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Tip-toe-ing around new baby

(71 Posts)
sandra Thu 12-Jan-12 10:45:04

My DS and his partner have a new baby, 8 weeks old (our 1st GC) who we all adore!
When they are at home baby doesn't go back to his cot to sleep during the day. He plays on his baby gym and if he falls asleep they tuck him up and he snoozes happily there. He has slept through the night from the first day home so I guess doesn't need much sleep during the day.
However, when they come to ours, say for dinner in the evening, the sit him in his little baby seat where he may nod off for a few minutes. During this time they seem to expect us all to tip-toe around and speak in whispers which I think is unreasonable as well as impractical. My other son and my DH are not quiet people and just don't do quiet! Whilst they were with us last night my other son was told by baby's mum, "He's trying to sleep!" and my son said to baby, for our benifit obviously, "Did Grandad slam the door and wake you up?" The atmosphere was a little strained and I don't feel I should have to feel like this. It's my house after all! By the way we all get on well normally. What to do?.....

Annobel Tue 17-Jan-12 07:28:16

Given that babies can hear sounds when they are still in the womb, it might be quite strange for them suddenly to be subjected to silence!

pinkprincess Tue 17-Jan-12 01:39:04

Talking about drawers for cots Jeni, my mother said her cousin, born in the 1930s, slept in a drawer for the first few months of her life. Her parents were so hard up they could'nt afford a cot.
What a change now, when hand outs are given all over the place!.
The same baby grew up to be the first in the family to go to univerity.

maxgran Mon 16-Jan-12 10:45:43

As I said earlier - my daughter's children slept through all the nbormal household noice,.. my Son & DiL, on the other hand would whisper and creep about when their son was a baby. They are expecting another baby in May and I think they will find it difficult to keep their now 4 year old son quiet for the new baby because they let him be noisy all the time !!

GoldenGran Mon 16-Jan-12 10:33:21

I have step-son and a step-daughter in -law and they have an adorable daughter who is now 6 months, but the first three months we really did have to tip toe around and often did and said the wrong thing. However yesterday she rang me up and asked me to have cute GD for a weekend in April-- Major, major break through, she said we, my DH and I, were the only ones she could trust to do it, flattery probably, but we were thrilled, I can't wait. JessM i do think that parents now seem to be a bit older and the sleep thing, or lack of it, is a major cause of stress.

JessM Mon 16-Jan-12 09:23:39

glammanana it is hard when they grow up so fast isnt it. I notice it particularly with only seeing mine at long intervals due to the 12,000 miles...
I think DS1 is going to stop at 2. How could they cope with 3. It would be a nightmare.
My DS 2 has had high dose chemo and says he does not want kids. (just as well as he may be infertile now) I hold out hopes that he might at some stage acquire some nice step kids at least as he would make a great dad. sad
maxgran I think your lot have the right idea. But once a pattern established... it is the parents call.
I think it is hard for us to remember the intense anxiety and sleep deprivation that some new parents are suffering. The baby's sleep can become the holy grail and nothing else is in any kind of perspective in those few short months.

maxgran Mon 16-Jan-12 09:00:37

WHen you have a new baby and are tired through sleepness nights etc I think you are really pleased when the baby is asleep - just for some rest & peace ! However, a baby will get used to normal levels of noise and there is no need to tiptoe around.
If your DS & his wife are very quiet in their home then the baby will not be used to noise levels in your home.
Its usually sudden loud noises that wake or distress a baby.

My Daughter used to use the vacuum and have the radio on when each of her babies were asleep in the same room - they never stirred !

Nuttynanna Sun 15-Jan-12 23:58:32

Surely there's a difference between keeping quiet - not giving advice, and keeping quiet when new parents are being unreasonable or rude in your own house. It's a tricky line to walk but a gentle reminder that it is a noisy house can't hurt. After all, it's not going to be news to your son. We also have a new grandchild and live in a noisy house - grandad is getting very deaf so no chance of the sounds of silence here. Everything is full volume.

glammanana Sun 15-Jan-12 13:24:19

Super best time of the week when Lukie and I have our cuddles,but I am noticing that he is growing up a bit too fast and is a bit consious of the affection that he receives,and that is only because he is the baby of the family.I would love another baby in the family but there is no chance with my 2DSs.

supernana Sun 15-Jan-12 12:25:07

glamma Nanas are good at cuddles smile

glammanana Sat 14-Jan-12 23:25:04

When my DGCs where tiny they we always had a travel cot in the house and we put it in the spare bedroom,when DD came with the children the cot was used for nap's and quiet time,because adults need their quiet time also and no one had to tip toe around them,even now with my youngest DGS being 8yrs old when he is tired I think nothing of telling him to lay on nana's bed and have a nap.(even been known for me to cuddle up with him)

jeni Sat 14-Jan-12 22:54:09

seasider in the midlands I have known babies to arrive when nobody knew anybody was pregnant( including the mum to be ). In these cases te bottom drawer of a chest of drawers was utilised!

harrigran Sat 14-Jan-12 22:33:02

Today I had the pleasure of watching a baby of 9 months have his lunch in the restaurant. Unusually, the mother did not have a bagful of equipment. She placed baby in the highchair and tied a napkin round his neck and then fed him from the meal that she was having. The baby had bread and soup followed by fish and potato and washed down with fresh orange juice. She used the adult cutlery too and the baby coped well.This is the way we used to feed ours.

Zephrine Sat 14-Jan-12 12:52:47

The Times Weekend today has a huge section on Bringing up Bebe the french way. I don't agree with everything it says but there is a huge amount of good sense there especially about feeding and manners. I may leave it lying around for my DD to see. Of course I don't know if French children are all as well behaved as it says!! smile

Carol Sat 14-Jan-12 12:12:13

Annobel you're so right. Advice given without the offer of 'what can I do?' may not be welcome. Someone to take rubbish out to the wheelie bin, iron a few things and hang them up, or turn up with a cooked meal, is what new parents need when they're busy and tired. It's while you're doing a few mundane tasks that you get the benefit of seeing lots of the new grandchildren, and can casually slip in the odd suggestion without being overpowering.

NannaJeannie Sat 14-Jan-12 11:51:02

I am of the view that you should give advice and even action. Before Christmas my DD decided that DGS (2) should grow long hair. His hair had not been cut for ages, it was in his eyes, and sticking out all over. I said 'for gods sake - may I go and get his hair cut', she ummed and ahhed. So I put him in the pram and whipped him to the end of the road for a 'boys trim'. He was as good as gold in the barbers chair. When I got back she said 'Oh you do scrub up well'.

Now she has said would I get his hair trimmed again in a few weeks please.

It would be far more difficult with a DIL though I think.

seasider Sat 14-Jan-12 00:32:29

When my children were little we had a hotel. When they were small babies they slept in a room behind the bar, until we went to bed, so I could tend to them if the monitor went off. They slept through music, chatter, doors slamming and all the other noise of the hotel. I believe that life should carry on as normal and babies will adapt. We had to take our holidays in Winter and used to go abroad for some sun so all of them travelled from a very early age as well . We once arrived in Greece late at night to find the cot we had ordered was not in the room. We were told they could not get a cot until the following day. After some thought we hit on the idea of putting our son to sleep in the suitcase on a bed of towels. He was very snug and could not roll out and he slept very well!

sandra Fri 13-Jan-12 12:35:53

AnnobelI have 3 sons and, like you, no daughters and I also treat them like my own and honestly love them to bits. My youngest son's wife is really receptive to any shows of affection, be they practical advise or hugs! This one however, see the same thing as being patronising - bit of a chip on her shoulder for some reason. So not so easy to help.

Annobel Fri 13-Jan-12 11:27:07

Thinking about this, I've realised that when I had a new baby what I wanted from my parents (MiL not on the scene) who came to stay for a couple of weeks wasn't advice but help. Advice not needed because no1 was a very easy baby, but I was anaemic (having iron injections with what looked like a horse needle) and needed practical help which I did get. My point being that if you put an arm round the DiL and give her sympathetic support, asking if there's anything you can do for her, she might be more receptive to advice. I treat mine as the daughters I never had.

sandra Fri 13-Jan-12 11:02:06

Have decided to play it by ear. If any actions/comments really bother me I will say so. Have obtained a very nice second hand travel cot (EBay £10!) will put this in the guest room and hope it's useful. Thanks for all the advise by the way, it's good to talk! thanks

JessM Thu 12-Jan-12 20:06:40

Yes Phoenix but if MIL takes that attitude it is not a recipe for her future relationship with her DIL.

Anne58 Thu 12-Jan-12 19:53:38

No, you are not being unreasonable, but they are!

Babies have to adapt to the world that they live in, not the other way around.

I made so many mistakes with my first, only ever put in his cot once asleep etc. Number 2 was put in awake, I would hoover (sorry, product placement, I mean vacuum) around the house, catch up with other chores, phone friends etc.

Seems like they are being far too precious.

Sorry, harsh but true, but just because you have a small baby, the world (or even the rest of your family) will not dance to your tune.

Get over it!

Pennysue Thu 12-Jan-12 19:05:21

JessM I agree there are times when you have to step in (make a suggestion) My GS was a very large baby and at about 3 months was not thriving, was miserable, did not sleep etc. I suggested he was hungry and was told they could not give solids for the first (I think at that time) 6 months. But DiL was so desperate I sent my son to the shop to get some Farleys rice made up a bottle and it was like a miracle. He took the lot and slept well for the first time. DiL carried on and it did no harm. He is now 17, 6' tall and a rugby player.

DiL would after that ask for advice if she was not sure. I never again "butted in".

As I have said before "throw away the book the baby has not read it" they are as individual as every other human.

jeni Thu 12-Jan-12 18:10:06


bagitha Thu 12-Jan-12 17:57:13

Thanks, jeni. That is what I do. Resting does help. Down to a dull chest annoyance now. hmm

jeni Thu 12-Jan-12 17:27:07

baggy asthma is horrible I know. Just try and relax and think of things liketha air air at sea, or on top of an alp. It can me, I know---