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How bad is it that…

Erin Zammett Ruddy

I don't like to hold other people’s babies? And how bad is it that I’m admitting this on a parenting website to a whole lot of people who have babies? Let me explain…

I think babies are awesome and adorable and amazing and all the clichéd things that babies truly are. I just don’t feel the gravitational pull toward other people’s newborns the way some women do. I am not the person in the store who rushes over to peek in every snap-n-go I see. I have always known this about myself. When we were little and my sister, Melissa, would be playing house and carrying around her baby dolls (and pretend nursing them) I’d be setting up dinner parties for Barbie and Ken and taking them on road trips in their tricked-out van. 

Yesterday I visited my friend who just gave birth to a beautiful baby boy. I could have talked all day about how he was eating and sleeping and what the birth was like and who he really really resembles. Brand-new babies are amazing! I just didn’t feel compelled to hold him the second I walked in the door. I did hold him, but it was later on so my friend could eat her sandwich. Then I took him again after she nursed him so she could sip some coffee. I love being useful to people with new babies so if my holding him gives her some hands-free time, I’m all for it. And I like to think I’m pretty good at it. I’d stay all day and keep him in my arms if it helped her out.

But I am not one of those women (like my mom and sister and several of my friends) who love to hold babies—anyone’s babies—just because. Who could sit there staring at them for hours on end. It could have something to do with their fragile state (I never seem to remember how tiny babies are until I hold a five day old--eek!) or the fact that I like to always be multitasking, which you just can’t do with an eight-pound human in your arms. Or maybe I’m just a heartless b----. It’s tough to admit you’re not a “baby person,” particularly in this company. But what is this blog for if not embarrassing confessions?!

How about you guys? Do you go gaga for any baby you see? Do you ask to hold them? Ever ask to hold a baby just because you think you’ll offend the mom if you don’t? (I have.*)

 *To all my very pregnant friends who might be reading this, I will not do this to you, I promise, but if you need a shower/a nap/a little two-handed facebook time, I’m your girl!