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advice to deal with baby grabbers

578 Views 11 Replies 8 Participants Last post by  monkeymimi
Twice now it has happened that my dd, three weeks old, has become overwhelmed after being passed around by well-intentioned friends and family. The worst was last night, when we were visiting IL's and extended family were there, this one grandma-type actually took her out of my hands to burp her as she was crying - I was flabbergasted and did nothing
She cried until we left shortly thereafter, and then finally finally fell asleep in the car, holding my fingers for dear life. I feel like a horrible mother. When the woman last night took her, I felt like I didn't know what I was doing, and maybe she could help my baby - in retrospect, I feel she was grabby and I didn't do anything to stop her and protect my baby's peace of mind.

How do you deal with this situation? Obviously if a stranger grabbed my baby I would beat them to death. But what when it is a family elder? How to be tactful? I feel so disrespected and weak = help.
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An easy way to avoid this is when you are in a situation where you think it might occur is to wear her in a sling....easy to bf and no one will try to take her out without your help.
If someone tries to take her out of your hands just hold on tight with a big smile and say "Thanks, but I have the situation under control" or something to that nature.
If they still try to grab you might have to get forceful.
Oh mama!

My worst pet peeve are baby grabbers.

When my babe was that tiny, I lied (
) and told them that the doctor told me not to pass him around till he got older.

Also, get yourself a good sling, or baby carrier of your choice, and keep the baby in it. With baby in there, they have to ask you before they go ripping him out of it, and you can then politely tell them, "No, he's tired right now", or some other well worded excuse.
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We made an announcement when we got there--"Andrew gets really upset and overwhelmed by being passed around so we're sorry but we aren't going to be able to let anyone hold him today. It keeps him up all night."

If someone later wanted to hold him we'd say, "Oh, didn't you hear our announcement?"

Andrew did grow out of it and now being passed around causes him to sleep nice and sound when we get home!
This is sound advice, mamas. I am still learning to use the sling - it is a New Native pouch - it had not occurred to me that it would serve as a baby protector as well!!

I did not know there was such a thing as baby grabbers until just now. I wish I had known - I still have so much to learn=

I will be a vigilant slinger from here on out.
Something that I wish I had done earlier and practiced more when my baby was very tiny was to learn how to use the sling and practise more at home. (I never really learned how to use it until he was much older, never bothered with it until I was out, and therefore did not really know what I was doing.)

Force yourself to practice using it at home where both you and your baby are comfortable, while you are comfortably sitting down, and just use it whenever possible while at home so that you can get the hang of it, and then it will be easier when you are in public.
My favorite line is "Skyla and I are both happier if..." fill in the blank with

* I hold her
* I feed her when she is hungry, not on schedule
* I hold her
* She sleeps with me
* I hold her
* I don't make her wear the headband
* I hold her

Or whatever the case may call for. Good luck
I totally agree with the sling as baby protector! And if you learn to nurse in a sling, you have the added benefit of not having to take the baby out or fiddle with nursing a floppy newborn in an unfamiliar place.
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Originally Posted by monkeymimi

I did not know there was such a thing as baby grabbers until just now. I wish I had known - I still have so much to learn=

I will be a vigilant slinger from here on out.
I didn't realize that people were so anxious to hold babies, either! I would never dream of taking someone's child out of their arms/carriers/cart but holy cow people love grabbing for my DS. I had to learn the hard way after a stranger took my DS out of his stroller and held him and bounced him. I was too shy and sheepish to say anything but later I was so mad at myself and I cried so hard for being so dumb. I think this must be a common phenomenom and now you know to be more vigilant. I know that I am! It only takes once for someone to drop the baby or give them a virus or cause them unnecessary stress!
Such an interesting thread! I'm still learning, too, to stand up for what I know is right for my baby, though it often is contrary to what the elders in my family think. I wonder somedays, what it might be like to know it all...?

I like the ideas of heading it off, and we've done that, kind of, where we tell people like the absolute second we walk in the door that the baby does much better with people if he's got time to check them out first, and things will be easier and happier all around if they just hold off holding the baby.

I do find that I am still learning a lot about standing up for myself. I envy those women who now reminisce about being "so stupid" in the beginning of their days of motherhood before they learned to stand up for themselves. It comes with time and learning from experiences, I'm sure.

My current dilemma is how to keep strangers' grimy paws off my kid when out in public. Even if he's in the sling, they still reach on in there to touch. Sadly, I am currently "dealing" with this by not making much eye contact and appearing to be in a big hurry everywhere I go. Against my desire to stop and smell the roses, to live in the moment, even if that moment is browsing through Walmart, but oh well.

Try and forgive yourself, and if nothing else, come prepared with good phrases and excuses like I do...until sticking up for yourself comes naturally.

Tresa, mommy to Logan, 5.5mos
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You mamas are so wise, and so very kind. I am grateful -

DH and I are together on this. He is equally horrified that someone would have "the audacity!" (his words) - to grab our child out of our hands!! This may be the number one piece of advice I give my new mama friends as they come along - I so wish I had known -

He has not been into slinging so far. He has a front carrier for dd - maybe this will be the thing that sways him=

All of you, I will practice with that darn sling, and we (dd and I) are going to get louder and firmer about stating our needs! Darn it!!!

Thanks again, especially for the reminder to forgive - it has been a bleak day today but I have learned something very important. So it goes.
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