Top 5 Things Not To Say to/Ask New Parents

The worst offenders and what you could ask instead.

  1. “Is he/she sleeping through the night?” If the baby is younger than 5 months, you know the answer to this question. Instead, ask how the parents are feeling. This is a simple question with a lot of weight because not enough people ask how the parents are doing. It’s all about the baby (rightfully, but still). The first time the pediatrician asked me if I was OK, I cried. It matters. Please ask.
  2. “Are you breastfeeding?” Why is everyone so obsessed with this? And why is it your business? If my baby doesn’t look malnourished, then I must be feeding him somehow, right? A relative (husband’s side) said that it was the “big fad” now. No. It’s not a fad. It’s been a way to feed your baby since the beginning of time. I honestly don’t have an answer for questions you should ask instead. Maybe just how’s he/she eating.
  3. “Do you want more kids?” If the new baby is younger than a year, don’t ask. How could any sleep-deprived, clueless, first-time parent know the answer to this? Especially a mother who just went through the trauma of it all? Maybe just don’t ask.
  4. “You should have more kids.” No, YOU should have more kids. My body is not your body. If I’m ready, I will. I understand that maybe you think all kids should have siblings, and as someone with a sister, I would tend to agree. But you shouldn’t *tell* me to do anything. Even if you’re just making conversation.
  5. “What time?” Now this is a perfectly legitimate question on any given day about any given event. However, when you have an unpredictable baby (like in the first two months), it’s so hard to give you a specific time. So just roll with us here and give us an hour. We’ll try to be there within that hour. A specific time is too much to ask of a new parent who has no idea what their baby’s schedule is yet.