Can I Hold Your Baby?

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Categories Infants, Other people

Hi all! I’m Rebecca D, a middle school teacher by trade and SAHM for the year. My fraternal twin boys are 5 months old. We live in lovely San Francisco.

When I was pregnant, I became quite the neighborhood fixture with my daily walks. I trundled up and down the block (sometimes aaaallll the way to the ice cream shop), happy to finally be out of the house, yet already looking for a bench to sit down. You know the drill, twin mamas. Yay, I’m up and going somewhere! Let’s do this!! Please get me back home immediately, everything is uncomfortable and I can’t make it another step.

My point is, I had a lot of time to get used to the attention – from the horrified stares to the kind smiles. Once the boys were born, of course, we couldn’t go into a store without hearing the usual exclamations/questions/weird things people say to babies. And everyone, EVERYONE, thinks one of my kids is a girl. I think the general public has a secret wish that all twins are boy/girl. But I digress.

I expected these things, and have become accustomed to them. It can be sort of nice or damned annoying depending on how much I’m struggling to remember what the hell I came into Smart and Final for.

But there is one comment that is increasingly catching me off guard. People totally ask me if they can hold one of my babies.

Do parents of singletons get this too? Or is it just a twin thing, ’cause we like, have a spare?

I was at the library today for Baby Rhyme Time, aka Somewhere to Take Your Infants (it’s pretty great. And free.). I had one of my boys in the Bjorn and I was holding the other on my hip. We were singing and dancing along with the rest when another mom commented on their cuteness (aw thanks), asked if they were identical (one has red hair and one has black hair so…no), and then asked if I wanted any help (I got this, lady). A few minutes later, she turned around again and asked if she could please hold one.

Is it just me? But hell no. I’m not handing my infant over to a stranger, no matter how many I have.

The thing is, this happens on a regular basis. Yet I cannot imagine someone asking a parent of a singleton, someone they have never seen before in their lives, if they could hold the baby.

So I have to know. Do I live in the most baby-crazy community in the entire world and folks are just looking to get their fix? Is their cuteness so irresistible that people are drawn to my kids like moths to the flame? Or is this just another strange thing that twin parents hear because we happen to have more than one?

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RebeccaD has 8 month old fraternal twin boys, R and M. She’s a teacher-turned-SAHM in San Francisco who loves dance, quilting, and geeking out over DIY projects. Having twins is challenging her perfectionism in the best possible way.

7 thoughts on “Can I Hold Your Baby?”

  1. Ha! I live in the Bay Area too and I have never had anyone offer to hold my baby but I too would stare at them in disbelief if they did. So strange! I also have one red head :)

  2. I can’t remember strangers ever offering to hold my babies, but friends did all the time (which I was fine with). I wonder whether it was because you appeared to have a “free” baby on your hip, although, come to think of it, I’ve ventured out plenty often with one kiddo in my Baby Bjorn and the other in my arms or on my hip.

  3. That’s just crazy! I had a lot of random people from church/social circles ask to hold one of the baby as I was getting the two others ready and I did let them. But I don’t remember ever a total stranger asking for that (at least not without presenting it as an offer to help).
    Since I didn’t like the constant attention I did often disguise the babies into a singleton by placing them both in a single bassinet stroller.

  4. This post is so funny! My twins are only 3 months, but we get a lot of attention with our double Snap-n-Go. I always pull the sun shield completely over them in public so they don’t constantly get a face full of strangers. And wouldn’t you know, people will contort themselves to get a look under there, as if maybe there aren’t actually two babies, or maybe I’m transporting an exotic animal or something.

  5. I laughed when I read this! The same thing happened to me when my identical twin daughters were babies. I think people that don’t have twins are so enamored by their phenomenon that they want to be a part of it. Of course, like you I smiled politely and declined. Then high-tailed it away from the crazy lady…

  6. I live in china and I got that a lot. At one point, when they were almost one, i tried to see how my kids felt about it. sometimes the baby would move towards the friendly woman and ask to be held by her. Just a random, strange thing that I won’t forget.

    Generally there is great affection for babies here, and particularly foreign babies, not to mention boy/ girl twins.

  7. Just to conclude, I never liked being asked, often pressured, to let my baby be held by a random, strange, albeit rather friendly woman.

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