Okay, so you’ve been invited (or invited yourself) to the home of a friend who has an infant. “It’ll be great”, you think. “I’ll breathe in all that beautiful baby smell ’til I’m delirious from all the cuteness. Plus they probably haven’t had visitors in ages, they’re just dying to have someone else in their home”.
Then, you don’t get invited again or they’re always out of reach when you try to arrange another visit because you didn’t see the parents exchange pained grimaces behind your back the whole time you were there. You don’t have a child, so we get that you think you can come over, eat our food and laugh from deep within your belly while the our baby’s sleeping.
Don’t sweat it, you don’t have to be that douchebag anymore, not with these handy hints:
Respect the routine
Parents love nothing more than to let others know that their baby’s finally sleeping at specific times. If you haven’t picked this up from chatting with them, ask what the baby’s routine is like and find a way to slot your visit in there. The greatest consequence of getting a baby out of routine is parents getting even less sleep than usual and you don’t want to be responsible for that, do you?
When visiting parents with infants, unless you know otherwise, assume they’re poor; time poor, money poor, style poor, sleep poor…take your pick. So even if you’re going over for dinner, take along something for all of us to nibble on while the corn casserole is on the go. Chances are, what you bring will probably be all we’ll get to eat, anyway.
You’re a guest, not a king
For the love of crying in a bucket; wash a plate, pick up after yourself, go get your own glass of water, and get me one while you’re at it.
Give us decent notice when you want to come over
Our lives are run with military precision and each hour of each day has already been pre-determined for the preservation of our sanity. When you tell us you’re coming over 15 minutes before you arrive, you’re probably going to mess with the sleep routine (see point #1) which sets in motion a potentially cataclysmic set of events that can, may, possibly definitely will result in an overstimulated baby and as we all know now Overstimulation is the thief of sleep.
Let sleeping pups lie
You plan a trip to see your favourite little baby (the pretext is that you’re coming to visit us, the parents, but we know better than that). You get there and find that they’re napping. Don’t wake the baby or ask the parents to wake him up quickly so you can see him before you go. Babies work in mysterious ways and it’s not for us to question such things. Should it be your fate that you miss playing with the baby because they were sleeping; tough. Just suck it up and make plans to return (if you weren’t already a douche and worked your way out of a second invite).
Look, it really shouldn’t be all that difficult, unless things like courteousness and consideration for others is something you struggle with generally. If all else fails, just have an infant of your own to see what it’s like to have to deal with the likes of you.
Author: Tshepo Mogotsi – Millennial Dad Blog
I recently connected with a Papa-blogger/Daddy-blogger, Tshepo from Millennial dad (http://millennialdad.co.za) and I just loved reading through his blog, for so many reasons, but top of the list being his obvious obsession for his family. The post I’ve shared above tells it all – it’s refreshing (it’s not every day that we see one of our African brothers putting fingers to keypad to bring us their perspective of parenting), honest and so real (hey, I have a lot of visitors lately).
Mama’s, please show Tshepo some love by following his blog and connecting with him on social media:
Tshepo, thank you for allowing me to share this post.