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4mo Old Doesn't Love Carrier

post #1 of 23
Thread Starter 

Hello! This is my first post. I am a first time mom and I've just started trying to wear my 4mo old in an Ergo Active. She will tolerate it for about 10min but then wants out! Instead of keeping her legs in the frog-like position (knees above bum) she wants to stretch her legs out and stand. Any advice? I love the idea of wearing my baby whenever possible (aspiring towards attachment parenting). Thanks in advance!

post #2 of 23
My ergo didn't work well for me until about 5 or 6 months. Then it was used for hours every day. Your dd might just need a little more time.
post #3 of 23

I never used an Ergo, but my daughter was in a hip harness from <1 week of age so we never used the froggied-legs position and went straight to the position for older babies with the legs hanging out the side. If your daughter can hold her torso up well she can probably be in this position instead. I don't think that babies necessarily like being scrunched up so much as they get bigger. 

post #4 of 23
I have been told by babywearing educators that structured carriers (ethos mei-tais) should be used once LO can sit up by self. It may be that your LO doesn't feel as supported and that is why the straightening etc.  good luck
post #5 of 23

Maybe an infant insert would help. I would agree the babe probably needs to be close or at least close-ish to sitting. The only reason we were able to wear our kiddo in the Mei Tai in that position at that age was because the hip harness kept her torso much more rigid than she would have been otherwise. 

post #6 of 23
To echo what other posters have said, my babe didn't like the soft structured carrier (we have a Boba) or mei tai until 5 or 6 months. Have you tried a ring sling? That was our go-to for a long time (and still often is).
post #7 of 23

At 4 mos my DD was not having the legs in and we switched from a moby to ring sling and she was a much happier baby.  She didn't sit unassisted til almost 7mos (was pretty wobbly at 6mos) and things progressed quickly after that, BUT, she never liked being cradled when held out of a sling - she preferred to hang onto my hands and stand on my lap and I think because of that she just never got the hang of sitting until she was older.  I knew it was time to go legs out when she began to stretch and stand while wrapped up in the moby!

post #8 of 23
Thread Starter 
Thanks for all of the advice! I think we'll try a ring sling and revisit the ergo later!
post #9 of 23
I agree to wait. We've been using an ergo for weeks now (legs out) with my almost 4 month old but she's a huge, strong kid. Her torso is rigid but she tilts forwards at the hip, so not sitting yet but she's not slumpy. She's been worn in a ring sling since she was 6 days old and for many weeks now in a woven wrap. If you can swing one (some can be found for under $100 but still very high quality), I'd try a wrap. It's amazingly versatile and super supportive.
post #10 of 23

We were advised against carriers of any sort for our daughter for a short period of time after her birth. She was a preemie, and the worry was that the compression from the carrier could have suffocated her in her first few weeks. Don't know if there's any truth to that, but I was so overwhelmed with the craziness that is parenting a preemie, I barely left the house with her until she was about 10-12 weeks, so wearing her was hardly a concern.

Fast forward to when I began to wear her. She hated every second in the Mei Tai, screaming like it hurt her. I walk A LOT-- way more than the average American. I probably walk more in a week than the average American walks in a year.

I bought into all the attachment parenting ideology. Then I injured my back because I was wearing her. Because I bought into all the guilt-inducing AP stuff out there, I injured my back, and ended up gaining 60 pounds after my daughter was born because it hurt to walk anywhere. Of course, the weight gain made the back problems worse. My back problems got so bad I'd even lose gross motor control randomly for a few hours at a time. I'm now left with a plethora of back problems and medical bills, all because I bought into the idea that putting an infant in a stroller is akin to child abuse.

I'm all for attachment parenting, but you *can* be AP without holding/wearing baby 24/7. (I even used a baby bouncer! and at 6 months, we broke down and put her in a crib next to our bed!) I walk so much I'm on jogging stroller #2, and little one is now 3. She still loves riding in it on longer walks. She's always been Little Miss Independent. Like her mom, she likes to be left alone sometimes. She *never* cried in the stroller, always fussed in the carrier.

AP is a guideline. It's not a rule book. My only advice to you, is don't frustrate yourself with trying to follow AP philosophy to a "T"-- LOVE is the most important thing you can give a child. If your little one hates being worn, use a stroller or a baby bouncer once in a while.

I'd love to see a thread about baby-wearing mamas who managed to wear their baby for 5+ miles of walking a day. I'm convinced it's not possible without risk of serious bodily injury.

post #11 of 23
Thread Starter 
Thank you for sharing preemieprincess! That's a wonderful perspective. I too don't plan to follow AP to the T.I am a single mom who works part-time so its virtually impossible for me to do so.
post #12 of 23

Um, just read through this thread.  I have five kids, and when my first few were little, I easily walked 5-10 miles a day (1-2 5 mile walks) while wearing the youngest and pushing the other 1-2 kids in our jogging stroller.  My four big kids are all teens/adult now, and I have a "bonus baby" who is 7 months.  I walk and run with him daily (in a Kanga wrap if walking, jogging stroller when running), and I bring him to work with me.  I work part-time cleaning houses, and doing garden work.  He's either on my back in the Kanga, or nursing in my Maya Wrap.  I'm so sorry that you had that experience with your back.  I'm glad that you're back to walking and that your DD is happy in the stroller!  :)


Also, I didn't get the impression that the OP was trying to follow guidelines for AP, she was simply asking for advice about how to carry her baby.  For the record, I had an Ergo and got rid of it.  I found it to not be supportive enough--my son likes to arch and lean back.  He also HATES to be wrapped.  But, he's happy in the Kanga or the Maya Wrap.  I think it is worth trying a few different carriers.  Some babies like the way certain ones feel.  I think DS didn't like the Ergo because he sat so low in it.  With the Kanga, he can look over my shoulder.  OP, is there a babywearing group in your neck of the woods?  It would be neat to get in touch with them and see what they have for carriers in their lending library!  :)


Good luck!

post #13 of 23
This is the first time I've seen so many people saying a baby is too young for babywearing. Most moms I know online and offline started babywearing ASAP, usually around 1mo pp, but experienced moms do it from birth.

You just need the right carry. At 4mo, I would definitely go with legs out rather than froggy. My DD grew out of froggy at 2.5 mo.

And while you do need to take care with your body and over-straining yourself, babywearing can be loads of fun. Can you try other carriers? My faves are mei tai and ring slings.
post #14 of 23
@preemieprincess, I am so sorry for your experience. Just out of curiosity, where is it said (or who has said ) that strollers are nearly abusive ?

I ask because I just bought that big honking Dr.Sears book, and I'll be disappointed if it's that extreme.
post #15 of 23

I don't think this thread is saying that any babies are too young for babywearing, just that they may be too young for certain carries.


I read the Dr Sears book and felt guilty about every time I put my daughter down. Even though she seemed to like it better sometimes. I distrust anything that claims that babies always like X or never like Y (assuming, of course, that Y isn't something wholly inappropriate). Not all babies are the same. Sometimes my girl WANTED to be in the bouncy chair rather than anywhere else. 

post #16 of 23

1) Are you moving? I'd start using a baby carrier for going on a walk outside initially. Even when I'm home with the baby doing something sedentary (like now), I tend to sit on a ball and bounce or do sway with the baby.

2) If the baby is happy and then suddenly unhappy in the carrier, I would see that as a sign my kid has to pee..., especially if it's coupled with try to pull away from me

3) Do you know how to nurse in your carrier?

4) I've always had babies who were huge and strong, so at 4 months I always had my baby in more of a sitting position then a froggy position at that age.

5) Your baby might also like a high back carry to look around...which is definitely doable in a mei tai



post #17 of 23

@cynthiamoon-- Nobody here on mothering, but I heard it from some hardcore AP moms IRL. Granted, these were the same handful of moms who were being bullies about my daughter's gross motor delay, and acting as if it were contagious. (This happened at church of all places). Not the biggest fan of Dr. Sears myself, but I agree with many of the ideas behind AP.

post #18 of 23

Same here. I think the idea of forming solid attachments is key to good parenting… but I don't think those attachments are as fragile as some make it seem. 

post #19 of 23

Thought I'd bump this instead of starting a new thread.  My three month old doesn't seem to like any carrier.  We have a Moby, a Bjorn, and a pocket carrier that's like a Mei Tei but all enclosed around the baby.  She usually tolerates being carried when we go for a walk, but not around the house, which is where I was hoping to use a carrier the most.  If she'd let me, I could do laundry, dishes, pick stuff up around the house, all while wearing her, but she doesn't tend to like them.  Sometimes she enjoys being in her swing, even laying in her playpen and playing with her giraffe, but other times I really wish she'd be happy with me "holding her" via a carrier so that other things could also get done.


Maybe there's a hold I can use in the Moby other than the hug/newborn holds that she might like?


Also, I know I read that wearing baby facing out and away from you isn't advisable, though I wonder if that might be just what she would enjoy.  I haven't tried it yet, but I will.


Thoughts?  I'm not investing in yet another carrier.

post #20 of 23

The Moby and the pseudo-Mei Tai both sound like you are using them in holds that are more for really little babies--all scrunched up/curled up against you? I wonder if your girl is ready for a more upright hold. I haven't used the Moby personally, but most who have say it's only good for the first few months and after that baby gets too heavy for it to really be comfortable. You could look into different holds that are used with a wrap carrier, and you might be able to do some of them with a Moby... but honestly, I would sell the Moby (and maybe the other two as well) and buy a soft structured carrier of some sort to see you into the older baby and toddler years. I know you said you don't want to invest in a new carrier and I get that, but if the carriers that you have aren't working for you, what's the alternative? 

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