Picture This: Out to lunch with my family and the waitress thought my baby was so cute that she kept bending down to talk to him. Brody was acting like his normal, flirtatious self and just when I was about to take a bite of my salad, she did the unspeakable. She picked up my baby, right out of his high chair.
OH NO YOU DIDN'T… Why yes she sure did!!!
Just because I know you for five minutes, doesn't mean you should pick up my baby out of his high chair. When she saw the horror in my face she knew to make her unwanted cuddles short-lived. However, when she tried to put him back in his high chair, he wasn't having it. She officially ruined the momentum and lunch was now in a to-go box.
But it doesn't end there. A friend of mine recently asked me if Brody was teething and before I could answer she took her finger and swiped his gums. I gasped quite loudly and was mortified that she would stick her finger in his mouth. I have so many stories and for some reason its taken four kids for me to be so in tune to this violation of my baby's space. What is a mother to do to get people to adore him from afar? I know he's cute, but must everyone touch his hands, mouth and even pick him up without asking?
One of the biggest causes of the spread of germs comes from other people's hands. I totally get it that everyone wants to touch him, he's quite adorable, but your fingers just touched that doorknob and who knows what germs are creeping on them.
Ways to Handle Strangers Invading Your Baby Space
- Get A Sign- There is now a baby sign that you could clip to your stroller or car seat that reads, "Please wash your hands before touching mine… Doctors Orders." It comes in bright colors and in English & Spanish. For $7.99 you could save your baby from wondering hands. I kid you not!
- Be Firm- Once that stranger lays eyes on your baby, you better believe and know he/she will try to touch his little fingers and possibly hold him. Right from the start you need to say, "I am worried about germs right now, so please don't touch his hands." Please note I have said that before and the person decided to touch his face instead, so simply say, "DONT TOUCH."
- Blame The Baby- This one works like a charm for setting some boundaries. Right from the start when the stranger looks at him say, "Don't get too close he is just getting over an awful virus. Poor baby has been vomiting for days." You can be sure people won't want to expose themselves to that kind of bug.
- Bundle Them Up- Another tactic that could have you hashtag #winning is bundling your baby. If the baby is swaddled and/or has baby mittens on then at the very least their hands are covered and protected. There are plenty of pajamas that have built-in mittens, I suggest you pile up on them.
- Stroller Coverage- Most strollers today have baby nets that cover the stroller to protect little ones from unwanted insects. Who knew it can also protect your baby from googling eyes? Works like a charm! No way is a stranger going to move the netting, but if they do just keep a fly swatter in your stroller's basket. Maybe then they will get the hint. (wink wink)
- Walk Away- This one is a little hard with my jovial personality, but if all else fails just walk away. Say, "I am so sorry we are late for an appointment," You will know if the stranger is oohing and ahhhing that they are gearing up to touch your baby. If you wait, its your own fault. This may be a little rude, but you have to protect your baby from these unwanted germs. You have to simply walk away.
Strangers touching my baby with dirty hands is just as gross as someone licking your cheek. You see, every time someone puts their unwanted hands on his, he nine out of ten times puts his hands right after the gross encounter in his mouth. It's unsettling for me as his mother. This unwanted encounter exposes my sweet baby to being sick and you can bet it will run through my entire house. Smile, wave, talk in baby blabber, dance and spin, but please DON'T TOUCH! Cool?
I would love to hear from you, comment below and let me know your baby's gross encounters.