would you approach mom wearing sling the "wrong" way? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 38 Old 12-24-2006, 09:36 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I just wondered what other people would do...I see lots of people wearing Baby Bjorns VERY low and I never really thought to approach anyone about it, I guess they are doing what works for them. But yesterday I saw a woman in a mall with a good-sized baby (probably 9-12 months old and 15+ pounds) in a padded ring sling. Not a fancy one, I htink it was Snugli brand like they sell at BabiesRUs. As I passed her I saw that the back part of the sling was totally twisted around going across her back. And the ring was really low on the front of her, instead of near her shoulder. I wanted to go up to her and tell her that she needed to spread it out smooth across her shoulder and her back or else it was going to get really uncomfortable. But I am just not the kind of person to approach/talk to a stranger in public. If I had been in a line or something with her I probably would have managed to talk to her. But I really was just passing her walking through the mall.

It's too bad there's not more information/modeling out there for how to wear these kind of slings!

WWYD?
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#2 of 38 Old 12-24-2006, 10:20 AM
 
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As a mom who rarely wears her baby out of fear that I'm doing it wrong -- I would LOVE for someone to approach me, truthfully! I always try to tie my wraps correctly and I am still terrified that the baby's going to fall out! And if she spent any money at all on her sling and it was uncomfortable when it didn't need to be... I imagine she'd have appreciated your approaching her too!
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#3 of 38 Old 12-24-2006, 10:23 AM
 
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I don't think I would say anything unless you were in line and talking about slings and the subject of how to use them, comfort, etc. came up. Sometimes when I use my sling with my 9 month old I don't get it on quite right but we are in a hurry and won't be out long, so I just leave it alone since she is comfortable and secure (even if my shoulder hurts a bit). Maybe this mama was just having a "bad sling day"

On the other hand, I have been so tempted to say sometihng to those women who smugly carry around their babies in Baby Bjorns and other similar carriers. They look so uncomfortable for both baby and mom/dad I wonder that they can wear them for more than a few minutes. But I don't think they would appreciate my comments about the negative aspects of those carriers and would probably just think I am trying to be mean rather than helpful.
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#4 of 38 Old 12-24-2006, 02:29 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I love these two responses...on some days, especially when I was new at slinging, I would have felt the first way--like I would have just kissed someone who came up to me to help me with wearing a sling. But after I'd gotten used to it, there were in fact times it was on me wrong but at least he wasn't fussing and I didn't want to do any more adjustments because his mood was kind of on the fence, iykwim, and someone coming up to "help" would have annoyed the crap out of me.
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#5 of 38 Old 12-24-2006, 02:59 PM
 
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Originally Posted by MomOfImandZee View Post
As a mom who rarely wears her baby out of fear that I'm doing it wrong -- I would LOVE for someone to approach me, truthfully! I always try to tie my wraps correctly and I am still terrified that the baby's going to fall out! And if she spent any money at all on her sling and it was uncomfortable when it didn't need to be... I imagine she'd have appreciated your approaching her too!
ITA!

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#6 of 38 Old 12-24-2006, 03:36 PM
 
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Lately I've been getting people stopping me (with L. on the back in her Ergo) to tell me, sometimes very emphatically, that "her arm is stuck in the straps" (it's not ) It doesn't bother me...I just smile and say no, she can put her arms in or out at will, whatever she wants.

I realize that they're not as popular here, but as a fairly long-time, usually non-smug Bjorn user I would not have loved someone telling me that it looked uncomfortable or bad for my baby. I've read the pro and con literature and am pretty tuned in to my baby's comfort (not to mention my own.) I've read in many places on the forum posts by sling-wearing mamas that don't enjoy getting the "he looks so uncomfortable, all smooshed up in there; that has to be bad for his spine" comments, either. Had someone said "hey, have you ever tried out an Ergo/wrap/whatever?" I wouldn't have minded.

But I'm not really one to approach strangers in public, either. The best I could probably do is ask "how do you like your sling?" and maybe try to read her reaction.
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#7 of 38 Old 12-24-2006, 04:05 PM
 
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i've done it. i said "i'm so glad someone showed me when i was wearing it that way because it is so much more comfortable if you do this, etc.....". i think any mama would be grateful.
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#8 of 38 Old 12-24-2006, 04:26 PM
 
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I might just try to strike up a conversation, "what a cute baby! how do you like your sling?" If she has nothing but positive things to say about the sling, I'd assume it works for her the way she's doing it, and not bug her... if she complains that it's not comfortable, I'd try to offer advice.
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#9 of 38 Old 12-24-2006, 04:33 PM
 
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I don't always put on my mei tai perfectly. Especially if I am in a hurry, baby is starting to get tired and I just want to go get what I need and get out of the store. I would rather be uncomfy for the 10 minutes than take the extra two minutes to make sure everything is perfect/no twists.

But no, I would not be offended if someone told me the straps were twisted, etc. I would just explain I was in a hurry so I didn't care at the time.
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#10 of 38 Old 12-24-2006, 05:31 PM
 
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I have with a bjorn. Once when my dd was new, I saw a couple walking with their tiny newborn faced forward. I felt awkward but the baby didn't have any head support. I was really nice and so were they. I felt weird, though.
When my dd was a baby lots of people asked me how to sling. My dd and I did lots of demonstrations.

:Mama to 2 :
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#11 of 38 Old 12-24-2006, 05:41 PM
 
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I have lots of times. I have occasionally made and sold slings as well as wearing both my children in every conceivable baby wearing contraption out there so I fancy myself a bit of an expert.

usually I just say something like, "I love your sling, can I offer a quick suggestion about how to make it more comfortable?"

I have never been turned down or had a reaction that was anything other than thankful.

Then again, I leave notes on cars when I see carseats installed wrong and I have been told that it is offensive to do so. :
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#12 of 38 Old 12-26-2006, 01:11 AM
 
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I am so grateful for the help. Especially when I first started wearing dd seven months ago. If I hadn't had a couple of mothers make suggestions for me I would have done away with baby wearing. When these mother's helped me they really showed me ways of wearing my dd that made me and my baby more comfortable. People who offer suggestions that don't know what they are talking about like, "I don't think she can't breathe, lets pull her head out" definitely have annoyed me though!
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#13 of 38 Old 12-28-2006, 02:42 PM
 
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I would maybe stop and also try to make small talk about how comfy her baby looks in the sling and how much you love the slings and then eventualy say something about your previous experince and how you needed a little extra help getting it in a " more comfortable position" and try to assist her w/ positioning , rather than mentioning anything about her actually using it
" incorrectly". If you are a friendly out going person anyway it should come off just fine!
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#14 of 38 Old 01-01-2007, 01:49 PM
 
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I quickly (and sloppily) threw dd into a hip carry in my OTSBH recently. Another mom came up to me and said "is this your first sling?" and when I said yes started adjusting it right on me! At first I was a little put off, but then I appreciated the help and the fact that I live in a community where bw is very common and there is lots of support. She gave me some good tips that I am thankful for.
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#15 of 38 Old 01-01-2007, 02:20 PM
 
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Originally Posted by MomOfImandZee View Post
As a mom who rarely wears her baby out of fear that I'm doing it wrong -- I would LOVE for someone to approach me, truthfully! I always try to tie my wraps correctly and I am still terrified that the baby's going to fall out! And if she spent any money at all on her sling and it was uncomfortable when it didn't need to be... I imagine she'd have appreciated your approaching her too!
:

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#16 of 38 Old 01-01-2007, 04:24 PM
 
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i did say something to a mom once, at the park she had it lose and twisted and was still pretty much holding her baby so i asked her if i could help her with her sling since i have worn 3 children. she said NO, i am fine, i think she was upset! i was just trying to be nice and i thought that i had approuched her well!! i am really shy and it was hard for me to say anything even.....
i think that some people just don't want help.. buti think i would try to help someone again anyway !

Susan, Mom to 4- Elizabeth 12, Hailey 9, Sammy 7, Caroline 3
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#17 of 38 Old 01-01-2007, 04:28 PM
 
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Then again, I leave notes on cars when I see carseats installed wrong and I have been told that it is offensive to do so. :
: How on earth is that offensive? I assume they say "your carseat may be installed incorrectly, call 1-800-###-#### for free help installing your seat correctly" not "you're going to kill your baby with your lousy carseat installation."
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#18 of 38 Old 01-01-2007, 05:47 PM
 
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: How on earth is that offensive? I assume they say "your carseat may be installed incorrectly, call 1-800-###-#### for free help installing your seat correctly" not "you're going to kill your baby with your lousy carseat installation."

Yup, pretty much. I think the last one I left went something like this:

Hello,

We were parked next to you and I was admiring the beautiful blanket on your back seat when I noticed that your car seat isn't installed correctly. The long strap sticking out of the back of the seat needs to be connected to a tether bolt to keep your little one safe in an accident. If you call ICBC they will help you out.

I think that was about it. Does it sound offensive?
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#19 of 38 Old 01-01-2007, 06:45 PM
 
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Yup, pretty much. I think the last one I left went something like this:

Hello,

We were parked next to you and I was admiring the beautiful blanket on your back seat when I noticed that your car seat isn't installed correctly. The long strap sticking out of the back of the seat needs to be connected to a tether bolt to keep your little one safe in an accident. If you call ICBC they will help you out.

I think that was about it. Does it sound offensive?
I'm a carseat tech and have done this once. Your note sounds fine btw, but if people would just read their manuals they'd know. If I did every time I saw a wrong seat I'd have no time for anything. lol I do what I can by advertising our monthly carseat checks and working them. Our next one is on the 13th.

I don't think I would say anything to someone carrying their baby 'wrong' b/c I rarely see anyone here carrying their baby at all! I remember seeing my first sling before I was pg w/ my oldest and thinking how weird it looked and why didn't she just use a stroller. lol Every time I wear Ilana in her pouch, people are all over me telling me how great it is and how comfy she looks.

Jennifer, LPN and nursing student, Doula, CPST, and VBAC mama x3 to
AJ (5/03), Evan (12/04), Ilana (11/06), Olivia (2/09), and Unity (8/2012)

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#20 of 38 Old 01-01-2007, 10:49 PM
 
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I don't think I would say anything.
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#21 of 38 Old 01-02-2007, 02:32 AM
 
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Ahhh, if only I'd get a chance to talk to Gwen or Gavin. I'd tell them about adjusting the sling over their shoulder instead of wearing it digging into their necks. Or... most likely I'd just stammer and bow a little.

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#22 of 38 Old 01-02-2007, 02:49 AM
 
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Well, that's a tough one. I've been known to get one of the kiddos in there "wrong" but I don't change it because I'm just going a short distance, or baby is fussy and I just want to get done or whatever. I've gotten the strap twisted, but didn't bother to change it. Dh wears the sling in a way that many people would consider wrong - where it looks like it would dig into his shoulder/neck, but he wears it that way because it comfortable to him. Neither of us would be offended if someone said something. Honestly, I'd probably be annoyed, but no big deal.
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#23 of 38 Old 01-02-2007, 05:14 PM
 
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I have gone up and helped a woman with a sling before. She was trying to get a very padded sling on while holding a tiny baby and her dh was standing there chatting with a friend. The area we lived in at the time going up and helping her wouldn't have been seen as odd by most people even though she was a stranger in a store. I helped her get the sling and baby adjusted as best she could and pointed her to a couple websites to look at better slings. She thanked me and said she had never been able to get it comfortable before I helped her. I'm not sure I'd tell someone out of the blue they are wearing a sling wrong, but I'd probably help someone with their sling again although where we live now people would probably look at me like I'd grown a second head if I went up to them to help them out

Kristina mom to A 1/12 J 11/05 D 4/08 and tiny dude in late April 2010
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#24 of 38 Old 01-02-2007, 05:27 PM
 
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Yup, pretty much. I think the last one I left went something like this:

Hello,

We were parked next to you and I was admiring the beautiful blanket on your back seat when I noticed that your car seat isn't installed correctly. The long strap sticking out of the back of the seat needs to be connected to a tether bolt to keep your little one safe in an accident. If you call ICBC they will help you out.

I think that was about it. Does it sound offensive?
What if your car doesn't have a tether bolt? Our doesn't and I always wonder if I should do something else with that strap.
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#25 of 38 Old 01-02-2007, 05:51 PM
 
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What if your car doesn't have a tether bolt? Our doesn't and I always wonder if I should do something else with that strap.
You need to get a tether anchor added. Either post your year and make of car or pm me.

Jennifer, LPN and nursing student, Doula, CPST, and VBAC mama x3 to
AJ (5/03), Evan (12/04), Ilana (11/06), Olivia (2/09), and Unity (8/2012)

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#26 of 38 Old 01-02-2007, 05:57 PM
 
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What if your car doesn't have a tether bolt? Our doesn't and I always wonder if I should do something else with that strap.
Most manufacturers will install a tehter bolt for free. If you have a Toyota (for example) just call your local Toyota dealer and ask if they will do it. You might need to buy the bolt for $3 but the installation is usually free.
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#27 of 38 Old 01-02-2007, 06:06 PM
 
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Most manufacturers will install a tehter bolt for free. If you have a Toyota (for example) just call your local Toyota dealer and ask if they will do it. You might need to buy the bolt for $3 but the installation is usually free.

Wow, that's great news I have a 98 (or so) Toyota Corolla.
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#28 of 38 Old 01-02-2007, 06:07 PM
 
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Wow, that's great news I have a 98 (or so) Toyota Corolla.
Ford put 5 tether bolt in our minivan for free! I was so impressed! I wanted the flexibilty of putting seats anywhere and they were so great about it. :

[/hijack] - sorry to the OP
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#29 of 38 Old 01-02-2007, 06:08 PM
 
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So they'll do it even thought I didn't buy the car from a dealership?
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#30 of 38 Old 01-02-2007, 06:09 PM
 
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So they'll do it even thought I didn't buy the car from a dealership?
Yup, we bought our Ford used from Toyota and Ford still retrofitted the tether bolts for us.
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