If the sling doesn't work for your frame, have you tried another type of carrier?
RT knitting mama to 3 (& 8 who didn't make it) wife working on 13 years to a silly man who drives me crazy.
It's totally understandable to hate *slings* in particular- I don't love them either, but wraps are heavenly! You can find something that will work, I promise!
Mama to DS R (June/06), DD K (September/07), DS M (October/08), DD R (June/09)... waiting for #5 in late 2013!!
SAHM to 6.5yo DS and 4yo DD. PCOS with two early m/cs. Married 8 yrs. Certified birth doula, writer, editor.
Some stuff I like:
There is no ONE ideal carrier for everyone. So it might be worth your while to investigate other types of carriers to find one that suits your body type and needs. I suggest signing up for the forums at www.thebabywearer.com Very helpful advice and reviews from parents everywhere on just about any carrier you can think of.
Since discovering more carrier options and investing some money into some that fit me well and are comfy to wear, I love it! It is the best thing I have ever learned about and invested in. It has made the addition of kiddo #5 into our family the easiest ever. I only wish I had had this knowledge and carriers 11 years ago when I started having kids.
I just always feel like the baby is going to fall out. So I end up just carrying the baby in my arms or if I'm in the store or something just using the carseat to carry the baby.
I'll check out those forums, but I don't think there are any groups near me. I live pretty rurally so there isn't a lot of stuff like that around here.
I found videos to be very helpful, both online videos and videos that come with the baby carriers.
Simple Stretchy Wrap
SSC (Soft Structured Carrier)/Buckle
Several Types of Carriers
DVD - Several Types of Carriers
There's also a video called Tummy2Tummy with helpful demonstrations and instructions for a variety of carriers. http://www.tummy2tummy.com/
I taught myself using these or similar videos (and tips from the babywearing boards) and they were immensely helpful. Maybe they'll help you.
I'm sure that even in indigenous areas where baby wearing is a cultural norm that not all mamas feel comfortable wearing their child.
I remember reading Dr. Sears Baby Book baby wearing section and wondering what planet they were on. They showed all this stuff that could be done with baby in sling and even had a story about going to a black tie affair with one. I was like, riiiighhht. I wore mine on walks and such, but back and shoulders always hurt unless I wore it just right. But no cooking, cleaning, gardening with the darn thing, I had two extra little hands with a mind of their own trying to grab knives, dirt, cleaning products, etc.
When we arrived in Africa, everyone wears the baby on the back and I envy this as it IS possible to do all sorts of things without worrying as much about the grabby baby. But when I went out, kids tried to stick things in his mouth and he cried when he couldn't see what I was doing. So back to the ring sling it was...when such was needed.
BUT, I think we've gotten our baby wearing wardrobe figured out a bit more now. Its taken a bunch of practice and becomes more of a moot point as DS wants to not be held as much, but it does work. The back carrier at home, the ring sling for quick outings and a Kelty backpack for longer outings and excursions. Its STILL not perfect, but with a lot of practice and trial and error, we do have a system. I went to a baby wearing group meeting and learned some interesting things and tried on a sling i ended up buying, but it wasn't as helpful as i had hoped, but that was no ones fault.
Unassisted birthing, atheist, poly, bi WOHM to 4 wonderful, smart homeschooling kids Wes (14) Seth (7) Pandora Moonlilly (2) and Nevermore Stargazer (11/2012) Married to awesome SAH DH.
I also agree that some in real life assistance helps. Do you have a local API, AP or babywearing group? These can be great resources. We often have people coming in with the same issues, and with some great advice and hands on help, they usually leave much happier.
Once I found the right carriers for me (mom and me pea in the pod pouch--seriously amazing and so easy to use--and a woven wrap. Oh and a hotsling for summer) and how to use them correctly, I was quite happy.
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i also agree if you have a babywearing group near you, get to them. i've met so many people who said they hated wearing their baby, and once they got some advice on how to use their carriers, they loved it. i showed a yoga student mama of mine how to use a ring sling once and it was like a huge light bulb popped up over her head. she said "oh, wow, no wonder my baby hated it!" and came back to class two weeks later raving about how happy they were. sometimes it just takes a little tweak here and an adjustment there to make all the difference in the world.
After DD2 was born, I tried wearing her, on and off, for about 5 months. I was miserable. I hurt. She hated it. We were both uncomfortable. It just wasn't working for us. I handed the sling over to my best friend shortly before her baby was born (9 mos after my DD2).
She wore her DS more diligently that I wore my DD2, but she had the same complaints I did. So, she set about looking for another sling, and in the process, she found that my original sling (a pouch by Lucky Baby) was sized too big for either of us. She ordered a different sling (don't remember which), sized it correctly and wears her baby ALL the time and loves it.
I tried her sling on, but still found that the simply fact that slings hang on one shoulder causes me a great deal of discomfort. I have TMJ and all of the neck, back and shoulder pains that go along with it. So, I figured that I might fare better with a soft-structured carrier that distributed the weight evenly. After much research, I decided to bite the bullet and order a Beco Butterfly.
I've had it for about 2 weeks now and I have to say I have almost no complaints. My DD2 will be 1 yr old in 2 weeks. She's 25 lbs, wiggly and solid. She hated the pouch, but loves to be carried in the Beco. I can do just about anything with her on my front or back, including house cleaning, exercising, cooking, laundry, you name it...Sometimes, if I don't have all of the straps adjusted just right (like, if someone else in the family has been wearing her and so my "standard" adjustments are changed), I'll get some pain in my nect and shoulder. And if I don't watch my posture if I'm standing for a long period of time with her on my front, my lower back will catch, but I think that has more to do with me being out of shape. LOL
Anyway, I say all of that to say this: I was very discouraged with baby-wearing when my DD was younger. But once I was able to find a carrier that worked with my body and our needs, I am so happy with it. I can't imagine how I managed to get through the last year without my Beco.
Making a March 9th sandwich with a Halloween filling.
Karen - spouse to dh for 11 years, mama to ds (Nov '02), dd (May '05) and ds and dd (Jun '08)
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