I understand, who can resist it right. A cute baby. Those eyes, those cheeks and oh my god those baby laughter that are just addictive. I personally think the baby’s laughter is the sweetest melody in the world. I’m addicted to my own son’s laughter. I’d do just about anything to hear it. Anyways, the point is yes we all love babies especially baby snuggles. Most of us, I supposed. And we all want to touch, cuddle or god forbid KISS the baby when we see them. But really? Especially during this pandemic of Covid-19? In case you’re completely oblivious to the mom’s killer side glare when you are near the baby, here’s what the baby’s mom really wants you to know about the correct baby etiquette especially during the pandemic.
Social distancing rules apply to babies too. In fact, especially for babies.
We all know that social distancing is one of the keys to break the virus chain. Governments from all over the world are trying to ask people to keep a safe distance from each other because the virus is transmitted via respiratory droplets and contact. So, please refrain yourself from any kind of physical contact with the baby. I cannot stress this more. No kissing especially. And even holding their hand, because babies love putting their hand inside their mouth! So whatever germ you have on your hand, can be transmitted easily into the baby’s body. Please be considerate because the baby’s immune system is not as developed as adults hence they are more vulnerable. Actually, the proper baby etiquette at all times is to keep a safe distance pandemic or not.
Especially for newborn babies. Please, if you have any family / friend that just gave birth during this pandemic, do them a favor and don’t ask to visit. It is probably stressful enough for them already to be giving birth at this unprecedented time. A video call will be lovely for them instead. It shows that you are caring and want to be there, but at the same time you really want to protect both the mother and newborn from any slightest risk.
Correct baby etiquette for physical contact
I’m giving you a benefit of doubt here. Maybe you have traveled long and far to see this baby. Maybe you are a close family member. Okay, fine. In that case, this will be the proper etiquette before you initiate the physical contact. First of all, please ask the parent’s permission if it is fine to touch their baby. Look at their facial expression. Is there any slightest hesitation? Some parents are just too polite to say no. So be vigilant. If you sense the slightest hesitation, quickly remedy the situation as said “Ah, perhaps it’s not the best timing to do so, maybe in future”.
If the parent seemed fine with it, then please ensure to take precaution beforehand. Please wash your hand, use hand sanitizer and make sure you are wearing a mask. Do not take off the mask to kiss the baby. That’s the basics. Ideally, if you can change your clothes to a fresh one that will be even better to eliminate the risk of exposure. Honestly, if the parent is allowing you to touch / carry or cuddle the baby, that is already giving you a lot of face. Don’t push it. Ask yourself if you really cannot wait past the pandemic to see the baby.
Don’t even think about it if you’re sick
Sometimes it really amazes me how some people are completely lacking common sense for proper baby etiquette. If you are sick, or even just recovered. Please do not show up anywhere near the baby. Some sickness is more contagious at the stage when you are recovered, you will just never know. You may think, ok this is just a runny nose. No big deal, it’s mild. WRONG.
First of all, you don’t know the virus causing it. Some may have bigger effects on babies. Second, do you know that the poor baby doesn’t know how to deal with the nasal congestion? They don’t know how to blow their nose, the poor thing will be so uncomfortable all the time not being able to breath properly. Do you know what this means? This means a lot of crying. Then they will swallow a lot of gas, and then they are going to have an upset stomach from the gas. Next thing you know is, they will be crying all night long and the poor parent needs to tend to them.
Comforting the baby all night long is all you can do when there is no medicine you can give to a young baby. Both the baby and the parents will be sleep deprived, tired and uncomfortable thanks to your selfishness. So for god’s sake do you understand, please don’t turn up anywhere near the baby.
Correct baby etiquette you should practice at all time
Protect the baby’s privacy!
Please forbid yourself from taking photos of the baby and then post it on your social media. Ensure to ask permission from the parent before taking the photo, and turn off your flash. Some parents may not appreciate having their baby’s photo circulating out there on the internet.
Don’t give unnecessary commentaries
The baby is too fat / too thin / too big / too small etc. Please keep those thoughts to yourself and don’t judge the baby. Every baby is growing so fast at their own pace. These judgmental commentaries are completely unnecessary unless you are meant to compliment the baby.
You also don’t have to give unsolicited advice. Seriously, unless the parents ask for some advice. Otherwise, I’m pretty sure they already did their homework and they want the best for their own baby.
And lastly, please keep your visit / interaction short. We want to limit as much as possible any social interaction during this time. If possible, none at all.
There you have it. These are the correct and proper baby etiquette that mommies out there want you to know, but too polite or too nice to tell you off. A word of advice for the nice mommies though, remember that this is your baby we are talking about. Understood that we all want to be nice and sociable, and would like to avoid telling people off if we don’t have to. But it could cause you great consequences. So please, keep an open mind and don’t worry about hurting other people’s feelings. Your baby’s well being is at stake here.
But another thing you can do is to print these little tags and hang them on the stroller, carrier etc so that people can be more aware about the no touching baby rule. You can get these tags here.
Please feel free to share this article to create awareness to people about the proper baby etiquette. Especially, during pandemic times like this. Stay safe and to those who read this article, a heartfelt gratitude for joining us in keeping our little one healthy. No hard feelings!
By the way, if you’re looking for gift ideas for the visit to the newborn baby, make sure to read here to get an idea of what the baby’s parents may need for your gift ideas.
Parenting pain : My biggest pain is having to deal with completely oblivious people who’re keen to touch my baby without permission especially during this pandemic. Worst type of all, those that touch my baby without washing their hand / sanitizing in prior. This is driving me nuts!