New Baby Etiquette

 

Over the past year, I have excitedly celebrated my dearest friends become mothers, and experienced the greatest blessing of all, becoming a mother myself. A true education in more ways than one (I am now the reigning queen of swaddling!), parenthood has provided me, Mrs. Buns, with invaluable insight into all things bebe, including new baby etiquette. I remember when the baby boom in our group first began, and I so thoughtfully wondered if I needed to be invited to meet the tiny angel or if protocol demanded I ask to visit. Or, is it appropriate (or required?) to bring a meal when meeting the new baby? I quickly learned the precious answers to these oh so important questions, and am thrilled to share them with you. In case the sweet stork lovingly visits you or your neighborhood anytime soon, here are my tips for new baby etiquette. Enjoy!

  • Do share well wishes with the new parents whether it’s a beautiful card in the mail, flower delivery, phone call, email, or text message congratulating them on their precious newborn.
  • Do consider offering to set up a meal calendar so friends and family can coordinate times to drop off dinner. Here is a fabulous site to use: http://www.carecalendar.org.
  • Do ask to come meet the baby (new parents love a little company!) and offer to bring over lunch or dinner (deliciously home cooked or from their most favorite restaurant). In terms of when to do this, it’s up to you. You can ask within days of the birth, of give the new mom and dad a little breathing room and visit a week or two post-birth.
  • Don’t show up unannounced, especially to the hospital. Instead, schedule a visit with the parents based on a date and time that is convenient for them.
  • Do be punctual when visiting the baby.
  • Don’t stay for more than an hour.
  • Do wait for the mother to offer for you to hold the baby, and be sure to wash your hands before you cuddle with the darling angel.
  • Don’t bring children (namely toddlers or sick little ones) or pets with you when visiting the new baby.
  • Do bring a baby gift or flowers – remember, never show up empty handed! Here are some ideas for baby essentials 
  • Don’t visit the baby if you’re ill or have recently been ill.
  • Do show your support and love if the baby has been in the NICU by congratulating the new parents, sending flowers, cards, a baby gift, etc.
  • Do send a baby gift once you receive the birth announcement (if you’ve generously given gifts at the shower or when meeting the baby, this doesn’t apply unless you’re so inclined).
  • Do check in on the new mama (she will appreciate it!), by sending a quick text such as “How are you and baby?” or “Hope you’re enjoying this special time! Thinking of you!”

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