I really don't want to offend anyone and have no problem if it's not the done thing. I just don't want to go out and buy loads of stuff if afterwards we will get offered some used things...

How has everyone else handled this?

sobloodystupid Wed 10-Aug-11 10:10:29

I think as it is your first (isn't it?) some people will assume you want everything new and that they might be "insulting" you by offering you their stuff. If your dh's aunts are quite young they may not have finished their families so might want to hold on to baby stuff for a bit. I don't think you should ask for things however. How far along are you? Perhaps as you get bigger,this might prompt them to offer. I'm a mum of three and there is no need to buy loads of stuff, honestly so don't worry. A sling is the handiest for the early stages so you don't have to sink your money into a buggy or whatever for ages yet. Congratulations and good luck!

mamadivazback Wed 10-Aug-11 10:25:19

I found as soon as I asked people if they could recommend anything to buy and what type of things I would need they would say they have X,Y,Z lying around and would I like to borrow it.

If you are close to DH's family there is nothing wrong with asking, just ask if they have anything spare that you could borrow because you don't want to waste money on something that won't get used or used for such a short time. Most of the time people are glad to get rid of baby stuff.

Generally though babies are only as expensive as you make them, you don't have to buy lots and certainly not new stuff. I spent a fortune on my DS only to realise that I did'nt need a lot in the end and passed on loads of barely or unused stuff.

If I had to do it again my must haves would be:

Travel- Pushchair, footmuff, raincover, sling and car seat

Sleep- Cot, matress, 2x baby sleep bags, 2x sheets and 2x swaddling blankets

Cleaning- 10x Fleece babywipes, Bath support, 4x flannels, Bar of goats milk soap, changing bag mat

Feeding- Breast - 12x muslins, Lansinoh, 6x washable breast pads Bottle - 6x bottles, 6x teats, steriliser, 12x muslins/bibs

Play- Travel toy arch, rocking bouncy chair

Clothing- 5x Babygro's, 5x vests, 2x cardigans, 2x hats, 2x scratch mitts

I know it looks a lot but really it's not, anything else is just preference IMO.

G1nger Wed 10-Aug-11 10:25:26

People do very much hand things around - but only when they're finished with them for certain (the aunt with the 1yr old might really be hoping to have another) and only if they haven't already given them to someone else. There's certainly an element of luck in it... I was lucky as my sister had saved a lot of things in her attic waiting for me, whereas my best friend had given most of her stuff away as and when she was finished with it (although still had a few things for me). It is culturally the way things are done, but that's not to say you'll get lucky. Have you tried Freecycle/Freegle, too?

pozzled Wed 10-Aug-11 10:29:24

In my experience, people are very happy to pass things on. With me it's been more friends than family, but in my group of friends things have been passed back and forth more times than I could count!

I would second the advice to get into a conversation about what to buy, and see what they say.

MrsHuxtable Wed 10-Aug-11 10:32:56

Thanks sobloodystupid,
they are all well into their 40s now and have finished their families. If you say, don't ask for things, I won't. I really don't know how these things are done here.
I'm only 15 weeks, so there's still loads of time to arrange things but then I'm leaving the country again at 35 weeks to give birth, so last minute organising won't be an option...
I definitely want to use a sling as much as possible. I'm just not sure if it's a feasible option for hours on end.

MrsHuxtable Wed 10-Aug-11 10:37:17

Thanks to everyone else for their replies as well. I will have a look at freecycle as well.

Mamadivazback, that's a great list! Do newborns go into sleeping bags straight away?

blueShark Wed 10-Aug-11 10:38:50

its ok to ask! I also come from a country and culture where everything is passed on. For the first DS born in UK I bought everything as many do for a first child, second DS inherited everything, now that I am due with DD any day I asked an ex colleague that has 3 girls to pass on everything as I have already passed on all boys things to my sister in law abroad including baby chair, gym, swing as DD wasn't planned right now but I am sure will be a lovely additionsmile

mamadivazback Wed 10-Aug-11 10:39:11

You can sling all day everyday if you get the right one grin

My friend has used a wrap sling for 11 months now and does'nt even own a pushchair! She has had several different designs from
Victoria Slinglady on Ebay, they are really well made and a bargain price.

mamadivazback Wed 10-Aug-11 10:43:56

Sorry X-Posted.

Are you going to be near your family for the birth?

If so you could ask your family before you go, if they have anything you could have for baby as you don't want to traipse a lot with you to bring back a load more.

Babies can go into sleeping bags from 7lbs so if they are over that yes but I know my DS loved being swaddled for the first 4-6 weeks, I just used plain cellular blankets for that nothing fancy. Apparently it makes them feel more secure as they are wrapped up.

MrsHuxtable Wed 10-Aug-11 10:48:03

And is it still ok for their spine? Because you know how they say babies should lie flat most of the time?

mamadivazback Wed 10-Aug-11 11:00:31

Slinging is fine for their spines as long as they are in the right position.

It sounds scary but there are lots of videos and there is a whole section for sling advice on here so have a look and see what you think smile

MrsHuxtable Wed 10-Aug-11 11:13:05

Yes, I'm going to stay with my family for the birth. I had a horrendous time with hyperemesis in the hospital in the UK and ended up flying home for treatment.I was very reluctant but it was the best decision ever. I think it would be counter-productive for the birth if I have a bad attitude towards the hospital, even if it's just in my head. I can feel myself getting more and more "alternative" in pregnancy and think the birth will have a lot to do with how I feel about it. Of course I may be wrong. I don't have a clue. We will get some things double to leave them for when we come to visit (hopefully about twice a year for a few weeks at a time). I'm finding it a bit of a nightmare to figure out what I need to get to have where etc.

And I really hope a sling will work well for me. Prams seem to be the most complicated thing to buy. They scare me...

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